Giant press order for Forgemasters

A giant casting made by Sheffield Forgemasters International for German press manufacturer Schuler Pressen and destined for the Loncoln plant of Bifrangi.
A giant casting made by Sheffield Forgemasters International for German press manufacturer Schuler Pressen and destined for the Loncoln plant of Bifrangi.
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Sheffield Forgemasters has completed two giant castings for one of the world’s largest screw presses.

Six hundred tonnes of steel had to be poured into massive moulds to make the 315 tonne and 285 tonne castings which will form the table and head piece of the press, which is being made by German company Schuler Pressen.

The table casting is seven metres long, four metres wide and three metres high, while the head piece is six metres long, four metres wide and 3.6 metres high.

When work on the components is completed, they will be installed at the Lincoln plant of Italian company Bifrangi, allowing the firm to expand its production of forged parts, including crankshafts, for the power generation industry.

Forgemasters senior sales manager for castings, Mick Holloway, said: “We are one of a select few foundries in the world capable of producing something on the scale of this press.

“Every part of the process is on an expanded scale, even the time. It takes approximately three-weeks for the molten metal to solidify in a cast of that size.

“The table and headpiece will be completely manufactured and finished at Forgemasters including the pattern making, moulding, casting, heat treatment, rough machining, fettling and non-destructive testing, finish machining painting and packing.

“Contractual delivery is September 2013 and the good news is that we are ahead of schedule on this job.”

Sheffield Forgemasters has achieved a series of successes, making components for massive presses.

In 2005, the company made history when it made a forging press traverse which weighed 340 tonnes and was the largest steel casting made in Europe.

Two years later it made castings weighing a total of 400 tonnes for the largest counterblow hammer for Müller Weingarten, which is now part of Schuler Pressen, before going on to win a contract to supply German heavy engineering firm SMS Meer with components for the largest open die press in the world, designed to make critical components for the power generation sector.

Last year it beat international competition from as far away as Asia to clinch a major contract from Schuler Pressen to produce a 300 tonne table and 288 tonne headpiece for a screw press for making automotive parts.

Forgemasters specialises in producing some of the largest engineered products in the world, and has the capacity to produce single castings of up to 350 tonnes from one pour of molten metal as well as processing forgings weighing up to 275 tonnes.