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Difference between Cast Steel Valves and Forged Steel Valves

January 11, 2024

Valves play a critical role in various industries, and understanding the differences between cast steel valves and forged steel valves is essential for making informed decisions in valve selection. In this article, we will delve into the characteristics, applications, and manufacturing processes of cast steel and forged steel valves, shedding light on the factors that set them apart.

Cast Steel Valve Overview:

A cast steel valve is crafted through the casting method, wherein molten steel is molded into the desired valve shape. This manufacturing process imparts exceptional wear resistance, high strength, and durability to the valve. Cast steel valves find applications in diverse industries, including power plants, petrochemical facilities, water treatment, chemical processing, and waste processing plants.

Features of Cast Steel Valves:

  1. High Hardness: The steel composition results in outstanding hardness, making the valve resistant to damage from external forces and abrasive wear.
  2. High Mechanical Strength: Carbon content ensures robust strength, making these valves suitable for high-pressure applications.
  3. Wear Resistance: Superb resistance to friction enhances the valve’s service life, even in challenging conditions.
  4. Corrosion Resistance: Steel’s inherent resistance to corrosive fluids, such as acids, adds to the valve’s versatility.
  5. High-Temperature Resistance: Cast steel’s high melting temperature makes it ideal for applications involving elevated temperatures and pressures, such as in power plants.

 

Forged Steel Valve Overview:

Forged steel valves, on the other hand, undergo the forging method, where steel is heated and shaped using mechanical tools. Although more expensive than cast steel valves, forged steel valves offer advantages, particularly in large-sized valves where casting might be prone to leakage.

Critical Features of Forged Steel Valves:

  1. Thermal Fatigue Resistance: Highly resistant to thermal fatigue, making them suitable for high-temperature environments.
  2. High Strength: Exhibits high strength, making them ideal for high-pressure applications without compromising mechanical integrity.
  3. Corrosion Resistance: Shows resilience against corrosive media like acids and alkalis.
  4. Extended Service Life: The forging process enhances durability, providing an economical and long-lasting solution.

 

Differences between Cast and Forged Steel Valves:

  1. Strength: Forged valves exhibit superior strength due to the aligned grain structure, whereas cast valves are relatively less strong, with a porous structure that can be prone to cracking.
  2. Manufacturing Cost: Casting is a quicker and less labor-intensive process, resulting in more cost-effective valves. Forging, being labor-intensive, leads to more expensive valves.

 

Types of Cast Steel and Forged Steel Valves:

  1. Ball Valve:
    • Cast Steel: Utilizes a ball-shaped component, connected to the actuator/handwheel via a metallic shaft.

    • Forged
      Steel:
      Offers a quick 90-degree rotation for efficient fluid control.

 

 

  1. Gate Valve:
    • Cast Steel: Linear valve controlling fluid flow using a gate component.

    • Forged Steel: Features a gate connected to the handwheel via a shaft for precise fluid regulation.

  1. Check Valve:
    • Both: Also known as a non-return valve, operating automatically based on pressure levels.
  2. Globe Valve:
    • Forged Steel: Cylindrical in shape, suitable for controlling fluid flow, albeit with a higher pressure drop.

  1. Plug Valve:
    • Cast Steel: Uses a plug to open or close fluid flow, connected to the handwheel via a stem.

Conclusion:

In conclusion, both cast steel and forged steel valves have their unique characteristics and applications. Understanding their differences is crucial for selecting the right valve for specific industrial needs. Whether it’s the cost-effective versatility of cast steel valves or the robust strength of forged steel valves, each type serves a distinct purpose in fluid control systems.

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