Lone Star Foundries, Inc.  
 
 

Empire Castings Inc., Ductile and Gray Iron Sand Foundry

History

In 1940 Empire Castings began as a private foundry producing oil tank vapor control valves.  In 1996 Empire castings Inc, joined the Lone Star Foundries Inc Team.  Empire Castings Inc. takes advantage of the skills of its workforce and upgraded state of the art furnace and molding capacity. Empire Castings Inc. has made a firm commitment to investing heavily in the latest equipment, processes and training.

Our Process

Our manufacturing facility has over 67,000 square feet of equipment and processes that allows it to meet customer needs, quality requirements for a competitive price. 

In sand casting, sand is used to define the cavity inside a mold.  In addition, sand is used to make any cores that are contained in the mold.  There are the five basic steps to creating a sand casting.

Step 1 - Pattern making

The first step in sand casting is pattern making. The pattern is a replica of the exterior of the casting with dimensional allocation for shrinkage and finishing. If the casting is to be hollow, additional patterns called cores are used to create these cavities in the finished product. Patterns are usually made of wood, plastic, metal, or plaster.  

Step 2 - Core making
The next step in the process is core making. Cores are forms that are placed into the mold to create the interior contours of the casting. They are typically made of a sand mixture- sand combined with water and organic adhesives called binders- which is baked to form the core. Since cores are made in molds, they require a pattern and mold, called a core box. The core pattern is made in the same fashion as the casting pattern, but the core box is created from a durable material like metal or wood.

Step 3 - Molding
Molding can be accomplished by automatic molding machines, cope and drag molding machines and squeezer molders.  The patterns are then packed in sand by the molding machine with a binder, which helps to harden the sand into a semi-permanent shape. Once the Sand mold is cured, the pattern is removed leaving a hollow space in the sand in the shape of the desired part. The pattern is intentionally made larger than the cast part to allow for shrinkage during cooling. Sand cores can then be inserted in the mold to create holes and improve the casting's net shape. Two-piece molds are clamped together and melted metal is then poured in to an opening, called a sprue. If necessary, vent holes will be created to allow hot gases to escape during the pour.

Step 4 - Melting & Pouring& Shakeout
Melting is the preparation of the metal for casting, and it is converted from a solid to a liquid state in a furnace.   It is then transferred in a ladle to the molding area of the foundry where it is poured into the molds.  After the metal has solidified, the molds are vibrated to remove the sand from the casting, a process called shakeout.

Step 5 - Cleaning
Cleaning generally refers to the removal of all materials that are not part of the finished casting. Rough cleaning is the removal of the gating systems from the casting. Initial finishing removes any residual mold or core sand that remains on the piece after it is free of the mold. Grinding removes any superfluous metal. In the last stages of finishing, the surface of the casting is cleaned for improved appearance.  In addition, at this point, the casting is inspected for defects and adherence to quality standards.


Inquiries

Plant: 2729 Charles Page Blvd, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74127
Telephone: 918-587-3327, Ray Belzeski
Fax: 918-581-8932, Ray Belzeski
E-mail: rayb@empirecastingsinc.com