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Cast Iron Test Methods - Destructive Inspections

 

There are many types of inspection services that are available to our customers here at our foundry, many of which we can perform in-house. Then there are other inspection services that require high tech equipment, which we do not have in-house…… well at least not yet. There are two broad groups that categorize inspections, destructive and non-destructive; by their title I'm sure you have already figured out the differences.

Destructive Inspections are exactly what they sound like. After using this type of inspection, the casting will not be usable, but the results will give you an accurate representation of the casting. In a previous blog, I talked about cutting up a casting to inspect it, also known as fracturing. A few days ago we received a casting that had the fracturing testing performed on it and the casting had some flaws. I thought it would be a perfect example to show our viewers to see how the casting was cut and what the flaws looked like.

This first picture shows the entire casting and how it was cut. It was cut multiple times along different cross sections to inspect each area of the casting. This will tell us what areas are having trouble pouring and allow us to begin the search for a solution to the problem.

This picture shows what a porosity defect looks like within a casting. You can see where there are porosity issues and these issues can arise for multiple different reasons. These issues can result from air pockets when pouring the casting, or debris getting into the mold prior to pouring. Whatever the reason, we would not have seen these issues without cutting the casting apart and looking for ourselves.

There are, however, other testing methods that could have detected these issues such as Magnetic Particle Inspection or X-ray inspections, but we tend to use those inspection methods on production runs where it would not be cost effective to cut and reproduce a casting. Fracturing is typically performed by the foundry so they can view the immediate results and if the casting has a defect, they can just recycle the metal. On production runs, the customers want to know for certain that there are no defects in their castings and to do that we use non-destructive inspections.

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