Making the difficult doable

Making the difficult doable

In the field or in the shop, a lot of parts needing repair prove to be awkward. A flange could be at an odd angle, and in a confined space. A gear box might have multiple bores — right next to each other. Or the irregular shape of a rock crusher could make fixturing and turning the piece a substantial challenge.

It was a rock crusher head that Peninsula Iron Works of Portland, Oregon, recently found on its to-do list. Adding to the challenge presented by its shape, the crusher was 7 feet (2.1 metres) in diameter and weighed 28,000 pounds (12.7 tonnes) — cumbersome to say the least!

But with a CLIMAX BW5000 Auto Bore Welder, a jib crane and a little ingenuity, Peninsula Iron Works was able to greatly reduce the time and headache normally associated with such a task. “We go into just about every job expecting a creative application will be required,” said Dave Johnson, vice president of PIW. “After 98 years in business, we’ve gotten pretty good at thinking things out.”

For the rock crusher job, the capabilities of the BW5000 and the flexibility of the boom proved to be a winning combination. “It reduced our typical setup time for a job like this from about 20 hours to less than four hours,” said Johnson.

It also cut run time in half.

“I was impressed,” said Johnson. “We put on 900 pounds of wire; that could not have been done manually. With this machine, we could feed out a lot of wire really fast — about three times faster than a manual repair, but still with just one operator.”

The BW5000 is itself very flexible, rotating around the work piece so large parts can be welded without rotating them. This makes the BW5000 ideal for field work, setting up on large equipment that could never be rotated. The wire feed, step and weld wire rotate together under the stationary head unit, retaining consistent wire placement. It is capable of building up or cladding bores from 12 to 144 inches (304.8 to 3657.6 mm).

The BW5000 is Peninsula Iron Works’ first purchase from CLIMAX, and the company foresees an excellent payoff from its investment. “With this machine and our creativity, we’re seeing a lot of other things we can do,” said Johnson.

Does your company regularly machine large surfaces? Connect with a CLIMAX representative today to determine a machine tool solution that best meets your needs.