Types Of Die Casting: The Ultimate FAQ Guide

This guide covers all the different types of die casting techniques.

So, before choosing die casting process for your part production, read this guide.

This information will help you save time and money – take a look.

What Are The Available Types Of Die Casting?

Die casting Process

Die Casting Process

Die casting

Die Casting

Die casting

Die casting

The main types of die casting available in the market today include the following:

Pressure Die Casting

This type of die casting is suitable for the production of components in high-volume usage.

Besides, it can manufacture thin-walled parts without compromising on their quality.

Also, the tonnage of pressure die casting will range between 80 tons and 1000 tons, and this relies on the pressure requirements.

Pressure die casting applies pressure from outside which forces the molten metal to enter the die molds.

Furthermore, you can categorize pressure die casting based on the amount of pressure you will use in the process.

These categories include:

Low Pressure Die Casting

Low Pressure die casting

Low pressure die casting

High Pressure Die Casting

High Pressure die casting

High Pressure die casting

Gravity Die Casting

This type of die casting is suitable when you are manufacturing parts in high to medium production processes.

It also uses permanent dies in common scenarios thus enabling you to attain near-net-shape parts.

Besides, you can use either manual or automatic processes in gravity die casting.

The type of gravity die casting machine you use in your application will determine the final weight of the parts you are making.

Gravity die casting allows you to save on the production costs thereby making it applicable for several industries.

The cost of the tooling you use in gravity die casting costs less than that for pressure die casting.

Gravity die casting is suitable for the production of heavy parts.

Gravity die casting

Gravity die casting

Vacuum Die Casting

This type of die casting is suitable for use in industries that make large parts.

When you are manufacturing large parts, they tend to trap air during the fabrication process.

This trapped air will cause the parts to have porosity issues.

However, vacuum die casting is a suitable choice to make large parts since it will eliminate such effects.

Vacuum die casting

Vacuum die casting

How Does Pressure Die Casting Operate?

The steps you will undertake during pressure die casting include:

  • Clamping

In this stage, you will tightly clamp the two die halves after cleaning and lubricating them.

Besides, lubrication should happen at least after 2 to 3 cycles as it depends on the metal you are using in your application.

Afterward, you will apply ample pressure to close the die before you begin injecting the molten metal.

Also, large pressure die casting machines require more time and force to securely clamp the dies.



  • Injection

This process involves transferring the molten metal from the furnace into the die chamber where you will inject it.

Also, you can perform the injection process through a cold or hot chamber die casting process.

Afterward, you will inject the molten metal at the appropriate pressure level.

The pressure you apply to the molten metal assists it to solidify.

Furthermore, the injection time is quick and lasts around 0.1 seconds as this ensures even solidification of the cast part.

The thickness of the cast wall and thermodynamic properties of the metal determine the time of injection.

For instance, you will have a longer injection time if you want to make thicker walls.



  • Cooling

After injecting molten metal in the die casting, it starts to solidify.

The molten metal will take the shape of the die cavity after it fills it and solidifies.

Besides, ensure you wait for the cooling time to expire before opening the die cast.

The cooling time depends on the complexity of the die, wall thickness, and thermodynamic traits of the molten metal.

  • Ejection

This stage entails the opening of the die halves once the cooling time expires.

Besides, you can manually open the die or use ejector units that assist in the process.



  • Trimming

During the solidification process, the metal cast attaches to the sides of the die cavity.

For this reason, it is vital to eliminate the surplus material as well as flash that occurs.

The trimming process can happen using various devices like trimming presses or saws.

Also, you can recycle the parts you trim for use in the next cycle.

How Does Hot Chamber And Cold Chamber Die Casting Compare?

Here is how these two compare:

  • Temperature level

Hot chamber die casting works with non-ferrous metal alloys at a low-temperature level.

Besides, the maximum temperature level of metal alloys you can use in a hot chamber die casting is about 450°C.

Such metal alloys include lead, magnesium, zinc, etc.

However, cold chamber die casting can handle non-ferrous metal alloys at a high-temperature level.

The temperature level of these alloys in this system is equal to or above 600°C.

