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Heat Treat News

Nickel charts on InfoMine.comMolybdenum charts on InfoMine.com


Monday Morning Briefing. It’s going to be a good year for heat treaters especially heat treaters in North America. MTI reports that commercial heat treating sales as of the end of October 2014 were up 4.6% over 2013. Important to keep in mind is that the largest commercial heat treater in North America, Bodycote is not a part of this organization but Bodycote recently reported their sales growth in North America as actually higher than this number. So if anything this 4.6% growth number is probably conservative. "Ytd sales for the Metal Treating Industry for October 2014 were $795.1 million, an increase of 4.6% from 2013 when sales for January-October equaled $760.1 million. Sales for the Metal Treating Industry for October 2014 totaled $85 million, an increase from 2013 when sales for October equaled $81.3 million". Where are they now?  David Pye. David has always been a very well known consultant in the worldwide heat treat industry. While he is originally from the UK he lived and worked for quite a number of years in the US. We largely lost touch with him when he left the US a couple of years ago but we understand that he just finished a long consulting project which lasted just on two years and is now back in the UK although this might change. Joe Martin is another fellow who has been in this industry for quite some time, focusing on selling new furnaces. We recently mentioned how he was Sales Manager at Olson Industries but that he parted ways with the company. Turns out he is now Business Development Manager at Nutec Bickley another furnace builder. Mike Blazejewski. Mike has been with well known industry supplier Heatbath/Park Metallurgical for 18 years in a number of positions and was recently promoted to metallurgical product manager where he will be responsible for overseeing the technical laboratory departments in Detroit, working with suppliers, developing new products and continuing his technical service work with customers.

In the powdered metal industry Atlas Pressed Metals, located in DuBois, Pennsylvania, USA, has reported that it is expanding its Tom Mix Drive facility. The expansion will bring the total size of the building to more than 52,000 ft2 and allow the installation of new machinery. Part of this new machinery will include (you guessed it) a new high temperature sintering furnace. The building was first expanded in 1989, and a second expansion was completed in 1998. Out in California it certainly sounds like commercial heat treater Hi Tech Heat Treating in Gardena is adding more equipment which we have been told includes a Surface Super 30 batch IQ furnace. Automotive Components Holdings LLC (Ford Motor Company) in Plymouth, Michigan has an auction coming up in a couple of weeks an auction that will include 3 Controlled Atmosphere Brazing Lines. Not a big market for equipment such as this but you never know. General Motors in St. Catherines, Ontario, Canada also has an auction coming up which includes some heat treating equipment mainly Induction Hardening systems. More details of the auction can be found on this page under the “Hilco” banner ad. Not that long ago we told you how Northland Heat Treating in Antigo, WI was closing their doors. As it turns out the company declared bankruptcy which is very unusual for a commercial operation considering that they have no inventory. No word on when or if the equipment will be auctioned off which includes some older batch IQ furnaces. Solar Atmospheres of Hermitage, PA, a commercial heat treater who recently made out list of the 10 largest in North America recently announced that it has agreed to extend its contract to inspect titanium seat tracks for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner for another seven years. It has been four years since the Hermitage company signed the original agreement with RTI Claro of Quebec, Canada, which manufactures titanium components used for the seat tracks in the floor structure of the 787. Solar Atmospheres anticipates the agreement will include work on more than 1000 of the Boeing 787 aircraft.

And to round things out we have this press release from Pregl Services. "Pregl Services, Inc. (Pregl), providers of comprehensive aftermarket support to the thermal processing industry, today announced they were recently contracted to replace a large vacuum furnace hot zone with a new Pregl Furnace Mate™ Hot Zone.  A major concern for this Midwestern customer, a significant heat treater in the tooling industry, was being able to install a new hot zone without having to modify their existing furnace chamber.  Pregl conducted a full on-site inspection and analysis to collect and verify all engineering data for this project.  “To maximize the performance of your furnace, all Pregl Furnace Mate™ Hot Zones are specifically engineered to match the form, fit and function of your original hot zone with no modifications to your chamber”, said President of Pregl Services, Andrew Pregl.  The newly hand-crafted Pregl Furnace Mate™ Hot Zone will be built at Pregl’s facility in Janesville, Wisconsin. ABOUT PREGL SERVICES:  Pregl Services, Inc. was founded in 1997 by experienced vacuum furnace professionals to provide reliable, expedient, cost-effective, value-added repair, rebuild and reconditioning services to the thermal processing industry. For more information, please visit us at www.pregl.com.  Contact: Jack Herbert, Director of Marketing & Sales. Pregl Services, Inc. 5043 South U.S. Highway 51, Janesville, Wisconsin 53546-9109  Ph: 608.314.8260  Fax: 866.359.3365  Email: jack.herbert@pregl.com November 24/2014


Used Equipment Available. Our list of the best priced used furnace equipment in the industry keep changing. So what have we added in the past couple of weeks? An Ipsen Dunk/Spray Washer a Surface Combustion Vacuum Furnace, a Leco Microhardness Tester Model LM100AT in excellent condition, a Vacuum Hot Press, a very impressive Abar Ipsen Vacuum Brazing Furnace, with a flexible asking price, two Sunbeam Rotary Hearth Furnace, a very nice Beavermatic Box Furnace and two Wisconsin Box Tempers. If you don't see what you are looking for please let us know and we will try to find it for you. jordan@themonty.com ovember 24/2014

A few examples include:


SECO WARWICK Press Release. "Service Heat Treat has purchased a standard Vector 2 bar vacuum furnace for their commercial heat treat facility in Milwaukee, WI.  The furnaces will be manufactured in the SECO/WARWICK Corp. Meadville, PA facility. About Service Heat Treating, Inc. Service Heat Treating, Inc., serving southeastern Wisconsin and northern Illinois, is the area’s top provider of batch and vacuum heat treating services.   The Service Heat Treating niche is case hardening and vacuum processing medium to large production runs.  We also offer standard stainless steel and tool steel processing quickly and cost effectively.  The company scrutinizes every department offers standard stainless steel and tool steel processing quickly and cost effectively.  Service Heat Treating offers the capability to develop boutique annealing cycles for making the impossible bends.  The company also has vacuum carburizing capabilities for the most distortion critical applications.   For more information, visit serviceheattreatingmilwaukeewi.com

About the  Vector Family of High Pressure Quench Vacuum Furnaces Furnaces;Vector™ High Pressure Quench Furnaces, available in 2, 10, 15 or 25 bar are the ideal solution for hot, cold and high speed steels.  Along with our patented vacuum carburizing technology, these furnaces can be used for tempering, annealing, solution heat treating, brazing and sintering. With the FineCarb® and PreNit® (high speed) carburizing options, a SimVac® process simulation package is included at no extra charge.   With hundreds of systems installed worldwide, SECO/WARWICK’s high pressure quench furnaces have a proven record of high performance technology.  Learn more at www.secowarwick.com/en/products/vacuum-heat-treatment/.

About SECO/WARWICK Corp. The SECO/WARWICK Group provides industrial metal heat treatment furnaces used in a variety of processes for material finishing and component manufacturing applications.  We supply furnaces to customers involved with steel, titanium and aluminium production as well as aluminium recycling, forging, automotive, aerospace, commercial heat treating, HVAC/R, electronics, wind energy, medical equipment and nuclear industries. The globally integrated organization includes the manufacturing sites SECO/WARWICK Corp. (USA), Retech Systems LLC (USA), SECO/WARWICK S.A. (Poland), SECO WARWICK Allied Pvt. Ltd. (India), SECO/WARWICK RETECH Thermal Equipment Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (China) and SECO/WARWICK do Brasil ltda (Brazil). Sales and service offices in Russia, Belarus and Germany complete the customer care network." November 24/2014

Custom Electric

Business Opportunities. "The Monty" has many top notch positions available in the heat treating industry which indicates both the shortage of good people available and also the fact that we get results for our advertisers. A small sampling of recent offerings include these; a company in Israel looking for advise from an Experienced Gas Fired Furnace Expert, Tri City Heat Treating in Rock Island, Illinois needs a Process Developer, a commercial shop in Ohio needs a Heat Treat Manager and very large heat treater FPM in the Chicago area is looking for a Metallurgist.

