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Vacuum Casting
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Vacuum Casting
Get 5-200 low volume plastic parts in low cost by silicone mold vacuum casting.

Vacuum Casting

Vacuum casting, people also call it urethane casting or polyurethane casting, which is a manufacturing process used silicone moulds to make low-volume plastic and rubber components under vacuum. Due to the flexibility of silicone, it is an extremely adaptable process to produce complex parts with undercuts in polyurethane resins and cast nylon. Vacuum casting is popularly used in rapid prototype manufacturing for some parts need small volume and no special requirements for the product's materials.

Vacuum Casting Products

Vacuum Casting Process

Vacuum casting is one of the most economical prototyping and low volume manufacturing process, the working flows of vacuum casting:

Step 1: Prepare the master model by 3D printing or CNC machining. Since the casting parts are patterned by the master, so the master model must be perfect size and cosmetic.

Step 2: Located and firmed the master model into the right position of a custom size wooden box.

Step 3: Mix and pour the silicone into the box to create silicone mould.

Step 4: Split the silicone mould along with the parting lines by knife. This step must be processed carefully and detailed, anything wrong usually leads to mould damage.

Step 5: Take out the master model, maintain and store the master model well in order for the next round silicone mould making.

Step 6: Mix and pour the Polyurethane into the silicone mold to do the castings. Casting is under vacuum condition, the bubbles inside can be vacuumed out.

Step 7: Remove the gate, overflows and flashes on the casting parts.

Step 8: If the parts have post finish requirement such as painting, silk printing etc, we will process it after deburr.

Step 9: First part copied.

Step 10: First part inspection and quality control during low volume manufacturing.

Vacuum Casting for Resin Casting

Vacuum Casting For Resin Casting

As the development of molecular and material science, materials used in vacuum casting are diversities. Thermoplastics, rubbers and resins are the 3 major vacuum casting materials, which can emulate specific properties and characteristics including degrees of:

Vacuum Casting Materials1. Physical appearance quality.

2. Surface texture/finish.

3. Transparency/translucence.

4. Rigidity.

5. Flexibility.

6. Strength.

7. Hardness.

8. Temperature resistance.

9. UV stability.

10. Color.

Commonly Used Vacuum Casting Resins at TEAM Rapid

Vacuum Casting Material Comments Material Code
PU ABS  Flame retardant resin(UL94-V0 specification) Hei-cast 8263
PU Classic ABS This is the classic and most popular ABS compound. UP 4280
PU Classic PP PP resin compound - living hinges possible(typically 30 to 50 bends before breaking) UP 5690
PU PC Transparent. Mainly stimulates filled ABS or PC.  PX 527
PU PMMA(Acrylic) UV stable. Great for glossy, clear parts. Can be tinted or colored. This is classic acrylic substitute. UPX 5210
PU Rubber Rubber TPE resin. Variable hardness ranges from 40-85A. Can be over-molded. UPX 5690
PU Silicone Translucent silicone that can be used as vacuum casting mold and also for vacuum casting parts. ESSIL 296

Application of vacuum casting parts is massive. We usually depends on the parts function and application to suggest our customer about materials, UP4280(ABS like material), PX521(PC like material), UPX8400(Rubber like material) are some of the most commonly used materials at TEAM Rapid. Ready for your next vacuum casting project? Contact our team at  [email protected] to get free materials suggestions.

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