A Step-by-Step Guide of Manufacturing New Refractory Molds


Introduction to a new Mold Design

Mold is an important tool necessary for manufacturing industrial products, and the material used to create itself is one of the key factors affecting the performance of the mold. Traditional mold materials are mainly metal and ceramic, but these materials are prone to failure under high temperature and heavy load environments. Therefore, the development of new materials for mold has become one of the popular research areas. Refractory molds are important tools used to produce refractory products, and the quality & performance of the materials to make them directly affect the properties of the products. In order to improve the durability and service life of the mold, a mold composed of carbide and steel parts together can be considered.

Composition of this Refractory Mold Design

Cemented carbide has the advantages of high hardness, high wear resistance and high strength, which can be used to make stamping or cutting parts of the mold, such as heads and edges. Meanwhile, steel parts have good toughness and plasticity, which can be used to make the supporting/substrate part of the mold, such as base, bracket, etc. Combining carbide and steel parts together can bring the mold excellent comprehensive performance, which can meet the requirements of high precision machining and also ensure the durability and service life of the mold.

It should be noted that, in order to avoid deformation and cracking of the mold due to temperature changes, the combination of carbide and steel parts needs to consider the material variation and the difference of thermal expansion and contraction coefficients between the two. During the process, the two parts need to be finely connected and precisely processed to ensure the mold surface is flat and precise, as well as the material organization is uniform and dense to improve the performance and service life of the mold.

Vacuum Brazing

Vacuum brazing is a technology that combines two or more metal materials into one by brazing. Compared to conventional gas shielded welding technology, vacuum brazing has the following advantages:

First, vacuum brazing allows the connection of cemented carbide and steel parts at high temperatures to form a single unit, avoiding the weak points and gaps that can occur in other methods. The tighter connection between the cemented carbide and steel parts gives the mold better durability and service life.

Secondly, vacuum brazing can avoid the oxidation and pollution problems that may occur in other welding methods, ensuring the quality and performance of the connected parts. Especially in mold production of refractory products, vacuum brazing can effectively avoid problems such as oxidation and pollution, improving the precision of mold at little environmental cost.

Finally, vacuum brazing features for high efficiency and automation, which can finely control and detect the connection part to ensure the bonding quality meets the requirements. At the same time, the vacuum brazing process does not require the use of other auxiliary materials, saving costs and improving manufacturing efficiency.

In summary, vacuum brazing is of great significance in the fabrication of molds for the combination of cemented carbide and steel parts, which can ensure the durability, service life and quality of the mold, improve the efficiency of the mold, and provide strong support for the production of refractory products.

Detailed Steps of Manufacturing this new Mold

Below are the steps with suggestions of ZZ Old Craftsman when making this refractory mold:

1. Selecting suitable carbide materials and steel parts

Before combining the carbide and steel parts, you should rigorously consider their mechanical properties, thermal stability, corrosion resistance and other factors. Finish the steel parts by mechanical processing tools such as lathe and milling machine to create the shape of the mold; deliberately choose the carbide grade for required hardness and wear-resistance of the mold, and finish the carbide part, such as precision and surface finish.

2. Clean and degrease the carbide and steel parts.

This step ensures the cleanliness and surface quality of the joint, which is beneficial to the quality of the brazed joint. The purpose of this step is to remove surface dirt and grease, which is usually carried out by solvent cleaning and sandblasting, etc.

3. Brazing in a vacuum environment to join the cemented carbide and steel parts as a single unit

Vacuum brazing is a key step in joining carbide and steel parts. A vacuum environment prevents the occurrence of undesirable reactions such as oxidation and hydrogenation and ensures the quality and performance of the brazed part. The brazing temperature and time need to be precisely controlled to make sure the expected properties.

4. Check the quality and performance of the brazed part.

Quality inspection is an important step to ensure the quality and performance of the brazed part, which needs to be checked for cracks, warpage, deformation, and other problems. Tensile test, hardness test, metallographic analysis and other tests are also required.

5. The follow-up treatment of the mold, such as heat treatment, polishing, etc.

By heat treatment, polishing, etc., the durability and service life for the mold can be improved. Heating can adjust the organization structure and properties of the mold; polishing can improve the surface finish and corrosion resistance of the mold.

6. Conduct testing and evaluation to make sure the mold meet the requirements.

Testing and evaluation is the last step, which needs to be carried out on the mold. The test usually includes the dimensional accuracy, surface quality, wear resistance, corrosion resistance, etc.


By using vacuum brazing method to create refractory molds connected by carbide and steel, we can look forward to a newly designed mold with an extended service life and better improved performance, accessible to harsh environments such as high temperature and pressure. Meanwhile, more emphasis should be put to the manufacturing process of this kind of mold, which needs to be finely controlled step by step in order to ensure the final mold quality and performance.

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