Monday Morning Briefing

Poclain Hydraulics Inc., Wisconsin, USA exiting vacuum carburizing. Out in Wisconsin, USA Poclain Hydraulics a manufacturer of hydrostatic transmissions has decided that they will no longer be carburizing at this location and consequently their ECM vacuum carburizing system has become surplus to their needs and is available for sale. The 3 cell system was installed 20 years ago and is still in operation.

Looks like somebody is in a whole lot of trouble: General Motors is recalling 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and GMC Sierra 1500 pickups to fix a defect in the trucks break system. Certain Silverado and Sierra pickups were produced with brake-caliper bolts that were not heat-treated. Without heat-treating, the bolts are weaker than they should be, and there is a risk that they could fail, which would affect the trucks’ braking performance, possibly leading to a crash.” In Mexico Carlos Angeles Michel was just appointed Plant General Manager of the Bodycote San Luis Potosi facility. Carlos is a long time Bodycote employee and previous to this he was Engineering and Maintenance Manager.

We’re getting tired of talking about Corona Virus and it’s effects on the heat treat industry but we will mention 2 Heat Treatment shows which have been sideswiped by the virus; “The European Conference on Heat Treatment (ECHT) 2020, which was due to be held at Flanders Meeting & Convention Center, Antwerp, Belgium, from March 25–27, 2020, has been postponed.” And in China; “The 13th International Exhibition for Powder Metallurgy, Cemented Carbides and Advanced Ceramics (PM China 2020), organised by Uniris Exhibition Shanghai Co., Ltd, has been moved to August 12–14, 2020, following the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak.”

With all the bad news out there-how about a little good news? Nickel Pricing continues to drop which means your base trays, baskets, grids, radiant tubes and everything else made out of alloy will continue to drop in price. Mind you this is not immediate as price changes can take a little while to work their way though the system, however the long term trend is good.

At the recent Mexico Heat Treat 2020 event we met up with Mr. Carlos Carrasco, a long time rep in the country. As it turns out his rep firm is now into their third generation and he tells us about the history; “As per our conversation please find attached the pictures of the three Carrasco’s generation in furnace business; starting in 1965 with Jorge Carrasco (now retired) who started working for a local company with a sublicensee of Sunbeam Equipment Corp. now SECO-Warwick, the actual licensee was coming from Can-Eng. Followed by Carlos Carrasco, starting in 1984, actually “Carrasco Hornos” is a  sales representative of several companies such as Ajax Electric, Dubois Chemical, EFD Induction, Intek, Lucifer Furnaces, Selas Heat Technology, Seco-Warwick, Seco-Vacuum. At the present time Sebastian Carrasco, the youngest of the line will be soon be graduated as a Mechanical, Electrical Engineer in order to continue the “Carrasco Story in Furnace Business” now extended to 55 years of experience. Ing. Carlos Carrasco[email protected]

One of the pictures below deserves a mention-the one with the Carrasco team standing in front of a vacuum furnace with a “VAS” logo on the front. The furnace was originally built by an Italian company, TAV for a European customer. It was later acquired by Vacuum & Atmosphere Services in the UK who rebuilt it and listed it for sale on “The Monty”. Subsequently it was purchased by captive/commercial heat treater Bohler Uddeholm for their facility in Puebla, Mexico which is where this photo was taken.

To round things out for today we have this photo for you. The very dapper fellow on the right is President of one of the largest commercial heat treats in North America-a heat treater with 350 employees if you can believe it. Later this week we are going to introduce you to him and his company.