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ProcessMonitoring in mechanical processing

Forging the future in "Location G (Germany)“

Petroleum production is a hard business. Companies must extract this black gold from even greater depths. The trickiest job associated with deep sea drilling is working with high pressure under water, where the material must withstand drilling and extraction forces at all times. Experts on the almost 3,000 drilling platforms around the world rely only on the highest quality - for example, on the hammer mill “Hans van Triel”.

„Not everybody can do what we do“, Helmut van Triel, son of the founder and Managing Director of the Hans van Triel GmbH & Co. KG, relays confidently. The Essen-based company delivers around 1,000 tons of precision parts annually, meeting the highest demands. The petro-chemical industry is only one of its customers. Flanges, rings, disks, forged fittings, tube sheets or special forged parts from van Triel are also used, for example, in machine construction, the chemical industry or power plant construction. The close to 100-employees crew is in command of the entire manufacturing process, from precision sawing of the starting material with precisely calculated operating weights, through open-die forging to quality control.

Special employee know-how

„As opposed to large-scale production, our forgers must possess the right feel for the material“, says Helmut van Triel. With open-die forging, as with the hammer forging carried out by van Triel, the position of the workpiece is formed only by the continuous change of its position beneath the forming tool. For this, the forming is limited to pressure applications through compression, stretching, spreading and swaging. At van Triel, workpieces weighing up to half a ton are processed. For this, a modern forge manipulator, a type of small crane, helps with the forging of heavy workpieces on the table saddle. „Employees need a good deal of experience to form a flange or a ring out of the starting material“, explains 68-year-old van Triel. He learned the smith's profession, himself, as the first apprentice at the young company back in 1951. In the start-up years, the small team surrounding founder Hans van Triel, repaired farm equipment, performed metal work and shod horses. „Back then, nobody could have imagined forging flanges out of titanium alloy“, says Helmut van Triel. Today, 60 to 80 tons of precision components are shipped from the company grounds in the Essen district of Dellwig every month. „We transform forged blanks to assembly-ready dimensions in our mechanical processing department“, says Helmut van Triel. Following computer-supported thermal processing, the workpieces are transferred to classic turning lathes, to the processing center or to automated CNC-controlled lathes. A particular challenge to the machine operators and the machines: „We work with different materials - from steel, Nickel and Copper to Titanium. Of course, the worker must know exactly how to drive the workpiece so the tool, or even the machine itself, will not be ruined“, according to foreman, Michael Kucin. And: „The open-die forged part can also be one millimeter thicker or thinner. You must know that when approaching the piece.“

Machine protection: Economically interesting, easy to operate

In order to prevent damage to the machine while ensuring the continuous availability of the high-utilization machines, the hammer forger, Hans van Triel, has been using ProcessMonitoring systems from the first mover and world market leader, BRANKAMP, for over two years. „An extremely large crash was the reason for the installation. A CNC machine was subsequently out of service for a half year and had to be repaired for 40,000 Euros. Since we've been using the BRANKAMP systems, we have not experienced any large damage to the machines or tools. If something does go wrong, the systems are shutdown reliably and without delay“, says Helmut van Triel. Operator Erol Karabulut also finds BRANKAMP technology to be persuasive. For him, the CMS systems make work much easier. Above all, he praises the ease of operation. „The intuitive control system is so easy to operate that any employee can be taught in only one day.“ Helmut van Triel adds to this: „No machines will be operated without BRANKAMP systems anymore. The systems are an integral component of our quality strategy!“

Production to increase to 2,000 tons a year

High quality is a decisive criterion in staying competitive for the hammer forger, Hans van Triel. Numerous certificates and successful audits impressively document the company's performance capabilities. „We also manufacture specially dimensioned forged parts according to individual customer-specifications“, says Helmut van Triel. Signs of growth can be seen for the professional Essen-based forger. A further hall will be built as soon as possible on the 8,000 square meter company grounds. This will allow the company to double its capacity.

 

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