My recommendations for books on sandcasting. I have personally constructed the Lil Bertha furnace.
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Books on Sandcasting of Metals
It's unbelievable, but true! You can melt metal in your home shop! I have done it. The catch: Information. Now you can order it, online. These books are a necessity if you have never melted metal before. Upgrade your shop with foundry capababilities!
|Lil Bertha-Compact Electric Furnace
Here is the information you need to start melting. Lil' Bertha is the cleanest way to melt metal. My wife got me this book one year for my birthday, and it was what made the difference between melting and not melting metal. I toyed around with various cumbersome designs of gas fired furnaces, only to meet with despair. Author Dave Gingery guides you through selecting the right element, making the voltage, amperage, and wattage calculations, and covers foundry safety.
Lil Bertha is compact, quiet, and clean. You can put metal in it and walk away. Build patterns. Ram up the mold. When you're done, the metal is ready to pour. Click here to see a picture of Lil Bertha in my shop.
Melt Aluminum with Grocery Store Charcoal! This is the classic text that has brought foundry capabilities to thousands of home shops. This furnace is built with a 5 gallon metal pail, fireclay, and sandbox sand. The blower is either your shop vac (in blowing mode) or an auto heater fan. This book is the first in the Dave Gingery series, "Build Your Own Metal Working Shop From Scrap." The charcoal foundry is simpler and there aren't electrical details as in Lil Bertha.
|Complete Handbook of Sand Casting
Before you even melt metal, you need to know what you are going to do with it. When your metal is the right pouring temperature, you better have a sand mold ready to pour it into! To make successful sand castings you need to know things like sand moisture content, ramming hardness, cores and core prints, how to make patterns, and venting the mold.
|Lost-Wax Casting: A Practitioner's Manual
Lost wax casting is an artist's technique for duplicating intricate wax designs. This book covers the details of this process. This method has capabilities of reproducing fine detail and beauty. The molds used in lost wax casting (also called investment casting) have some other advantages over conventional sand casting techniqes. There is no parting line or draft angle required on the pattern. Cores are also easier to negotiate with lost wax castings. Get all the details here!
|Handbook of Lost Wax or Investment Casting
Another reference for your library on lost wax casting. These techniqes round out your home foundry. Even if you never try lost wax casting, the knowlege can be applied to other techniqes. For example, I made a mold that used a styrofoam pattern to replace the grill on my car. This was a techniqe called lost foam casting...keep this site in your bookmarks and come back later. I am looking for a book on this technique.
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