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Old 09-07-2017, 07:17 AM   #12
Member#: 198281
Join Date: Dec 2008
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: Virginia
2005 WRX/STi
WRB of course


Originally Posted by jigga View Post
I'm not insinuating that you are a company that does things on the cheap. I could only make the deduction that since you no longer have a skilled professional slaving over welding up these oil pans from individual pieces of aluminium, and you can now knock these things out like proverbial sausages, savings might be passed on to the consumer. Would you say that casting the oil pans is a more labour intensive process than your previous construction technique?
I think you are solely looking at material costs and assuming after the pour they are completed. There is far more process time that goes into the cast product than the fabricated version. The machine work requires a CNC operator with some experience, so you're also trading welding labor for CNC labor.

Castings require a material cert at melt (samples for the mass spectrometer), the pour, band-saw trimming gates/vents/etc., x-ray inspection, grinding gates/vents/flashing/etc. flush and any other abnormalities, inspection, heat treat to T5, test, heat treat to T6, test, bead blast, then off to machining, post machining inspection reports, welding the baffles, final fitment and QC checks, then washing.

With the previous process the sheetmetal certs from the supplier (made in the USA of course), laser cut, inspected, CNC brake, inspected, fit-up, welding, finishing, final fitment and QC checks, etching, and washing.

We are trading labor for materials and process. The costs are within a few dollars of each other (not including the +$30K we've got into casting tooling costs). The fabricated version price will go up though (and only available directly through us), since they will no longer be production batch made, but instead MTO, so there are losses in productivity.
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