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Comparison of Standard Manufacturing Processes

The chart below summarizes the characteristics of the manufacturing processes we offer to help you choose the right one for your products.

PROCESS DIE CASTINGS PRECISION SAND CASTINGS RUBBER PLASTER MOLDING INVESTMENT CASTINGS PERMANENT MOLDING GRAPHITE PERMANENT MOLD
Weight Range 0-30 lb (0-15kg) 0-45kg 0~ 12 kg 0-20 lb (0~±10 kg.) 0 ~ 45 kg. 0 ~5 kg
Tolerance ±0.002" (±0.1mm); add ±0.015" across parting lines ±0.5-3.0mm ±0.2~3 mm ±0.003" to 1/4"; 0.004" to 1/2"; ±0.005" to 3"; then add 0.003" per inch ±0.4mm ±0.2mm
Flatness Within 0.2mm (geometry dependent) Within 0.5mm (geometry dependent) Within 0.3 mm (geometry dependent) Within 0.015" (0.2mm) (geometry dependent) Within 0.3mm (geometry dependent) Within 0.2mm (geometry dependent)
Surface Finsh 32-63 RMS 120-175 RMS, except on cored areas 63-125 RMS 63-125 RMS 150-300 RMS 63 RMS or better
Minimum Draft Required 1° to 3° 0.5° to 3° 1/2° to 2° None 2° to 4° 1° to 2°
Minimum Wall Section 0.030"-0.060" (0.8-5mm) Typical: 3.5-5mm; Minimum: 2.0 (geometry dependent) Typical: 2.5~5mm. Minimum: 1.0 (geometry dependent) 0.060" (1.5mm) 5 mm 2.5mm
Typical Quantities >2,000 All <2,000 <1,000 >500 500-1500
Typical Tooling Cost (N.R.E.) $3k-$100k $800-$4k $3K - 15K $3K - 10K $5K - 15K $1.5K - 5.5K
Nominal Lead Time Samples: 4-6 wks; Production: 4-6 wks after 1st article approval Samples:1 - 4 wks. Production:1 - 5 wks. after approval. Samples:2 - 4 wks. Production:1 - 5 wks. after approval. Samples:2-4 wks. Production:5-12 wks. after approval. Samples:8 - 20 wks. Production:10 - 12 wks. after approval Samples:3 - 6 wks. Production:2 - 4 wks. after approval. Lifetime use.
Data source courtesy: Special Metals Supply, Inc.