Customers come to Spokane Industries’ steel foundry not just to buy castings, but to find solutions to their problems. Simulating the casting process has helped Spokane support their selling point that they are on the cutting edge of the industry.
By being able to simulate the entire casting process, Spokane has found that their customers now expect more from them. Spokane is confident that they have always lived up to and exceeded the challenges their customers have given them. It is common that when Spokane goes back to a customer with a design change that affects them in ways that cost them more money, like adding a riser, the customer wants to know why. Having the results from the casting process simulation gives Spokane that credibility and additional support. Rod Grozdanich, Technical Director, states, “We use the software to help customers with refining their designs, as well as converting weldments into castings. Being able to simulate the entire process helps a lot in that regard.”
Spokane’s quality department has seen an increase in both current customers and potential customers requiring that casting projects are run through the simulation program. Spokane reports they are increasingly being asked that they show their casting process simulation capability in order to be awarded a particular job.
Spokane utilizes their MAGMASOFT® license to simulate solidification, heat treatment, stress analysis and macrosegregation. In the last 10 months, on the dozen or so new projects they have put out, all but one or two were quality parts on the first run. In addition, by being able to simulate the entire casting process, Spokane sees a large reduction in the time to first quality part, while having a significant impact on shrink issues which were quite a struggle before using MAGMASOFT®. Antonio Melendez, Design Engineer, adds that, “One of the main advantages of the software is that one can see roadblocks beforethey actually happen and can compensate for them, specifically with predicting the distortion of the casting and other issues that might arise before we actually build it.”