New Summit Lathe Roll Grinder

July 2020, Kastalon has purchased and installed a new Summit roll lathe to further enhance our large roll manufacturing and repair capabilities. Kastalon now offers the most comprehensive roller services in the industry.

The Summit lathe/roll grinder allows Kastalon to not only machine metal, but to turn, mill, groove, and grind polyurethane and rubber covered rollers to ultra-precise diameters, geometric finishes, and straightness specifications. This CNC machine has a capacity of 48 inch finished diameters x 20 feet CC (1.22 x 6.1 meters) and almost 50,000 lbs with full CNC grooving. Simple to highly complex and precise grooves and finishes can be produced with this state-of-the-art equipment.

Kastalon’s roller capacity ranges from fractional diameters and face lengths to 62 inches in diameter x 30 feet overall length (1.57 x 9.1 meters). Kastalon’s polyurethane roll coverings are available from 20 Shore A to 75 Shore D (baby’s skin soft to bowling ball hard, and anywhere in between) with surface finishes and groove patterns to optimize your roller’s performance.

We’ve combined chemistry and mechanics just for you. Contact Kastalon today and bring the Kastalon’s advantage to your operations.

What does a dead blow hammer have to do with success at a Tube Mill?

Heavy duty polyurethane Dead Blow HammerAccording to Wikipedia “A dead blow hammer is a specialized mallet helpful in minimizing damage to the struck surface and in limiting peak striking force, with minimal elastic rebound from the struck surface.”


So here is the STORY…
A tube mill’s high performance automated systems are designed to keep things moving, however, one tube mill had an issue with their pipe bouncing back too far when they impacted their adjustable pipe stop bumpers. The bumpers were designed to stop the tube and prepare them to be fed into the next area of the line.

The bouncing of tubes was causing misalignment and jams. The line then had to be shut down until the jam could be cleared. This was a continuous issue so the mill staff assumed that the hardness of the bumper needed to be adjusted, however, that was not the solution. The problem was so severe that the bumpers were causing a bounce back as far as 18 to 24” on large pipes and 8 to 12” on smaller pipes.

Fortunately, the mill contacted a representative from Kastalon to get a second opinion. Kastalon’s expertise in chemical engineering was able to determine that the hardness was not the issue, the physical and mechanical properties of the polyurethane bumper needed to be adjusted to allow the bumpers to absorb the energy rather than rebounding it. What they needed was a “dead blow bumper”.

polyurethane dead blow bumperOnce the bumpers were replaced by a proprietary Kastalon polyurethane bumper, the results were immediate and dramatic. The bounce of large pipes was reduced to 4-5 inches and the small pipes were only bouncing back about an inch.

Regardless where polyurethane is used, the secret is not just the hardness of the material, but how the material needs to work to its optimal performance in that application and environment. This is where Kastalon’s “engineered to fit” philosophy puts the emphasis on the desired result and the environment that a part is operating in. Even if it is a simple bumper!

Kastalon Makes Big Dollar Difference for Rewinding Coils

In February of 2007 Kastalon was called to a Steel Mill for interest in our mandrel sleeves. We were called because this particular customer was having issues with the rewinding of their steel coils, as a result of the mandrel sleeves that were being used. They had also tried a few different mandrel sleeves from different vendors without the satisfaction they were looking for. Along with the operating issues, they were just not experiencing a longevity that they felt was adequate.

This particular line was a high speed steel processing line that converted hot band to automotive/appliance grade steel. The area of concern was at the end of the line where they have two rewind mandrels, that they alternate rewinding their finish product with. Most of their steel is considered exposed steel and they guarantee to their customers, 100 % coil usage.

