Experimental Alloys and Designs

Texmo prides its self in staying on the cutting edge of industry. From our custom developed software packages and automated work flows to our automated work centers on the shop floor, we are always looking to push the boundaries of our respective industry. When it comes to our customers, we love to support them in staying on the cutting edge of theirs. Whether it’s a design that others say can’t be cast or a new alloy with no casting history – we want to help you develop a casting process that can turn
your dream design into a reality.

Texmo is happy to step into the fray with our customers and try to achieve something that has never been done before. Not only are we happy to do this but these are the challenges we live for. Projects such as these are a great opportunity for Texmo to leverage its internal technical expertise as well as utilize our network of top tier, world class experts – most of who choose to work exclusively with Texmo Precision Castings because of our passion for learning and pushing boundaries. Below are just a couple examples of projects in which Texmo has partnered with customers to try something new, leading to a
great success for both companies.

Case Study One – Complex Design

First let’s take a look at a case study on design.

Several years ago, Texmo was approached by a top tier firm in the hardware/power tool industry. This customer wanted to bring a revolutionary product to market; however, to do so would require the mass manufacture of incredibly complex designs. Due to the design complexity, the investment casting process was the only choice for manufacture at the high volumes projected. One component in particular poised a great challenge. Our customer tried all of their regular suppliers at the time only to be “no quoted” by every single one. To quote one of our biggest competitors, verbatim; our future customer was told, “You’re crazy. No one is ever going to cast that”. Well someone did cast it. And we’ve since cast quite a few of them. It was not without many trials and late night brainstorming sessions but we persevered and delivered. This would not have been possible without the partnership we formed with our customer during this time.

To partner with a like-minded organization during new product development – one that is open to design discussions, willing to work through several iterations of trials to get it right, and driven by the need to innovate – makes a world of difference in a project like this. The result – our new customer was able to deliver to market a new battery operated tool which was the absolute first of its kind. The product led to record breaking salesand help them tighten their grip on a very competitive sector. For Texmo, it was an amazing learning experience and helped us partner up with a major target customer. Our partnership with them continues to flourish to this day.

Case Study 2 – New Alloys

Another case study is one which required the use of a specific alloy which came with its own set of challenges. Our customer wanted to produce a rotary component which would be under high stress and extremely cold temperatures. They needed to use a more exotic alloy that would give them the material properties that the cold operating temperatures required. Forging, machining, and vacuum casting were not economical manufacturing processes for this specific product, application, and volumes. To make
the project a success, our customer needed to have this product investment cast in air. Like our previous example, all of our competitors that were approached by the customer ultimately turned down the job.

Unlike our competitors, we saw this as a unique challenge and great opportunity to test our skills and deliver for our customer. The specific alloy to be used had quite high amounts of titanium present. Due to the large, negative magnitude of free energy for the formation of titanium nitrides, titanium reacts easily with the nitrogen in the air at molten temperatures and detrimentally affects the mechanical properties of the material. Only zirconium has a higher affinity for nitride formation than titanium does.

Expressing the risks up front, our customer was willing to work with us through development to create castings which would meet their needs and lead to a successful launch for their project. Again we prevailed – but also not without challenges and difficulties. Many special processes had to be put in place to prevent the titanium nitrides from forming. Ultimately while we fell just short of the vacuum melt spec, we were able to increase the mechanical properties to an acceptable level for the application and hold the agreed upon custom specification for our customer. Our customer was able to deliver on their contract and we were able to have another great learning experience while further positioning ourselves as a technical asset and partner for our customer.

We Make It Possible

Do you have a challenging project in mind you think may be right for investment casting? Even one which other foundries may have told you is impossible? Bring it to us and let us have a look. If at all possible, we would love to support you in your goal to deliver your innovative product to market.