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A Design Study in Austempered Ductile Iron - Smith Foundry Drive Wheel

Lessons Learned
Smith Foundry began full production of these ADI drive wheels in 2003 after an 18 month development cycle.

The use of Austempered Ductile Iron for this drive wheel required detailed, collaborative design work and process optimization. Major lessons learned were --

  1. Austempered ductile iron requires open communication and collaborative engineering between the end-user, the foundry engineers, the pattern shop, the machine shop, and the heat-treater to produce a final design and process definition that will meet the performance, schedule, and cost targets.
  2. 3D computer-aided design is essential to rapidly optimize the design for mechanical performance and to reduce the "first part" time. Finite element analysis is used to optimize structural features for minimizing stress concentrations.
  3. Process planning for machining and heat treatment is critical to ensure a casting that meets tolerance, dimension, and mechanical strength requirements. 




Copyright 2005 by the American Foundry Society. All rights reserved.
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Last Modified:May, 2005 by STG

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In cooperation with
Smith Foundry Co