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Considerations for Reducing Die Casting Cycle Time

  • Die Casting

ELK GROVE VILLAGE, IL, January 5, 2021  

When it comes to die casting, cycle time optimization is more than just moving quickly. 

At first thought, the time required to complete castings should be as short as possible because more money can be made if you produce more parts per minute. But the world of die casting simply isn’t a minute to minute science.

Optimizing the die casting process is much more than moving as quickly as you can. We are sharing insights to consider for your die casting operations and the pros and cons of cutting time off your cycles.

The Importance of Correct Operation

Don’t worry so much about tasks like the three seconds to open, because you will likely find yourself paying for damages in the long run if you try to shave a second off. Doing the basic sequence of events correctly is more important to the time-cost savings. 

  • Die closing: Readying the machine to close and actual closing are two of the most important processes.  Shibaura’s electromechanical or conventional full hydraulic control is very good at controlling the closing of the machine and moving the ejector system and cores. This means a more consistent and uniform lock, straining the tie bars uniformly. 
  • Transfer of metal: Many methods can be used to pour or fill the metal and this process can also cause heat loss, porosity in the casting, or unnecessary turbulence.  Shibaura’s die casting ladle function is an integrated part of the control systems’ so it stays in time with the cycle ready to pour when needed.
  • Injection process: The injection process is the most important phase of the die casting process.  The timing, speed, and pressures used during the injection are all process-related and are not subject to operator changes. Time is not a variable during injection and adding or subtracting even a few seconds can greatly affect end results. 
  • Die cooling process: While using a die cooling system can reduce time, the cooler can also potentially crack the die if not done properly. Shibaura die-casting machine allows for the cooling of the die to be monitored by the machine control system to help maintain proper dwell time.
  • Die opening: During this process, the mechanical core movements should still be considered when deciding the opening speed since too much speed can damage moving elements.

Understand Potential Risks of Reducing Cycle Time

Operating the machine too quickly leaves a higher risk for things to go wrong. Time may look like it is being lost in the cycle time by slowing down a second or two, but in the long run, it will be time (and money) well spent. 

Even the slightest changes to the die temperature, metal temperature, shot speed, etc. can hinder the quality of the casting. While you may reduce cycle times you may realize defective castings increase.

Die castings performance may also be affected while working towards reducing cycle times. While it may take a few more seconds to correctly run a cycle, you will be less likely to break die casting pins, or wear and smash slides in the process. 

Your Partner in Die Casting

Die casting is a complex process that requires a well-trained operator. Ultimately, understanding and correctly operating the die casting machine will serve more important than working towards cutting seconds off of die cycle time. Shibaura Machine’s die casting machines offer a well-coordinated opening and closing with integrated processes that can save both time and money. 

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