Kastalon met with this customer and discussed their needs and concerns for this particular problem. We obtained drawings of their steel mandrel and engineered a mandrel sleeve that we felt would meet and exceed all of their expectations. In March of 2007, this customer placed an order for one mandrel sleeve for trial. The sleeve worked right out of the box and they ran it for three months, not experiencing any of the issues they had experienced with the prior sleeves. In July of 2007, they placed an order for the second sleeve and outfitted both of their mandrels with Kastalon Mandrel sleeves. They continued to see no reoccurring issues seen from the prior sleeves so they purchased two more sleeves as spares in November of 2007and continue to run problem free. Soon after the two spare sleeves were delivered to the customer, I stopped out and met with the customer to offer them with some tips on how to store and add operating life to all four of their mandrel sleeves. Tips that were never offered to them from previous suppliers.

In June of 2009 an order was received at Kastalon, Inc. for one sleeve. We called the customer to check in and we were told that they had an operator error and that one of the sleeves was tore and that they had to take it out of use. We asked them why they didn’t call us out to take a look at the sleeve before that was determined. They responded that the operator admitted to his error. And that the sleeves were just inspected a few weeks prior and looked as good as new, other that being oily from use. In November of 2011, two more sleeves were ordered. The customer was concerned that they have never had Mandrel Sleeve last this long and wanted to add two more to their inventory in case of a sleeve failure.

Since March of 2007, Kastalon has supplied a total of seven Mandrel Sleeves to this particular line. As of April of 2012, three of the four original sleeves provided by Kastalon are still in use. Remember, one was taken out of use due to operator error. This particular line is considered a High Speed, High Tension, Dual Rewind line. This customer has averaged 1,125,000 tons of steel per year that has been recoiled on our sleeves at an average speed of 1800 feet per minute. Their steel is considered very high quality steel which also adds something to say about our sleeves. (If our sleeves had poor cut resistant properties, we could also create them quality issues with their thinner gauge steel. But they have not experienced any of that.) Our customer has worked with us and together we engineered a sleeve that would meet and exceed their expectations. To say that they are satisfied with Kastalon Mandrel Sleeves is an understatement.

Update: 8/1/14
This customer placed an order for two more Mandrel Sleeves in July of 2014. Two of the original sleeves from 2007 finally wore out. That brings the total amount of sleeves ordered to 9 since 2007. Six of the sleeves are still in working order and are in their rotation being swapped out during downturns every three months.

Total cost of the nine sleeves that have rewound 9,000,000 tons of steel since 2007 have produced an operating cost for Kastalon’s Mandrel sleeves of $0.07 per thousand tons.

Maximizing Quality and Yield by Al DiZanni

Increasingly, competitive markets are pushing tube makers to reduce costs while improving quality.

The surface and edge condition of incoming coils has a significant impact on processing cost and quality. Scratch-free surfaces are important when processing polished, plated, or painted tube. However, scratches also can lead to weaknesses in the tube wall. This can be important for pressure tubing as well as mechanical tubing. Stresses can concentrate along scratches in mechanical tubing that is bulged or formed. Scratches can also concentrate stress in pressure tubing and create a weakness in the wall. This consideration is more critical for nonferrous materials.

Incoming material with a poor edge condition can lead to increased cost because of additional reprocessing, reduced yield, inspection cost, and the general inconvenience of returning the material and seeking credit for defective material from suppliers.

Producing, rolling, and processing coils influence its surface and edge condition. Surfaces and edges can also be compromised when they are handled during basic processes such as slitting, painting, annealing, and rolling.

Coil handling and protection also influence surface quality. This article examines typical problems in coil handling and how to maintain quality stock on the warehouse and mill floor.

Coil Handling Challenges and Answers
Beginning with the final stage of production, the finished metal surface is vulnerable to damage. Worn bridle, passline, pinch, tension, or other rollers that contact the metal as it is rolled can scratch surfaces. Slippage through or across rollers also contributes to scratching. To prevent slippage, these rollers can be covered with materials that provide traction and are softer than the metal, including rubber, polyurethane, and plastic .

Winding. Another potential source of damage is the expanding mandrel used to hold the coil while it is unwound and rewound during processing. These mandrels open and close when loading and unloading coil. To make this movement possible, the mandrel has segmented leafs that have gaps between them when expanded. The edges of these leafs can mark the inside of the coil.

