Re: V-12 Engine castings. Which alloy is better?

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Posted by Lyle Landstrom on September 06, 19100 at 12:45:55:

In Reply to: V-12 Engine castings. Which alloy is better? posted by Tom Kay on September 03, 19100 at 09:31:23:

I've cast in both 356 and 319 alloy. Engine cases should be heat treated and both alloys are suitable for a T-6 heat treatment. Both alloys are common. The 316 alloy has a little copper in it as well as silicon and the 356 has mostly silicon added with no copper. Harley Davidson uses 319 alloy and most aftermarket engine case builders use a 356 alloy. The main thing is the alloy should be heat treatable which means it should have some silicon in it. Silicon will also increase the fluidity of the aluminum.

Atlas metals in Colorado will ship these alloys to you if they are not available around you. Most pistons are good scrap because they have silicon in them and are a heat treatable alloy. It works best if they are melted into ingots first and then recast into whatevery your making. The first melt seems to burn most of the impurities such as oil and carbon out. Most books reccommend cleaning scrap first with a wire wheel but I find that melting them into ingots works well.

Are you degassing those cases? If so, what methods are you using? I'm building a nitrogen bubbler and could use a little advice. I just got finished casting my first Indian motorcycle engine cases a couple of weeks ago so I'm kinda on the same track as you.


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