Examples of these metal alloys include brass, copper, aluminum, etc.

  • Location of furnace

The furnace that melts the metal alloy is in different locations for both of these die casting chambers.

An in build furnace that melts the metal alloy is within the hot chamber die casting.

This means the molten metal enters the die cavity via a gooseneck system.

However, the melting furnace in a cold chamber die casting is not attached to the chamber.

This means you need to carry the molten metal into the cold chamber die casting system manually or automatically via ladles.

  • Production time

The cycle time in cold chamber die casting is lower than that of hot chamber die casting.

Cold chamber die casting has longer cycle times because you are manually handling the molten metal.

This is even though these two chambers operate almost similarly.

  • Tool durability

The materials that make both hot chamber and cold chamber are similar.

Hot chamber die casting uses metals alloys that have a low melting point, thereby, minimally affecting the die.

For this reason, the die is more durable in hot chamber die casting.

However, the die material in cold chamber die casting is not as durable since it degrades at a rapid rate.

This is because the molten metal you are using has a very high-temperature level.

  • Safety requirements

Hot chamber die casting can operate with minimum safety procedures whereas cold chamber die casting requires a lot of safety requirements.

This is due to the location of the melting furnace.

Hot chamber die casting

Hot chamber die casting

Cold chamber die casting

Cold chamber die casting

Hot Chamber versus Cold Chamber die casting

Hot chamber versus Cold chamber die casting

How Does High Pressure And Low Pressure Die Casting Compare?

This is how these two types of pressure die casting compare:

  • High pressure die casting

This version entails the injection of molten metal within the metal die cavity at high-pressure levels.

In high pressure die casting, the process occurs at high speeds and pressure rates.

The temperature of the molten metal in several of these applications is around 700°C.

Some advantages of using high pressure die casting include:

  1. Minimal machining requirement as it is a precise process
  2. Enables you manufacture light components
  3. It allows you to achieve tight tolerance levels for the cast parts
  4. Suitable for large-scale component volume production
  5. It allows you to fabricate complex parts
  6. Highly flexible thus guarantees rapid delivery
  7. A high production capacity for metal parts
  8. It allows you to make thin parts
  9. Superior component finish as they are smooth

Some of its disadvantages include:

  1. Costly to produce parts in low quantities
  2. The machine size determines the size of the cast part
  3. It may need the application of complex machinery
  4. Costly tooling costs than that of gravity die casting

High Pressure die casting process

High Pressure die casting process

High pressure die casting machine

High Pressure die casting machine

  • Low pressure die casting

This type of die casting entails injecting molten metal within the die cavity at a low-pressure level.

Furthermore, the parts you make using this die casting process have higher quality than that of gravity die casting.

However, their quality is less than that of high pressure die casting.

This process works well with low melting point metals like magnesium or aluminum.

Some advantages of low pressure die casting include:

  1. Minimize secondary functions due to enhanced metal finish
  2. Suitable for production of parts in small amounts
  3. It enables you to perform heat treatment on the metal casts
  4. Low production costs than high pressure die casting
  5. Guarantees high production yields
  6. High production capacity

Some disadvantages include:

  1. High cost of tooling
  2. It requires complex and expensive equipment

Low Pressure die casting process

Low Pressure die casting Process

Low pressure die casting machine

Low Pressure die casting machine

High pressure die casting versus low pressure die casting

High Pressure die casting versus Low Pressure die casting

What Are The Benefits Of Using Pressure Die Casting?

Pressure die casting will offer you the following benefits:

  • It allows you to make components with high mechanical traits.

This means the parts have appealing surface finishes and a tight and accurate dimension.

Therefore, you will use pressure die casting to manufacture complex parts.

  • Pressure die casting is suitable when making parts in large amounts.

This is because pressure increases the flow rate of the molten metal.

Due to its high setup costs, pressure die casting is not suitable for short production runs.

  • The purity of part from pressure die casting remains intact.

This means the cast part has no oxidation effects since it traps no gas within the component.

  • This process is more cost-effective than other types of die casting.

Besides, this is suitable only when conducting large production processes.

