February 2018 News

Local Students Pour Castings Using 3D Printed Molds

Recently, the Area 18 Precision Machining class at South Adams High School poured their own castings from 3D printed molds printed with HPI’s sand printers.

The South Adams / Area 18 Precision Machining classes prepare students for going straight into their machining careers. Several of our employees at HPI are graduates of this class. Past graduates include Tony Uhrick, Ryan Seddlemeyer, Phillip Bauman, Jon Dathe, and Kyle Rittmeyer. Advisory board members from Hoosier Pattern include Keith Gerber and Ryan Seddelmeyer, and Todd Yoder.

The graduates of this class can earn both NIMS (National Institute of Metalworking skills) certifications and college credit, but most importantly, they are ready to begin their careers in a real-world machining/manufacturing company.

The South Adams Precision Machining class begins the first year with an introduction to shop safety, shop math, and basic hand tools. While the first “bench work” project is starting, each student gets an introduction to CNC (computer numerical controlled) machining by using a CAM system to design and program a polished aluminum nameplate for their lockers. After that, it is back to the manual machines to get a good machining foundation on manual lathes, mills and surface grinders. By the end of the first year, the students begin to get more experience programming and setting up basic parts on their 6 CNC machines. (3 of the machines were donated by HPI).

During the second year class, students completely design, engineer and manufacture a complex assembly from scratch. This year, the student designed a double acting steam engine with variable timing. The students worked together as a team to produce a working model in SolidEdge of their own design. Once the design was finalized, the students created industry level blueprints for each part along with inspection sheets. After that, the students will take all that paperwork they created as a team and machine all the parts individually and leave with a working engine by the end of the school year. The column/crankshaft support is the part that the students worked with HPI to have sand printed molds made for.

Back in January, Mr. Jerod Dailey’s class poured their castings using HPI’s molds. Lars, Mason, Chandler, Keaton, Kegan and Bailey got some real hands on training in handling molten aluminum as well as how to safely pour it and produce a quality casting. Below are some pictures of the class as well as some of the student’s thoughts on the project.

 

1st and 2nd are of the parts they poured – there are two parts to a pour, each one will make a column for the 17-18 engine project that the students designed. Once they are cut apart, there are still 4 holes and 2 bearing bores that will be machined.

 

The material that they melted that was donated by FCC Adams and they used about 8 pieces for this first pour. 4 more pours to go plus any green sand casting they do. The class took their scrap parts and cut them into 4 pieces to fit in the crucible

 

Last picture are the molds that Hoosier Pattern made for us with the 3D Sand Printer

 

“It was really interesting to pour molten aluminum. It was neat that at really high temperatures that metal will flow as easy or easier then water. I thought it was going to be pretty light weight but when all the aluminum was melted it was actually pretty heavy. So thank you for the material and for donating the molds to us so that we could experience casting for the first time."

Keaton A. (Adams Central)

 

“Pouring our molds was very interesting and fun because we got to see the aluminum melt and turn into liquid form which I have never seen. This was my first time I have ever poured aluminum and I think it would be cool to do more often. Thank you for donating the molds to the class so we could have the opportunity to pour our own part for our class project.”

Chandler S. (Adams Central)

 

“Thank you for the molds that you made for us. This was the first time I have poured aluminum and it was one of the coolest experiences I have had in this class. I was surprised by how easily it poured into the mold. I hope I can defiantly do this again sometime.”

Lars I. (South Adams)