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NADCA Announces Winners of 1999 International Die Casting Competition.

The North American Die Casting Assn. (NADCA), Rosemont, Illinois, has named the winners of its 1999 International Die Casting Competition. Judges assessed castings for their ingenuity, quality, cost savings (compared to other processes) and their individual contribution to the expansion of the diecasting market.

The competition included nine categories, four aluminum, three zinc, and two magnesium. Winners were selected for eight of the categories--there were no entries in the aluminum squeeze/semi-solid category.

In the aluminum under 1 lb category, two winning entries were selected. The first entry is a pistol frame from Stroh Die Casting Co., Inc. The pistol frame is manufactured for Smith & Wesson for its .22-caliber Sport Series. The casting weighs 0.35 lb and is cast from A380 alloy. Parts for this pistol series were machined from stock. This is the first aluminum diecast frame used by Smith & Wesson. The casting was chosen for its ability to provide ruggedness, minimal machining, high dimensional repeatability, exceptional surface finish and high-production capability.

The second winner is a connector housing from Tool Products (Internet Corp.). The connector housing is used in a 160-pin filter-connector for an automotive engine control unit. The part is cast from A383 alloy, and weighs 0.6 lb. It was designed as a die casting to provide high-volume production and a moisture-proof enclosure for the connector housing. The part also exhibits a thinly cast side wall.

In the aluminum 1-10 lb category, Acme Die Casting won for a 9.97-lb microwave communications housing produced for Harris Corp., Microwave Communications Div., using Aluminum 413 alloy. The part has fins, which provide heat dissipation, and the diecast body provides electrical conductivity. Conversion to die casting from a two-piece investment casting helped reduce production lead-time and machining requirements.

In the aluminum over 10 1b category, Ahresty Corp. won for a monocoque scooter chassis produced for Honda's Super Sport Scooter. Cast from JIS ADC12 (an aluminum 383 equivalent), the frame weighs 23.4 lb. The casting incorporates underside ribbing for added strength, and cable channels and mounting points for the external decorative body as well as the functional hardware. This casting had been fabricated from a steel sheet stamping and pipe. Diecasting helped provide weight savings and a cost reduction.

In the magnesium under 0.5 lb category, Eastman Kodak's camera assembly was the winning entry. Chicago White Metal Casting, Inc., produces the part for Kodak's professional digital camera, the DCS 620. The parts are cast from AZ9ID and were originally designed as aluminum investment castings. Diecasting was later chosen due to the design of the geometrically complex housing. Diecasting could meet the precision tolerances required, and the precision achievable through diecasting provided the best overall appearance and fit for the final assembly. In addition, the magnesium housing provides a built-in EMI shielding, which allows for additional weight savings.

In the magnesium over 0.5 lb category, the winning entry is a circular saw guard assembly produced for Milwaukee Electric Tool Corp. by Product Technologies, Inc. The circular saw is cast from AZ91D and weighs 1.41 lb. The parts were aluminum 380 die castings, but Milwaukee Electric Tool Corp. found that the magnesium diecasting offered additional benefits. Magnesium provided weight savings, an excellent cosmetic appearance and helped reduce noise and vibration during operation, while increasing the life of the tool.

In the zinc under 6 oz./non-electroplated category, a fuel fitting submitted by Miniature Casting Corp. was chosen as the winning entry. The part, which is produced for Mountain Safety Research's (MSR) DragonFly multifuel cook stove, is cast from Zamak 3 and weighs 0.51 oz. Originally designed as an assembly of three screw-machined components, it was converted to diecast Zamak 3, which reduced cost and streamlined the component.

In the zinc over 6 oz./non-electroplated category, the winning entry was submitted by Dero Enterprises, Inc. The casting is a cross member component used by Nortel Networks in telephone wiring systems. The component weighs 2 lb and is cast from Zamak 3. Diecasting provided the ability to form the complex part and still maintain structural strength, quick delivery times and tremendous economy.

In the zinc, any size, coated category, Dynacast won for a "TERA" connector, Produced for Siemon Co. the connector is cast from Zamak 3 and weighs 0.4 oz, Diecasting offered superior EMI shielding and superb mechanical integrity at a favorable cost.
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Comment:NADCA Announces Winners of 1999 International Die Casting Competition.
Publication:Modern Casting
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2000
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