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Foundry sand molds with 3D printers, present and future


In today’s technologies advance rapidly, a world in which advances day by day trying to continually seek improvement and innovation. There is, in this respect, an unwritten law very clear and simple, adapt or die. 

Just a few years ago, it was hard to imagine carry in your pocket a mobile phone with which to check the news at any time, check mail, banking ultimately endless possibilities unimaginable time ago. Today, however, it is difficult to imagine not take. This simple case provides a basis to explain how something that was not necessary before has now come to be. 

Let’s move now to the field this simple case that concerns us, the world of casting. The foundry industry strives daily to improve day by day he strives to reduce lead times and costs while maintaining the quality and accuracy of their castings. One way to achieve these goals is 3D printing, specifically 3D printing sand molds. This is to create the sand mold using a 3D printer automatically from the CAD data we have on the computer. In this case, as in the simple example above mobile phone, it is difficult to imagine a future in which this technological innovation does not flood the world of the foundry industry

3D printing allows quickly produce castings. The procedure, known as “Generis-Sand”, is based on a 3D printing technology, in which a molding material, such as quartz sand, is placed in thin layers on a base molding. You can vary the size of grain of sand depending on the surface quality we want. Then it has been printing selectively on the thin layer by injecting a binder material, typically furan resin. The resin is injected only necessary to move the mold and forming the particles into and attached below the layer areas. Finally, we proceed to clean the unbonded sand by compressed air, a vacuum cleaner, a brush or a brush, thereby obtaining sand mold ready to work. 

For all this revolutionary production process sand molds are carried out it is essential to supply 3D CAD data printer model. Notice the enormous progress that involves creating a sand mold by typing the desired data into the computer and it is from them that the 3D printer to print automatically charge and realize that sand mold. Thus, the molds are produced without the use of tools and in a completely automated using the layer construction method. The 3D printer generates successively superimposing different layers until the mold is composed entirely. The addition process for creating molds with complex geometries and with excellent precision. There are countless advantages offered by this innovative casting method from a huge reduction in time, to a significant improvement in quality of the castings. You do not need to have draft angles and the lack of tooling costs makes this particularly economical process. With this technology you can think of any part geometry, you can even make items that are not manufacturable in traditional casting, such as fittings assembled parts without 
possibility of removal. 3D printers are generally faster, easier to use and cheaper than other manufacturing technologies by addition, and the range of services offered is very wide, with casting molds made  of sand can get to melt large pieces and weighing several tons. However, it is also possible to manufacture molds of sand foundry parts extremely small and with a very small thickness.


For a long time, the main area of  application of 3D printers was the automotive industry using the procedure for the production of auto parts and engine components. But ever occur to a greater extent for smaller molds series aimed at the end user. Even the preparation of specific parts is having a great boom. 

Working in 3D has become a necessity for companies that do not want to become obsolete. To maintain productivity and competitiveness, it is essential to incorporate this technology into the working methodology. 3D printers become part certainly in the near future, the majority of companies dedicated to the world of casting, obviously because of the many possibilities and advantages provided in the production of sand molds. These printers extol the maximum of any casting company, “more in less time and less cost.” Despite knowing the benefits of 3D technology for the production of sand molds and the desire of many companies to incorporate this technology into their equipment, printing are unable to do so because, today, there are still in short supply such printers at a very high price, factors that will gradually improve through the R & D departments. This aspect makes many companies hesitate to buy, doubts will dissipate in a short period of time since us strongly about the future of the smelter

3D printers to produce sand molds, present and future.

Iván Rueda Puchet