Italian company San Grato produces numerous forged parts for cars, motorcycles, industrial and commercial vehicles, and agricultural machines. Many of them are made on seven Farina presses with press forces between 1,000 and 5,000 tons at the company’s sites in San Carlo Canavese (Torino) and Malonno in the province of Brescia. San Grato recently ordered its eighth press from Schuler affiliate Farina. The 2,500-ton machine features a kinetic energy recovering system (KERS), which reduces the power demand by 40%. San Grato already covers two-thirds of its energy cost through its hydroelectric power station located close to Torino and a photovoltaic system installed on the roof of both plants. The Farina press also offers increased output and reduced maintenance costs.
Otto Fuchs KG ordered a crank forging press with ServoDirect technology from Schuler for its Shenyang, China, location. The automotive supplier will use the machine, which has a press force of 3,150 tons, to produce more aluminum chassis components for customers in China. In crank forging presses with ServoDirect technology, several torque motors operate on a main shaft via a step-down gear unit. They are suitable both for wear-free single-stroke operation and for forging in continuous operation.
Mosdorfer GmbH, a manufacturer of fittings for high-voltage overhead lines, ordered two screw presses and five C-frame presses from Schuler. According to Schuler, its screw presses with ServoDirect technology are the ideal solution for Mosdorfer’s new forge in Weiz, Austria. The press models have 2,100 and 1,100 tons of press force. Thanks to the servo motors, the screw presses have a lower design and offer improved drive controllability and higher starting torques with shortened stroke cycle times. The closed water-cooling circuit for the servo motors results in optimized temperature stability of the drive system independent of operational air conditions.
A. Benevenuta & C. S.p.a. ordered a 2,500-ton mechanical forging press from Farina, a Schuler affiliate. The company produces hot-forged steel components for the automotive industry near Turin, Italy. The parts are used in suspension systems, transmissions, engines and brakes in passenger cars, tractors, trucks and earth-moving machinery. The press force of the Benevenuta production lines ranges from 1,200 to 2,500 metric tons.
In the hot and warm forging of steel, there is a clear trend to replace graphite-based die lubricants with synthetic lubricants. This is driven by the need for cleaner work environments, easier handling and to avoid graphite-induced galvanic corrosion of equipment.
Schuler and its affiliate Farina demonstrated what the companies say is the world’s largest mechanical forging line to an international group of 60 forging experts. A live video stream transmitted from the production site in Suello, Italy, highlighted the features of the 16,000-ton press, which has a stroke of 600 mm, in action. The press will be delivered to Germany’s thyssenkrupp Gerlach. Due to its Scotch Yoke design, the press has a total height of 14 meters – making it much smaller than conventional presses. This enables high off-center loads and a high number of strokes. From the outside, the GLF-type machine looks like a conventional press, including the flywheel, clutch and crown gear. However, the Scotch Yoke directly works in the slide, which is the reason for the compact design.
Schuler Service repaired two machines damaged in a fire at Mühlhoff Umformtechnik, an automotive supplier in Uedem, Germany. As a result, part production on a new 2,000-ton press from the TSD series can also start on time – all within just 12 months of the fire. Because drive components with long lead times were already accessible, Schuler was able to shorten the time to commissioning by three months. This happened even though the experts on site had to contend with challenges such as the foundation, which was designed for the previous and significantly smaller 800-ton line.
Schuler will deliver a 16,000-ton forging line, which includes a Farina forging press, to thyssenkrupp Gerlach. Internal assembly for the 16,000-ton line – one of the largest mechanical machines in the world, according to Schuler – has been completed at Farina’s facility in Suello, Italy. After the test run, the components (with a total weight of 1,700 tons) will make their way to thyssenkrupp Gerlach’s forging plant in Homburg, Germany. Production is expected to start in 2022.
This final installment of three parts reviews FutureForge at Scotland’s Advanced Forming Research Centre (AFRC) at the University of Strathclyde. Not too big and not too small, FutureForge is just the right size to not only stimulate radical developments in the art and science of forging, but it will also nurture new thinking on the scale, and therefore investment requirements, for tomorrow’s experimental infrastructure.
When it comes to forging research, it turns out that size really does matter. The bigger the press, the lower the chance of using it for experimentation and the higher the costs associated with the research.