Stainless steel casting

Your reliable partner in stainless steel casting

CIREX is one of the largest steel foundries in the world. By our decades of experience with lost wax investment casting in steel, we can assure you high quality castings, which are produced in a very efficient manner. With locations in the Netherlands and the Czech Republic, CIREX is well represented in Europe. By composing our own alloys, we can cast almost any steel alloy. One of the types of steel in which CIREX is specialised and casts in large quantities is stainless steel (INOX).

Different types of stainless steel

CIREX composes her own stainless steel alloys, so nearly any type can be cast. Depending on the different amount of unique elements and the quantity (%) of elements contained within the stainless steel, a unique stainless steel alloy can be created. Thanks to the large variation in compositions, countless stainless steel castings are possible. Below you will find a short overview of the stainless steel types that we cast most often at CIREX:

Different types of stainless steel
CX no.Mat. No.SymbolSimilar toHeat treatmentProof stress Rp0,2Tensile strength (N/mm²)Elongation (%)Hardness
9471.4008GX7CrNiMo12-1AISI 410Refining≥ 440≥ 590≥ 15≥ 90 HRB
71.4027GX20Cr14DIN 17445 / SEW 410Refining≥ 400≥ 590≥ 1590-100 HRB
9571.4036GX46Cr13Refining49-53 HRC
221.4059GX22CrNi17SEW 410Refining≥ 750≥ 800≥ 822-30 HRC
9411.4162X2CrMnNiN21-5-1LDX 2101®Solution annealing + quench hardening
251.4308GX5CrNi19-10AISI 304 / CF8Casting condition≥ 175≥ 440≥ 3075-90 HRB
341.4309GX2CrNi19-11AISI 304L / CF3Casting condition≥ 210440-460≥ 3070-80 HRB
241.4317GX4CrNi13-4Refining≥ 650800-1000≥ 1522-30 HRC
271.4408GX5CrNiMo19-11-2AISI 316 / CF8MCasting condition≥ 200≥ 450≥ 2075-90 HRB
281.4409GX2CrNiMo19-11-2AISI 316L / CF3MCasting condition≥ 200≥ 450≥ 2075-90 HRB
9451.4468GX2CrNiMoN25-6-3Casting condition≥ 650≥ 22≥ 92 HRB
9551.4470GX2CrNiMoN22-5-3Normal annealing≥ 450680-880≥ 30≥ 93 HRB
261.4827GX8CrNiNb19-10Solution annealing + quench hardening≥ 175≥ 440≥ 2075-90 HRB
9241.4815GX8CrNi19-10AISI 304Casting condition≥ 450≥ 2070-90 HRB
Stainless steel 304L (DIN1.4309)

Corresponds to stainless steel 304. The “L” stands for “low carbon” and this stainless steel has a lower carbon content to make it easier to weld and to limit the corrosion sensitivity after welding.

Stainless steel 316 (DIN1.4408)

A more corrosion resistant but more expensive type is stainless steel 316. This alloy contains at least 16% chromium, 10% nickel and 2% molybdenum. The addition of molybdenum makes this stainless steel more resistant to salt corrosion and acids and is widely used in the chemical industries.

Stainless steel 316L (DIN1.4409)

Similar to stainless steel 316 but with a lower carbon content to increase the weldability of the stainless steel.

17-4 PH (DIN1.4549)

A high-quality stainless steel that is regularly used in the aircraft industry. It is characterized by a high tensile strength, hardness, toughness and is also corrosion resistant.

The metallurgists at CIREX are happy to help you choose the most suitable stainless steel alloy for your application. Depending on the application, it is determined which hardness, tensile strength or elongation the stainless steel alloy should have and the correct stainless steel is selected on the basis of this.

Stainless steel casting process

How does ‘investment casting‘ (lost-wax) work? An overview of the steps and phases involved is given when you click on “read more”. CIREX is one of the largest lost wax foundries in the world. By means of the lost wax method, high quality investment castings are produced with complex shapes and high dimensional accuracy. Besides that, this process offers a great degree of freedom in design and material choice. Your specific wishes and demands can be incorporated into the castings. By our decades long experience with the lost wax method, we can assure you a very efficient production process and top quality castings.

Casting stainless steel

CIREX develops and produces high quality investment castings that can be cast in virtually any steel alloy. Steel is an alloy consisting of iron (Fe) and carbon (C), where the term ‘steel’ is used for iron alloys with a limited amount of carbon (less than 1,9%). When the iron contains more than 2% carbon, we talk about ‘cast iron’ instead of steel.

Stainless steel, also called INOX, is a type of steel known for its corrosion resistance after contact with water. Next to the basic elements iron (Fe) and carbon (C), stainless steel also contains chromium (Cr) and nickel (Ni). Before it can be classified as stainless steel, at least 12% chromium has to be present in the steel alloy. Next to the basic elements, many different types of stainless steel also contain the elements molybdenum, nitrogen, manganese or silicon.

But exactly, what are the influences of the elements chromium and nickel in stainless steel? When chromium comes in contact with oxygen, a chemical reaction takes place whereby an invisible layer of chromium oxide (Cr2O3) is formed. This is also known as “oxide skin”. This layer protects the underlying metal against rust (oxidation). Whenever the oxide skin gets damaged, a new layer has to be built up. In that case, rust might occur on the surface when a damaged layer comes in contact with water. This rust will never push through, because a new oxide layer builds up again in the meantime.

Stainless steel types with 6% to 26% nickel are austenitic and non-magnetic. Indirectly, the nickel in stainless steel will neutralise the magnetic effects of the chromium. When a relatively large amount of chromium is present in stainless steel alongside a limited amount of nickel, the stainless steel can be magnetic. As such, stainless steel is not non-magnetic by default. There are also types of stainless steel with a ferritic structure which only contains chromium and not nickel. That’s why they don’t have magnetic properties.

Properties of the lost wax technique

CIREX is a supplier of precision castings which are cast by using the lost wax technique. These castings are characterized  by low surface roughness values and precise tolerances. Lost wax castings are also known as the highest quality steel castings available on the market. They are often applied in environments where the quality demands are high, because the components usually operate in environments which are aggressive (hostile), subjected to large differences in temperature or they are required to be especially hard, strong or light. Because of these specific and high demands, special alloys are often utilised for these castings.

Shape tolerance: Freedom in style and design
Roughness: High surface quality & low roughness values (Ra 1.6 – 6.3 µm)
Dimensional tolerances: High dimensional accuracy and precise tolerances (VDG P690 D1)
Materials: Virtually any steel alloy can be cast
Complexity: Complex shapes can be cast as a single component
Machining: Little to no machining is required
Undercuts: Products with undercuts can be cast
Series: Suitable for smaller and larger series