For decades, automotive component makers have relied on hot forging presses and shearing systems to transform metal bars into high-quality parts such as drive shafts, gear wheels and bearing rings, to name but a few.
China’s AVIC Shaanxi Hongyuan Aviation Forging Co. Ltd. put what it says is the world's largest clutch-operated screw press into operation at its site in Xi’an, Shaanxi Province. The SPKA-type clutch-operated screw press, which was supplied by SMS group, has a screw diameter of 1,330 millimeters (52 inches), a blow force of 365 MN, a gross power of 27,000 kJ and a weight of 2,900 tons. It offers flexibility when it comes to optimizing the forging process and requires far less stroke to achieve the preset ram speed than a conventional slipping-wheel screw press. This type of press is particularly suited for high-energy forging typically used for turbine blades or structural aircraft components.
For the third consecutive time, Cleveland played host to the biennial Forge Fair, which was held on the shores of Lake Erie May 21-23, 2019. Nearly 2,000 attendees and 169 exhibitors made Forge Fair 2019 the largest ever.
Thyssenkrupp will build an advanced forging line at its Homburg site in Germany’s Saarland region. The company will invest approximately $90 million in a new 12,000-square-meter facility to produce forged front axles for trucks. The centerpiece of the highly automated and digitized forging line will be a 16,000-ton forging press measuring 32.8 feet (10 meters) high and weighing 1,700 tons. According to thyssenkrupp, the press will produce 360,000 forged components per year and will not be restricted to one product. In addition to front axle systems, the line will be able to produce crankshafts and other forged parts as required.
ParkOhio completed the previously announced acquisition of Erie Press Systems (formally EFCO Inc.) of Erie, Pa. Erie Press manufactures advanced forging presses, hydraulic and mechanical presses, and metal stretch-forming and carbon extrusion machines for end markets including aerospace and defense, primary metals and high-speed rail.
Porsche and Schuler have chosen Halle an der Saale, Germany, as the location for their new joint press shop. The 13-hectare site is in the vicinity of Porsche’s Leipzig plant. The sports-car manufacturer and the forming specialist from Göppingen want to drive the flexibility and digitalization of body-part manufacturing. Their joint venture, Smart Press Shop GmbH & Co. KG, will invest approximately $112 million in this project, which is expected to create 100 permanent jobs. Construction is due to commence in the second half of 2019, and production at the new press shop is scheduled to begin in 2021.
SMS group received an order from China’s Sichuan Liuhe Forging Co. for a high-speed, 50/55 MN open-die forging press. The press is a two-column, push-down design and features a table shifter and die shifting unit. Operating with a press force of up to 50 MN and a maximum upsetting force of 55 MN, it is suited to forging high-quality products with finished dimensions within the close tolerance range of ±1 mm.
At the FIERF 32nd Technical Conference held last September in Long Beach, Calif., Weber Metals’ Justin Owen made a presentation about the process by which OTTO FUCHS (OF)/Weber Metals made the decision to invest $180 million in what they say is North America’s largest forging press. This became the largest single investment decision in company history.
A group of forging professionals recently gathered in Long Beach, Calif., to attend the Forging Industry Educational and Research Foundation’s (FIERF) 32nd Technical Conference. Attendees were treated to a great plant tour, two days of technology, and a chance to greet old friends and network with new ones.
Long Beach, Calif., is perhaps best known as the retirement home of the legendary cruise ship Queen Mary, which is permanently moored there and is currently an operating hotel and museum. But on Sept. 11-12, Long Beach hosted some of the forging industry’s best and brightest technical people, industry professionals, suppliers and educators at what was FIERF’s 32nd Technical Conference.
Weber Metals of Paramount, Calif., and parent company Otto Fuchs Group (Germany) unveiled its new 60,000-ton forging press. The press was designed and built by Germany's SMS group and represents a $180 million investment. According to Weber Metals, the huge press is the world’s largest private investment in aerospace metal forging. As a result, the company will double its employment to 800 jobs.
Check out the February 2020 issue of FORGE, featuring our cover story on the "Proper Use of IR Temperature Sensors (Part II)", "How Hatebur Solved a Shearing Production Problem", "Optimized Cooling Rates of Microalloyed Steels (Part II)", and much more.