The history of investment casting will continually be redefined through the advancement of materials employed in the process. Each passing year has shown that raw materials can be combined in such a manner that results in improvements of process and cost. Investment cast wax, ceramic, and alloys combined with improved equipment to produce castings on a high or low volume basis ensure that the process will be deployed well into the future. Once the molds have been done then the wax patterns will be produced as well. Patterns of the precision castings are done in two ways: first is where wax is poured into the mold and swished to produce even coating; and the other is through leaving the filled mold until it is cool and the desired thickness is obtained. When the wax patterns are removed from the mold then assembly should be done.
Advancements in the pattern making, wax, refractories, and melting equipment have resulted in processes that can hold extremely tight dimensional properties. Modern investment castings generally hold dimensions that are measured by a few thousandths of an inch per inch. This allows components to be made that often can be used directly from the manufacturer without subsequent machining. Worst cases allow the parts to be near net shape, which minimizes the amount of handling and processing to be completed on the casting. Users of these casting processes can also deploy the process to create parts that can be poured in thousands of different materials including steel, non-ferrous materials, duplex alloys, aluminum, iron, and more. One of the most recent advancement in investment castings is the lost foam casting. This type eliminates some of the steps in the entire process. On an overall consideration, the procedure is used for smaller casts but is able to produce complicated tasks such as door frames for aircraft and steel and aluminum castings. Although it entails lower costs for equipment, it is relatively more expensive than either sand or die casting systems. It also requires some minor surface finishing and machining.
The common applications for precision castings are various, for example, the power generation and the aerospace industries. The reasons why these industries tend to apply the precision casting is because they produce complicated shapes for turbine blades, besides, they are also important in making out cooling systems. Some of the common examples of blades produced from the process are directionally solidified, conventional equiaxed and single crystal blades. To some extent, military, medical, automotive and commercial fields also use investment casts. In words, this ancient art technique has improved massively to change our life directly.