Zinc Die Casting Parts
Zinc is a natural element found as a component of the earth’s crust. With deposits spread widely throughout the world, zinc ores are extracted in more than 50 countries. Added as a dietary supplement in vitamins, facial creams and sun blockers, zinc is an indispensable part of our daily lives.
While zinc has applications in many consumer products, zinc is primarily used in industry. The largest single use for zinc today is for galvanizing steel to provide protection from corrosion. The second largest use for zinc is the production of zinc die-castings. There are a number of reasons why designers and engineers take advantage of the inherent benefits of zinc die-castings in component design, but principally, the reasons are quite simple: zinc die castings are strong, they are economical, and they can often be cast to the exact shape required without the need for additional machining.
Zinc Alloy Die Castings
Among the other advantages of zinc die castings are the complex shapes and tight tolerances that can be designed as one-step castings. This allows sophisticated features to be added to a product without requiring any subsequent machining operations. The result is a beautiful and functional product with a competitive price. However, when necessary to allow for component features that are problematic to die-cast, zinc is easily machined or threaded, and accepts self-tapping screws.
Complex Shapes & Tight Tolerances
Zinc die casting produces multi-cavity, complex shapes within closer tolerances than many other production processes. In addition to producing high volume runs of virtually identical parts, it produces rugged heat and wear resistant parts that are dimensionally stable, while maintaining exceptionally close tolerances.
The die casting process gives designers the opportunity to save costs by consolidating components into one net-shape die casting, as well as potentially eliminating secondary operations such as machining. Zinc die castings have successfully been designed as bearings (eliminating bronze alloys), rivets, and threads. Due to these advantages, die castings are found in a wide variety of industries including automotive, building hardware, electronics, sporting goods, etc.
It should be noted that industry standard tolerances can be met and/or exceeded, if it is necessary to the design of the part. However, there are many factors that must be considered, such as; the shape of the part, where a feature is located within the tool, what is its position with other features of the part and if you are dimensioning across the parting line. When considering tool life and cost, it is best practice to allow generous tolerances and draft on areas with less fit, form or function and to tighten tolerances only in areas where it is necessary.
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