Do you want results when it comes to filling a position within the heat treating industry? "The Monty" is the most economical, fastest way to fill that position. Looking for a job? Send us your ad and we will put it on the site free of charge for as long as you would like. When it comes to filling positions within the heat treating industry "The Monty" can't be beat. With a readership of over 20,000 heat treaters/month we will help you fill your position or help you find a job. Just contact jordan@themonty.com. November 24/2014


Texas Stress Fire. Commercial heat treat Texas Stress http://www.texasstress.com/index.htm in La Porte Texas suffered quite an amazing fire which was actually entirely filmed by a local news station. Nobody was hurt but the footage is quite something to see. November 21/2014

"HOUSTON - A fire at a La Porte heat treatment plant burned for about two hours before it was finally extinguished Wednesday morning. The fire started at around 9 a.m. in a furnace at Texas Stress, Inc. at 1304 Underwood Road. Workers were heat-testing a newly fabricated piece of equipment made of magnesium. The Deer Park Fire department rushed pumpers to the scene, but firefighters couldn't use water to put out the fire, because water causes fires fueled by magnesium to intensify. Firefighters used a company crane to remove the top from the furnace, causing the fire to flare for a while as fresh air rushed in. Firefighters contained the blaze, allowing it to burn down, before moving in to douse it with a compound called Metal X. RAW VIDEO: Firefighters battle magnesium fire "Firefighters went in with proper gear and proper extinguishing agent, had it under control quickly in about 10 minutes," said Chief Greg Bridges with the Deer Park Fire Department. Deer Park firefighters were among those from several local departments who responded to a gas leak a few miles away last Saturday. That incident resulted in the deaths of four workers at a DuPont chemical plant. "We stay sensitive about all the plant problems," Chief Bridges said. "Plants operate in sound and environmentally safe manner for the most part. Unfortunately with the magnitude of chemical industry we have in this area, you're going to have a mishap every now and then." No injuries were reported as a result of the fire. Workers at a neighboring business were requested to shelter in place for a time as firefighters fought the fire".


Ipsen Press Release. "CHERRY VALLEY, IL – As the need for hands-on, tailored thermal processing education increases, companies are continually recognizing the value of sending employees to Ipsen U. Ipsen recently held their last class of 2014, and they are now preparing to host another series of Ipsen U classes in 2015. Ipsen’s three-day course allows attendees to learn directly from the experts while asking questions about specific equipment and processes, as well as experience a hands-on approach to learning. This proves useful for those wanting to expand their thermal processing knowledge base and first-time furnace operators, alike. Participants in the October 2014 Ipsen U course came from across the country, including California, Illinois, Missouri, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin. Reflecting on the class, attendees found that “the instructors’ hands-on approach and knowledge of leak detection were very helpful.” Others found it useful to “see all of the different furnace designs and be able to relate them to the information talked about earlier in the class,” concluding “mixing the lecture with actual furnace visualization was extremely valuable.”

Throughout the course, instructors covered an extensive range of topics, from an introduction to vacuum furnaces and heat treating to furnace subsystems, leak detection, maintenance and so much more. Most notable about Ipsen U is participants’ ability to bring up any topic they are interested in for discussion. This allows for some fluidity and permits the instructors to shape the course to individuals’ specific needs and concerns. In addition, attendees are able to tour the facilities, participate in a leak detection test on a furnace and view firsthand the different furnace components while learning about how they affect other parts of the furnace and/or specific processes. Overall, Ipsen U allows participants to build upon and refresh their knowledge of heat-treating equipment and processes through applied learning. Regardless of where attendees fall on the expertise scale – maintenance, operator, engineer, project manager and/or plant manager – Ipsen U’s instructors provide the necessary level of information in a casual, open-forum environment. Learn more and register for an upcoming 2015 Ipsen U course – February 3-5, April 7-9, June 2-4, August 4-6 or October 6-8 – at IpsenUSA.com/IpsenU. November 21/2014

Super Systems

Global Warming/Global Change. You will have a very hard time convincing any North Americans that Global Warming is happening. The winters in North America are getting colder and snowier and the summers getting cooler. The photo below shows Maryanne Colopy, wife of Curt Colopy VP of Inex Inc., of Holland, NY a supplier of composite radiant tubes. This area which is well known for their brutal winters has broken all records by achieving in 4 days what the region normally gets in an entire winter. In the past few days the region has received up to seven feet (2130mm) of snow with another 3 feet (1 meter) expected tonight. Amazing. November 21/2014


Park Ohio/Saet Induction. So what is happening in the Induction world? Looks like Park Ohio (parent company of Ajax Tocco-a well known induction heating supplier) has agreed to buy Saet an Italian manufacturer of Induction Heating Equipment. Saet has locations in Italy, China, India and in the US. The location in the US is located in Tennessee and was founded by Frank Cole a former Robotron Induction guy under the name of EDMS. EDMS concentrates on Induction heating/press quench systems and from what we have heard they are not bad at what they do. November 20/2014

Cleveland, Ohio – ParkOhio has signed a definitive agreement with Milan, Italy, based Star Capital SGR S.p.A. and other minority shareholders to acquire Saet S.p.A headquartered in Turin, Italy, for approximately $22.9 million. The transaction is expected to close by December 22, 2014, subject to certain closing conditions. Saet is a heat treating company that services engine, steering, and transmission components for automakers and heavy equipment producers. Edward F. Crawford, Chairman and CEO, stated, “ParkOhio continues to expand its interest in manufacturing of induction heating equipment and parts and service centers. Saet is a strategic acquisition with great technology and a strong brand name in induction heating. Saet’s locations complement our Ajax Tocco locations with tremendous synergies. We believe that we are building a business that will be the clear leader in induction heating capabilities worldwide.” Saet designs, manufactures, and tests induction heating equipment and heat treat solutions. Saet operates through its locations in Italy, China, India, and Tennessee. With more than 4,000 machines installed around the world, Saet machines are used for hardening, tempering, and annealing for various industrial applications in the agricultural, automotive and renewable energy markets."


Bodycote Trading Update. November 17th 2014 commercial heat treater Bodycote issued a Trading Update. While a number of UK publications summed the results up we chose this summary from insider media ltd as being the most concise. To cut a long story short North America good, Europe not so good. Also within this article is an interesting little note about new Bodycote locations in Turkey and China and a mention about a new board member. November 20/2014

"Engineering group Bodycote has reported a 2.9 per cent rise in group revenue for the four months between July 1 to October 31 despite economic growth slowing in Europe. The Macclesfield-based firm said revenues in its aerospace, defence and energy business were higher by 2.5 per cent at constant exchange rates. There has been continued demand from the North American onshore sector and revenues for subsea applications, particularly for the group’s HIP Product Fabrication offering, have continued to grow steadily. Revenues in the industrial gas turbine sector were flat compared to the same period of last year. The automotive and general industrial business saw revenues increase 3.2 per cent at constant exchange rates. In Western Europe revenues were ahead 0.9 per cent at constant exchange rates and North American revenues increased 8.5 per cent at constant exchange rates. Car and light truck revenues grew strongly in North America as the group said it continued to win market share, but revenues were modestly lower in Western Europe compared to the same period last year, as many customers took extended summer shutdowns this year. During the period the group opened two new heat treatment facilities, one in Kunshan, close to Shanghai and one in Gebze, Turkey, which offer a range of services required by automotive and general industrial customers. The group is also continuing the expansion of its specialist technologies. In a trading update, Bodycote said: “In light of weak economic conditions, especially in the Eurozone, the Board currently expects that general background demand will be more difficult in 2015 than in 2014. However, the strength of the Group’s specialist technologies is expected to counter the effects of the soft macro-economic environment.” Bodycote has also announced the appointment of Ian Duncan to its board. Duncan, who is board member of Babcock and WANDisco, will join as a non-executive director and will become a member of the audit, remuneration and nomination committees."

Woodworth Inc./Homer, Michigan. Earlier this week we updated our “Largest North American Commercial Heat Treaters” list. One of the companies we mentioned (and which has been a perennial on our list for the past few years) is Woodworth Inc., with plants in Pontiac and Flint, Michigan, as well as Puebla, Mexico. We mentioned in passing that the company will shortly have a new operation in Homer, MI a project which started in August of this year and which is expected to be completed by May of 2015. A very impressive project which will most likely mirror the other Woodworth plants with large JL Becker Company tip up furnaces offering; Nanotechnology, specifically Nanowear ®, providing corrosion resistance to the oil and gas industry. Ferritic nitrocarburizing (FNC) of brake rotors for the auto industry, resulting in greater performance of the rotor, enhanced durability, noise reduction, and decreased friction. The end result is longer life of the part, allowing extended warranty periods and rust-free brakes. Ultrawear ® is applied to steel components to increase wear resistance. It also increases the material strength properties as well as increasing its resistance to corrosion. The company has been tremendously successful over the years by specializing in medium and large volume work and I doubt many companies out there can match their pricing on very large volume work for the technologies mentioned above. November 19/2014

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SECO/WARWICK Changes. Furnace builder SECO/WARWICK has announced these personnel changes at their facility in Meadville, PA. "Andrew Paris, COO has announced the appointments of Jeanne Moser as Supply Chain manager and Monica Zaczyk as Materials Manager for the Meadville facility. As Supply Chain Manager, Jeanne Moser is responsible for purchasing management activities.  Ms. Moser earned an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Kent State University and an MBA from Youngstown State.  She is a member of APICS, the leading professional association for supply chain and operations management.  Monica Zaczyk is responsible for inventory management and part availability at the Meadville manufacturing facility.  She earned an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Governors State University and a Masters degree in Supply Chain Management from Elmhurst College.  She is a member of APICS, the leading professional association for supply chain and operations management." November 19/2014

