Erie Press Systems recently installed a 3,500-ton ring blanking press at McInnes Rolled Rings. Both companies are based in Erie, Pa. McInnes forges carbon, alloy and stainless steel preforms weighing up to 10,000 pounds. The new press will support a new radial-axial mill that can produce seamless rings up to 12 feet in diameter. It complements a 1,200-ton Erie Press Systems’ press for rolled-ring preforms that has been the workhorse of the McInnes plant since 1992. The installation will expand McInnes’ base of business in the power-transmission, energy and commercial/aircraft bearing markets.                

Significant energy savings are achieved in the new press through the use of variable-frequency drives on the eight 300-HP main motors. The design adjusts the motor speed to provide the required flow and then “turns off” a motor when pump flow is no longer required. This eliminates the energy wasted during idle periods, which is typically 30% of a motor’s full-load current. Additional benefits include reduced noise level over the cycle, reduced pump wear due to fewer rotations, reduction in cooling demand and use of fixed displacement pumps instead of servo pumps.