All posts by Jonas Fischer

Preventative Maintenance for your Conveyor Oven

In the world heat treating, a conveyor oven is a very unique piece of equipment that must be maintained to mitigate large break downs. Processes like tempering, preheating, quenching and annealing all require an efficiently functioning unit to maintain production deadlines. While some downtime is expected when working with large pieces of machinery, less time lost is better. This is why preventative maintenance is so paramount. Compared to the price of purchasing a new conveyor oven, the cost of regular repairs is much more reasonable. A little fiscal planning can go a long way when it comes to taking care of your equipment and your business.

Before scheduling maintenance on your conveyor oven, make sure that the technician is a qualified maintenance mechanic that has experience working with heat treating equipment.

The benefits of regular maintenance on your conveyor oven are numerous. For starters, you are able to schedule repairs at a time when production will be least affected. Regular care will also extend the life of a conveyor furnace. A well maintained unit will also protect your business by ensuring quality production and deadlines met on time.

Here are some helpful guidelines for the preventative maintenance of your heat treating or conveyor oven unit.

Preventative maintenance on your conveyor furnace begins with a regularly scheduled and thorough inspection of the entire unit. These inspections are able to catch small issues before they become large and costly problems. Any amount of energy loss is problematic for these conveyor furnace or other heat treating units whose processes are performed continuously.

The best rule of maintenance is keeping your equipment clean. The front and rear louvers and ventilation ports require regular cleaning. Before touching the temperature controller or control panel make sure that your hands are clean from oil, chemicals and dirt. Always clean any spills or other deposits from the chamber walls. Be careful when loading and unloading the chamber so that the thermocouples and heating elements are not damaged.

Another important task is to lubricate the moving parts of your conveyor oven. The fan shaft bearings need to be lubricated with high-temperature lithium grease every 3 months. The fan belt also needs to be regularly inspected for cracks and worn areas. Be sure to never exceed the maximum temperature of your furnace.

Be mindful of the amount of energy being used during production. A change in the amount of energy being used could mean your conveyor furnace is not running at optimal efficiency. Lastly, be sure to regularly inspect the door seal for any heat or energy loss.

These easy maintenance tips can help prevent costly repairs and maintain production schedules. Be sure to refer to your Operating and Maintenance Manual from the manufacturer when performing any repairs or maintenance on your conveyor furnace.

To schedule an appointment a with Baker Furnace’s Service technician, call us at 714-223-7262 or click HERE to contact us online. For more Heat Treating oven or Industrial Furnace news and follow us on Twitter at @BakerFurnace Facebook: Baker Furnace or on Google+ as Baker Furnace Inc.

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Two of The Biggest Heat Treating Events of 2016

The top metal manufacturing event, Advanced Manufacturing Expo & Conference, and the most important aerospace and defense event, AeroDef 2016 are here! 2016’s Biggest Heat Treating Conferences will be held in Southern California. These events are the mecca of new products and technology for the heat treating and metal working industry.

This year’s Advanced Manufacturing Expo & Conference led by the brightest minds in their fields, will be held at the Anaheim Convention Center in California. The expo will showcase an impressive tradeshow floor and specialized conference program covering numerous topics affecting the metal industries that are connected with advanced design and manufacturing. This conference will also host the most comprehensive educational program of the year for the heat treating and metal manufacturers.  The Advanced Manufacturing Expo & Conference is an essential hub for new technological innovations in the heat treating and metal manufacturing.

The 3 day expo include more than 2,000 vendors displaying their most cutting-edge developments for medical technologies, electronics, plastics, automation technologies, manufacturing, packaging and product design.

Open discussions will also be held to discuss industry trends and challenges. Educational classes on medical technology including nanotechnology will be available. Some of this year’s themes will include product design and market access.

Learn more about this annual event by clicking this link http://www.fabricatingandmetalworking.com/events/ .

The 2016 AeroDef Conference will be held at the Long Beach Convention Center. This conference is the most important heat treating technical conference and exposition of the year for defense and aerospace industries. Keynote speakers will include leaders from the pinnacle of the defense and aerospace world including Scott P. Willoughby of Northrup Grumman, Daniel G. Korte of LMI Aerospace, & Bryan G. Dods of GE Power & Water. The conference will highlight the industry’s newest and most advanced technologies.