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Wall Colmonoy Press Release. "Wall Colmonoy announces the appointment of Steph Curtis as Managing Director for its European Headquarters. Steph joined Wall Colmonoy in January 2014 bringing with him 30 years’ experience in strategic, operational and commercial management. He has worked in a broad range of industries with over 15 years as a P&L responsible director with major international plc’s and UK SME’s. His experience covers Steel & Concrete, Capital Goods and Electrical Switchgear industries and automotive industry (Brake systems, Fasteners, Electronics, Hybrid Electric high-tech startup). Steph has a strategy for Wall Colmonoy focused on continuous improvement and profitable growth. Steph will provide leadership for a very capable management team and experienced workforce. He will oversee all company operations to ensure a safe working culture and production efficiency with the goal of delivering quality products, excellent customer service and value. Steph states, “I am delighted and privileged to be given the opportunity to lead Wall Colmonoy as its Managing Director in Europe. There are tremendous business development opportunities to be exploited in our diverse international markets. I am very excited about leading the company to even greater success”.  Commencing his career as a mechanical apprentice, he graduated with a 1st class BSc (Hons) Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Cardiff University and gained an MBA in Strategic Management from the University of Glamorgan. Steph is a Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, CEng FIMechE." November 19/2014

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Linamar Gear/AFC-Holcroft. While we mentioned this a few months back we now have the official press release about Linamar Gear in Guelph, Ontario, Canada adding more batch IQ capacity in the form of two more UBQ furnaces. The press release says Linamar has one of the largest batch IQ installations in the world-it is our belief that it is the largest in North America and maybe possibly but probably not the largest in the world-but pretty darn close.

"LINAMAR GEAR ADDS ADDITIONAL MANUFACTURING CAPACITY WITH NEW AFC-HOLCROFT BATCH FURNACE FACILITY. (November, 2014) Canadian auto parts supplier Linamar Gear located in Guelph, Ontario has expanded their manufacturing capacity with the addition of a new AFC-Holcroft UBQ (“Universal Batch Quench”) batch furnace facility. This order represents the 26th and 27th UBQ furnace at this site, making it one of the largest batch integral quench installations in the world. The newest batch heat treatment facility consists of two gas-fired UBQ Universal Batch Quench furnaces sized 36-48-36 with top cool, along with two UBT Universal Batch Temper furnaces, all served by a new spray/dunk washer and transfer car. Installation of the batch facility is planned for the 2nd quarter of 2015.

About AFC-Holcroft: AFC-Holcroft is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of heat treating furnaces. The legacy companies that comprise AFC-Holcroft have a combined 225+ years of thermal processing experience. The company manufactures turn-key heat treating systems for applications including commercial heat treating, bearings, automotive, aerospace, mining, military, aluminum heat treatment, gear manufacturing, fastener manufacturing, and alternative energy industries. AFC-Holcroft, headquartered in the United States, has a global reach with direct sales coverage in North America and worldwide, while AFC-Holcroft Europe serves major industrial markets in Germany, France, and other European locations. AFC-Holcroft’s Asian Operations manages partners in China, India, South Korea, and other countries in the region, and the company also extends into markets in Australia, Brazil, Mexico, Poland, Russia, and Spain, through relationships with partners, many of whom have manufacturing capability. For more information, contact media@afc-holcroft.com" November 18/2014


European Used Equipment Available. Surplus Heat Treating Equipment. For 16 years “The Monty” has been very successful at putting buyers and sellers of used heat treating equipment together and we now bring this model to Europe. If you have surplus heat treating equipment we would be very happy to help you find a buyer on a non-exclusive small commission basis. Please let us know what questions you have and we will be happy to answer them. If you are a buyer looking for a particular item please let us know and we should be able to find it for you. jordan@themonty.com November 18/2014

A few examples include:


Pregl Services Press Release. "JANESVILLE, Wisconsin (November 13, 2014) – Pregl Services, Inc. (Pregl), providers of comprehensive aftermarket support to the thermal processing industry, today announced a contract to rebuild a large vacuum furnace hot zone for a Midwestern location of a large commercial heat treater.  This customer wanted to ensure it could use its existing inventory of replacement parts on the rebuilt hot zone.  With this in mind, Pregl engineered a solution that allowed the customer to exhaust the inventory of parts in their stockroom, as well as provide upgrades to new Pregl components, which maximize furnace efficiency and performance. The customer’s hot zone will be rebuilt at Pregl’s facility in Janesville, Wisconsin.  All insulation, shielding and hardware will be removed. Damaged components will be repaired or replaced.  The plenum will be cleaned and repaired.  New insulation, elements and element hangers, gas nozzles, and shielding will be installed. To learn more about Pregl’s new and rebuilt hot zones, and replacement parts for major vacuum furnace brands from Pregl Express Parts™, please visit www.pregl.com or call 608.314.8260.

ABOUT PREGL SERVICES:  Pregl Services, Inc. was founded in 1997 by experienced vacuum furnace professionals to provide reliable, expedient, cost-effective, value-added repair, rebuild and reconditioning services to the thermal processing industry; which minimize downtime, reduce operating costs, improve operating efficiencies and maximize equipment longevity.  Pregl has developed its vacuum furnace expertise into comprehensive aftermarket support that includes: Furnace Repair, Rebuild and Reconditioning; New Pregl Furnace Mate™ Hot Zones; Hot Zone Repair, Rebuild and Reconditioning; Vacuum Pump Repair, Rebuild and Reconditioning; Pregl Vacuum Furnace Control Systems and Pregl Express Parts™ - the company’s private label parts inventory for vacuum furnaces which includes molybdenum, graphite, vacuum pump parts and oil, and ceramics. For more information, please visit us at www.pregl.com.  Contact: Jack Herbert, Director of Marketing & Sales. Pregl Services, Inc. 5043 South U.S. Highway 51, Janesville, Wisconsin 53546-9109  Ph: 608.314.8260  Fax: 866.359.3365  Email: jack.herbert@pregl.com" November 18/2014

Corner Stone

Largest North American Commercial Heat Treaters. We set ourselves the task of putting together a list of the ten largest commercial heat treaters in North America based upon annual sale volume knowing that this was an impossible task. Impossible because with very few exceptions commercial heat treaters worldwide are privately held companies that guard their sales figures with an almost religious zeal, the two largest exceptions to this would be UK based Bodycote and Germany based Aalberts Industries. While a number of firms did share their sales figures with us on the basis that they would not be published others were very cagey and we had to rely on number of employees, plant sizes, processes offered and number of locations. Adding to this difficult task is the fact that beyond the 5 or 6 largest you find quite a number of operations in the $20 to $25 million USD/year range with very little separating one from the other. Going back slightly we mentioned that processes offered was one factor in our decision and this point needs clarifying. Companies such as Solar Atmospheres and ALD who did make our list are not even close when it comes to pounds/year processed when compared to a number of other companies that did not make the list, however what they both have in common is that they are offering “high end heat treating” which translated means that the price per pound of material processed is far higher due to the high capital costs of the furnaces required as opposed to “low end” heat treating of fasteners as an example. So while we do not for a minute claim this list is 100% accurate we will in our conceit say that it is pretty darn good and as close to dead on as you are probably going to find. November 17/2014

1) Bodycote. Use any measure you would like and UK based heat treater Bodycote comes out on top with almost 60 plants in the US, Canada and Mexico. With total North American sale of roughly $350 million USD the company dwarfs the next 3 or 4 commercial heat treaters combined and if there is a heat treating process that Bodycote does not offer we would be surprised.  http://www.bodycote.com/

2) Bluewater Thermal Solutions. 10 plants in the US and Canada make Greenville, South Carolina base Bluewater the second largest commercial heat treater in North America or as the company likes to phrase it “the largest US based commercial heat treater”. The company has gone through several ownership changes over the years and is now owned by a venture capital firm who seems to be dedicated to investing whatever is required. Another firm which covers most of the bases when it comes to differing processes.  http://bluewaterthermal.com/

3) Paulo Products. Paulo is the largest family owned heat treater in North America with five locations around the US and is based in St. Louis, Missouri.  Founded by the Raisseur family three generations ago the firm is still entirely owned by the same family. While I think of mesh belt processing when I think of Paulo we do know that most types of heat treating are available from Paulo.  http://www.paulo.com/aboutus.html

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Vac Aero Press Release. "Burlington, Ontario, November 17, 2014  - VAC AERO has recently shipped four complete replacement hot zones for various sized furnaces to be delivered to a North American manufacturer. The hot zones feature unitized construction for easy removal and maintenance. The lightweight design’s low thermal mass enables faster quenching and longer life. The heat shield package consists of three layers of half inch thick graphite felt and an inner reflective layer of graphoil bonded carbon composite that provides added protection and enhanced reflectivity. The graphite felt does not shrink which minimizes heat leakage and contributes to stable uniformity throughout its useful life. The heat shield package is supported by a 14 ga. stainless steel assembly that uniformly distributes the quenching gas to the workload. Some ongoing improvements on VAC AERO’s hot zones include improved durability, thermal efficiency and extended hot zone life." November 17/2014


