Part geometry is a major issue when converting a wear application to carbide. LPM allows the engineer or End item user to use his imagination. Retco stands ready to demonstrate the feasibility of your geometric design. Some examples of different geometric shapes are; nozzles with an angled exit, rectangular nozzle, interior dimension ( I.D), with a venturi , ears or locating lugs on an outer dimension ( O.D.), countersinks or undercuts already molded in that dont have to be ground. A major tooling advantage can be obtained when a part has the same outer dimensions but has several I.D. details, say 0.015-0.250 inch. The same mold body can be used and core rods built for the different I.D.s as they are required. Irregular shaped parts that cant be pressed can be injection molded. The smallest part currently being manufactured is a 0.300 inch (7.62 mm) long nozzle which has a 0.011 inch (0.28 mm) venturi in the I.D. This part weighs less than a gram. The largest part currently in production is a feeder tube that is 7 inches (176 mm) long with a 1.25 inch (31.75 mm) O.D., a 0.750 inch (19 mm) I.D.. This tube has a 5° angle about 1/4 of the way up from the entrance and a 1.0 inch radius in the I.D at the exit end to divert the flow 90° to exit the tube. This part weighs 550 grams.
Retco has yet to determine what the maximum dimensions suitable for LPM are. We have made complex nozzles with a 0.006 inch (0.15 mm to 0.750 inch (19 mm) I.D.s. We are currently producing nozzles that have a 90° change of direction on the exit end.
Retco as molded tolerances are a function of actual dimension. Dimensions up to 0.100 inch ( 2.54 mm) are ± 0.002 inch ( 0.05 mm). Every dimension above 0.100 inch are currently being held to ± 0.005 per inch ( 0.127 mm). We can work with the customer to meet his desired dimension or show why an alternative dimension would work.
When the part geometry is such that you require a near net shape to reduce fabrication costs, then LPM is the process you should use. The LPM advantage in the myriad of geometry required is a plus in trying to solve your wear problems . As a rule, carbide will wear 10 times longer than steel. A near net shape tungsten carbide part can reduce your down time and maintenance costs.
Retco has been in the carbide business since 1959. In 1994, the low pressure molding department was added . We can produce geometry that can not be produced by any other form of manufacturing, especially creative I.D.s. By producing near net shape parts, tighter tolerances can be held for efficiency in final operations. We strive to provide materials and products that are the leading edge of the Metal Industry, insure that meeting or exceeding your specific need is paramount, Analyze, Ask Questions, and Communicate with our customers, apply the most advanced Quality Assurance and Non-Destructive Testing Techniques and provide unparalleled Customer Service.
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