Inexpensive 2 Piece Die for Aluminium Casting


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Posted by Ben Mann on March 24, 19100 at 00:43:37:

I am trying to work out the viability of casting housing components for an electro-mechanical device out of aluminium (ok, aluminum in the rest of the world - this is Australia).

The question:

Anyway, my housing design consists of external detail with some internal flanges etc. to fit circuit boards and lenses and things. I am looking for a good way to cast this in a manner that is reproducable (so that I can cast 1 or 100), but inexpensive (done at home).

I have found so far that probably what I am looking for is to create a die which I can use repeatedly, however since I am aiming for 'inexpensive', a steel die may not be ideal.

Is it possible to build a 2 piece die out of plaster/sand mix? Could this be reusable? I realise it probably won't last forever, but at least for a few copies before I have to make another one...

I imagine that the other choice is for me to create a latex mould of the original part, then create a wax replica and use a lost wax method, which will result in destruction of the mould each time.

This is part of one of those 'research before you attempt' attempts, as I am a computer programmer / electronic engineer with 0 experience in this area! :)

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