I figure its time to try aluminum casting

A project log for SATRAN - Satellite Tracking Antenna

Wifi-controlled, azimuth/elevation antenna rotator.

Daniel NikolajsenDaniel Nikolajsen 12/08/2021 at 13:310 Comments

Plastic injection molding is great. But since I am putting in the effort to design a brand new version of the antenna rotator, I cant dismiss the demand for a more sturdy product out of metal.

So a few days ago I started building a furnace to melt aluminum. A big and rusty iron bucket will be the housing, with a fireproof mortar coating inside that will then be filled up with charcoal briquettes. An air fan will pump oxygen into the foundry and rise the temperature enough to melt aluminum. In theory.

Also I have made a batch of "green sand" out of cat litter sand (bentonite clay) and regular fine grain sand, which is now out in the open to dry into a perfect consistency. You can see some of the finished sand in the bucket below. I have also made simple wooden frames that you fill up with the sand and compress to make a one-time-use mold. No matter how this will work out, it will be a very fun experiment.