What’s the Deal with “Investment Casting?”
A short 3 minute read from
Fabspeed Motorsport USA
Investment Casting is a term we hear thrown around all the time in this industry - but what exactly is it?
Most of you may have a general idea of what Investment Casting is, but we want to clear up any misconceptions and show you how a 5,000 year-old metal-making process has become the backbone to the world’s top manufacturers.
Investment Casting, also referred to as lost-wax casting or precision casting, is a widely used practice. Modern Investment Castings are the best solution when performance and durability are the priority. The technique gets its name from the way the outer wax portion of the mold “invests” itself around the material (steel, aluminum, glass, etc.) used to form the piece.
To create the molds, most processes start with a precise wax copy of the part. The duplicate part is then coated in ceramic multiple times for added strength and then set to dry. After the mold has been set, liquid material is added into the casting and solidified.
The initial mold itself requires a substantial capital investment. To justify this expense a company often requires that the casting is used for manufacturing runs with significant quantities of finished parts. Other times, the cost is justified simply by the very high yield of consistent and quality parts. Either way, products produced with Investment Casting technology result in a finished component using completely solid metal which is much stronger and more durable than their fabricated counterparts.
At Fabspeed Motorsport we choose to use Investment Castings in many instances to allow our team to design, engineer, and fabricate the highest quality finished products for our customers. Our team uses CAD design software and 3D printers to create a prototype version of a new product for examination and testing. This allows us to test the parts on cars for fitment and appearance before we start the casting process.
Yes, using Investment Casting takes more time, and yes, it adds a bit to the cost to produce the product, but our craftspeople believe that the quality, longevity and performance we get from the process is well worth it. It’s one of the reasons we proudly give a Lifetime Warranty on all Fabspeed Motorsport brand products.