Tool / Die Manufacturing

High-Quality Tools Make High-Quality Castings


LeClaire Manufacturing, a single-source casting and machining company, designs and builds tooling and fixtures in our full-service pattern and die shop. We are committed to using the highest-quality materials to make the highest-quality tools, because the highest-quality tools make highest-quality castings. Our highly skilled design engineers and state-of-the-art modeling software, coupled with our commitment to using the highest-quality tooling materials, are what separate LeClaire’s aluminum casting tooling from that of our competitors.

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Tool/Die Engineering

Advanced simulation software lets us engineer defects out of the casting. LeClaire Manufacturing utilizes both SolidWorks Design software and Pro Engineering Design software to engineer the 3D CAD models of our customers' tools and dies.

Completion of the initial design by the project engineer is just the beginning of the process. Our next step is to convene an engineering staff meeting that we refer to as Advanced Quality Planning (AQP). During this meeting, we brainstorm innovative improvements and ensure that we are able to develop and build the dies and tooling needed to produce the casting you require. Then, we implement the changes and meet for another round or more of AQP until the design and engineering receive approval from engineers, production managers and executives.

Solidification Modeling

To identify and prevent potential problem areas from occurring in our customers' castings, we use the latest technology of MAGMA solidification modeling. This identifies problem areas before a tool is ever made and further ensures that our customers receive the castings they require on every project that LeClaire Manufacturing undertakes.

Permanent Mold Tooling

A casting is only as good as the tool that produces it, and not all permanent molds are created equal. At LeClaire Manufacturing, we enjoy a unique advantage — we understand the intricacies of building the permanent mold itself as well as the intricacies of making the casting from that mold. This combined knowledge enables LeClaire to make slight adjustments in the design phase of the mold, which creates a better casting when we move to production. Meticulous pre-engineering and the identification and reduction of problems from the start combine to ensure timely delivery.

Sand Casting Tooling

Like a permanent mold, all sand casting patterns are not created equal. There are many kinds of sand casting patterns, ranging from a simple wood pattern that wears more quickly but can be good for prototyping, to aluminum-machined patterns that create a better dimensional accuracy and have a longer life cycle.

At LeClaire Manufacturing, we listen to our customers' needs and help them make informed decisions. We understand both the intricacies of building a sand casting pattern as well as the intricacies of the casting the pattern produces. This combined knowledge gives LeClaire Manufacturing an advantage that allows us to make slight adjustments in the design phase of the mold that result in a better casting once we move to production.

Machine Fixture Tooling

A good CNC machining fixture makes the difference between a good part and a bad part. The machining phase may be the most critical due to the production that precedes it; if anything goes wrong in the machining phase, it can result in late deliveries to customers. The proficient engineers at LeClaire Manufacturing have extensive experience in designing machine fixtures that minimize mistakes. Because of our experienced engineering staff, our customers receive the machined aluminum casting they expect — on time, every time.

Core Box Tooling

Making a good core is critical in making a quality casting, and it all starts with the core box, which is the tooling. LeClaire Manufacturing analyzes every core design to determine the best way to produce it. Complex core boxes are our specialty, and our equipment investments allow us to explore every option when designing a core box. Whether the core calls for a top-blow core box design or a side-blow core box design — or if the core is large and bulky or small and intricate — LeClaire Manufacturing has the experience and the capability to make every possible design.

Why Do Customers Prefer LeClaire Manufacturing?

“This part has been sourced through 4 foundries, and it was my full-time job to babysit the supplier on this part, for 10 years, prior to the part being sourced at LeClaire; now I never even hear of it ̶ it flows thru the shop so smoothly.”

Supplier Quality Engineer, Employer of 76,000