Process Comparison

Return to Process Selector
Property Name   Investment Casting
ShapesThin-walled: Complex, Solid: Cylindrical, Solid: Cubic, Solid: Complex
(Flat, Thin-walled: Cylindrical, Thin-walled: Cubic)
Part sizeWeight: 0.02 oz - 500 lb 
MaterialsMetals, Alloy Steel, Carbon Steel, Stainless Steel, Aluminum, Copper, Nickel
(Cast Iron, Lead, Magnesium, Tin, Titanium, Zinc)
Surface finish - Ra (μin)50 - 125
(16 - 300)
Tolerance (in.)± 0.005
(± 0.002)
Max wall thickness0.06 - 0.80
(0.025 - 5.0)
Quantity10 - 1000
(1 - 1000000)
Lead timeWeeks
AdvantagesCan form complex shapes and fine details, Many material options, High strength parts, Very good surface finish and accuracy, Little need for secondary machining 
DisadvantagesTime-consuming process, High labor cost, High tooling cost, Long lead time possible 
ApplicationsTurbine blades, armament parts, pipe fittings, lock parts, handtools, jewelry 
Typical values shown first (Feasible values in parentheses)

Disclaimer: All process specifications reflect the approximate range of a process's capabilities and should be viewed only as a guide. Actual capabilities are dependent upon the manufacturer, equipment, material, and part requirements.