This year’s new convention design and discussion sessions were created to allow heat treating professionals to experience first-hand the showcase concepts on the exposition floor.

For more information click their link http://www.aerodefevent.com/ .

For more Heat Treating oven or Industrial Furnace news and information follow us on Twitter at @BakerFurnace Facebook: Baker Furnace or on Google+ as Baker Furnace Inc.

Interested in a Heat Treating Furnace or Heat Treating Oven? Contact us at info@BakerFurnace.com or visit us at www.BakerFurnace.com .

Buyer’s Tips for Purchasing a Car Bottom Furnace

Before you begin shopping around for a Car Bottom Furnace there are a few requirements that you will need to figure out before you start the process.  Here are some tips to that will help determine the type of Car Bottom Furnace that will suit your needs best.

What is the typical Temperature Uniformity needed in my Car Bottom Furnace?  These Furnaces typically operate at about plus or – 25 deg. F uniformity depending on the maximum temperature.  A Car Bottom Furnace can also achieve tighter uniformity (+ or – 10 degrees F), but the engineering must be precise. Typical temperatures are around 1350 deg. F range at + or – 25 deg. F.

 Does my Process Require Pressure Controlled Flue Dampers?  There are benefits to including a pressure transducers and a control motor/linkage in a Car Bottom Furnace. These benefits include greater control over the flue which gives the user excellent temperature uniformity.

 Will my Car be sealed on the side and back walls when inside the Furnace?  Every Car Bottom Furnace should utilize some style of “bumper” system that will thoroughly seal the car inside the unit.  The drive mechanism for the car is shielded by the Refractory surfaces and is located beneath the car.

 Do I need an Accreditation approved Control Panel?  The U.L.is a well known independent, globally accredited Safety Company. U.L. requires a high safety and quality standards for all products. Good manufacturers use components accredited by the U.L.  These parts will have a U.L. Classified Sticker on the unit.

 Will the Combustion System be rated to Factory Mutual, IRI and NFPA 86 standards?  Car Bottom Furnace units should come equipped with several safety mechanisms including surplus Gas Safety shut off valves, High/Low Gas Pressure Switches, Isolation gas cocks, flame supervision with Ultra Violet (U.V.) and Scanners Air Proving switches.  A Car Bottom Furnace Burner should not ignite until a purge air cycle has been concluded at start up. Burners can light on low fire and vary safely to high fire via linkage and drive component.

 Will I need Installation/Start up assistance for My New Car Bottom Furnace?   It is always a good idea to be trained from the manufacturer on your specific unit as well as on trouble shooting tactics whether you have an onsite engineer or not. The manufacturer should also provide you with drawing of your unit as well as an operating manual.  

For more Car Bottom Furnace or Industrial Furnace news and information follow us on Twitter at @BakerFurnace , on Facebook as Baker Furnace or on Google+ as Baker Furnace Inc.

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Interested in an Industrial Furnace or a Car Bottom Furnace? Contact us at info@BakerFurnace.com or visit us at www.BakerFurnace.com .

Forming Oven 101

One of the most widely used thermal processes in manufacturing is called Forming. Forming processes are used in nearly every aspect of industrial manufacturing due to its versatility and ability to adapt to every application. Components created in a Forming Oven are used to make everything from Mac truck panels, bicycle helmets and spaceships.

Forming is the process where metal or plastic is stretched, drawn or bent in order to create a desired shape while maintaining the material’s tensile strength and ductility. The prerequisite to forming is that the materials have an ultra fine grain size. Processing materials while in a super heated state called Thermoforming. The desired application and material determine the type of process and temperature performed in the forming oven.  Forming techniques include stretching a material over a mold, vacuuming the material into a concave or blowing air into material to produce a hollowed out center.

