UW-Platteville American Foundry Society wins regional

March 9, 2018
American Foundry Society with award

PLATTEVILLE, Wis. – After more than 2,000 hours of work, 100 hours of machining, and 500 hours of design and simulation, the American Foundry Society student chapter at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville recently won first place at the AFS Wisconsin Regional Casting Competition. Its entry into the competition consisted of 525 cast frying pans, all complete with the UW-Platteville logo.

“Receiving the regional win felt well deserved after the work put into this project,” said Abby Werner, president of the American Foundry Society student chapter at UW-Platteville. “The pans were originally planned just as the gift given by UW-Platteville for the 2017 Foundry Educational Foundation College Industry Conference — the largest event of its kind — and turned into so much more for all of the students involved in the project.”

Not only did the student chapter members design, simulate, machine the tooling, mold, cast, and finish the frying pans, but they also built the machine needed to make the molds. Tooling production began at the end of the 2017 spring semester, and the casting process began in October.

The core machine was started as a senior design project in 2016 and was worked on for the following year. Students bought a steel frame of the machine from a company in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area and had to complete many modifications. They then troubleshot for many weeks to determine the ideal process before casting began.

With the help of several dozen students, the pans were cast in less than four weeks, and required two tons of iron and more than 20 tons of sand. Thirteen pans could be poured at one time using a stack mold, allowing for a faster production, and the maximum production rate was 91 pans cast in 24 hours.

“This task allowed students to be involved in all aspects of an engineering project, from design to production,” Werner said. “These skills are priceless when moving on to the professional industry and are not as common anymore in universities. This was a unique opportunity for our students to get involved in something that industry leaders will be talking about for years to come.”

Entries of the AFS Wisconsin Regional Casting Competition were judged on benefits to the casting customer, use of the casting process’ unique capabilities, quality and workmanship, a poster and booth presentation at the AFS WI Regional, imagination, success in reduction of the idea to practice, and potential impact to the industry within the lifetime of the students.

Led by Dr. Kyle Metzloff, the American Foundry Society student chapter at UW-Platteville is one of many organizations all students can get involved in. For more information about UW-Platteville’s industrial studies program, visit www.uwplatt.edu/industrial-studies.

High-impact practices are an important component of UW-Platteville’s 2017-2018 strategic work plan, which includes the institutional priorities of improving student learning, data-informed decision making, budgeting and planning, supporting student success through retention and recruitment initiatives, and campus climate.

Written by: Amanda Bertolozzi, Writer/Editor, Communications, 608-342-7121, bertolozzia@uwplatt.edu


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