Cast vs. Pressed Steel
Name: Aaron D.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of using cast
aluminium or pressed steel in the base plate of a lawn mower?
Advantages of using a cast aluminum housing would be its
light weight and non-rusting features. A disadvantage
would be that aluminum housings on a lawnmower will
sometimes develop stress cracks in high stress areas.
An advantage of using a pressed steel housing is its low
cost to fabricate and durability. A disadvantage would
be that it may rust and it is heavier than its aluminum
counter part. I hope this gives you some food for
Aluminum has the advantage of being lighter in weight and more resistant to
rust and corrosion. However, it is also more expensive. If you're like me
and only use the mower sporadically (much too sporadically, my neighbors
would probably say), then the extra expense of a lightweight mower is
probably not justified. On the other hand, if you plan to use it
professionally and spend significant amounts of time pushing it around, then
the weight savings may balance out the extra cost.
I am not sure what base plates you are talking about,
but the advantage to using casted anything is that you
can replicate numerous complex parts for a low price.
By pressed steel, I assume you mean stamped or formed
sheet metal or thin plates. The advantage there is
the same as for castings -- cheap prices for complex
parts if you make thousands to hundreds of thousands
of the same thing. Another interpretation for
"pressed steel" would be forged parts. Here, the
parts will have great strength. Most hand tools are
The biggest disadvantage for these methods is the
initial cost for the tools--5 to 20 thousands a piece.
If I did not answer your question, just mail me more
details to what you mean.
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Update: June 2012