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All About Silicone Vacuum Casting

by Nice Rapid | Apr 01,2020 | Silicone Vacuum Casting

silicone rubber mold

Vacuum casting with silicone mold is referred as silicon vacuum casting which is the combination of two distinct methods: Vacuum Casting and Flexible Mold. This combination is possible because of the silicon resin that is used in the process to create the mold. Inside this mold polyurethanes are used that replicate the properties of the materials that are used for the mass production. Due to this there is a higher success rate in the method. Today, Vacuum casting is widely used across different industries in pre-series productions and small series for visuals, functional, assembly, mechanical and marketing testing processes.

What is Silicone Vacuum Casting?

Silicone vacuum casting is the manufacturing process that uses vacuum to draw out liquid material into the mold and it is completely different from the injection molding where the liquid is pushed into mold using screw. This vacuum casting process offers ample benefits and it is mainly useful for the parts which comprise of undercuts and finer details.

The process of vacuum silicone casting starts with master model which is created using one of the CNC machining methods and it is treated and finally mold is produced. After it is cut and master model is removed, the silicone mold is used in this stage casting resin is poured into mold and vacuum removes the bubbles as well as the air pockets to optimize and smoothen the finished products. Finally the resin part is treated under high temperature and removed from the silicone mold and it can be used for 20 more times to produce prototypes.

What Does Silicone Vacuum Casting Process Involves?

  • Step One – In the first step master models are created which are the 3D solids of CAD designs. It is created using the CNC machining or 3D printing and it is created at 40 degree. After it is created and checked the second step starts and it is silicone mold making.
  • Step Two – The second step involves casting of mold using liquid silicone. The casting box is filled with liquid silicone in half and then it is treated under high temperature until the silicone is fully treated and then it is allowed to treat in oven for 16 long hours. The extra silicone liquid is filled which is cured and heated and dried thereafter. The mold is cut open and master is removed.
  • Step Three – The third step involves pouring of casting resins into empty cavity so as to create copy of original with highest precision. You can also use 2-3 materials to make the mold, and the silicone mold is only suitable for designing 20 prototypes and copies of the main mold.

What is Silicone Vacuum Casting Capable of?

The automotive and mechanical industries are now reaping benefits of vacuum casting for mass production of a variety of mechanical and automotive parts. It is also used to produce fixtures and fittings of different materials which are compatible with different types of automobile. There are also other uses of vacuum casting in different industries for designing different parts from master model.

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