Casting ladle

Spoon-shaped vessel for ladling and pouring liquid metals.

Casting ladles are used both for casting small sand castings or gravity die castings and in automated sand casting, gravity die casting and pressure die casting. In automated casting, the casting ladle is fitted to castingrobots and casting manipulators. Materials used for ladles are:

Ladles made of heat-resistant steel, cast steel or cast iron (Fig. 1)

These ladles need to be provided with a ladle coating in order to largely prevent soldering, attacks and high temperature losses of the melt. Prior to pouring, the ladles must be warmed up well and their coating renewed during operation since erosion and ferrous impurities could occur otherwise. The benefits of metallic ladles are their relatively low price compared to ceramic ladles, their high strength, robustness and insensitivity to mechanical impacts (e.g. blows) and the fact that they are easy to fasten to robots or casting manipulators.

Ladles made of ceramic composite materials (refractory composite, Fig. 2)

Despite the lower resistance to mechanical impacts when compared to metallic ladles, ladles made of ceramic composite materials continue to gain importance as they provide the following benefits:

  • Low own weight
  • No preheating necessary
  • Low temperature losses
  • Excellent corrosion resistance
  • Low wettability by aluminum alloys (easy removal of ladle residues, the ladles usually come with a boron nitride coating)
  • No ferrous impurities (see Iron needles)

Sample designs of ceramic ladles can be found in Fig. 2, examples of technical data for a ceramic composite material are shown in Table 1.


  • Fig. 1: Ladle for gravity die casting made of heat-resistant steel, face-coated, fastened to a casting robot
  • Fig. 2:  Ladles made of ceramic composite material, RFMTM Autopour casting ladle from Pyrotec Inc.
  • Table 1: Technical data of the RFMTM material from Pyrotec Inc.
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