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The Renegade Project
The Making of a Renegade
Click Here for Part Deux - This is the continuation of the second round of tooling creation.
The following images represent the making of the mold or "pattern" used in the sand casting process for the manufacturing of the DCS "Renegade" manifold. The pattern is a replica of the manifold and is used to create impressions in the sand mold such that when the molten aluminum alloy is poured in to the mold the exact shape is formed once the molten metal cools and the sand is removed. Here is a link that further explains Sand Castings.
The purpose of these images is to show the progress of the pattern making process.
Here we can see the outline of the base along with an outside runner, EGR, water neck and distributor hold down start to take shape (lower right portion of the image). An yes what you see is made from wood.
Here is the same view as above but at a different angle to show the thermostat housing (middle left portion of the image).
This is the prototype mounted vertically so features can be transferred on to the wooden pattern (below).
Here we can see the runners starting to take shape.
The basic outlines of the runners are in.
Another view of the runners.
The runners are really taking shape. The radius corners are in. This is where the pattern makers craftsmanship comes into play. They are formed by hand. Yep by hand.
Here is the bottom of the Renegade. The features in the middle represent the bottom of the runner as it sits on the motor.
This one is hard to make out but this is the puzzle for the runners the top of the manifold. This piece is inserted in to the piece above to create the sand mold.
This is another shot of the top of the manifold.
This is a shot of the thermostat housing and the passage that runs between both heads. Still have some tweaking to do.
This shows the thermostat housing on the right and you can almost make out the EGR passage on the left (the reverse 'L' shaped feature).
Here you can see the starting of the water passage for the rear of the manifold and portions of the EGR passage.
Another shot of the water passages taking shape.
Here you can see the top plate starting to take shape. Our plan is to have the word "Renegade" as part of the cast and then skim it with the end mill. The end result will be nice shiny letters against the matte surface of the top plate. Should look pretty sweet.
This picture shows the water passages taking shape as well as the EGR passage. We ran into a problem which made it necessary to redesign the water passages for more flow. They are now 50% larger.
This is the same image as above but from the other side. And yes we are getting closer.
We are finally getting somewhere. The next batch of images represent the Shell Core boxes that are used to compress the sand and create the shape of the feature to be molded. Below are the intake runners.
Another shot of the intake runner core.
Below is the mate to shell core above.
This is the shell core for the EGR tube. There was much discussion regarding this little jewel. We wish we could forget about this little jewel.
The mate for the EGR tube above.
Yet again another EGR piece. This is the complete set.
Below is the shell core for the thermostat water passage. It is difficult to see but in the upper right hand corner you will see some "blueing" which is used to transfer high points to the mating half of the shell core. The process is to transfer the high points (using the blueing) and then remove what is transferred. As you can imagine this is a labor intensive process.
This is a sample of what the shell core from above produces. This is then placed in the "pattern" for the final feature. In short the molten aluminum will not fill this space and when it cools the sand is removed to create the internal feature.
This is the shell core used to create the coolant crossover in the rear of the manifold.
Today is a great day! Below are all of the core boxes needed to create the internal features of the Renegade manifold.
Below is a shot of one of the four core boxes used for the intake runners. Please note the discoloration is due to heating the core before the epoxy sand is placed inside to create this runner segment.
This is a shot of the completed cores. (yes we are getting close to pouring the Renegade). In the center you will notice 4 runner segments, a corebox just like the one above was used to create the core below. What you see below are thermostat housing and water passage (left), the rear runner passage (center top), part of the EGR system (right), intake runner segments (middle and lower middle). Regarding the EGR core, this is the segment used to connect the EGR crossover in the head to the EGR valve. As you can see it is quite a complicated little piece.
Today is a monumental day. We delivered the match plates to the foundry. We will have our first pours Tuesday (10/13) or Wednesday (10/14). The feedback from the foundry is they do not anticipate any major problems but they want to check the flow characteristics before we start pouring production units. Yes *production* units. The picture below is a smaller segment of what we have been striving for "DCS Made in the USA". Who says the good 'ole USA does not make stuff anymore! Our production may not be high volume and we probably won't sell millions of Renegades (it would be nice) but we did it! We take a lot of pride in the words "Made in the USA". We have gone where nobody was willing to go and have achieved our goal of producing a great performing manifold for the CFI world.
This is what the top of the match plate looks like. You can clearly see the thermostat housing (top center), the runners (middle), the EGR port (lower right - the small rectangle and circle) and of course the distributor hole.
This is the bottom. You can clearly see the runners, EGR passage and the mating surface to the head.
Here we have the top plate.
Another shot of the top plate, the stub (lower middle) is the port for the PCV valve. Once it is drilled and taped the stock PVC fitting will go in its place.
This is the bottom of the top plate.
Check This Out
Would you like to have your Corvette, Camaro or Firebird featured on our site? As a DCS customer, all you have to do is send us a 400x300 pixel jpg file and we'll post it in the Gallery section. Also tell us a little about the mods you have done for others to see.