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Involving your die casting supplier in the design process

by Martina Fagnani December 12, 2016

There can be many suppliers involved in the die casting process such as the raw material producer, the die caster, the toolmaker and others representatives of companies involving secondary operations. The right zinc die casting supplier is able to support its customer, anyway it is fundamental that the designer has knowledge of the material features and the process phases.


In fact, the most important person involved in the die casting process is the customer company's designer. This person has the knowledge of the die cast product design, performance, appearance and assembly costs. A good designer must be able to consider every aspect of the production and to organize it. Below a list of zinc die casting features for designers starting to develop products or components in zinc alloy:

  • Function
  • Weigh
  • Importance of simulation
  • Split line
  • Ejection phase
  • Cost



The function should determine the shape of the components; one of the main functions of a component is the ability to withstand operational stresses with a margin for safety. As the economy of zinc lies in the reduction in weight of an object, it is fundamental to fix the safety margin. It’s important to design the item just to withstand the operational stresses because the thickening of walls can be made during the pre-production run of the die. To improve a better collaboration between customer and supplier in this phase, a co-design activity is suggested to take care of all the production aspects.



Normally the zinc alloy die castings weigh is up from a fraction of a gramme to a kilogramme and have a maximum dimension of 300mm. The predominance of small casting is given by the increasing cost advantages of zinc alloy. However it is important to know that the special characteristics of zinc die castings can be used also for larger castings. The right zinc die casting supplier could show to customer the most performing way to achieve its goal.


Importance of simulation

The difficult will be increased if the designer does not pay attention to avoid sudden changes in section and to keep wall sections fairly even. Simulation and an entire department focused on these issues could help the customer to find the right solution for its product or component. A zinc die casting supplier, which has tools and simulation technicians, could support to optimize the component geometry, the die cooling placement and avoid casting defects.

Split line

The split line of the die is mostly given by the design of the component. The ability of producing a flash free component is given by the quality of the toolmaking and the ease of the manufacture and maintenance of the tool. Choose the right zinc die casting supplier that create molds help customers to avoid issue about split line. Considering the split line of the component, it is important to consider the position and length of the ingate. If the only available position does not give the chance for metal to flow directly into every part of the casting, then the good surface finish and is really difficult to achieve low porosity: it is possible to overcome the problem changing the configuration of the component. It is also important to remember that an adequate gate area will be needed and if the gate length is restricted the gate will need to be thick with possible consequences trimming problems and a heavy witness mark. In this case also computer optimization of runner and gate with simulation will be very useful to determine what gate length and thickness is necessary to reach a good casting quality.


Ejection phase

Final stage of casting is the ejection from the moving die half, it must ensure that both the casting and the runner are moved without distorting the component. It is a critical phase, but the right supplier should not have any problems in this case.



With zinc die casting technology it is possible to save costs in terms of additional machining and assembly. This system reduces the assembling of components and minimizes the machining process. The perfect zinc die casting manufacturer has the knowledge to develop components or products in a cost saving way. For the entire production process this is a competitive advantage in cost and time saving terms.


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Freely adapted from IZA 

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