Denison Industries, an aluminum foundry in Denison, TX, has adopted additive manufacturing for sand molds with the ExOne S-Max 3D printer system, the centerpiece of an expansion project intended to add new customers as well as to accelerate and improve production processes.
“We really feel this will separate ourselves from the current industry,” Bryan Petty, director of projects and process improvement stated, according to local reports. “What we really wanted to do is attract those customers like the Department of Defense, aerospace, and defense and ensure we provide them a good service.”
The sand-molding (as well as semi-permanent and permanent-mold) foundry produces aluminum castings ranging from 1 to 3,000 lbs. Its customers are aerospace, automotive, and commercial industrial manufacturers, as well as military and defense contractors.
The S-Max is ExOne Company’s largest 3D printer for sand molds and cores, with a 1,800x1,000x700-mm build area (LxWxH), and a build speed of 2.12-3.00 ft3/hour. Its printers combine foundry sand and with phenolic or sodium-silicate binders to deposit the bonded material in layers, as indicated by the CAD-defined pattern for the mold or core.
Denison Industries has adopted one printer, but has indicated a second unit may be installed in available space (now used for a 3D scanning operation.)
Denison Industries anticipates the new technology will accelerate its prototyping and tooling processes, in particular for new and prospective customers.