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Casting Methods Reference Book: Lost Foam Inside

Editor: Nicole Kareta

The lost foam technique offers numerous advantages in the production of castings. The book "Lost Foam Inside", published by Lost Foam Council e. V. (LFC), provides users and newcomers with practical experience and in-depth insights into the process.

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From the individual process steps to the use of materials and quality control, the reference book provides a precise overview of lost foam casting.
From the individual process steps to the use of materials and quality control, the reference book provides a precise overview of lost foam casting.
(Source: gemeinfrei / Pixabay )

Already in the development phase of component design, considerations of weight and material savings as well as functional integration and component reduction must be taken into account in order to be able to decisively influence the possibilities of value creation. The book "Lost Foam Inside - For the use of aluminum, cast iron, steel and non-ferrous metals" thus targets not only foundries but also designers and design engineers. The book offers a comprehensive insight into the possibilities of component design, application and entry into the lost foam casting process (LFCP).

From Basic to Specialist Knowledge

What is lost foam casting? The first chapter provides basic information about the procedure. For this purpose, the most important process steps - from raw materials for the patterns through molding to demolding and extraction - are explained using the example of aluminum lost foam casting in series casting.

A major strength of LFCP lies in the possibility of manufacturing functionally integrated cast parts with high complexity and low wall thickness. In addition to the wide range of design options, technical, economical and ecological advantages are discussed and opposed to possible disadvantages. Further focal points in this chapter are the procedural differences between the materials used and the comparisons between full mold casting and lost foam casting.

Another emphasis is on design characteristics such as channels, drillings, breakthroughs and undercuts as well as tolerances, which can be compared with those in chill mold casting. In addition, foundrymen and designers are informed about the advantages of calculation and simulation programs, as these allow predictions to be made about the casting process and the later properties of the casting.

Thematic Subdivision

The book also distinguishes between two main processes, to each of which a chapter is dedicated - pattern making, which deals for example with the use of different pattern materials or the joining of foam pattern segments, and the casting process itself. The latter provides a detailed description of the process, which includes manual pouring, influencing factors for the casting process and possible defects.

Further chapters of the book are:

  • Process equipment
  • Tools for production and gluing of the patterns
  • Quality assurance and quality control
  • Statement on the introduction of the lost foam casting process

Behind the Scenes

The LFC is a registered association that is supporting the scientific and technological development of the lost foam casting process in Europe. From foundries and pattern makers to equipment and material manufacturers, all members of the LFC were involved in the creation of the book. The contents reflect the many years of experience of the members and thus offer added value for all companies and institutions involved in the process chain - from the development and production of polymer foam models to the completion of cast parts as prototypes, small or large series.

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