the engineer checks the correct setting of the metal mold for castings in the factory using a


Once the founder has constructed the investment mould, it is time to fire it up in a kiln to remove the wax content. Then, create a metal cast that is the ‘positive image’ of the artist’s design by replacing the wax with a molten metal charge of some kind.


This stage of the casting procedure can be pretty short time-wise. With modern developments, small investment moulds can be fired, burnout, and poured in an hour. This also means many things can go awry during this time, rendering any previous preparation useless.


The first couple of steps of removing wax followed by mould firing are generally, though not exclusively, conducted in a single sweeping operation with an electric or gas-powered kiln. After firing, the mould is removed from the kiln. The charge is likewise taken out from its furnace and poured into the mould.


In alphabetical order of the first letter, here we have casting keywords for your convenience.

AKA de-waxing, removes the wax content of investment moulds using a flame.

forces a charge into a refractory mould by rotating it in a centrifuge and is generally a small-scale precision cast method.

is the quantity of a metal alloy used for decanting into a refractory mould.

is a flux coating put over a molten charge, functions as a guard against gas contamination, and consolidates dross material.

is a refractory container, typically created out of a graphite material used to contain the metal charge during the melting or pouring procedures.

is any contaminant, including oxidised film and cover flux, floating by the surface of the melted charge. Removed by skimming off before the pouring process. Any entry into a mould often leads directly to inclusion faults.

is a type that can melt a charge by inducing a current using a high-frequency electrical coil. Suitable for high-melting-point alloys and metals, like stainless steels, nickels, etc., and produces a clean melt.

is a type that can melt a charge by radiating heat using an electrical element. Only suitable for the low-melting-point alloys and metals, fusible alloys, aluminium, etc.

is drying out and modifying the refractory structure of an investment mould using heat.

is the rapid removal of wax content from a ceramic shell investment mould using a pre-heated kiln.

is the material condition before attaining the complete set of functioning properties, generally referring to pre-fired moulds and other refractories.

is the non-metallic variety of cast contamination, usually caused by a loose investment, dross, or sand entering the cavity during or before pouring.

is an alternative vessel to a crucible for a furnace-decanted charge. It may be a hand-held bowl, akin in appearance to soup spoons, but is generally larger to pour higher quantities of metal. Most of the large ones are engineered for easy dispensation of the molten metal charge.

is a failed or otherwise incomplete cast.

is a failure to completely top up a mould due to a small air cavity gap or a return of backpressure.

are off-cuts from prior casts returned to charge the furnace, which should not exceed 25% of the total charge composition by weight with standard conditions.

is a material added to a metal charge with a powerful deoxidising impact, like silicon, zinc, phosphorus.

is the incomplete filling of a mould due to insufficient pouring of the molten metal charge.

 assists metal to flow into complex moulds by using a partial or complete vacuum force.

A stream of molten slag
Master steelmaker at furnace, steel factory