There are a large number of alloys available with a wide range of physical and mechanical properties covering almost every conceivable application a designer might require. Available alloys include aluminum, zinc, zinc-aluminum, magnesium, copper, lead and tin. Die casting alloys are normally non-ferrous, and there is a large number available with a wide range of physical and mechanical properties covering almost every conceivable application a designer might require.
Aluminum and zinc alloys are the most widely used, and are followed by magnesium, zinc-aluminum (ZA) alloys, copper, tin and lead.
Zinc, lead and tin based alloys are classified as low melting point metals, all melting at less than 725°F (385°C). Zinc-aluminum (ZA) alloys have a slightly higher melting range of 800°F to 900°F (426°C to 482°C). Aluminum and magnesium alloys are considered to be moderate melting point alloys, being cast in the 1150°F to 1300°F (621°C to 704°C) range. Copper alloys are considered to be high melting point alloys, over 1650°F (899°C). Low melting point alloys are cast in hot chamber machines. Intermediate and high melting point alloys are cast in cold chamber machines. In recent years, specially designed hot chamber machines for die casting magnesium alloys have come into use.