Largest Commercial Heat Treaters in North America. As we put together our list of the largest North American heat treaters we are struck by the fact that UK based Bodycote is in overall terms so much larger that the next largest competitor (perhaps “struck” is too strong a word as this is a well known fact). While with sales of roughly $350 million USD per year in North America they are the industry leader their record is “spotty” in that in some areas of North America they clearly dominate the market and in other areas the company would appear to be playing “catch up”-our personal feeling is that a great deal of success is based upon the local and regional managers. Having said that here are some interesting facts about Bodycote. The company has over 190 locations around the world with total sales of roughly $972 million (using a value of 1.57 British Pounds Sterling to 1 US dollar). This breaks down to $379 million USD for general industrial sales, $240 million USD for automotive, $218 million USD for aerospace and defense and $130 million USD for Energy (all numbers are very approximate and rounded off). In terms of geography to break it down further we see that Western Europe accounts for roughly $544 million USD in total sales, North America as pointed out $350 million USD and Emerging markets such as Eastern Europe, China, Brazil, India, Singapore, and Dubai amounting to approximately $74 million USD. All of these facts and more can can be found on the Bodycote website www.bodycote.com November 14/2014

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Edwards Press Release. Vacuum Pump Supplier Edwards whose banner ad can be found on this page issued this press release. "CRAWLEY, WEST SUSSEX, UK. (12 November, 2014)— Edwards is delighted to announce it has received a Supplier Excellence Award from Lam Research for its performance and support. This is the third Supplier Excellence Award which Edwards has received from Lam Research in the last four years. Edwards, who supplies turbomolecular vacuum pumps to Lam Research, is the only vacuum and abatement supplier to be recognized.

Lam Research Corp, a major global provider of wafer fabrication equipment and services to the semiconductor industry, recognized only six companies with Supplier Excellence Awards at its 10th Supplier Day held on October 23, 2014. These awards acknowledge exemplary performance to pre-defined standards, including on-time delivery, quality, cost reduction, and several areas of flexibility and support. Chosen from among Lam’s preferred suppliers, the winning six companies also stood out for their willingness to exceed performance requirements, for example, by rapidly delivering solutions in support of challenging new product introduction cycle times. 

“We have an outstanding preferred supplier base that contributes significantly to our capabilities,” commented Tim Archer, Lam’s chief operating officer, “and it is an honor to recognize the achievements of the top six companies with these awards. In the fast-paced, competitive semiconductor industry, close collaboration with suppliers is a key component in Lam’s ability to deliver on commitments and provide the innovative solutions our customers need.”

About Edwards; Edwards is a leading developer and manufacturer of sophisticated vacuum products, abatement systems and related value-added services. These are integral to manufacturing processes for semiconductors, flat panel displays, LEDs and solar cells; are used within an increasingly diverse range of industrial processes including power, glass and other coating applications, steel and other metallurgy, pharmaceutical and chemical; and for both scientific instruments and a wide range of R&D applications. Edwards has over 4,000 employees worldwide engaged in the design, manufacture and support of high technology vacuum and exhaust management equipment. Edwards has state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Europe, Asia and North America. Further information about Edwards can be found at www.edwardsvacuum.comNovember 14/2014

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Stop Off Paints. Most people in the heat treating industry are very familiar with stop off paints-a method of preventing carburizing on a certain portion of a part to be carburized. However we don't believe that most individuals are aware that the regulations regarding what you can use are changing June 15/2015. This press release from a company in Germany spells out what is changing. November 13/2014

DAM Härtetechnik GmbH Press Release. "A new labelling requirement for stop-off paints will take effect on 15 June 2015. Stop-off paints will then be subject to the GHS, the Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals. But what does that mean for the products? Stop-off paints containing boron can easily be removed by washing and are made of the raw materials boron trioxide, borax and boric acid. Copper-based stopoff paints can mostly be removed by sandblasting and contain copper, copper(I) oxide or copper(II) oxide. While the first version will, in future, be labelled as toxic for reproduction within this classification, the version containing copper will be classified as environmentally dangerous. That means that the new labelling will clarify one thing: all stop-off pastes currently used in the industry or in the market pose a risk not only to the environment in general but also to the individual person.

That means in a nutshell: The currently available products pose a direct danger to humans and the environment For more than 20 years, DAM Härtetechnik GmbH has been a worldwide active and leading company which specializes in the development and manufacturing of stop off paints for the heat treatment of steel. As a specialized company, DAM Härtetechnik GmbH is not only active in the field of development and manufacturing itself, but also offers a wide range of problem solving strategies and professional consulting services. The company reacted to the new GHS regulation with new developments. These products are used like traditional stop-off paints for gas carburizing and vacuum carburizing, nitriding and Nitrocarburizing, for plasmanitriding, annealing and oxidation, for induction hardening and brazing. The name of these new stop-off products is LUISO®.

What is new is the fact that these products are both boron-free and copper-free and ensure optimal protection properties. They have, in addition, a neutral odor and do not contain any solvents. Any residues remaining after the heat treatment can be removed easily by washing with water. Even their viscosity and flow can be controlled by water. The objective behind the development of these new stop-off pastes was to strongly improve their environmental performance. And DAM Härtetechnik GmbH has achieved this objective with its new product line. Three additional products (LUISO W30, W34 und W36) are offered for gas carburizing for case depths of up to 6 mm. And the new product line also includes two products for nitriding and Nitrocarburizing: LUISO W21 which is ceramic-based and the LUISO W25 paste which can be used both for nitriding and Nitrocarburizing. The product portfolio contains, in addition, two hardness protection paints each for vacuum carburizing (W44 and W45) and annealing (W61) as well as two pastes which cover the field of plasmanitriding (W51 and W53). The product offer is rounded off by a kneadable protection mass (LUISO W63) to seal off hardening boxes, small or large holes."

Dayton Forging and Heat Treating Fire. Luckily it would appear that a fire yesterday at commercial heat treater Dayton Forging and Heat Treating in Dayton, Ohio was a small one. From their website we have this description of the company. "Dayton Forging and Heat Treating is your source for large open die forgings and commercial heat treating as well as bar stock and rough machining.  Our speed in manufacturing and delivery will keep your company ahead of its competitors.  As a family business started in 1919 and with over 100 years of service in our upper level management team, our consistency and close adherence to your specifications will provide your business with a significant edge".

"A malfunction involving a manufacturing furnace caused a fire Wednesday morning at an East Dayton business.The fire broke out shortly after midnight at Dayton Forging and Heat Treating, 215 N. Findlay St.“They were doing what is called a ‘quench,’ which is basically just dropping metal into a heated furnace,” said Dayton District Chief Scott Rowlett. “They had some type of malfunction, still undetermined at this time. “The furnace caught fire and the fire spread to the building’s roof, Rowlett said. Initially, fire units thought the fire was caused by a gas leak, but they were able to shut off the gas and determine that was not the cause. No one was injured, said Rowlett, and all the employees were able to get out of the building safely". November 13/2014

Interpower Inductions Press Release. "Interpower Induction, Almont, MI, http://www.interpowerinduction.com is pleased to announce the appointment of Cliff Darnell as Senior Sales & Development Engineer.  Gary Gariglio, President describes Cliff’s solutions-based selling approach as “a valuable asset in helping customers with their manufacturing issues.”  Cliff brings over 20 years of induction heating experience to Interpower Induction, including direct application/process testing, development and troubleshooting, along with engineering and sales. His experience runs deep in a variety of applications/processes, most notably in fiber optics, crystal growth, brazing, heat treating and nickel coating. He has been the lead sales engineer on projects involving full automationsystems. He applies his engineering background with a hands-on approach providing a strong technical solution to a customer’s manufacturing challenges. Cliff is the former Vice President of Sales, Fiber Optics Business Director, and Regional Sales Manager at Lepel, an Inductotherm/Inductoheat company, and RDO Induction. He has a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University. Cliff Darnell 810-292-4832 cdarnell@interpowerinduction.com" November 13/2014

Ipsen Press Release. "CHERRY VALLEY, IL – As the world evolves, so does the way products travel to customers. Ipsen recently hit a new milestone, shipping their first TITAN® vacuum furnace by air. This TITAN H2 with 2-bar quench was shipped to a company located near Shanghai, China as part of a collaborative 3-D printer-furnace package. This company is part of the Continuous Casting industry, and they will use the TITAN furnace to process printed steel part prototypes and assist in furthering the company’s new Research & Development projects. This thermal processing vacuum furnace was purchased as part of Ipsen’s partnership with a global provider of 3-D printing machines and printed products. This collaboration helps provide customers with the ideal 3-D printer-furnace package. Since the partnership began, several 3-D printer-furnace packages have been sold to companies throughout Europe and North America; however, this was the first combination to be sold to a company in China. The TITAN vacuum furnace’s journey began at Ipsen’s Cherry Valley facility, where it was assembled. During that time, the customer visited Ipsen’s facility to receive hands-on installation and operation training. The furnace was then shipped to Kentucky’s CVG Airport. >From there, its modular and compact size allowed it to be easily loaded upon a plane and shipped to China. Even though this is the company’s first 3-D printer and first vacuum furnace, Ipsen’s global presence – including an office located nearby in Shanghai – gives them immediate access to support whenever necessary. Customers can also take advantage of Ipsen’s Global Support Team, which facilitates on-site installation, expert training and start-up assistance from the moment of delivery through the entire life span of the equipment. Ipsen’s TITAN line is a self-contained, skid-mounted system that installs in just one day. Designed for ease of use, the TITAN is perfect for first-time heat treaters and experts alike. TITAN's standardized, simple-to-master control system operates in 20-plus languages, meets global industry standards, switches easily between units of measure and stores up to 1,000 recipes. Overall, the TITAN is an extremely versatile furnace that is able to handle a number of different processes, including annealing, hardening, brazing, sintering, tempering and more. To learn more about TITAN, visitwww.IpsenUSA.com/TITAN." November 12/2014