When the metal is wound, it may bend at the edge to wind in a straight line to the next leaf edge. This is a condition called reel break. These breaks can print through many wraps before they soften enough to stop deforming the metal. In some severe cases, breaks can cause damage extending as much as 1/2 inch into the coil, potentially resulting in the loss of a 1-inch thick portion of metal out of the coil eye.

Excessive mandrel wear causes the leafs to get out of level and exacerbates reel breaks. Rubber or polyurethane sleeved (also call boots) can be used to minimize or eliminate this damage. A mandrel sleeve cushions the edge of the leaf and distributes the bending force over a wider area, helping to eliminate plastic deformation of the metal.

Storage and Transportation
Once the coil is wound, it must be removed from the mandrel, moved to storage, stored, and transported. Large, basic coil producers and processors generally have automated handling systems, coil cars, and conveyors. These units remove the coil from the mandrel and transfer it to a station, where more traditional equipment, such as C-hooks, ram trucks, and coil tongs, are used to move the coil.

Various flat pads or cushions may be attached to the coil contact areas. These are usually made of rubber, polyurethane, plastic, or some other material that is softer than metal.

When the coil is removed from the conveyor, forklift/ram trucks, C-hooks, or tongs are usually used to transport the metal. These devices can damage the coil’s edges. One mishap, such as a bump, can severely damage the entire edge of the coil. The only way to correct this damage is to slit the coil to a narrower width. However, this requires additional processing and wastes material. This waste can be substantial, depending on the amount of trim required to reach the next usable coil width.

The best method of protecting the metal during these operations is to cushion the areas contacting the coil, such as the sides and the back sides of the transport devices.

When coils are stored, stacking is not recommended. However, when space limitations make stacking a must, coils should be stored not more than three high because the weight on the bottom coil can deform it and make it square. This usually renders the deformed coil scrap.
Prepainted, coated, polished, or soft metals may need further protection when stored.
Coils can be stored in pads or racks when floors are wet, dirty, debris-covered, uneven. These devices isolate the coils from the floor and help prevent damage caused by hard set-down or placing coils on debris (which can dent the material).

Cost of Quality
Whenever and wherever coils are handled, damage can occur. Incurring or repairing damage, either at a vendor’s facility or at a tube mill, adds cost and compromises quality.
When reviewing processes or auditing suppliers, tube manufacturers should consider these problems and their simple resolutions. Excess cost anywhere in the supply chain adversely affects everyone’s bottom line.

Al DiZanni is a Field Sales Engineer specializing in steel handling and steel processing from Kastalon, Inc., 4100 W. 124th Place, Alsip, Illinois 60803, phone 708-389-2210, fax 709-389-0432, Website: www.kastalon.com

Kastalon is a manufacturer of polyurethane coil storage, handling, and protection products.
This article originally appeared in an issue of TPJ, a FMA Communications, Inc publication.

Filler Plates – Cargill Steel

Challenge/Problem/Issue
As the global demand continues to grow for light gauge metals in the automotive, appliance and building material markets, the metal coil processors must adapt to the unique challenges of producing surface-sensitive materials.

Because the pre-finished metal surface is more susceptible to scratches or damage, they must pay extra attention to the equipment and the handling of the coils.

Solution
Cargill Steel, East Chicago addressed their desire to successfully process light gauge materials by purchasing a new re-coiler reel for this application. Unfortunately, they continued to experience creasing, “head-in” damage, and marks on their finished product. They made several process changes as well as modifications to the reel but could not obtain an end product that they believed would be acceptable to the market that they were trying to attract. As a result, they moved away from those customers.

Cargill Steel started investigating ways to eliminate the damage they were experiencing and sought the assistance of Kastalon Polyurethane Products , who are well known for their coil protection solutions. After many months of design and engineering reviews, Kastalon made the recommendation to outfit the reel with a multi-segment bolt-on set of engineered polyurethane filler plates.

