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June 27, 2024
The largest pour of molten metal recorded in at least two decades – more than 3.5 tons – and using multiple 3D-printed sand mold components was completed by Rock Island Arsenal.

The U.S. Army’s Rock Island Arsenal-Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center reported it completed the largest pour of molten metal in at least two decades – 7,125 lbs. or more than 3.5 tons – on June 6, at the manufacturing center in Rock Island, IL. The completed casting consists of 16 separate pieces that form a “pintle system” for a Pennsylvania lock and dam project by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

“This is a proud moment for all of us at RIA-JMTC,” said Jamie Morris, division chief of hot metals. “Producing such a massive part required precise coordination, advanced technology, and a relentless commitment to quality. This achievement is a testament to our team’s skill and dedication.”

Each of the 16 parts was formed from printed sand molds, also produced at RIA-JMTC. The foundry pours a wide range of metals, including nonferrous and specialty alloys.

According to RIA-JMTC, the casting project involved eight days for printing all the mold components necessary for the mold, culminating in this significant accomplishment.

The Rock Island Arsenal - Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center is a vertically integrated manufacturing operation covering more than 3 million square feet and in service to the U.S. Dept. of Defense. Along with metalcasting, its production capabilities include additive manufacturing (3D printing for sand, metals, polymers and wax); forging; heat treating; grinding; CNC machining; precision welding; assembly; plating; gear and spring production, among others. It also has engineering services, material and product testing, and lab services.

“The successful pouring of the pintle system showcases our capability to handle large-scale projects with precision,” according to Shane Mattson, laboratory and process development and foundry production controller. “The integration of sand printing technology has revolutionized our approach, allowing us to meet and exceed the high standards required for such critical components.”