GM St. Catherine's, Canada Auction. A banner ad appeared on this page today from auction company HILCO about an upcoming auction at GM St. Catherine's, Ontario, Canada. This GM facility which manufacturers automotive drive components used to have quite an impressive heat treating department but over the years is has shrunk to almost nothing and it would appear that the remaining heat treating equipment is being auctioned off. This consists of a large continuous Holcroft mesh belt temper and quite a number of Induction Hardening machines. And what is GM doing about the heat treating? As far as we know it has all been going to ALD Thermal Treatment in Port Huron, MI for vacuum carburizing. November 12/2014

Remembrance Day, November 11. Today is a day of remembering all the good people who through the years have fought and sacrificed for causes they believed in. They will be remembered. November 11/2014

Largest North American Commercial Heat Treaters. Yesterday we told you how it was time to update our list of the largest commercial heat treaters in North America http://themonty.com/top10largest.htm As it turns out it is far past time when we should have done this since our last review was in 2011. A scan on the list shows that Metal Improvement Company was listed in the #5 position at that time, Metal Improvement was of course swallowed up by Bodycote some time back which makes for an obvious change. By the way to give you an idea about the size of Bodycote in North America in 2013 their sales were in the neighborhood  of $350 million USD. It strikes us that the old saying “the rich get richer and the poor get poorer” can be applied to this ranking in that virtually all of the largest companies have made substantial gains in the past few years. We would certainly argue that virtually all of the commercials in North America have grown over the years but the growth is most striking for the larger players. We are aiming for early next week to have the complete list available to you. November 11/2014

Bodycote Press Release. "MACCLESFIELD (U.K.) – Bodycote (LSE:BOY), the world’s largest thermal processing services provider, today announces the signing of an eight-year agreement with Messier-Bugatti-Dowty (Safran Group), the world leader in aircraft landing and braking systems. Under the agreement, Bodycote will provide thermal spray coating services for major commercial and military airframe component programs, including the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350. Thermal spray coatings are used to prolong the working life of critical components and provide in-service protection from factors such as abrasion, temperature and wear. Bodycote’s core business is to provide services that protect and improve the properties of metals and alloys. This in turn improves the material properties of components, extending their operational life and making them safer. The company plays a vital role in the aerospace supply chain." November 11/2014

J.L. Becker Press Release. "J.L. Becker, a Gasbarre Furnace Group Company, is pleased to announce the installation of two similar furnace systems for a domestic alloy manufacturer. The first, a retrofit of an existing 6’ x 32’ x 3’ Car Bottom Furnace with a complete insulation reline, upgraded pulse fired combustion system with self-recuperative burners, and upgraded furnace controls with data logging. The second, a new 55,000 lbs. 6’ x 32’ x 3’ Car Bottom Furnace with duplicate combustion and control systems. Operating temperatures of both furnaces range from 900-2000°F (482-1093°C) and comply with AMS-2750E specifications. Located in Plymouth, MI, J.L. Becker designs, manufactures and services industrial atmosphere heat treating equipment, specializing in Tip Up, Car Bottom and Large Batch Furnace Systems and has been delivering custom solutions to the heat treating industry for over 40 years." November 11/2014

Monday Morning Briefing. We will start off in Canada where we see that commercial heat treater A & M Heat Treating in Mississauga, Ontario is adding another large Ipsen vacuum furnace. A & M is a growing operation that has always invested a great deal back into additional capacity always in the form of advanced technology. As an example it is less than a year ago that the company added a very impressive ALD Vacuum Carburizing system. Speaking of companies adding vacuum capacity another is Certified Heat Treat in Dayton Ohio who also will be adding another vacuum furnace in the very near future. In other news about Certified we have this press release about a new addition to their sales team. "Certified Heat Treating Inc. is happy to welcome the newest member to our sales team, Mark Grubb. Mark brings with him over thirty years of experience in the heat treating industry.  As a young man, he started on the floor as a furnace operator and through the years worked as a plant manager and in Quality at several different heat treaters in the region". Stack Metallurgical in Portland, Oregon has been described to us by a couple of individuals as the best run commercial heat treat in the US (and this description did NOT come from anybody at Stack by the way). It is a well run place we have to admit always investing back into the company. Just recently they started up a new Endothermic Generator provided by McLaughlin Services. The very poor quality photo below shows Jeff McLaughlin and Jeff Lane of Stack at start up.

It would appear that Joe Martin is no longer with Olson Industries in Burgettstown, PA. Olson was established in 1945 and is a large new furnace builder supplying furnaces such as car bottoms. Joe who has been in the industry for many years became Vice President of Sales and Marketing just one year ago. No idea what happed to Joe but the relationship doesn’t seem to have lasted long. Michael Delahunt who was with vacuum pump supplier Trillium just recently made a move to the competition Oerlikon Vacuum where he is now Market Segment Manager. In Germany Greg Matula (who actually did an interview with us about the Polish heat treating industry a few years back) has a new position at oven builder Eliog Industrieofenbau GmbH in Germany. Greg was previously with furnace builder Elino but when the company encountered some financial difficulties earlier this year he was forced to make a change. Speaking of Europe AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group in Germany just released their financial results. Not familiar with the name? We’re sure you will know the name ALD (vacuum furnaces, vacuum carburizing) which is a division of AMG. "AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group N.V. ("AMG", EURONEXT AMSTERDAM: "AMG") reported third quarter 2014 revenue of $279.7 million, a 2% decrease from $286.4 million in the third quarter 2013.  Net income attributable to shareholders for the third quarter 2014 was $3.2 million, or $0.12 per fully diluted share, an increase from $1.4 million, or $0.05 in the third quarter 2013.  EBITDA increased 32% to $23.4 million in the third quarter 2014 from $17.7 million in the third quarter 2013". In related news it looks like the current CEO Dr. Heinz Schimmelbusch will remain as CEO for another 4 years.

Largest North American Commercial Heat Treaters. It is time to update our list of the largest commercial heat treaters in North America, something we have not done for some time. We won’t keep you in suspense, Bodycote is far and away the largest but after that it gets more challenging to rate the next nine. Stay tuned. November 10/2014

CAN-ENG Furnaces New Order. CAN-ENG Furnaces International Limited has received an order from a large International Mining and Materials supplier with locations spread throughout North and South American, and East Asia. The order consists of four (4) turn-key High Temperature Rotary Hearth and Chain Conveyor Tempering Furnace Systems with capacities between 10-30 tons/hour and staggered deliveries. The equipment includes the latest in energy efficient/low emission combustion, state-of-the-art drive system, refractory and automation including atmosphere monitoring, pressure and temperature control, high temperature cameras, safety systems and level II automation. Start-up for each project is planned to begin the first quarter of 2015. For more information, contact Gregory R. Stanley, CAN-ENG Furnaces International Limited, North American Sales Manager, Steel Products at gstanley@can-eng.com. November 7/2014

Advanced Heat Treat Press Release. "Safety Comes First at Advanced Heat Treat Corp.
WATERLOO, IA — Advanced Heat Treat Corp. (AHT) has been committed to keeping employees safe for over 33 years. Today, safety still comes first, as shown with these recently released numbers;
 The Burton facility located in Waterloo, IA has sustained zero injuries (no loss time) for over 6,000 days;
When compared to one of Industry Week’s 2013 Best of the Best manufacturing winners—at three years no loss time—the Advanced Heat Treat Corp. Burton location blows those numbers away with over 16 years!
 The Corporate Headquarters, also located in Waterloo, IA has sustained zero injuries (no loss time) for over 4,000 days;
 The Monroe, Michigan location recently participated in the 10th Annual MIOSHA Take a Stand Day, which recognizes the importance of workplace safety and health in Michigan;
 The Cullman, Alabama location is celebrating no loss time injuries since having opened in April, 2007!
The company recently held a Safety Awareness event with the theme “AHT Safe is AHT Strong” and created a humorous video staged with “It Wasn’t Me” mishaps to reiterate that safety is in the hands of each and every employee, whether they’re loading parts in the vessel or answering the phone. AHT also conducted emergency training with all employees, putting out fires with a fire extinguisher, in addition to tornado safety drills.
“We want to ensure the safety of our employees at Advanced Heat Treat Corp. so they are able go home each night to their families. We wouldn’t be able to maintain these great numbers without everyone’s commitment to safety, and I commend them for that.” Stated Gary Sharp, President and CEO. Advanced Heat Treat Corp. (AHT) is a recognized leader in providing heat treat services and superior metallurgical solutions to companies across the globe. Established in 1981, AHT is committed to exceeding customer expectations with “UltraGlowing” results.
AHT’s UltraGlow® family of processes includes Plasma Ion Nitriding, Ferritic Nitrocarburizing (FNC), Gas Nitriding, UltraOx®, Through Hardening (i.e. Quench & Temper), Carburizing, Carbonitriding, Induction Hardening, and many more services. The company’s unsurpassed customer service, high quality standards, prompt turnaround, commitment to research and development, and state-of-the-art equipment and technology have led AHT to where it is today.
To learn more about AHT’s capabilities, contact Mr. Mikel Woods (Sales / Marketing) at 319-232-5221 or woodsm@ion-nitriding.com. Or visit AHT online at www.ahtweb.com."
November 7/2014