One of the major advantages to processing in a forming oven is that you can form large and complex pieces in a single operation. These finished pieces have a fine surface and are created with excellent precision. A forming oven also allows the manufacturer to create very large works which eliminates the need for assemblies and additional pieces. This simplicity means that the finished pieces are lighter, which is particularly important to the aerospace industry. The main disadvantage is the slow forming rate of thick gauge materials, which can equate to a lower volume production for certain products.  Thin gauge materials, on the other hand, can be produced and finished very quickly.

Because a forming oven can be configured to process glass, metal or plastic, these units have become an essential part of manufacturing within the automotive, aerospace and medical equipment industries. Forming ovens are also very popular because their processes incur lower tooling costs than other metal manufacturing methods.

In the last decade forming oven processing, specifically thermoforming processing, has been greatly improved with the advancement of microprocessors and computer controls, which have increased process control and repeatability. Electric servo motors are also now being used in more sophisticated units for actuation of the machine platens, which gives operators more precise control over closing and opening speeds as well as tooling timing.

For more forming oven or industrial furnace news and information follow us on Twitter at @BakerFurnace Facebook: Baker Furnace or on Google+ as Baker Furnace Inc.

Interested in an Industrial Furnace or a forming oven? Contact us atinfo@BakerFurnace.com or visit us at www.BakerFurnace.com .

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Railway Concepts Inspiring the Car Bottom Furnace Industry

The biggest news to affect the Car Bottom Furnace Industry is the surge in high speed train proposals across the globe. The two largest proposals have been created by the Chinese who are looking to open world economy and open international relations by connecting the world via train.

In the last 15 years, China has begun an astonishing rail construction spree, laying tens of thousands of miles of tracks and launching high-speed railway lines. China has recently signaled its intent to build a “New Silk Road” heavy-duty freight network through Central Asia to Europe via rail rather than the old caravans that once bridged West and East.

All of this news has been very exciting for the car bottom furnace industry. There is still no word on when industrial furnace companies will get to bid for the car bottom furnace production jobs.

One of the biggest railway ventures in the concept phase is the China-American railway. A project of this size would require numerous car bottom furnaces working around the clock to produce railway and tunnel pieces.

China wants to build a 200km-long undersea tunnel to America via a railway route through Russia, running under the Bering Strait. The 8,000 mile route would need two undersea tunnels connecting Russia and Alaska.

Much like the Channel Tunnel, this new plan to link the East and West has been in concept for a hundred years. Both Russia and China have had great interest in a land route to the U.S. for at least the last 100 years. The proposed Chinese railway plan provides the solution for both countries.

Engineer Wang Meng-shu has laid out a plan for an exact route from northeast China through the Bering Strait. . While this is plan is breathtakingly ambitious, China claims to have the technology. The 8,000 mile route would reduce the need to fly, although at 350kph (220mph) it would still take two days.

China has a number of ambitious train projects in the pipeline. Each of these projects translate into great growth and would fuel new innovations for the car bottom furnace, such as portability and automated systems.

For more car bottom furnace or industrial furnace news and information follow us on Twitter at @BakerFurnace Facebook: Baker Furnace or on Google+ as Baker Furnace Inc.

Interested in an Industrial Furnace or a car bottom furnace? Contact us at info@BakerFurnace.com or visit us at www.BakerFurnace.com .

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NASA’s Composite Manufacturing Robot to Build World’s Biggest Rocket Parts

NASA has one of the most advanced composite manufacturing robots ever created in America. The robot will be used to build the biggest, lightweight composite parts ever made for space vehicles.

This latest addition to the Marshall Space Flight Center’s Composites Technology Center in Alabama will low-cost and high-speed composite manufacturing for large composite rocket. The structures this robot will be building will determine whether these special space vehicles are fit and safe for carrying humans on exploration missions to Mars and other places.

The robot’s key purpose is to build the lightest rocket possible. A lighter rocket carries more crew, science instruments, food, equipment and habitats. Lightweight composites have the potential to increase the amount of payload that can be carried by a rocket and lower the total production cost. NASA is conducting composite manufacturing technology tests to determine whether composites can be used to make units for the Space Launch System and other exploration spacecrafts and habitats.

