Mercury Castings is a business unit of Mercury Marine, a division of Brunswick Corporation (BC). Mercury Marine started producing castings for the parent product line of marine engines and components nearly 70 years ago. As Mercury Marine embraced the aluminum casting technology as foundation of the development of high performance marine engines, it continued to invested in people, technology, and equipment over the coming decades. Aluminum casting technology was one of the key competitive advantages that established Mercury Marine as the world leader in marine engine industry despite some very tough global competition.
Mercury Marine formed Mercury Castings in the mid 1990’s to start producing parts for various recreational, agricultural, industrial, and automotive customers. Mercury Castings engineers and technicians worked closely with a number of customers to develop and launch many programs that lead to successful production of hundreds of thousands of parts found in many applications.
Mercury Castings is located in Fond du Lac, WI sharing the same campus location as Mercury Marine’s Headquarters in the United States.
Due to the extreme operating environment of marine engines, metallurgy and related manufacturing processes are exceptionally important to Mercury, and are considered a core competency. Due to their superb strength to weight ratio and fair corrosion resistance, aluminum alloys were a good choice for marine engine components.
However, as the customer expectations for performance, durability, and reliability grew over the years, the engine development became constrained by the material properties of known aluminum alloys. In order to improve corrosion resistance, fatigue strength, and toughness, Mercury Marine started development of new aluminum alloys with improved properties. After many years of experimentation and studies of effects of various constituents in an aluminum alloy to the key properties, Mercury Marine was able to develop several aluminum alloys with significantly improved properties. Meanwhile, Mercury remained sensitive to both the environment and material cost by focusing the new material development using high content of recycled material. The result of these efforts are several high performance aluminum alloys that can be produced at very competitive costs using mostly recycled materials resulting in minimal impact to the environment.
These new alloys were named Mercalloy™, and they have been widely recognized in the industries beyond marine engines for their unique properties achieved at very favorable material and processing costs. Mercury Marine successfully produced millions of marine engine and other parts over the years, which established reputation of Mercalloy™ as “marine aluminum”. The industry noted Mercury propellers produced in Mercalloy™ 368 for their high ductility and ease of damage repair by welding. Mercury driveshaft housings, highly structural parts that connect outboard engine to the underwater propeller, produced using Mercalloy™ 367 were recognized for their superb impact energy absorbing characteristics during high speed collision of a boat with an underwater object. Likewise, the high fatigue strength characteristics of Mercalloy™ 362 allowed Mercury engineers to further reduce weight of marine engines while increasing performance, resulting in industry leading power-to-weight ratios.
Recognizing exceptional performance of Mercalloy™ materials in marine engine applications, engineers and material experts from many non-marine industries were starting to investigate using Mercalloy™ for various other applications. Prompted by this interest, Mercury Marine started to invest additional resources into further studies of applicability of Mercalloy™ materials beyond marine industry, conducting various experiments and collecting new material performance data. As a result, several automotive, motorcycle, heavy truck, and other companies are working on evaluation of Mercalloy™ materials for various uses in highly demanding applications requiring high strength, ductility, impact energy absorption, corrosion resistance, or high fatigue strength.
Mercosil 391, a hypereutectic Al-Si alloy, serves as an alloy suitable for light weight parent bore material in various marine engine applications, as well as various bearing surfaces requiring good wear qualities as a result of the high Si content.
The expert team of Mercury Marine material, technology, and process specialists is led by the pioneer of structural aluminum casting technologies and globally recognized expert in the field of aluminum alloys, Dr. Ray Donahue. This team is available to assist automotive and other OEM’s, as well as their suppliers of castings and materials, in evaluation, adoption, and readiness for production of structural components in Mercalloy materials. For more information about Mercalloy please contact [email protected].
Mercury Castings has been smelting aluminum alloys for internal production for over 30 years. Consistent with Mercury’s commitment to the environment, Mercury Castings uses recycled materials whenever possible, using only around 5% of primary materials. This extensive use of recycled materials helps Mercury Castings produce specialty aluminum alloys at a very competitive cost.
Inspired by inquiries of some business partners, Mercury Castings acquired a high capacity automatic ingot maker and started providing specialty aluminum alloy ingots to external customers. Mercury Castings can smelt almost any aluminum alloy in volumes of as small as a few tons to as much as thousands of tons monthly. For more information on Mercury Castings specialty aluminum alloy sales please contact [email protected].
Mercury Castings high pressure die casting operation consists of 35 HPDC machines with sizes ranging from 700T to 2500T. Most machines are equipped with state of the art shot controls and automated metal delivery, die spraying, and part removal. In addition to producing majority of key engine components for the Mercury Marine engines, Mercury Castings is also producing a large number of various parts for external customers in other industries.
Mercury Castings is currently expanding the die casting operation by addition of several new large die casting machines for both internal and external use. For more information on Mercury Castings high pressure die casting part sales please contact [email protected].
In addition to high pressure aluminum die casting, Mercury Castings operates a fully automated lost foam aluminum casting line producing a number of very complex parts for both internal and external customers. Very complex foam patterns are first dipped in ceramic slurry and then placed in one of the flasks to be filled with sand. The foam is displaced by molten aluminum to form a part, which is then solidified under pressure uniformly applied to the inside of the whole flask. This process is unique to Mercury Castings and it enables production of some exceptionally complex parts. For more information about Mercury Castings lost foam castings please contact [email protected].