Mexico Heat Treat Expo/Queretaro, Mexico. Mexico is one of the fastest growing heat treating markets in the world largely on the basis of the automotive industry which is seeing enormous investments by Japanese and US auto companies. So it comes as no surprise that the Mexican Heat Treat Expo held last week in Queretaro was a resounding success with 200 attendees and is a rapidly growing event. The event was two days with Thursday largely consisting of technical seminars where new products and Heat Treat day to day applications were presented. Attendees and exhibitors included companies such as AAM, AFC-Holcroft, Mattsa, Schunk, SSI, CRIO, MITSUBA, DANA and many others. The big event Friday night was a cockfight followed by a Dinner. While in years gone by this event might not have proven to be a good investment of time and money this has changed and we believe that in the years ahead no industry suppliers interested in the Mexican market will be able to miss this event. November 6/2014

Emerson Power Transmission/Ithaca, NY. It is 4 years now since one of the largest captive heat treaters in NY state, Emerson Power Transmission picked up and moved down the road To Kentucky because of lower operating costs. Although this is now old news we have a footnote to this story in the form of an abbreviated newspaper article which tells how the environmental issues continue to live on-a saga not unusual with old heat treating plants.

"Tests at the former Emerson Power Transmission site on South Hill conducted for redeveloping it have found more industrial contamination than previously documented. Getting it cleaned up, however, is part of the re-use project, the team behind the transformation proposal told a public meeting Tuesday. Unchained Properties, which has a purchase agreement with Emerson for the 95-acre site, and its team of architects, engineers and lawyers, shared results of two years of tests conducted in 2013 and this year in a meeting at the Cinemapolis theater on Green Street. Some 549 locations on the Emerson site, both on grounds and in buildings, were tested. Among contaminants found were barium and cyanide used in heat-treating metal products made there, free petroleum products such as oil and gasoline or diesel fuel, metals in soil such as from slag and ash used for decades in fill, and chlorinated volatile organic compounds such as the tricholorethylene, or TCE, long used there as a degreaser. TCE is familiar to many residents in the adjoining neighborhoods. It is the main source of vapor intrusion downhill from the former factory and the reason venting systems were established in some 60 homes to help deal with contamination believed to have entered through groundwater that seeped from the site. Morse Chain, which manufactured steel roller chain for the automobile industry, used the site from 1906 until 1928. Borg-Warner Corporation owned and operated the facility from 1928 to 1983, making power transmission equipment and automotive components. In 1983, Emerson Power Transmission purchased the site and operated the facility until its closure in 2010. Airplane parts and typewriters were also made there." November 6/2014

Kanthal Press Release. Kanthal APMT™ increases thermowell tips  lifetime more than ten times! Kanthal APMT FeCrAlMo alloy for high-temperature constructions has been successfully tested for use as thermowell tips in the petrochemical industry. Compared to other materials from competitors the lifetime of Kanthal APMT has proven to be substantially longer. Thermowell tips are utilized as protection devices for thermocouples used to control the temperature of one of the processes in the petrochemical industry. The atmosphere in the process is extremely corrosive and hot. Kanthal APMT bars proven to have longer lifetime. Several other materials, HR 160, Stellite 6 and Inconel 600H, have been tested in the process with limited success. Lifetime was measured from just days up to 3-6 weeks. The end-user is currently using Thermowells with protective tips machined from Kanthal APMT bars. This arrangement has been in operation for more than 6 months and is exceeding expectations. As step two in the trial, the remaining Thermowells in the process chamber will be retrofitted with the Kanthal APMT-tipped protection tubes. For more information: Klaus Meyer, Global Product Manager klaus.meyer@sandvik.com Mobile phone: +46 70-69 70 200 November 6/2014

ALD Thermal Treatment, Inc. If Advanced Heat Treat Corp., of Waterloo, Iowa is responsible for Plasma Nitriding becoming a mainstream part of commercial heat treating in North America, ALD is responsible for vacuum carburizing becoming a core part of commercial heat treating. We have lost track of the number of chambers at ALD in Port Huron, Michigan but if memory serves correctly it is roughly 38. Read on for more details.

"(Port Huron, MI) and ALD Tratamientos Termicos (Ramos Arizpe, Coah MX) plant have been awarded the 2014 GM Supplier Excellence Award. The Supplier Quality Excellence Award, given to a small percentage of GM's suppliers, recognizes those suppliers for their innovative technology, superior reliability, excellent collaboration for new developments, and consistent outstanding quality for the range of products it provides to General Motors during the past year.  The award, which is given to specific supplier locations, is focused on improving collaboration with suppliers who have achieved excellence in quality during the previous year. The presentations of the awards were held in September (Detroit) and October (Mexico City). Using specialized ALD Vacuum Equipment; the two ALD plants in North America provide significant volumes of gears used in FWD Transmissions - with Low Pressure Carburizing (LPC) and High Pressure Gas Quench (HPGQ). Salvador Almaguer, Director of Operations for North America: “We are pleased to be honored with this award. Our employees have worked hard to provide consistent quality to our customers. To be honored in such a way, brings credit to all who have contributed. We look forward to a repeat performance in 2015”.

For more information about ALD Thermal Treatment, ALD Tratamientos Termicos or AMG Engineering Services, Contact:  Michael Pode Vice President – Sales North America mpode@aldtt.net

For more information about AMG’s Global Operations in Engineering, Mining and Processing:
Contact: Jonathan Costello Vice President of Corporate Development and Communications
November 5/2014

ALD Tratamientos Termicos – Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila, MX

Parker Trutec Changes, Additions. Commercial heat treater and surface engineering company Parker Trutec is growing , expanding and prospering according to these details.

"Springfield, Ohio, October 31, 2014 – Parker Trutec Incorporated recently implemented Divisional structure changes effecting the organizational alignment of their North American operations. Current and future business growth prompted these changes in order to better serve the expanding customer base as well as increased operational growth opportunities in both U.S. and Mexico based facilities. Parker Trutec - MMI with facilities in Sevierville, Tn. and Paragould, Ar. will become the responsibility of Mr. William (Bill) M. Moore. President Bill Moore will focus on operational growth for the southern U.S. facilities and further expand this market area in the Metals Treatment Industry. Strong growth since the acquisition of these facilities in 2003 have allowed for a more regional focus. Parker Trutec MMI is owned 100% by Parker Trutec Incorporated. Parker Trutec Incorporated with facilities in Springfield and Urbana, Ohio will become the responsibility of Mr. Joseph (Joe) E. Gummel. President Joe Gummel will lead the Ohio based Parker Trutec facilities as both operational plants continue to experience steady growth. Recently the Ohio facilities celebrated 25 years of operations with the Urbana facility starting operations in 1988 and the Springfield facility in 1989. Parker Trutec Incorporated is owned 100% by Nihon Parkerizing Co. Ltd.

The Mexican company, Parker Trutec Mexicana S.A. de C.V., which began operations in 2009, is in the process of adding a second location. In addition to the surface treatment and heat treatment plant in Aguascalientes a second heat treatment plant in the state of Guanajuato is under construction. Parker Trutec Mexicana is jointly owned by Nihon Parkerizing, Hamamatsu Netsushori Co., Ltd. (a Parker Group company), and Parker Trutec Incorporated. The recent opportunity with the building of a new heat treatment plant in Guanajuato allows Nihon Parkerizing Co. Ltd., a world leader in surface treatment technologies with more than 50 facilities worldwide, to expand their global presence in Mexico. Mr. Shun Ono is the Chairman of Nihon Parkerizing Co., Ltd. This structure change began in September and is ongoing with the refinement of each business unit. The goal of strongly serving current and future customers will be the key focus of each new business unit as they expand and grow within the metal treatment industry they serve." November 5/2014

Modern Heat Treat/AFC-Holcroft. The press release below from AFC-Holcroft tells us how the company has sold a 7th UBQ furnace to Modern Heat Treat in the Dallas, Texas area. Modern is a real success story having started just 5 or 6 years ago and growing in to one of the largest commercial heat treats in Texas. November 4/2014

"(November, 2014) Modern Heat Treat, a commercial heat treating operation located in Richland Hills, Texas, is preparing for delivery of another new AFC-Holcroft UBQ (Universal Batch Quench) furnace, size 36-72-44 to accommodate their continued growth. This addition brings the number of AFC-Holcroft UBQ furnaces bought by this customer to seven. Modern Heat Treating has systematically added one furnace per year for the past 4 years in a row.

