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#1 May 18 2017


New and motivated: Metal Casting

People of Lebanon (peace be upon you)

I used to visit this website quite often, but this time my topic was not a previous one, therefore I decided to join and share.


1. A wee bit about myself
2. The Entrance test to this website
3. Metal casting
     a. What is it?
     a. Is it important?
     b. Plans and ambitions

1. A little bit about myself
I am a super perfectionist, hardworking guy with these HUGE ambitions that one day I will be able to make a BIG difference for this decayed rot of a country called Lebanon. To be specific, I wish to contribute to the industrial sector, and more precisely, to metal casting and metal works: I want to transfer this from the primitive state it is right now in Lebanon to the state of the art, largely automated, powerful, capable true metal working art which I see with my own eyes in The Netherlands. For me, watching metal works like this (www.youtube dot com/watch?v=4i0g8vWeliI) is like watching machine por*, so amazing, so fantastic, so I wanna do it.

I started studying Mathematics in The Netherlands a few years ago, until I started to get a clear vision of what my goals are. It then started to become clear that my mathematical background is not going to offer any help when it comes to realizing my visions regarding metal works. Therefore I did not continue with this program, even though mathematics was and still is what defines me.

Now I am going to study Mechatronics, yet in the same country. Holy Moly the technological standards they have here are SUPER WOW. Kids here have more knowledge than adults in Lebanon and intelligent machinery dominates each and every work ground. Logistics are always a big part. Every object in every industry in here is ever so neat. With the skills I hope to learn from Mechatronics, I aim to apply this practical knowledge to construct relevant machinery in Lebanon.

2. The Entrance test:

I'm really impressed by the test to qualify for becoming a member. It is not that hard, but sure for the other, average Lebanese guys this test wouldn't make any sense. I have to say though, I did not do it via a program, but with some mathemagics. Explanation: Multiples of 3= 3*k, let t be the limit number, take r=rounddown(t/3). Then Sum of multiples of 3 becomes 3*(1+2+...+t)=3*t*(t+1)/2. Do the same for 5, or whichever other number you're dealing with, as long as it is a prime (non primes have more details involved). Now if we sum both sums together, we will have the multiples of both numbers repeated twice. So take now 3*5 which is 15, sum its multiples up to t. Now Answer=f(3)+f(5)-f(15) where f(x)=sum of multiples of x below t.
This test makes me confident that the people I am talking to are well educated and not the stereotype-matching typical street Lebanese.

3. Enough useless formulas, now for the real talk. I joined here because I am VERY interested in starting a metal foundry, no matter how small scale it is for a beginning. I have had a long history with this subject, but, unfortunately, circumstances did not allow me to continue with my projects. Metal works are a very important tool for industrialization and lie at the heart of any industrial revolution.

a. So What Is Metal Casting?

Metal casting is the practice of thermally melting metals and then molding it into desired shapes.

Have a quick look in here, for a basic example: www.youtube dot com/watch?v=tH-PaNugz9w. In this video. you can clearly see how easy it is to create any shape you need out of metal.

b. What does this mean?

Read again: "... create any shape you need...". MACHINE DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION!!!

Do you know that the material price of a $150k heavy machine Caterpillar or Volvo does not exceed $2k maximum? Oh, did you also know that it is not that hard to design and construct one of these here in Lebanon (big talk I know, but do not underestimate yourself)

Do you know that the engineering skills required to build a construction lever can be achieved by first year university education? It is not that hard. Do you also that such a lever is very primitive and easy to construct? After all, it is just welding several beams and putting them into shape. You can probably build one in your backyard right now!
So why is it so costly to rent or purchase one of these levers? Simply, because you are providing jobs for foreign engineers and because we the Lebanese have not matured enough yet to start manufacturing these for ourselves.

"Ok, now be realistic please. It is very implausible that you and I will go as far as heavy machinery."

Yes I know, heavy machinery projects require the dedication of huge resources and efforts over a very long time indeed.

However, humble levers and engines up to 100 kg are relatively easy to produce and can be achieved within two weeks maximum. These are not going to be racing car engines, but industrial engines that just perform their function.

"How is this beneficial? What uses can you make out of an industrial engine?"

In case you are already starting to understand and develop your own views regarding the importance of metal casting, lathing, etc. then congratulations, well done.

Nevertheless, if you still can't see the picture, consider this: Cherries and apricots are one simple, yet very relevant, example regarding the Lebanese agriculture. How do cherry-farmers handle this? Like retarded peasants: picking cherries by hand, one by one, one by one..
Now I want you to take a look at www.youtube dot com/watch?v=ykGuOIMGbLI
In this video, a vibrator shakes a cherry tree making the fruits fall, and thereby these are conveniently harvested. Huge cut down on costs, huge improvement in work quality.
Another application of basic, industrial engines, is lathes and milling machines. Basically, you can construct a complete workshop from scratch: a foundry, a lathe, a milling machine, a drill press, a sheet metal brake, and much more. There is actually a notable person who wrote books about this: see David Gingery.

Basically, the only limit to what you can accomplish with metal working abilities is your imagination.


#2 May 18 2017


Re: New and motivated: Metal Casting

I have never taken the "entrance exam". I have joined at a simpler time.
Yet with every time I hear it mentioned here I get more curious about it.
Should I create a new account just to take the test, or maybe can someone share it here with me? (without the solution!).
Last but not least, welcome! Can I just call you "shar"?


#3 May 18 2017


Re: New and motivated: Metal Casting

Hi there sharshabillian, welcome to LebGeeks!

I have recently gained some fascination for machining and automation, after coming across technologies like EDM and laser surface texturing. However, my focus is currently on other unrelated areas, but I commend your enthusiasm and I truly hope that with time your ambition will lead to a successful endeavor.

Keep up the positive attitude and keep us updated on your progress!


#4 May 18 2017


Re: New and motivated: Metal Casting

Rolf, it goes like: find the sum of the multiples of x or y below t. Replace x and y with small numbers and replace t with a big number >500, enjoy. And yeah Shar is good.


#5 June 1 2017


Re: New and motivated: Metal Casting

First of all welcome aboard!! Glad to have machinery enthusiats here. The world of metal casting is huge, but I wouldn't say Lebanon is far behind the rest of the world. We do have a lot of places and workshops in Lebanon who do metal casting (aside from CNC) like RapidManufactury, IFB (Innovation Factory of Beirut, though not sure that kind of equipment is available to public), and a couple of my go to workshop pros in the South (namely Ghaziyi and Sarafand). I would love to discuss this more in person if you ever want to, so feel free to pass by Lamba Labs Beirut Hackerspace during Build-Nights on Wednesdays (starting June since now we are closed for Ramadan).


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