Home 9 Die Casting 9 Die Casting Costs – How to Figure Out the Cost of Die-casting?

Die Casting Costs – How to Figure Out the Cost of Die-casting?

Author: YiNuo Zhang
Published on: 2024-02-09

“Die casting is a cost-efficient solution for manufacturing complex metal parts. As production volumes increase, the amortized cost of molds decreases, making large runs more economical.”

What is die casting? It’s a metal casting process using molten nonferrous alloys like magnesium, aluminum, and zinc for producing molded products under high pressure. It brings forth durable, cost-effective, and high-quality metal parts widely used in manufacturing industries. One critical aspect contributing to die casting costs is the die-casting tooling cost. This comprises the charges interlinked with designing and manufacturing the die (mold) used in the die-casting process. The economic viability of the process is influenced by the die-casting tooling costs liquidated over production cycles.  

Familiarity with die-casting costs guides the manufacturer in managing and controlling the associated expenses. This article will focus on the cost estimation parameters of die casting.


Traits Affecting Die Casting Cost

Certain factors affect the overall die-casting process and their understanding will help you in cost analysis. These are;

1. Material Selection and Cost Implications

In die casting, the material choice plays a crucial part. Depending on the accessibility and physical aspects, the metal cost varies. Other requirements for instance recyclability, post-processing finishing, and material waste also affect the gross cost. The normal utilization rate of material is 90-95 % in die casting.  

2. Part Complexity and Design Considerations

Intricate and fancy design requirements such as high tolerance, undercuts, and thin walls directly influence the casting production cost.  Following the proper manufacturing principles not only overcomes the secondary operation needs or materials usage but also optimizes the cost-effectiveness of the die-casting operation.  

3. Production Volume and Economies of Scale

Categorically the production volume impacts sales economics and therefore controls the die-casting cost. To some extent, the per-unit cost decreases when there is higher production volume which allows the manufacturer to extend setup and tooling costs.

4. Tooling and Mold Cost Factors

The die-casting cost will eventually transformed by key elements including mold size, complexity, and material choice. On the other hand, tool requirements for molding, operational costs, and maintenance are additional factors affirming long-term cost-effectiveness. The die-casting machine weighs up to 500 tons for die-casting a part of one kg. The die casting price per kg is 1 USD in some manufacturing industries.        

5. Labor Cost and Post-Processing Cost

Inspecting the quality, packing, and deburring are the chores of labor. The labor cost is almost 1.5 % of die casting blank. The post-processing requirements of die-casting products for example tapping, anodizing, CNC machining, and drilling are also added to the cost calculation.

Try Prolean Now!

  All information and uploads are secure and confidential.

Determining Die Casting Mold Cost

Careful analysis of die casting mold cost plays a central function in optimizing overall cost. Design molding cost varies with specific descriptions such as surface finishing, complexions, and cavities. There are certain costs associated with die-cast molding.    

 Die casting mold

1. Design Fee

Multiple things are included in the design of a mold which mostly are 3D or 2D drawings, CAM programming, CNC structures, and CAE mold flow analysis. However, only CAD and CAE cost is considered mostly in calculating mold cost. Additionally, different molding companies have their quotations. But, if we look at the cost range, it is mostly between 2-3 % of the total cost.  

2. Material cost

The costs of mold core and mold frame are primary determinants of material cost. There are two types of framework, the standard and self-made. The base material is mainly outsourced by mold factories. The mold base and tonnage of the mold are directly proportional to each other, for instance, the larger the mold tonnage, the larger the mold base. 

Mainly, the weight is considered in calculating the cost, and the mold frame’s material is selected in compliance with the die-casting mold design lifespan. The shelf life of aluminum mold is between 80,000 to 100,000 mold times. The core material cost leans upon the mold’s life grade and we should use the material that is consistent with the mass product production.    

3. Manufacturing Costs

The mold processing cost shouldn’t exceed 20 % of the total mold cost for an Aluminum Die Casting Manufacturer. The processing embodies labor costs (finishing and mold matching), CNC machining, wire cutting, and other associated equipment.

4. Inspection Cost

The mold dimensions, core, and electrode are inspected to ensure quality, preciseness, and finishing. It is usually 1-2 % of the entire cost. The relevant person must have the experience, technical knowledge, and understanding of the molding process.  

5. Transportation and Trial Cost

The trial cost of aluminum alloy die casting is almost cheap compared to magnesium alloy die casting. This is because magnesium alloy die-casting requires safety measures, higher unit prices, and furnace differences. It is advised that the mold trial limit should not be more than three times. The mold trail fee below 800 Tonnes is 1-1.5 % and 2% for molds above 800 Tonnes. 

The geographical customer distribution directs the transportation cost. As we know that the molds are heavy merchandise, so, transport per vehicle and ship will increase accordingly. Transportation cost is between 0.5 % and 1.5 % of the total cost.       