The addition of this seventh AFC-Holcroft UBQ furnace further boosts the customer’s production capability by another 6,000 lbs. gross load capacity, and will be a duplicate of existing AFC-Holcroft furnaces already running production. Modern Heat Treat selected the UBQ design to gain maximum flexibility in controlling their production. As production increased, Modern Heat Treat have benefited from the modular, flexible UBQ design to add new equipment to their facility incrementally, creating full production cells that utilize existing controls. Individual furnaces can be idled then restarted easily as needed for maintenance service, changes in process or production. “The modular design of the UBQ allowed Modern Heat Treat to select the options that meet their specific needs. AFC-Holcroft is proud to be a part of the continued impressive growth of Modern Heat Treat” says Tracy Dougherty, Sales Manager, AFC-Holcroft. The UBQ furnace is scheduled to ship during the 4th quarter of 2014.

About AFC-Holcroft: AFC-Holcroft is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of heat treating furnaces. The legacy companies that comprise AFC-Holcroft have a combined 225+ years of thermal processing experience. The company manufactures turn-key heat treating systems for applications including commercial heat treating, bearings, automotive, aerospace, mining, military, aluminum heat treatment, gear manufacturing, fastener manufacturing, and alternative energy industries. AFC-Holcroft, headquartered in the United States, has a global reach with direct sales coverage in North America and worldwide, while AFC-Holcroft Europe serves major industrial markets in Germany, France, and other European locations. AFC-Holcroft’s Asian Operations manages partners in China, India, South Korea, and other countries in the region, and the company also extends into markets in Australia, Brazil, Mexico, Poland, Russia, and Spain, through relationships with partners, many of whom have manufacturing capability. For more information, contact media@afc-holcroft.com ".

The Aichelin Group New Furnace Order. "The Aichelin Group, Europe's technological leader in the thermo-chemical heat treatment of metal components, has received an order to supply a turnkey high temperature furnace from voestalpine Automotive Body Parts Shenyang Co. Ltd., of China. It is already the second plant to be built since the 2013 licence agreement with the thermal process technology firm BSN, based in Simmerath (Germany). http://www.aichelin.com Aichelin has already been able to prove the merits of the patented step-chain conveyor technology for the special press-hardening of metal components in early 2014. Now – instead of a twin-arranged plant that was last built – a single-arranged, yet much longer furnace with a simplified control and safety system is to be provided to China. As is the case with the twin-arranged furnace, NOXMAT burners with ceramic jet tubes will also be installed here.

In the coming week from 21st to 25th October, Aichelin is also taking part in the EuroBLECH trade fair in Hanover for the first time. http://www.euroblech.com Here, in Hall 17, Stand No. F94, the company will showcase the “heatXpress” technology for the direct hot-forming process. This technology enables the transportation of components through the furnace without racks, thereby reducing the investment costs for the operator significantly. “With our innovative, accelerated and energy-saving step-chain conveyor technology for the press-hardening of metal components, we are able to present great arguments for sales to the automotive industry”, explains Dr Thomas Dopler, managing director of Aichelin Ges.m.bH., Mödling.

Speeding up the metal treatment process was the aim of the Aichelin-BSN processing concept, in order to bring metal components up to temperature and into the press as quickly as possible and to thereby enable the achievement of the highly demanding cycle times in the automotive industry. At a required austenitising temperature of 880°C, “heatXpress” attains the shortest cycle times of around 13 seconds, thereby enabling an output of up to 1100 parts per hour (in fourfold production) in the press linked to the furnace, independent of the thickness of the sheets to be processed.

Additional strengths of this process

  • Unrivalled short conveying times from the furnace into the press; selectable cooling times down to a minimum of 4.2 seconds.
  • High positioning accuracy of the drive system. The racks are positioned +/- 1 mm in front of the press.
  • The drive system is suitable for direct production (sheets directly in the transport system) as well as for indirect production (sheets on racks).
  • The distances between the racks in the furnace can be kept to a minimum, making the furnace length shorter than conventional roller hearth furnaces.
  • No roller breakage caused by intrusion of the sheets' coating material.
  • No reversing of the furnace drive system is necessary in the event of production downtime or power cuts.
  • Longer maintenance intervals of the furnace doors owing to the layout with two parallel heating chambers.

The AICHELIN Group – since 1868 – is a global leading provider of heat treatment plants for metal components and employs around 1230 people. In addition to the production and servicing of industrial furnaces for various industries, the Aichelin Group also produces induction heating plants (EMA Indutec GmbH.) as well as industrial gas-burner systems (Noxmat GmbH.).
AICHELIN Ges.m.b.H., based in Mödling near Vienna, is a European leader in technology with excellent competence in heat treatment and proven process expertise in the production of high quality industrial plants and systems pertaining the thermal and thermo-chemical heat treatment of metal components. The plants are mainly used in the automotive and automotive parts industry, in heat treatment plants, in the screw and bearing industry, as well as in the industry for precision and small mass production components. AICHELIN is synonymous with reliable system technology, the highest standard of customer service and an excellent after-sales service.

Press Contact;  AICHELIN Holding GmbH, Fabriksgasse 3, 2340 Mödling, Austria harald.berger@aichelin.com  http://www.aichelin.com November 4/2014

Aichelin Group – International Management Team

Aichelin high temperature furnace "heatXpress"

Monday Morning Briefing. Today we start off in the US where we see commercial heat treater American Steel Treating in the Toledo, Ohio area has been awarded the GM Supplier Quality Excellence Award for 2013-2014. AST is a very large operation concentrating on the auto industry with one of the most impressive automated pusher line set-ups that we have ever seen. “American Steel Treating (AST) President Jeff Blanker announced that AST has been awarded the General Motors Supplier Quality Excellence Award for the 2013-14 year. This award is given to top-performing GM suppliers that met or exceeded a very stringent set of quality performance criteria and have achieved the cross-functional support of the entire GM organization. AST appreciates that its customer recognizes the attention to detail required in order to achieve this level of performance”. In the adding capacity category we hear that captive heat treater Valley Forge Bolt in Phoenix, Arizona is going to be installing a Surface Combustion Super 36 Line. Also adding capacity is Chrysler who recently installed a 2,000 pound/hour continuous-belt copper brazing and bright-annealing furnace line purchased from Alhern-Martin Industrial Furnace Co.

In where are they now news we hear that Jim Stevenson recently parted ways with commercial heat treater Bluewater Thermal. Jim is a good man and long time professional salesman who at one time worked with Hi-Temp Heat Treating.  Also in where are they now news we have John Chesworth. Younger people might not know the name but John was with Bodycote for many years, actually preceding Bodycote’s entry into the North American heat treating market. Working with Joe Dweck, the Chairman of Bodycote at that time Bodycote has grown over the years to become the world’s largest commercial heat treater. Now age 77 John lives outside Macclesfield, England and still spends some time in the heat treating industry through his investment in commercial heat treat Four Forte in Eastern Germany. Surface Combustion is one of North America's largest and best known furnace manufacturers. While Surface has sold furnaces around the world the company has long concentrated on the North American market. However this might be changing as the company is looking much more closely at the European Market where they have had some representation but not a great deal of support services. We all know that both gas and plasma nitriding is quite possibly the fastest growing heat treating technologies out there but it is still far more common in Europe than North America. To give you an idea we recently ran across a company in Germany that has 38-count them 38 Gas Nitriders in one location. Rexroth, Bosch Group in Elchingen Germany is an auto parts supplier and with this number of nitriders we can think of no other single location that has this many units anywhere in the world.

In Europe, the Czech Republic to be exact well known commercial heat treater Meduna is growing and is currently installing a Solo furnace. Solo is a Swiss furnace manufacturer and what they have provided is a Model 202-30/30/60 system. Again in Europe our understanding is that Rheintal Hartetechnik in Liechtenstein just recently added nitriding and nitro-carburizing capacity with a furnace with working dimensions of 2000mm X 1500mm X 1400 mm high and a load capacity of 5,000 kg. RH is a family owned business and the owner Mr. Karl Schrittwieserat one time worked with Bodycote. And to round things out for today we have one final photo from the HK14 show in Cologne, Germany, a photo which we missed. Below you see from left to right; Gord and Jordan Montgomery, Mr. Jarosław Talerzak, VP Thermal & Aluminum Processes, Mr. Thomas Kreuzaler, Vice President, Global Thermal Leader and his daughter Hedda all with furnace builder SECO/WARWICK. November 3/2014

Metlab. Commercial heat treater Metal of Wyndmoor, PA (possibly best known for their very large pit caruburizing furnaces) sent us this press release about recent changes/additions to the company. “As Metlab continues to grow the company is adding more capacity and fleet services to accommodate customers. Recently the company added a 26 foot Box Truck that can haul up to 26,000 GVW.  This is in addition to several other trucks and vans that allows the servicing of routes throughout an area within a 100 mile radius of the heat treat facility as well as parts of Maryland and New Jersey for pickups and deliveries. The new box truck is also a strategic addition to the company to compliment the amount of projects for Metlab’s New Vacuum Furnace installation.

