Frequently Asked Questions

Below you'll find answers to our most commonly asked questions. If you do not find the answer you are searching for, please contact us using the form or call us at +1 (563) 382-4264.

Deco Products Questions

Contact Deco Products Team

Deco Products is not only an industry leader in die casting production it also has the experts to help with die casting part design.

With over 20 engineers and over 400 years of experience, our team can discuss the design options and trade-offs important for your design. It is critical to optimize the design as early as possible.

When designing a new part, our engineering staff works with your engineering team to determine when zinc alloy material is best. We then we help optimize the design for low initial cost and long-term value, considering tool design and life and ongoing long-term quality.

One of the first and key challenges faced by a design engineer is material selection. At times, zinc is not the best choice for a part, but for other times it is a great choice. The following attributes are key benefits of zinc alloy:

Faster production times
Closer tolerances
Thinner wall sections
Tougher in impact and more rigid
Improved machinability / malleable
Better bearing surface
Easier Finishing
Longer Tool Life
Increased haptics (a premium feel)

Contact Deco Products to discuss material selection more!

With over 20 engineers with over 400 cumulative years of experience, your next new product or tool transfer project is in “good hands” with Deco Products.

With tooling transfer projects, our team has seen it ALL! Frequently we can adapt the existing tool to one of our over 100 die casting machines. With so many machines, we have highly diversified options. There are instances when implementation is not easy and our team needs to be “creative” to adapt the current tool while ensuring a rapid, but also reliable solution. Our engineering and tool room professionals are proven to be dependable with many successful tooling transfer implementation projects over many years!

Click here for a further check list for a tooling transfer project.

With proper planning, lead-times can be as low as 1 day with our key partners. With this said, our standard lead-times can be as low as 2 weeks for a raw casting.

These rapid lead-times are part of Deco’s commitment to extra capacity and modular operational centers, but also partnering up with our key customers to align our production capacities with customer demands.

Deco Products often provides raw casting, but frequently design requirements require extra “value add” processes. The following list are important processes that Deco Products can provide:

Part trimming
CNC Machining
Powder coating
Corrosion protective plating
Decorative plating

Deco is a made in USA manufacturer with reliable supply chain strategies. Most of our material and sourced components are local and/or have redundancy in sourcing. Our products flow reliably even when the ports are stalled.

With over 11 million pounds of zinc alloy processed in our Decorah Iowa facility, only Deco Products can provide such scale to achieve the needed efficiencies, synergies, and value be the best solution for the challenges faced in today’s supply chains.

Rather than integrating multiple capabilities and materials (zinc, aluminum, magnesium, plastic, etc.) and having diverse but limited support, Deco Products specializes in zinc die casting and provides the most innovative, practical, and all-around best zinc die cast support and solutions. With zinc alloy integral to our history, since 1960, we have developed operational excellence to ensure reliable deliveries.

When it comes to prototype zinc die castings, there is no perfect solution currently. Prototyping methods can include rapid tooling, machined parts, investment casting, spin casting, sand casting, and 3D printing, all of which has some advantages and disadvantages. To learn more about each of these prototyping methods, check out our Prototyping Zinc Die Castings page. Or contact a Deco Product expert to help you navigate these options for prototyping and further support during the design verification/validation processes.

Deco products can produce parts from as small as a few ounces to as large as 8 lbs.

Deco Products has decades of experience in tooling transfers. Our expert engineers will work with you to ensure it fits onto one of our 88 zinc die cast machines. If needed, we can modify the tool in our tool room, and sample the part without interruption of ongoing production.

The best time to contact Deco for a quote is early in the part design process. By incorporating our engineering team early in the design process, Deco can help ensure the die cast parts are going to be manufactural and ready for your testing and/or production needs.

Deco does all die casting with zinc specifically. The zinc alloy types we use at Deco are ZAMAK #3, ZAMAK #5, ZAMAK #7, ZAMAK #2, ZA-8, and EZAC. Please visit our Zinc Alloys page to learn more.

Die Casting Questions

Typically, our engineering team aims for 1/10th of an inch over long areas, but for specific features parts can be cast thinner. Although this is typical, all parts and designs are unique. Our expert engineering team anticipates working with customer’s design idea regardless of desired thicknesses and thinness.

Yes, Deco recycles scrap zinc left over from the die casting process. This scrap gets melted down and molded back into parts. Unlike plastic, zinc material properties do not degrade when being re-melted.

All die cast parts will have some level of porosity. The trick is to minimize the size and amount of porosity. Deco uses mold-flow software to help minimize part porosity.

Measured (BTU/ft/hr/degrees F), the zinc alloy thermal conductivity for the alloys used at Deco are: (Zamak #3: 65.3) (Zamak #5: 62.9) (Zamak #7: 65.3) (Zamak #2: 60.2) (EZAC: 60-67) (ZA-8: 66.3) For more information look at our Zinc Alloys page.

Die cast parts are not easily soldered or welded together. However, a property of zinc die casting is its ability to be molded or cast into the desired shape. Thus, it is possible to take a design of multiple parts into a design with a single casting. Our exceptional engineering team can assist in your project to make sure Deco is providing you with the best option.

Powder Coating and Plating Questions

Deco offers over 100 different powder coating finishes with the ability to process special colors. Contact our sales team to request a color chip sample.

It is a standard rule of thumb to clean any part prior to applying a finish. It is the same for zinc die castings. However, it is not required to shot blast a zinc die casting prior to plating.

Quick Links

Sign Up To Deco's Quarterly Newsletter

No spam! Just relevant news, events, and updates about Zinc, Deco, and our services. Sign up for our quarterly newsletter today!

Sign Up To Deco's Quarterly Newsletter

Deco Products is committed to protecting your privacy.  By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance to the terms defined in our full Privacy Policy statement.