Almost any degree of external as well as internal complexity can be achieved. The ability to produce complexity wit ease can even benefit simple parts which can be re-designed to save weight without loss of strength by providing I or H sections or thin walls with ribs.Thus many parts from competetive processes can be converted to investment castings.
Any castable alloy can be used, including ones that are impossible to forge or are too difficult to machine. Further, the cost of the alloy is less important in the final price of an investment casting than in many other metal forming processes; therefore an upgraded alloy can be specified (especially if the part is redesigned to save weight) at little or no increase in price.
The absence of parting lines and the elimination of substantial amounts of machining by producing parts very close to the final size give investment casting an enormous advantage over sand casting and conventional forging.
This ability is a major advantage in design and evaluation of parts. The use of inexpensive tooling methods facilitates timely collaboration between designer and the foundry to produce parts that are functional and manufacturable. This capability is simply not found in such competetive processes as die casting, powder mettulurgy, or forging. Further temporary tooling used in design phase can often serve for production while the market is tested or permanent tooling is constructed.
In addition to comlplex and demanding parts, investment castings also produces many very simple parts competetively. This capability is often made possible by low tooling costs associated with investment castings. Investment castings are competetively produced in sizes ranging from a few grams to more than 300 kg (660 lb) and the upper limits continue to increase.
The long standing use of investment castings in aircraft engines for the most demanding applications has fully demonstrated their ability to be manufactured to the higest standards.