The new VFS – HL34 furnace was added in August to accommodate the demand for heat treating stainless and tool steels and high temp nickel based alloys. This vacuum furnace compliments an existing smaller furnace and has a workzone approximately 24" wide x 48" deep x 18" high. The increased capacities allows for processing new materials and a wide range of part sizes. Currently Metlab is running three shifts on the new vacuum furnace.

  • Tools and dies
  • Stainless Steel Tubing
  • Aerospace jet engine parts
  • Medical parts

Metlab offers vacuum heat treating of stainless steel, nickel base super alloys, tool and die steels, as well as parts made from other materials like titanium and copper based alloys. The equipment used by Metlab has an all metal (molybdenum) hot zone in a stainless steel water cooled chamber, high vacuum diffusion pump system, current proportioned power supply for controlled heating, state of the art microprocessor controls to allow for automatic temperature and vacuum control, and repeatability. The furnace is rated for a maximum 2400°F operation, at a vacuum level of 10-5 Torr. Applications for the furnace include bright annealing, and hardening of tool and die steel molds and dies, heat treating stainless steel medical instruments and implants like hips and knees, age or precipitation hardening of 17-4 PH, 15-5 PH or 13-8 Mo Stainless Steels, and other processes where clean, scale and decarb free surfaces are required.

  • No surface oxidation or discoloration
  • Minimal part distortion
  • No post cleaning operations
  • Near finished, machined shape prior to treatment

Vacuum Furnace Applications:

  • Hardening
  • Annealing
  • Normalizing
  • Solution Treating up to 2200°F

The vacuum furnace operator and Metlab’s electrical engineer have been to Ipsen University training in Rockford, Illinois for operations and maintenance training. Ipsen U is a practical course for building and refreshing knowledge of vacuum thermal processing equipment specifically the VFS furnace that Metlab just acquired. Ipsen U addresses all levels of experience and is geared specifically for the two Metlab employees who attended.  They were encouraged to ask questions about their furnaces and applications, and some of the maintenance and technical issues that they encountered on equipment startup. The class they attended followed a format that allowed them to interact with several Ipsen maintenance and technical experts and have their specific questions answered as well as to ask questions about their furnaces and applications, and some of the maintenance and technical issues that they encountered on equipment startup. November 3/2014

Advanced Heat Treat Corp/Waterloo, Iowa. The abbreviated article below about one of the largest commercial heat treaters in North America recently appeared in a local Iowa newspaper and caught our attention mainly because of the reference to the US oil and natural gas boom. Recently oil prices have plunged 24% which is an incredible gift to North American heat treaters and manufacturers however as always this is a double edged sword. The heat treating industry in some parts of the US such as Texas is based upon heat treating components for the energy sector and the possibility looms that reduced energy prices mean less work for heat treaters. BUT conversations with heat treaters in Texas tell us that at present pricing levels they see no slowdown in demand and remain quite confident that the oil industry will continue to boom for some time. This feeling is backed up by these comments about the current pricing for oil.

“Amid predictions that the biggest drop in crude prices since the global financial crisis six years ago will choke off cash flow and slow drilling, industry leaders are reassuring investors they still have the means to return ample profits. Improved technology is bringing down costs and most shale producers operate in multiple basins, allowing them to shift work to the most profitable sites. The industry is used to price swings, Halliburton Co. Chairman and Chief Executive Officer David Lesar said in an interview in his Houston office. When prices climb above US$100 a barrel, oil companies are “printing money like crazy,” he said. When prices fall below US$80, the “doomsdayers start to come out. ‘‘If it floats between US$80 and US$100, our sector will be fine,’’ said Lesar, who leads the world’s biggest provider of fracking services to oil companies. ‘‘That’s a range that the service industry and our customers can easily live within.”

Advanced Heat Treat Corp./News Article. A current boom in the domestic production of oil is fueling expansion at Waterloo-based Advanced Heat Treat Corp’s plant at 2839 Burton Ave. in Waterloo. The company has purchased and plants to install several pieces of equipment in the near future, increasing surface treatment capabilities at each of its four U.S. locations, including Waterloo. At the Burton Avenue facility, Advanced Heat Treat will install two new batch integral quench furnaces, along with support equipment, such as temper units, washers, transfer carts and endogenerator before the end of the year, the company said, noting that the acquisitions will allow it to increase capacity of its carburizing, carbonitriding and quench and temper projects by more than 40 percent.  “We’re adding capacity, which is probably long overdue,” said Mike Woods, senior vice president of sales and marketing. Advanced Heat Treat provides equipment for hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” in the production of oil. Fracking technology is seen by many supporters as a key to the U.S.’s re-emergence as a major oil producer. “We’re seeing quite a bit of growth in the oil and energy field and are adding to cover quite a bit of that, and we’re adding some new equipment,” Woods said. Advanced Heat Treat, which also has locations in Cullman, Ala.; and Monroe, Mich., numbers Halliburton, one of the world’s largest oilfield services companies, among its clients, Woods said. On the aerospace side, Advanced Heat Treat does business with General Electric. The Waterloo company also numbers Deere and all three major U.S. automakers among its clients. The company currently employs about 150 workers and expects to add about 10 percent to its workforce in the expansion, which it estimates will cost between $2 million and $3 million. Gary Sharp opened the company in 1981 while he was an employee at John Deere in Waterloo. Sharp still runs the company as president and chief executive officer. “He is recognized as one of the top heat-treat gurus,” Woods said. October 31/2014

October 14 2014 installation of one of the new batch IQ furnaces

Ipsen Press Release. CHERRY VALLEY, IL In recent months, Ipsen has shipped more than 30 furnaces around the globe for a variety of applications and industries. The equipment was sent to international customers in Germany, Mexico, China, Tunisia and South Korea, as well as sites within the U.S., covering a range of 12 different states. These shipments were designated for use in a diverse range of applications and industries, including Aerospace, Automotive, Energy, Mint (Currency), Commercial Heat Treating, Medical, Commercial Sporting and Surface Engineering. More than half of these shipments were from Ipsen’s TITAN® line and included horizontal and vertical TITAN furnaces with a variety of hot zone sizes, as well as TITAN Temper furnaces. Other equipment models delivered included horizontal and vertical MetalMaster® furnaces, TurboTreater® furnaces and vacuum aluminum-brazing furnaces. Of the furnaces sold, five companies bought more than one Ipsen furnace to handle their varied processes. Overall, these shipments represent Ipsen’s ability to provide sophisticated and intuitive heat-treating solutions through an all-inclusive product line that supports various applications and processes. To best support such diverse industries and needs around the world, Ipsen also delivers custom-built solutions that allow customers to tailor features to their exact specifications. With the help of Ipsen’s Global Support Team – which facilitates furnace installations, as well as provides expert training and startup assistance throughout the entire lifespan of the equipment – customers are able to rely on Ipsen’s expertise for the solutions they need. Visit www.IpsenUSA.com/Products to learn more about the equipment options Ipsen offers. Contact your Ipsen representative today to discuss your needs at www.IpsenUSA.com/Map. October 30/2014

Mike Ives/Heatbath. "Mike Ives retired on October 3, 2014 after spending his entire professional career of 42 years with Park.  What started out as a “Bench Chemist” position with Park Chemical back in January, 1973 will end as “Product Manager” with Heatbath / Park Metallurgical.  Inbetween starting as a Bench Chemist and becoming Product Manager, Mike’s career included being a “Research Assistant” to Charlie Fox, and later becoming a “Research Chemist” with Park.  When Whitaker Corporation purchased Park Chemical in 1986, Mike became “Manager of Salt Bath Manufacturing” in 1988 and increased sales by 20% in three years.

Upon Park Chemical’s procurement by Heatbath Corporation in 1992, Mike was hired as Product Manager.  Mike’s biggest achievements during his time with Park Metallurgical included:  Traveling to Mexico, Canada, and throughout the United States in visiting customers and developing new business.  Oversaw the development of Enviroquench® which is an environmentally friendly quenchant designed to replace fast quench oils.  Researched and managed the introduction of No Carb Green as a new product to the company. Was the IT leader in Detroit in supporting the company’s networking computer system.  Oversaw and worked the booth at Furnaces North America and ASM Heat Treat shows for 22 years.  And managed the technical department in Detroit which consisted of six technically oriented personnel.  Mike will continue to work for Heatbath on a part-time basis after retirement in incorporating the new GHS standard to Heatbath’s product line.  After that he plans on doing some volunteer work, exercising, playing the piano more, and traveling the country in his RV.

After 18 years of experience in the Heat Treating Industry and working with Mike Ives, Mike Blazejewski has been promoted to Metallurgical Project Manager.  You can reach Mike Blazejewski at  mblazejewski@heatbath.com or (413) 452-2000 X 166." October 30/2014

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