“Foundry in a Box”
Report from 2016-17 Teaching Transformation and Innovation Grant
Final Summary Report by Paul C. Lynch, assistant professor of Industrial Engineering, Penn State Behrend
Penn State Behrend became a Foundry Educational Foundation (FEF) affiliated school fall 2016. As part of their manufacturing curriculum, Dr. Lynch is developing hands on lab based activities. The campus does not have a metalcasting foundry within the manufacturing lab. To address this, Lynch implemented “Foundry in a Box”, a program developed by the American Foundry Society and Kent State University, for schools that do not have state-of-the-art foundry equipment. The “Foundry in a Box” was also designed for AFS Chapters to conduct outreach activities.
Penn State Behrend secured a Foundry in a Box kit; however, it only included a set of two matchplates, flasks, and tools to make and pour sand molds—and one of the matchplates was not producing quality cast parts. The Schreyer Institute's Teaching Transformation & Innovation grant provided funding for new matchplates (patterns), flasks, tooling, and consumables (K bonded sand and tin) for the Foundry in a Box. As part of the manufacturing solidification processes course, taught by Lynch in spring 2018, students were asked to design new “Penn State Behrend” or “Erie, PA” themed matchplates (patterns) using 3D CAD software. The grant also provided funds to purchase materials to produce the new Penn State themed matchplates. The new matchplates, flasks, and consumables were used in the IE 311 manufacturing processes lab.
(what students will know or be able to do
as a result of the project)
(how you’ll know they’ve achieved the objective)
|(1) Design Metal Casting Patterns||IE 311 Students submitted pattern designs, solidification models, and process plans for manufacturing Penn State/Erie themed designs. They also presented their work as a final project to the entire IE 311 class.|
|(2) Mold Making, Pouring, and Finishing of Metal Castings||Engineering students were able to make molds, pour castings, and finish castings under the supervision of their instructor. They produced finished castings for their instructor and also wrote a report on mold making and casting.|
|(3) Costing of the Metal Casting Process||Engineering students were able to carry out steps (1) and (2) noted above. As part of this activity, they were able to provide a cost analysis of the casting activity while comparing the casting process with other manufacturing processes (i.e., additive manufacturing, machining processes). Students applied all of this knowledge in their final presentation and in answering casting cost questions on quizzes and exams.|
January 16, 2018: Industrial Engineering Students (IE 311 – Solidification Manufacturing Processes) Make Sand Molds and Manufacture Castings
Students in IE 311 used the Foundry in a Box kit to make molds, pour castings, and finish castings under the supervision of their instructor. The students produced finished castings for their instructor and also wrote a lab report on mechanical properties, mold making, and casting. This exercise introduced the students to the sand casting process and got them familiar with a horizontal matchplate/pattern for sand casting.
January 30, 2018: Industrial Engineering Students (IE 311 – Solidification Manufacturing Processes) Tour Urick Ductile Solutions (Sand Foundry) in Erie, PA
Students toured a full-scale sand foundry after they were exposed to sand casting in class and the lab.
February 16, 2018: Design Project Part A: Industrial Engineering Students (IE 311 – Solidification Manufacturing Processes) Submit 3D Matchplate Designs in Lab Groups
March 2, 2018: Design Project Part B: Industrial Engineering Students (IE 311 – Solidification Manufacturing Processes) Submit Edited 3D Matchplate Designs and Solidification Modeling of Designs in Lab Groups
March 2 – 16, 2018: (6) Lab Groups of Industrial Engineering Students (IE 311 – Solidification Manufacturing Processes) 3D print Matchplates on Stratasys 3D printer at Penn State Behrend
The matchplates were Penn State Behrend Theme (Paw Print Checker, Paw Print, State of PA, Penn State Lion Shield) or Erie, PA Theme (Gem for Gem City, Lake Erie Lighthouse)
April 7, 2018: Junior Industrial Engineering Students Use their Matchplates to Manufacture Castings
The students were able to make molds, pour castings, and finish castings under the supervision of their instructor. The students produced finished castings for their instructor and also used the manufacturing experience to put together their final presentation.
April 13, 2018: Design Project Part C: Industrial Engineering Students (IE 311 – Solidification Manufacturing Processes) Submitted Reports on Matchplate Cost Analysis and Production of Castings in Lab Groups
April 24, 2018: Design Project Part D: (6) Lab Groups of Junior Industrial Engineering Students (IE 311- Solidification Manufacturing Processes) Present their Matchplate Design Work:
As part of the “Foundry in a Box”, 23 Junior Industrial Engineering students were able to design, solidification model, and 3D print patterns for the Penn State Behrend Foundry in a Box. This exercise allowed the students to start with Design and see their designs made into matchplates and poured into castings. Each group completed a design with a Penn State Behrend or Erie, PA theme. On April 24th, each of the (6) lab groups provided a final presentation addressing the following outline:
- Matchplate Design (CAD Files/Screen Shots)
- Explain Casting Design Concepts (Used in your Matchplate Design):
Runner and Gating
Draft and Taper
- SolidCast Model of the Designs (Show Pictures and Briefly Explain What each tells you):
- Matchplate Manufacturing (Show Pictures of the 3D Printed Matchplate)
- Complete Cost Analysis of designing and producing the patterns:
- What would you do differently in design [Part (1) and Part (2)] in the future?
How did the project contribute to the students’ learning?
- Students were able to “Do” not just “See or Hear”. They were able to put the theoretical knowledge gained in lecture into practice in lab and their design project. The students were able to get “hands on” with this project and they enjoyed the hands on components of the course and lab.
- The students learned a great deal about costing. For many of them, it was their first time having to put an accurate cost on the design and production of a component. The costing process is crucial for an industrial engineering student to understand.
- A survey at the end of the semester revealed that at least (6) of the (23) students in class had accepted summer 2018 internships to work in the metal casting and forging industry. For most of the students in the class, it was the very first time they had ever been exposed to metalcasting both in class and lab and also on the tour.
- Possibly starting the design process in the fall semester IE 305 course to allow more time for design and refinement of design prior to solidification modeling and 3D printing in the spring IE 311 course. Allowing more time for design for manufacturing and design optimization could allow for less problems when trying to manufacture castings from printed match plates.
- Instructor needs to be fully engaged and providing detailed feedback at every stage of the design and production process. This was the first time being exposed to casting and design for manufacturing for almost all of the students.
This was a very successful Project. Thank you to the Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence for providing the resources necessary to make this possible.