So we are at a little bit of a standstill right now while the foundry looks over our machined case half left and case half right. As I stated in my last post, I had requested some minor alterations to the tooling for cosmetic reasons.
So why would we send our machined castings back to the foundry? Easy – for quality control.
A raw casting can hide a lot of defects, since the rough skin hides lots of stuff. After we machine it, we expose lots of the metal that would be otherwise hidden and buried. In some cases, like with the case through bolt holes, we actually drill right through the casting which makes it easy for the foundry to check for things like porosity or shrinkage that would otherwise not be visible, so this represents a great opportunity for us to confirm the way we pour these castings, and then lock the process forever.
Jeff, the owner of the foundry has taken this project on personally and is crawling over every millimeter of our castings as we speak. He also wants to revise some of the chills. If you recall from the video I posted about how the castings are made, you can see the chills being inserted into the mold.
Chills are metal pieces that help dissipate the heat of the pour, and promote strategic solidification of the molten metal. It really is a black art.
So for each case we pour, the foundry has to make DOZENS of these little metal chills to insert into the mold. They are reusable, but we still need several hundred on hand to make the initial run of the first 40.
I am doing everything I can NOW to QC these cases before the production run. Yes, the schedule has slipped a couple weeks or so, but this is what I like to call FOREVER work. The work we are doing now will not need to be done again in the future, it is work now so that we can make then same part forever. Letting the foundry frankly assess their own work by allowing them to test and visually inspect their own work is part of that.
When they are satisfied, they will pour me PROTOTYPE 3, which I will make into an engine, then off we go to live testing. The rest after that is CAKE.