Sand Casting

Consistent, Porosity-Free and On-Time Castings

Overview

Located in Bettendorf, Iowa, LeClaire Manufacturing casts and machines simple to complex aluminum sand and permanent mold castings.   With a focus on automation of our manufacturing processes and controls, we lead the foundry and machining industry in quality, consistency and on-time delivery of aluminum casting and machining.

Sand Casting

Our in house automation engineering team consistently sets new industry standards thru controls implemented, robots deployed, and technology advanced, that scales extensively throughout the foundry and machine shop for operations.  LeClaire’s customer diversification strategy, controlled strategic growth, and resistance of financial leveraging, provides their customers with a foundry / machine shop with proven financial stability, that they can serve all of their customers for the long term.  

Consistently putting profits from the business, back into the business thru significant year over year investments in molding equipment, real time x-ray, CNC’s, CMM’s, robotics, plant expansions and process improvements, provides the ability to produce a consistently quality product, porosity-free, and delivered 98% on time year after year.

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Green Sand Casting Equipment

At LeClaire Manufacturing, our sand castings are made using automatic green sand molding machines. Green sand is mixed with clay and water to obtain the desired characteristics. The mixed sand and clay is then automatically measured, and then pneumatically blown, against the pattern. Hydraulic rams compact the sand against the pattern, the mold then enters the production belt line, where the molten aluminum is poured using robotic ladling. Our fully automated green sand molding machines and our robotic ladling system enable us to achieve predictable and repeatable results.

Tooling

Utilizing dedicated and certified mold flow Software Engineers, LeClaire Manufacturing utilizes computer “Casting FEA” simulations on all new tools we build. This advanced technology identifies problem areas, or porosity probability, before the tool is made. This ensures our customers receive the castings they require, to the specification they require. Our software simulations are conducted and analyzed by a certified user, one of only 29 certified Simulation Engineers in the U.S. today.

Core Making

LeClaire Manufacturing makes all cores in-house. The use of multiple types of core-making machines allows us to meet each specific core’s requirement. Our ability to make complex cores and turn out a quality casting separates us from our competitors. From a single cylindrical core to complex eighteen piece core assemblies, LeClaire Manufacturing has the experience and expertise to make your design a reality.

Metal Pouring

Selecting the correct aluminum alloy for your casting is critical to the quality of your part. LeClaire has experience pouring a wide variety of metals depending on our customer’s specific needs. After 50+ years of pouring 200, 300, 500 and 700 series aluminum alloys, we are experts in selecting the right aluminum alloy for your specific project needs.

Heat Treating

There is no room for error in heat-treating. Accurate controls yield predictable results. Utilizing drop bottom heat treat systems, as well as ‘a system worth visiting LeClaire for’, our experience and expertise in maximizing mechanical properties and efficiencies thru heat treat is extensive.

Mechanical Properties

Achieving the desired mechanical properties is accomplished through a combination of alloy selection, heat treat cycle time, aging cycle and, in some cases, additives to the metal. Our decades of alloying experience help us to meet the desired mechanical properties.

Meeting our customers’ mechanical property requirements is critical to our customers’ parts — and our success as well. Our in-process mechanical property testing ensures we meet or exceed each customer’s specific project requirements, no matter how challenging.

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Why Do Customers Prefer LeClaire Manufacturing?

“No foundry I know of does as complicated of parts, as consistently, as LeClaire.”

Vice President, Aluminum Casting Engineering Software Company