Once the filler plates were installed and put into service, several different gauges were run. The first was a .070/.071 thickness. This coil ran twice through the line and re-coiled twice on the filler plates. No markings could be felt. The second coil run was considered light gauge at .017 thickness. This coil also ran through the line and re-coiled twice on the filler plates. Again, the Quality Control Supervisor reported no marks.

Customer Value

The success of these coils has since allowed Cargill Steel to go after the light gauge market. In addition to the added business opportunity, the Kastalon Polyurethane Filler Plates are far lighter than steel, thereby allowing for faster change-outs and reduced maintenance costs have further improved operating efficiency.

Expanding Mandrel Sleeves – Titan Steel

Challenge/Problem/Issue –
Titan Steel was not satisfied with the scrap rate they were experiencing on the coil processing lines and wanted to find a way to maximize their output.

As one of the worlds largest distributors of tinmill and an important distributor of steel plate including pressure vessel plate, hot and cold rolled steel, coated steel products including galvanized steel and prepainted steel, efficiency are extremely important.

Solution
Kastalon engineered expanding mandrel sleeves made from specifically formulated Kastalon Polyurethane® with exceptional wear properties and expansion capabilities. The mandrel sleeve not only increased the diameter of the mandrel but significantly reduced the damage and reduced the manpower required for change-outs.

Customer Value
According to the Plant Manager, “Kastalon’s Expanding Mandrel Sleeves virtually paid for themselves the moment we unwound our first coil. With coil prices at a premium, every effort to maximize our output must be made and we look to Kastalon to help design products such as Mandrel Sleeves. An initial investment on our part has optimized our production, giving our customers an excellent finished product while maximizing our operating profits.”

Running 180,000lbs per day, Titan Steel calculated a yield of 50-75 more sheet-per-coil on their blanking line using Kastalon’s Expanded Mandrel Sleeves. At a estimated cost of $2.00 per sheet, that represents a savings of $800-1000 per day, which does not include the huge cost savings in the manpower required to scrap the previously damaged sheets.

Kastalon Crane Bumpers – Simple and High Performance Can Be One and the Same

For more than 40 years, Kastalon supplies crane bumpers into every imaginable environment around the world.

From ports and shipyards to steel mills and industrial facilities, Kastalon bumpers are unaffected by extreme environmental conditions, and are highly effective in temperature extremes from less than -51°C (-60°F) to 107°C (225°F).

Approved for use on nuclear fueling cranes by the U.S. Navy and for nuclear power house cranes, Kastalon crane bumpers are virtually unaffected by gamma ray exposures in excess of 1×109 Roentgens.

Whether you are purchasing new equipment or are replacing existing bumpers, specify Kastalon Crane Bumpers.

To assist you in sizing or customizing bumpers, Kastalon offers an interactive web site for calculating the exact bumpers to meet any requirements.

Access the Kastalon Crane Bumper Calculator by visiting www.kastalon.com or contact us directly and an applications engineer will help select your optimum bumper.

Follow the Money – A Mandrel Sleeve’s Truth

When my children and I are talking about various social, political or other issues, I often find myself using the phrase “FOLLOW THE MONEY”.  It’s funny how often this simple phrase holds true. Many answers to some of life’s question can be answered by this phrase.

Why should mandrel sleeve’s be any different? An example of this hit me in the head when I was talking with a steel producer in New Carlisle, IN. They didn’t think that they had any issues with the life of their mandrel sleeves. They shared with me that they consistently got about 8 months to a year of life on their sleeves and then the sleeve needed to be replaced due what they called “sagging, like it had no rebound or memory”. The plant manager said “It’s been that way as long as I have been here, I don’t feel we currently have any issue’s with the life of our Mandrel Sleeves”. So I asked can we “Follow the Money”?

Because they kept such detailed records on the longevity of their sleeves, it would be that kind of record keeping that would allow us to “Follow the Money” and prove to them that they should and could get a longer life span and more efficiency out of these sleeves.

So we offered the “Kastalon Challenge” – Provide us with all of the specifications, including the application and environment the mandrel sleeve will be operating in. Purchase and run the engineered Kastalon Mandrel Sleeve and if it does not last longer than your current supplier’s Mandrel Sleeve, we will supply them with another mandrel sleeve for no additional cost.

