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Old 10-12-2017, 06:59 PM   #11
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For a flywheel, the easiest way of making them may be using a split pattern, just split it down the middle, and ramming the mold should be easy. Attached a picture of one of my flywheel patterns to illustrate. A couple brass pins keeps the registration between the cope and drag half of the pattern. The important part is that there is some draft, the metal don't care about the draft, its only there to make it possible to remove the pattern.

For the sloping part, a pice of cardboard or such could keep the sand out of the undercuts while ramming the drag. Just make it so that it becomes a V, so that there is no sharp corners when ramming the cope, then remove the cardboard pices before ramming the drag.

You could be able to use the same principle for the belt buckle, or you could do a false drag or molding board that helps you ram. A molding board could be as simple as a a pice of plywood with some cutout so that most of it lays flat against the board. False drag is a drag where you dig it down as you suggest.


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Last edited by ThomasSK; 10-12-2017 at 07:29 PM. Reason: spelling is hard...
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:36 PM   #12
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Thank you Thomas, looking at the Stuart one, this looks like it is most probably how Stuart did their casting for the flywheel/fan. You can see a taper which runs from outside edges to center line of the casting. Interesting.

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Old 10-13-2017, 08:45 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by MRA View Post
Wouldn't the parting line be pretty weird for those spokes / vanes, to preserve the draft in sand? I have a belt buckle I'm doing at the moment as a present for someone. My (wooden) pattern is curved, with detail on the back, and isn't going to part easily. I'm wondering if I can (and, by extension, you could) bury the thing in the drag as usual, then turn it over and mess about with a little trowel to dig it out a bit and sort the draft out, before adding parting powder and ramming the cope. That way it might come apart in one piece (well, two, but you know.)
A good way to deal with this would be to use a pattern that is not split and an 'oddside'. In this case it the oddside would be in the form of a plate, with a circular recess to locate the rim of the wheel pattern to half its depth, and projecting radial curved lumps to fill up the spaces under the spokes, and a bit more, to go up to different parting lines for the leading and trailing edges of the fan blade/spoke. The shape under the blade does not need to fit exactly, so long as it does so at the edges. It could be just two walls. However, the shape would also give consideration to the desired parting line on the inside of the casting rim and the outside of the hub, where it has to cross from the leading edge of one blade to the trailing edge of the next. This could be diagonal, or stepped adjacent to each blade.

The oddside, and the pattern on it, are placed on a board to ram up the drag, then turned and only the odd-side removed for ramming up the cope. The resulting mould cavity sits within the drag rather than half-and-half between the two boxes, but this does not matter. An additional benefit is that the draft around the edges of the base plate of the oddside forms a plug on the cope that helps to locate the two boxes accurately.
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Old 10-13-2017, 07:04 PM   #14
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Thomas - thanks. I'd been thinking about a moulding board with some holes in it to get the clasp projections out the way and the (curved) back of the buckle nearer to the parting line. And digging out = false drag - good to know it's got a name, which implies a degree of legitimacy!

And Charles - that's really neat, I can picture it in my head. It would be a bit of a sod to make, but the only way, really. Actually, a set of 'sloping slices of cake' might not be so hard to turn out and stick onto a board.
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Old 10-18-2017, 02:50 PM   #15
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When you say blades im assuming you mean fan blade spokes as opposed to plain spokes. If the original casting is iron or a die casting, you may have trouble duplicating it in aluminum gravity pour.

The problem would be freezing before the metal fills the vanes. And if not that stresses due to differential cooling between the rim and the vanes leading to cracking or failure. You may be able to address this with far mor material in the vane cross sections.

Another consideration is making the flywheel out of bar stock. For a one off this makes a lot of sense as the time involved would be far shorter. If the vanes are indeed fan blades the machining could be complicated especially if done manually. There is an option here though that is simple, that is to machine a conventional flywheel and then attach sheet metal vanes for air movement.

I know this is a casting thread but i had to point out that it may be far quicker to machine a solution. I suppose you could also cast a conventional flywheel and the attach sheet metal fan blades to it for a far simpler casting. I just see making a decent mold pattern for a flywheel with integrated fan blades as being very involved and time consuming. A bit of precision is required too to get a decent balance.
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Old 10-18-2017, 09:49 PM   #16
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Thank you Wizard, there is actually two that need making.

I can see your point on getting a balanced flywheel. The vains are for a fan the flywheel is for an air compressor, and cools the compressor whilst in action. I did think that it may be an easy (ish) job however I'm realising that it is not as easy as I first thought, for the reasons that are pointed out above, issues with the metal reaching all the areas of the cavity of the mould before it begins to cool. I'm thinking that they'll have to be multiple areas for the pour, and several risers to let the air escape. Certainly a lot more to think about.
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Old 10-19-2017, 06:04 AM   #17
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Multiple pour points isn't generally a good idea. Just as stopping and starting when pouring, this introduces oxidised layers into the cast material. The last thing you want is a 'layered' part with fault lines in it, especially when it's going to be rotating at a decent speed.

I'd like to be a perfectionist, but I lack the patience...not to mention the skill...
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