What happens during my products casting process?

Phoenix Foundry manufactures thousands of bronze plaques and associated products every month, each one individually handcrafted and cast. There are 8 stages within the production process:

  1. Plaque Design – The layout of the inscription, motifs and other design features are keyed up in computer programs from information provided by our customer.
  2. Negative Production – The requested plaque designs are transferred to a photographic negative in an image setter.
  3. Moulding – The patterns are placed in a mould box and covered with a thin layer of a blend of selected virgin sands. The remainder of the box is filled with a mix of silica sand and binder which hardens the sand after a short time interval. This mould is stripped from the box and assembled with other sections ready to receive the molten bronze.
  4. Pouring – Bronze ingots are melted in a gas-fired or induction crucible furnace to a temperature of around 1200°C. The molten bronze is poured into the mould and solidifies in the form of the finished plaque. On cooling, the mould is broken and the casting recovered.
  5. Fettling – This stage of the process involves cutting off excess bronze from around the plaque, water and sand blasting and edge linishing to prepare the plaque for further processing.
  6. Detailing – Appropriate fittings are attached and any irregularities are eliminated.
  7. Linishing and Painting – The plaque is painted with background colour in a spray booth. The surface of the plaque containing the inscription is then ground with a belt linishing machine to bring up the bronze metallic colour on the raised inscription and other design features. A clear protective layer of paint is then sprayed on and the plaque baked in an oven to harden this protective layer.
  8. Inspection and Packing – The plaques then undergo a final quality inspection and are packed ready for dispatch.

An on line display of our manufacturing process is available on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36jDnrsclf4

 

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