Also, the parts of the machine are durable meaning you can conduct several cycles before performing any replacements.

  • The configuration of the final cast is controllable as it depends on the pressure you are applying.
  • It allows you to make lightweight and thin-walled cast parts.

Pressure die casting

Pressure die casting

What Are The Limitations Of Using Pressure Die Casting?

Pressure die casting has the following limitations:

  • Not suitable for casting metals with low fluidity traits
  • High initial cost due to the technology
  • Not suitable for the production of parts in small amounts

What Factors Should You Consider When Working With High Pressure Die Casting?

These are important aspects as they ensure the whole process happens successfully.

This means you should consider the pressure, weight, and heating temperature.

Choosing the best metal is important as it the efficiency of the die casting machine.

For example, highly efficient die casting machines ensure you attain high production capacities.

The castings you can make per hour relying on the capacity of the die casting machine and the complexity of components.

Some other aspects to consider include the suitability and sustainability of the process.

Pressure die casting mostly operates on zinc and aluminum metal alloys.

This is because they are easily available and you can recycle them and they will maintain their important elements.

How Does Gravity Die Casting Operate?

Gravity die casting relies on gravitational force and not exerted pressure like in pressure die casting.

This means you will apply no force to the molten metal to make it flow in gravity die casting.

Gravity die casting is also suitable when casting non-ferrous metal alloys like aluminum, copper, and zinc.

The main procedures you will undertake when performing gravity die casting entail the following:

  • The initial phase involves heating the die mold
  • Afterward, you will spray it with lubricants as they help with the control of temperature levels in the mold
  • Once you complete this process, you will tightly close the entire setup
  • The next phase entails pouring the molten metal into the die cavity
  • Thereafter, you will allow the molten metal to cool and solidify in the die cavity
  • Once the cooling time elapses, you will open the die cavity and remove the cast metal component
  • This may happen manually or with the assistance of ejectors that apply the appropriate force
  • Finally, you will trim the cast metal part then prepare the gravity die casting machine for the next casting process

Gravity die casting enables you to make components that have complex shapes.

Examples of components you can fabricate using gravity die casting include:

  • Air conditioning systems
  • Valve flow systems
  • Cylinder parts
  • Components in diesel engines

Gravity die casting operation

Gravity die casting operation

What Are The Benefits Of Gravity Die Casting?

Gravity die casting will offer you the following benefits:

  • It allows you to attain quick production capacities
  • Components have better dimensional accuracy
  • It enables you to attain thin-walled components
  • The process produces suitable components that need no or less secondary functions
  • It allows you to make undercuts on parts by the use of undercuts
  • The process produces a smooth surface finish when compared to sand casting
  • It will enhance the mechanical characteristics of the metal alloy, for instance, a high tensile strength

What Are The Limitations Of Gravity Die Casting?

Gravity die casting has the following limitations:

  • The setup cost is expensive
  • It will not support the fabrication of complex component shapes
  • The process can produce parts with minimal wall thickness levels ranging between 3 and 5 mm

What Are The Benefits Of Tilting In Gravity Die Casting?

Tilting gravity die casting offers the benefit of producing dense castings.

Also, the castings will be of high quality with suitable mechanical characteristics such as stiffness and strength.

This makes it vital for automotive usages that tend to be demanding such as suspension units and braking systems.

Tilting Process in gravity die casting

Tilting Process in Gravity die casting

Tilting gravity die casting machine

tilting gravity die casting machine

How Does Vacuum Die Casting Operate?

Vacuum die casting works similarly to other types of pressure die casting.

The only change is with the formation of a vacuum during the die casting process.

Vacuum die casting can happen in both cold chamber and hot chamber die casting processes.

