Monday Morning Briefing

Now the beginning to this Monday Morning Briefing has little to do directly with heat treating but we just had to mention it since it has to do with Linamar. This international auto parts maker is one of the larger captive heat treaters in North America and as such we have mentioned them many times on this site (the photo below shows part of their heat treating department at Linamar Gear in Canada). “Well a group of workers at the company just won a $60 million dollar jackpot as you can see below; “Today, a group of nine co-workers from southern Ontario picked up a $60 million cheque. The auto parts production line workers won the Dec. 21, 2018 Lotto Max jackpot. “We’re a very close line – closer than any of the other lines,” shared group leader Ala Hirmiz. “We always talk and joke and celebrate each others’ birthdays. And now we get to celebrate this unbelievable win together!” The co-workers work the same line and the same shift at Comtech, a Linamar company.”

Solar Atmospheres Files Patent for 600 HP blower motor in Argon Gas; “Solar Atmospheres, Inc. has filed a Patent Application with the US Patent Office, application number 15/999,873 for a high pressure, rapid gas quenching vacuum furnace utilizing an isolation transformer in the blower motor power system. The gas quench with a 600 HP motor operates at 460 volts in Argon gas, utilizing a double wound, Magnetic Specialties, Inc. electrical isolation transformer, primary winding 1:1 to the secondary winding, with a Variable Speed Drive and solid state electrical spike protection for motor arc suppression.”

Heat Treating of Aircraft Landing Gear. A lifetime spent in the heat treating industry has shown us that there are many types of heat treating which can provide the same results-take aircraft landing gear as an example. Commercial heat treater and vacuum furnace manufacturer Vac Aero is the largest commercial heat treater of aerospace landing gear in North America. Their very impressive facilities utilize vertical vacuum furnaces with oil quenching manufactured by the company themselves-an example can be seen below. Landing gear manufacturer Safran one of the world’s largest chooses a different approach, pit furnaces with endo atmosphere and separate quench oil tanks-a photo is below. Both companies achieve excellent metallurgical results although the type of furnaces utilized are quite different.

John Principi, General Manager of Bodycote, Burlington, Canada retired as of December 31st, 2018. John has been GM of this facility for as long as we can remember- at this point no long term replacement has been named. This Bodycote location was formerly Nitrex Metals Technologies before it was acquired by Bodycote a few years back. Since that time the company has made very substantial investments in the plant including a number of new batch IQ furnaces. Remember the GM Enterprises, very large 2 bar vacuum furnace we listed shortly before Christmas (if not the photo below should jog your memory). As predicted it did not last long on the used market and is now destined to move from the aerospace rebuild facility where it was located to a commercial heat treater in North America.

GE India has now finished installing their brand new Ipsen bottom load vacuum brazing furnace. We mentioned this sometime back during installation and at the time commented on the color. While this is a very nice looking install the color hurts our eyes.

French vacuum furnace builder BMI has been having some success recently selling vacuum furnaces into Russia. During the last two months of 2018 the company shipped 4 new vacuum furnaces to Russia including an oil quenching furnace, a vacuum brazing furnace, an LPC furnace and a vacuum nitrider. While we know little about the Russian heat treating market we at “The Monty” will be attending the upcoming Exhibition “Heat Treatment 2019” and IFHTSE event September 17-19 in Moscow, Russia to learn more.