Kastalon manufactured a mandrel sleeve for their high speed steel processing line. At the rewind end of their line they have two rewind mandrels that work in tandem with each other. This would make for a great test. They installed the Kastalon sleeve and their current supplier’s sleeve as well at the same time. After the sleeves were tested for only four months it was clear on inspection some “sagging” was already showing on the current supplier’s sleeve, however, the Kastalon sleeves showed no wear or sagging whatsoever. So “ Follow the Money”. It was clear that Kastalon sleeves did in fact last longer and their assumption that they had no issue with their current supplier sleeves was not adding any profits (MONEY) to the bottom line.

They placed an order for two more Kastalon sleeves giving them a total of three. A year later they ordered one more from Kastalon. This gave them two in use and two spares that they would rotate in and out of production every six months for inspection.

A year later they placed an order for two more sleeves just as a precaution because they have never experienced mandrel sleeves that would last that long. As of today, all four of the original sleeves are still in rotation and the two ordered a year later are still in the storage warehouse yet to be used.

This is a high speed line that usually runs around 2,800 feet per minute. This customer has averaged running at around 78 percent of capacity. You can imagine the amount of times our four sleeves have expanded and collapsed in the past 5 years.  And to think they thought they did not have any issues with their mandrel longevity. I am so glad that we “FOLLOWED THE MONEY”

Polyurethane improves safety in mills

In a steel or aluminum mills, safety is always a major concern. With many employees staying in the workforce longer, there is a growing concern for reducing injuries that result from heavy lifting.

Recently, an aluminum mill established a goal to limit the maximum weight lifted manually at 50 pounds. In the roll shop this was a major concern because the bearings are held in place by a large steel split ring, known as a thrust collar that is locked into place. The maintenance process of changing out the bearing requires the worker to break the ring free and remove it. These rings can typically weigh more than 60 pounds each.

Interestingly, Kastalon was able to design a custom engineered polyurethane alternative that had all of the same strength and wear characteristics of the steel ring, but only weighed 12 pounds.

The first 4 rings well exceeded the life expectancy by lasting more than a year in continuous service and proved to reduced lost time due to back injuries in that area.

Not only did the mill find a method that would protect their workforce from unsafe practices but also found a way to achieve greater efficiency.

If you would like to learn more about our metal processing solutions, contact Lyn Thorne at lyn@kastalon.com.

Steel producer in New Carlisle, Indiana. Mandrel Sleeve made by Kastalon Polyurethane

In May of 2007 we manufactured a mandrel sleeve for their high speed steel processing line. At the rewind end of their line they have two rewind mandrels that work in tandem with each other. Once our sleeve was tested for four months, they placed an order for two more sleeves. One to install on the other mandrel where our test sleeve was not on, and one for a spare. I then also recommended purchasing one more sleeve to make their inventory of mandrel sleeves in house to four. We recommended that because if they would change out the sleeves every six months and allow the sleeves that were just in use, to rest on the floor, that would also increase the longevity of the sleeves. Since May of 2007, they have purchased a total of seven sleeves. The original four were ordered IN 2007, and then one was ordered IN 2008 due to an operator error that tore one of the sleeves off their steel mandrel. And then in November of 2010 two sleeves were order for precaution because they have never experienced mandrel sleeves lasting this long. Three of the original four sleeves are still in service with the two that were ordered in 2010 sitting in their warehouse.

Two competitor’s sleeves of ours were used prior to 2007. Our customer explained to us that they had constant issues with the sleeve not performing correctly. Sizing issues from one sleeve to the next. Constant tension issues from the sleeves slipping (again sizing issues). And short memory life or sagging of the sleeves when the steel mandrel was collapsed for unloading of the coils.

This is a high speed line that usually runs around 2800 feet per minute. This customer has averaged running at around 78 percent of capacity since 2007. You can imagine the amount of times our four sleeves have expanded and collapsed in the past 5 years.

Originally reported in May, 2007