The main processes that happen in vacuum die casting include the following:

  • Firstly, you will melt the metal in a furnace
  • When using a hot chamber die casting process, you will move the molten metal to the shot chamber through the use of plungers
  • If you are using cold chamber die casting machines, you will use a ladle to move the molten metal to the shot chambers
  • Afterward, you will perform the act of creating a vacuum and injection of molten metal under a high-pressure level
  • Air escapes the die cavity as this assists the molten metal to reach all parts of the die cavity uniformly
  • The next step is allowing the molten metal to cool down and solidify
  • Afterward, you will remove the cast metal part using ejectors

The creation of a vacuum in a vacuum die casting happens in the following ways:

  • Injection of metal after you create the vacuum
  • Metal injection happens concurrently with the creation of the vacuum
  • Using actuated sensors to perform the metal injection and vacuum creation

Vacuum die casting operation

Vacuum die casting operation

What Are The Benefits Of Using Vacuum Die Casting?

Vacuum die casting offers the following benefits:

  • Minimal porosity

Vacuum die casting allows you to make parts with minimal to no porosity compared to traditional types of die casting.

  • Lack of surface defects

The vacuum ensures no air gets trapped during the formation of the die cast part.

Entrapped air can cause surface defects such as blowholes and blisters.

  • Thin walls

Negative pressure in vacuum die casting enables the molten metal to reach all narrow recesses thus you can make thin-walled components.

  • Suitable mechanical characteristics

Because the metals casts have a dense pack, they have suitable mechanical properties due to minimized porosity.

Enhanced mechanical strength will improve other properties of the metal.

  • Enhanced production rate

Since vacuum die casting minimizes defects and produces suitable surfaces, the production time is lowered.

This means you require no post-production processes thus saving you money and time.

  • Minimal waste

Lack of quality control in other types of die casting forms defective components.

Also, you can treat other defects and reject others.

Vacuum die casting combats these issues as the parts are of high quality.

  • Allows for heat treatment and welding

Die cast parts are not heat treatable because gas pores within the cast can form surface blisters in high temperatures.

Vacuum die casting allows you to heat treat the parts as it eliminates this effect.

Also, the components are highly wieldable.

What Are The Limitations Of Using Vacuum Die Casting?

Some limitations include:

  • It is difficult setting up this process
  • High initial cost
  • Other parts may require secondary processes due to inaccuracies

How Will You Lower Production Costs Through The Use Of Vacuum Die Casting?


How Will You Ensure The Success Of A Vacuum Die Casting?

The following aspects can assist you in making a successful vacuum die casting:

  • To produce highly precise and reproducible parts, ensure you control pressure and velocities
  • Ensure the vacuum component is of high quality to ensure high performance
  • Properly sealing die and shot units make sure you attain high efficiency and reliability
  • Control parts such as:
  1. Control die temperature
  2. Plunger lubrication
  3. Molten metal fees
  4. Die spraying

What Are The Applications Of The Different Types Of Die Casting?

The different types of die casting find their application in several industries such as:

  • Automotive industries
  • Aerospace industries
  • Plumbing industries
  • Lighting technology
  • Domestic appliances
  • Power tools
  • Decorative industries
  • Medical equipment
  • Instrumental components
  • Manufacturing industries
  • Processing industries
  • Electrical industries

How Does Squeeze Die Casting And Semi-Solid Die Casting Compare?

Here is how these two compare:

  • Squeeze die casting

This is a method that offers suitable solutions when casting alloys and metals that have a low fluidity rate.

It starts by filling the open die with molten metal.

Afterward, you will close the squeeze die thereby forcing the molten metal inside the die cavity.

Squeeze die casting is suitable for strengthening fibers and they produce dense products.

Squueze die casting

Squeeze die casting

Squeeze die casting machine

Squeeze die casting machine

  • Semi-solid die casting

This is also known as thermoforming and will provide high density and less porosity on the cast parts.

It involves cutting the materials into smaller pieces before heating.

Once the metal is between the solid and liquid phases, you will force it into the die cavity.

This process is suitable for use with non-ferrous materials like aluminum and magnesium alloy.

Semi-solid die casting process

Semi solid die casting process

What Metals Can The Different Types Of Die Casting Handle?

Die casting machines can work with the following metals:

  • Zinc

This metal is commonly used and comes in different alloys such as ZA alloy and Zamalek alloy.

Zinc metal can withstand high pressure and temperature levels.