The robot will build structures larger than 26 feet in diameter, some of the largest composite structures ever constructed for space vehicles. NASA’s robot is making huge industrial advances in composite manufacturing for space exploration and increasing affordability of space vehicles.

To make large composite structures, the robot travels along a 40-foot long track, and a head at the end of its 21-foot robot arm articulates in multiple directions. The head can hold up to 16 spools of carbon fibers that look like pieces of tape and are as thin as human hairs. The robot is able to place the fibers onto a tooling surface in precise patterns to form different large structures of varying shapes and sizes. The robot head can be changed for different projects, which makes the system flexible and usable for various types of composite manufacturing.

The first project that the robot will tackle is making large composite structures for a Technology Demonstration Mission by Marshall for the Space Technology Mission Directorate. For the project, engineers will design, build, test and address flight certification of large composite structures similar to those that might be upgraded for an evolved Space Launch System.

NASA is also a partner with the National/Interagency Advanced Manufacturing Initiative and will share its data with American companies to open up the marketplace for increased use of composite manufacturing in every industry.

 

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For more information on composite curing and composite ovens & furnaces, contact us at Baker Furnace 714-223-7262 or visit us online.

The History of Powder Coating and the Powder Coating Oven

The invention of the powder coating process and the powder coating oven emerged as a response to the many issues that existed in the liquid finishing industry. The main issues were that the finishes did not last long enough, products contained and released volatile organic compounds when resins were being applied and the high costs associated with maintaining the proper safety equipment and pollution control units that were required for applying traditional liquid finishes.

In the 1940’s, the European finishing and coating industries were under tremendous pressure to find a more environmentally friendly way to process and dry coatings. The current method of coating was flame spraying, which utilizes combustible gasses to create the energy necessary to melt the coating material.

It was in the late 1940’s that Dr. Erwin Gemmer developed a way to fluidize the bed application for thermoplastic resins on metal as a more efficient alternative to flame spraying.

The new powder coating method could be applied to new or used parts after they have been degreased and chemically cleaned to provide a proper surface. The coated part is then placed in a powder coating ovenfor 2-4 hours to complete the process.

Over the next 40 years, major improvements in coating and application processes and the efficiency of the powder coating oven brought the industry huge amounts of growth. By the 1980’s, the process and the powder coating oven had gained enormous popularity as breakthrough advances in resinsand powder coating oven procedures had decreased waste, increased efficiency and lowered processing costs.

Today this coating can be applied and dried in a powder coating oven in as little as an hour. A standard powder coating oven on the market today can dry a coating resin in 15 minutes. These technological improvements continue to be driven by the automotive, aerospace, appliance and general industrial markets.

To learn more about how powder coating and a powder coating ovencan benefit your business, please contact Baker Furnace for a quote at www.BakerFurnace.com, email info@BakerFurnace.com or call us at 714-223-7262.

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The AISI Annual Report Shows Growth in the Heat Treat Furnace Industry

The American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) recently released their 2014 Annual Statistical Report (ASR). The report discusses good news and continued growth in the iron and steel industries as well as the heat treat furnace industry.

The American Iron and Steel Institute report details how the industry has seen an increase in U.S. steel production, shipments and imports in 2013. That steady growth has also continued into 2014. These increases in production and imports have also led to increased sales of heat treat furnace units as many manufacturing companies continue to bring processing back in house. Increases in Chinese wages as well as fuel charges have steadily brought more industrial manufacturing and metal working jobs back to the U.S.

The industrial furnace industry has enjoyed continued growth in the sales of heat treat furnace units with both total and finished steel imports quantities levels reaching to near record levels. These imports amass to a record 28% share of apparent steel supply.

Report details also show a steady industry growth over the last few years that is showing no signs of slowing. U.S. steel shipments were counted at 98 million net tons which is a 3% increase from the previous year and a 6% increase from the most recent five-year average solidifying the market growth. This industry growth has helped to fuel the growing number of U.S. manufactures who require a heat treat furnace for production. U. S. raw steel production was 97 million net tons in 2014, a 1% increase over 2013.

