What is Die Cast Metal?
Die casting is a metal processing process, and die-casting metal is used in the die-casting process. Die-casting metals generally include aluminium, zinc, magnesium, copper, lead, nickel, steel and other alloys. These metals have different properties, uses and costs.
What does die-casting metal contain
Aluminum alloy is one of the most commonly used metals in die casting. It has good mechanical properties, strength and corrosion resistance, and you can see them in cold chamber die casting.
We often see them in our daily lives, such as aluminium alloy doors and windows, door locks, handles, etc.
Commonly used aluminium alloy models are 5083 aluminium alloy, 6061 aluminium alloy, 6063 aluminium alloy, 7075 aluminium alloy, 2024 aluminium alloy, 3003 aluminium alloy, and 1100 aluminium alloy.
Zinc alloys have lower melting points, making them suitable for low-temperature and hot chamber die casting.
At the same time, zinc alloy and other metals get along very well.
For example, zinc alloy can be formed with aluminium, which gives it better corrosion resistance; zinc copper alloy can be formed with copper, which has better corrosion resistance—high strength and hardness.
Zinc alloys are also widely used in die casting due to their low cost and ease of processing.
Magnesium alloys are very lightweight and suitable for manufacturing components with lightweight designs.
It has the characteristics of low density, high strength, good thermal conductivity and mechanical properties.
These characteristics make magnesium alloy play an important role in aerospace, aviation, automobile and other industries, but the relatively high price makes us almost use it in our daily lives. I can’t see it.
Commonly used magnesium alloy models are AZ91D alloy, AM60 alloy, AZ31 alloy, WE43 alloy, ZK60 alloy, and M1A alloy.
There are two main types of copper alloys commonly used in die casting: Brass and Copper-zinc alloy.
Brass suits indoor and outdoor environments, and general faucets, door handles, and decorations are die-cast.
Copper-zinc alloys are mostly used to manufacture various parts, such as valves, pipe fittings, and decorative materials.
They have high corrosion resistance and mechanical properties and are suitable for various environments. (It should be noted that although zinc-copper and copper-zinc alloys are only different in name order, the metal properties are different because of the different proportions of the alloys. Please don’t think they are an alloy).
Lead alloys have some special properties, high density, radiation protection and toxic properties, which make them used in specific applications, such as manufacturing lead alloy projectiles in shooting sports or cryogenic sealing and radiation protection parts manufacturing.
Nickel Alloys are typically used in high-temperature, high-pressure, corrosive or wear-resistant environments due to their strong material properties.
Die castings of nickel alloys include jet engine components, gas turbine blades and combustors.
Commonly used nickel alloy models are INCONEL alloy, HASTELLOY alloy, MONEL alloy, aluminium bronze alloy, and nickel aluminium alloy.
Will die-cast metal rust? How to prevent rust
Die-casting metals are likely to be rusted (rust is a chemical reaction that occurs when metals come into contact with oxygen and water or humidity), especially for aluminium alloys, magnesium alloys, and zinc alloys commonly used for die-casting.
Still, in die-casting, Before the parts leave the factory, corresponding anti-rust measures will be carried out according to their actual application. The common anti-rust measures are:
Applying an anti-rust coating is one of the most common methods. The coating usually involves spraying or dipping and can provide a protective barrier that stops the metal from coming into contact with air and water.
The use of specially designed anti-corrosion coatings can enhance the corrosion resistance of metals and prolong their service life.
Electroplating is a method of coating a metal surface with a layer of another metal, usually chrome, zinc, or nickel. This covering protects the metal from direct contact with the corrosive environment.
Regular cleaning and maintenance are important steps in preventing rust for products made of die-cast metal. Prompt removal of accumulated dirt and moisture on the surface can reduce the chance of rusting.
Avoid exposing die-cast metal products to high humidity for long. Humidity is one of the main factors of rust.
When storing die-cast metal products, choose a dry, well-ventilated environment to reduce the risk of rust.
Die casting metal cost comparison
Price Range (USD/ton)
Typical Characteristics and Applications
Which metals are not suitable for die casting
Most common steels are not suitable for die-casting because they have a higher melting point and require higher pressure and temperature to process.
For the die-casting industry, die-casting steel is too expensive and difficult to die-cast, so it is not suitable for die-casting craft. However, other methods, such as powder metallurgy, can manufacture some special steel alloys.
Like ordinary steel, most iron materials are not suitable for die casting because of their high melting point. Cast iron generally uses sand casting or other casting methods.
Ultra-high temperature metals
Such as tungsten, molybdenum, niobium, etc., are difficult to process by die casting due to their extremely high melting point.
Low melting point metals
Such as mercury, lead, and tin, these metals are not suitable for die-casting because they have become liquid at lower temperatures and do not need to be die-cast.
Can die-cast metal be welded
Die-cast metals can be welded, but it should be noted that die-cast metals often require surface treatment to remove oxide layers, grease and other impurities, which can ensure the quality of the weld. Common surface treatment methods include sandblasting, pickling, mechanical polishing, etc.
Is die-cast metal magnetic
The magnetic properties of die-cast metals are related to the type of metal and alloy composition.
Most aluminium, zinc, magnesium, and lead alloys are non-magnetic and will not attract magnets.
However, nickel alloys and some stainless steel alloys may be magnetic. For example, high-nickel alloys are magnetic, while the magnetic properties of stainless steel alloys vary depending on their specific composition.
This article takes you to explore die-casting metals, their metal characteristics, and cost comparisons. I hope you can have a deeper understanding of die-casting metals after reading this article.