Zinc alloy

 Zinc Alloy

  • Brass

This alloy combines copper and zinc metals and the various brass alloys come about due to different zinc and copper amounts.

Brass alloy

Brass alloy

Adding other metals will enhance the characteristics of brass alloy.

Some brass alloys you can find include:

  1. Beta brass
  2. Aluminum brass
  3. Duplex brass
  4. Alpha brass
  5. Admiralty brass

Brass alloy is easy to machine and has high strength levels and corrosion resistance.

It also has low melting points making it easy to cast with the different types of die casting machines.

  • Aluminum

This is a common die casting material as it is readily available, affordable, lightweight, and recyclable.

Aluminium alloy

Aluminum Alloy

Aluminum is strong thus suitable for various applications.

The aluminum alloys available include:

  1. B360 alloy
  2. K-alloy
  3. Alloy 383
  4. Alloy 413
  5. B390 alloy, etc.
  • Steel

This metal is very versatile therefore finds its application in several areas.

It combines carbon and iron thereby having suitable performance characteristics.

Steel alloys include:

  1. Tool steel
  2. Alloy steel
  3. Stainless steel
  4. Carbon steel

Besides, steel is recyclable, resistant to corrosion, strong, lightweight, and has suitable thermal and electrical conductivity.

Steel alloy

Steel alloy

  • Copper

These alloys are long-lasting making them suitable for making mechanical parts.

Copper is highly resistant to corrosion thus find their application in plumbing and electrical areas.

Copper alloy

Copper alloy

  • Magnesium

The strength-to-weight ratio of this alloy is high despite being lightweight.

Besides, they are suitable for usages requiring thin walls and tight precisions.

Magnesium alloy


What Should You Consider When Purchasing The Machines That Will Perform The Different Types Of Die Casting?

When purchasing different types of die casting machines, consider the following:

  • Die locking unit

Several types of die casting machines employ hydraulic systems.

Also, you need to adjust them for them to handle different types of dies for your application.

  • Injection and ejection systems

They function using hydraulic systems and receive power from the accumulators.

  • Heat exchanger system

It works by cooling down the unit and preventing the formation of molds due to overheating.

  • Support base

This is the structure that the whole die casting machine rests on.

  • Ton capacity

The weight of these machines can reach or surpass 80 tons and depends on the usage.

  • Hydraulic system

The hydraulic systems will help you move several parts of the die casting machine.

  • Electrical system

These units are important in hydraulic machines and comprise switchgear, motors, etc.

What Dies Are Available For Use In The Different Types Of Die Casting?

These include:

  • Single cavity

This cavity produces a single unit component and is good for die casting machines than handles one die.

  • Multiple cavity

This cavity will produce many similar component units within a single casting process.

  • Combination

This cavity can produce different components that operate together within a single casting process.

  • Unit

This version is inserted in large dies which you will fix and use various units to make different components.

What Factors Are Important When Choosing Metals You Will Use On The Different Types Of Die Casting?

Some of these factors include:

  • Mechanical properties

These properties entail:

  1. Impact strength
  2. Yield strength
  3. Hardness
  4. Tensile strength
  5. Elongation
  • Physical properties

This involves understanding the behavior of metals as you expose them to extreme conditions such as high pressures and temperature levels.

  • Material composition

This involves understanding individual metal element composition and their use.

What Factors Are Important When You Are Designing Components Using The Types Of Die Casting?

The factors you should consider are:

  • Budget

The amount you have determines the design you can make.

Also, ensure the budget does not negatively impact the quality of the cast component.

  • Usage

Here, you will consider the area of application of the cast part.

  • Assembly method

The complexity of the cast part determines if the assembly process will be simple or challenging.

Furthermore, you can assemble individual segmented parts via:

  1. Threading
  2. Welding
  3. Cored holes
  4. Fastening
  5. Appearance

Customers will consider how the final product looks, therefore, ensure you plan the surface finish you will use.

Additional Resources:

Die Casting

Gravity Die Casting

Low Pressure Die Casting

Hot Chamber Die Casting

Cold Chamber Die Casting

Vacuum Die Casting

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