In other manufacturing news, President Obama recently signed two significant trade initiatives: Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) and the extension of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act which includes renewal of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) and trade remedy improvements. The steel and heat treat furnace industries have applauded the action, particularly enactment of the trade remedy measures for which the industry strongly advocated.

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To learn more about how a heat treat furnace can help your business or to get a quote on a heat treat furnace, contact us by clicking here or contacting our offices at 714-223-7262.

Gold Mining is Changing the Crucible Furnace Industry

Gold is regaining popularity, and with it, a resurgence in crucible furnace purchases. Gold has long maintained its market value despite its shifts in market saturation. This week’s headline, “Gold that could be worth €150 million discovered by miners in Ireland” gave gold enthusiasts renewed excitement in their search for the valuable metal. “Archaeologists Baffled by 2,000 Tiny Gold Spirals Discovered in Denmark” also sparked the imagination of gold hunters and miners when a half a pound of pure gold was found at an archaeological site over 1000 years old. Public interest was so high that in order to meet the demands of patrons the Skaelskor museum opened a special exhibit featuring the gold spirals. Western Australia has also seen new gold discoveries in its Gruyere mining province. These recent finds have led to an increase in crucible furnace purchases in gold processing areas including the one in Australia

Crucible furnaces have long been the pinnacle of gold melting for the precious metals industry. Gold has long been one of the world’s most highly sought-after minerals as it is one of the easiest metals to smelt and handle. Gold can be easily melted in a crucible furnace and is no-corrosive, non-reactive to most other elements and is highly malleable.

Since man first learned how to melt and process gold, it has proven to be a favorite precious metal for making coins and jewelry. With the help of a crucible furnace, gold is also now able to be used to manufacture electrical conductors, infrared shielding, and wiring and is even used on the circuit boards of most cell phones. Gold’s ability to be highly ductile and a great conductor of electricity make it a smart choice for electrical manufacturers.

Gold also possesses the ability to be pounded flat until the point of being transparent without losing its strength. Gold is able to be melted with or into other metals in a crucible furnace to create stronger alloys product while maintaining its highly-desired color and value.

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To learn more about what a crucible furnace can do for your company, contact the offices of Baker Furnace at 714-223-7262 or email us at info@BakerFurnace.com.

 

 

Top 5 Uses for a Car Bottom Furnace

A Car Bottom Furnace is one of the most versatile of all the industrial furnaces and is one of the most widely used unit types. Our customers use these furnaces for a variety of processes in their facilities including heat treating applications such as post welding, stress relieving and annealing.

Sales for Car Bottom Furnace models are on the rise as many of our customers are bringing their heat treating in-house. We decided to pole our customers’ applications as well as the most common industries to determine uses for our exceptional Car Bottom Furnaces.

Here are the Top 5 Uses for an Industrial Car Furnace:

  1. The number one most frequent application is heat-treating large or heavy welded fabrications like gear blanks, which are generally used in automotive and machine tool parts. Other popular heat-treating uses include industrial steel and aluminum mill applications like wire annealing, foil annealing and pre-rolling processes like pre-heating and reheating.
  2. The second most common use is homogenizing applications like aluminum logs, billets or plates.
  3. Forging processes come in 3rd for making parts used in manufacturing automotive, aerospace, oil drilling equipment and other capital equipment.
  4. Casting is the 4th most frequent use, most commonly using large steel and aluminum castings both expendable and non-expendable for manufacturing parts.
  5. Lastly is powder metallurgy which is particularly important for its unique ability to alter materials that are impossible to create by normal melting processes.

Car Bottom Furnace applications that did not make the top 5 list but deserve honorable mention include transformer drying and workpiece austempering. Transformer drying in a car bottom furnace can be done for both low frequency heating (vacuum drying) and vapour phase drying. These processes are important for the proper maintenance of any transformer. Workpiece austempering is a hardening process in which rapid quenching is performed during steel manufacturing in order to increase strength and ductility.

For more information about how a Car Bottom Furnace can be used to improve your manufacturing business or to request pricing on one of our customer furnaces contact our offices at www.BakerFurnace.com, email info@BakerFurnace.com or call 714-223-7262.

 

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