Castings are a good way of producing aesthetic shapes for tie rod terminations enabling loads to be transferred safely to the host structure.
However, as with many things in life, you should not judge by appearances. Although a casting may look sound because it has the right shape, dimension and surface quality, there could be hidden defects within the casting.
Defects can be found by using Non Destructive Testing (NDT) techniques such as ultrasonic testing and X-ray, small surface cracks can be indicated by using Magnetic particle testing (stainless steel excepted).
The Eurocode standard for structural steel castings is EN 10340 which lists steel grades that can be used and guidance for the production control process – it does not, however, specify what NDT should be performed – this is left to agreement between the foundry and the buyer. As NDT can add considerably to the unit cost of a casting it is important that this is agreed at time of order.
The correct NDT can highlight quality issues within the casting and should be an integral part of any project specification, particularly for safety critical components such as tie rods.
For more detail regarding castings and NDT contact our technical sales team.