6. After-sales expenses and Taxes

Tax rates are different depending on the area. After-sales service tax generally constitutes 5 % for special molds.


Aluminium Die Casting

In aluminum die casting, the molten aluminum is injected under high pressure to produce durable, smooth, highly conductive, and lightweight products. Industries like electronics, aerospace, and automotive exploit aluminum die-casting parts due to their corrosion resistance properties and textured surface.

Aluminium Die Casting Cost

The mold complexity cost factor plays a major role in aluminum die casting. The involvement of CNC machining as secondary operations for accomplishing the specific requirements of the design increases the production cost. The aluminum die casting price per unit increases or decreases seeing the production quantity.

Aluminum die casting part

The table below provides a comparison of die casting costs for different metals, including the cost per kilogram of material and the associated die casting mold costs.

Table: Comparison of Die Casting Costs for Various Metals: Per Kilogram Rates and Mold Costs

Materials/Metal Used Die Casting Cost per kg (Approx.) Die Casting Mold Cost (Approx.)
Aluminum $4.00 – $6.00 $8,000 – $15,000
Zinc $2.50 – $4.00 $6,000 – $12,000
Magnesium $5.00 – $7.00 $10,000 – $18,000
Brass $6.00 – $8.00 $12,000 – $20,000
Copper $7.00 – $9.00 $14,000 – $25,000
Steel $8.00 – $10.00 $15,000 – $30,000
Zinc-Aluminum Alloy $4.50 – $6.50 $9,000 – $16,000
Tin $5.50 – $7.50 $11,000 – $19,000


Try Prolean Now!

  All information and uploads are secure and confidential.

Die Casting Cost Optimization Tactics

There are certain strategies you can use to optimize the operation cost of die casting. You should consider and acknowledge the below-presented tips during the casting process.

  • Material Selection for Cost-redeeming

This cost-saving strategy involves meticulous material selection. Consider material properties, availability, pros and cons of that material die casting, recyclability, and durability. Find the equilibrium between cost-effectiveness and performance capacity. 

  • Following Manufacturability Principles

The term manufacturability refers to removing the secondary operation needs, minimizing complexity, and optimizing geometry in product design to ease the manufacturing process and make it cost-effective. This novel way not only increases efficiency but also eases up the die-casting process.  

  • Rationalization of the Production Phases

Before starting the die-casting process pinpoint and phase out the bottlenecks and obstructions. If possible try to set up the backup in case there’s any hiccup during the process. Use automation, advanced die casting methods, and continuous, and lean manufacturing principles, in turn, enhance productivity and lower the error costs.

  • Empirical Calculation Method

The aforementioned method will allow you to calculate mold quotation estimates. 

Mold price = material cost + design fee + processing fee and profit + value-added tax + mold trial fee + packaging and transportation fee.

However, it is always recommended to consult with expert professionals while estimating the cost for your di casting projects. Many manufacturers provide detailed quotes based on your design. So, you can get an accurate estimation of how much it costs.


Why Choose Prolean as your Die-casting Cost Optimization Consultant?

Although die-casting has multiple benefits some high-cost associated processes limit its use. For cost reduction or optimization, outsourcing to pro-lean die-casting services will be your top priority. We here at pro lean with a  team of technical experts will increase manufacturability, which leads to cost-effectiveness. You will also get an easy approach to our surface finishing prospects.         

Die casting service

Over and above that, molding is also a crucial determinant of die-casting costs. Here, we ensured the quality-controlled, efficient, and long-lifespan molds by using our advanced technologies. It’s time to contact us for your die-casting needs and get a quote.

Try Prolean Now!

  All information and uploads are secure and confidential.

Summing Up 

Die casting is an integral part of the metal fabrication process. It requires certain expertise when it comes to creating intricate designs. Understanding the factors affecting the die-casting cost can direct manufacturers in cost optimization. These factors include design complexity, tooling cost, material selection, and production volumes. There are also certain cost-effective strategies like streamlining the production process and following manufacturability principles, aid in reducing the overall die-casting cost.  



What metals can be used in die casting?

Depending upon the availability and customer needs, the common materials used in die casting are zinc, aluminum, copper, magnesium, and zinc.

What is the range of die-casting mold cost in China?

The China die-casting mold cost varies according to the complexity, size, and capability. The die-casting mold costs confines between $1.9 to $150000 per piece.

Do reusing old molds reduce mold costs?

If the old mold is in good condition and has extendable service life then reusing old mold minimizes die-cast molding costs.

Can we consider die-casting a cheap process? 

According to some businesses, die casting is a quick and economical process but is surely not very cheap. However, its cost can be optimized by considering some factors discussed above.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may also like


Get Your Parts Made Today


  All uploads are secure and confidential.