Our quality lab is responsible for making sure our facility is running within the set parameters on a daily basis.  The lab is equipped to perform Loss on Ignition (LOI) , mold strength and surface hardness tests.  The results of these tests can be sent to you weekly in the form of an excel spreadsheet or a control chart.  The lab is also responsible for calibrating all of our measuring equipment.  All of these devices are on either a monthly, bi-yearly or yearly cycle.

Loss On Ignition – consists of strongly heating (“igniting”) a sample of the material at a specified temperature, allowing volatile substances to escape, until its mass ceases to change. This may be done in air, or in some other reactive or inert atmosphere. The simple test typically consists of placing a few grams of the material in a tarred, pre-ignited crucible and determining its mass, placing it in a temperature-controlled furnace for a set time, cooling it in a controlled atmosphere, and re-determining the mass.  This test will determine the percent of resin in the sand sample.

In order to keep quality at an exceptional level at the point of production we use first core quality checks, process sheets, a shell color chart and Baume check sheet.

First Core Quality Check – This is done by all of our supervisors and lead personnel. When the first few cores are made from a box, they will complete a check list unique to each department.  This check list will make sure the operator is using the correct materials and that the cores are being made properly.  The supervisor or lead will then come back every two hours to do another check.

Process Sheets – Our process sheets consist of everything that the operator needs in order to produce a quality core.  They will provide the sand mix, pictures, where to file, packaging information, special procedures, setup procedures, etc.  Theses sheets will also help the supervisors and leads to determine if the cores are being produced correctly during their quality checks.  These sheets are kept at revision levels and are updated when changes occur.

Shell Color Chart – This chart is used for operators in the Shell department to compare the amount of bake on the cores they are making to the color chart.  This chart ranges from 1 – 10, lightest to darkest.  The color of the core can be specified by the customer.

Baume Levels – When washing cores the operators will check and record the Baume level of the wash every hour.  This is to insure that the thickness of the wash is at the level stated on the process sheet.  If needed, they will then add water or wash to return the Baume range set by the customer.  These records are kept in the quality lab.