August 2021 Volume 3

Official Publication of the Forging Industry Association

August 2021

PRE-SHOW ISSUE & BUYER’S GUIDE Featuring details about the upcoming show, exhibitor highlights and a showcase of companies youwill find on the showfloor.

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President's Note

Annual Meeting a Smashing Success! Kudos to the FIA Board for pushing for an early summer AnnualMeeting in the Midwest, and a great big thanks to the FIA staff for pulling it off in such style! This would have been another easy one to say ‘eh COVID might hurt attendance…

Forging 2.0 Electric vehicles (EVs) have been a hot topic lately, and we sometimes receive calls from the media looking for a comment on how the forging industry plans to react. I enjoy this opportunity because it allows me to educate reporters on how forging is integral to so many industries, including the future EV car segment (forgings support the structure/suspension); aerospace (you’re welcome Sir Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos.); medical, energy, agriculture, infrastructure, nuclear and more! When it comes to defending our country, that’s where we’ve really shined, and will continue to do so! If you ever see a burgundy minivan rolling down the Ohio turnpike with a personalized ‘FORGE’ aerospace-themed license plate – that would be me. I’m blown away by what our industry and this country was able to do in World War II and beyond from protecting our citizens to exploring our galaxy. I drove the staff here bananas last week yelling “did you see it go by?” - ‘it’ being one of only two airworthy B-29’s on tour in Cleveland at our Burke Waterfront Airport – close to the FIA office. It was a real treat to get up close and photograph some of those awesome forgings I know our members made back in the day. I had a nice chat with the plane’s owner and pilots and expressed our memberships’ affinity for the forgings on this aircraft.

let’s wait’ - but the board said go for it in late June, it’s time to start meeting again. And they were right. Our early planning was for a maximum of 75 attendees, and we were so happy to see 150+ come out to lovely Lake Geneva in Wisconsin. This was one of our largest Annual Meeting gatherings in some time. We had a nice couple of firsts as well for this meeting: our first FIERF Forging Foundation Silent Auction was a blast to put together AND generated nearly 18K in donations from nearly 40 donated items– thanks to all who participated as a donor or winning bidder; and the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Award, recognizing Bill Walker of Walker Forge and Al Underys of Finkl Steel – two titans in the industry. For The main focus of this issue is Forge Fair 2021, and we are pleased to share that the show planning is coming along quite nicely. We are very near our goal for number of exhibitors, and the registered attendance numbers are tracking to match Forge Fair 2019 – our most successful show ever. At this time, we’re planning for 125 exhibitors and 1,500 attendees in Detroit. This year boasts lots of new features for Forge Fair in 2021: first time ever in Detroit; first Career Day planned with a focus on students visiting the show; first Women in Forging panel on the show floor; and the first time we’ll have the FIA Economist present from the show floor. It is my hometown, and we promise a great time in this revitalized city! Check out the full Forge Fair Pre-Show information, starting on page 66. NewMaintenance Column! FIA staff was happy to reconnect with Jeff Fredline of MECO Corporation for maintenance training and a new every-issue maintenance-themed column. Jeff’s early career was in forging and he is excited to be back with FIA. (See page 16) a full recap of the event, see page 62. Forge Fair is Coming Soon

Today, I see many examples in the membership of diversifying, getting creative and not sitting around waiting around to see if EV cars will impact us as advertised. If yes, we will find our niche with EV's and otherwise continue to build our businesses in as many industry segments as possible. FORGE ON! ■

Sincerely, James R. Warren

President and CEO Forging Industry Association Board of Directors

PUBLISHER James R. Warren EDITOR Angela Gibian Editorial Staff

Perry Bennett Peter Campbell Mark Candy John Coward Robert Dimitrieff

Marcelo T. Garza JimKravec Chelsea Lantto James Romeo

DESIGN Lorean Crowder AD SALES Keri Kichurchak





54 Improving the Quoting Process INDUSTRY NEWS 58 Trenton Forging Expands Capacity & Capability with Fully Automated Press Forging Line 59 FIA Annual Meeting of Members Recap 62 FIA Lifetime Achievement Award Winners Announced 64 FIA Announces 2020 Safety Award Winners 66 Forge Fair 2021: Everything You Need to Know Before You Attend North America’s Largest Forging Industry Trade Show 70 Forge Fair 2021 Exhibitor Presentation Schedule 71 Thank You Forge Fair Sponsors 73 FIA Upcoming Events 74 Welcome New Members 76 Remembering Gregory D. Timmons, Esq. FORGING RESEARCH 77 FIERF Donor Spotlight: Walker Forge 78 FIERF Board of Trustees Approves 12 New Grants MEMBERS SPEAK 82 Advice for Attracting the New Generation of Workers AD INDEX 84 August Advertiser Index

PRESIDENT'S NOTE 1 President's Note WASHINGTON UPDATE 5 Deep Dive on Trade Policy in The Biden Administration EQUIPMENT & TECHNOLOGY 8 The Evolution of Brass Forging 13 It All Comes Down to the Right Choice of Lubricant MAINTENANCE 16 Maintaining Die Space Parallelism on Forging Presses BUYER'S GUIDE 18 Forge Fair 2021 Equipment & Technology Highlights 21 Forge Fair 2021 Buyer's Guide AUTOMATION 36 What’s Your ROI on Reshoring? MATERIALS 40 Heat Treat Corner 42 Why Graphite for Forging Lubricants? 44 Controlling Residual Stress in Aluminum Forgings OPERATIONS & MANAGEMENT 46 Non-Competes: Is Federal Oversight Coming or Will State Variation Continue? 48 The Power of Mentorship 50 Leaders as Coaches 52 Why It’s Always the Right Time to Be Accelerating Strategic Value

p. 66

DEPARTMENTS 1 President's Note 5 Washington Update 8 Equipment & Technology 16 Maintenance 18 Buyer's Guide 36 Automation 40 Materials 46 Operations & Management 58 Industry News

77 Forging Research 82 Members Speak 84 Ad Index

Official Publication of the Forging Industry Association

August 2021

PRE-SHOW ISSUE & BUYER’S GUIDE Featuring details about the upcoming show, exhibitor highlights and a showcase of companies youwill find on the showfloor.

For advertising contact

FIA Magazine (ISSN 2643-1254 (print) and ISSN 2643-1262 (online)) is published 4 times annually, May, August, November and February by the Forging Industry Association, 1111 Superior Ave., Suite 615, Cleveland, OH 44114. Telephone: (216) 781-6260, Fax: (216) 781-0102. Only (1) copy of the print version distributed at no charge only to members of the Forging Industry Association. Digital version distributed at no charge to qualified individuals. Subscription requests available at Printed in the U.S.A. Periodicals postage paid in Cleveland, OH and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Forging Industry Association, 1111 Superior Ave., Suite 615, Cleveland, OH 44114. Copyright © 2021 by the Forging Industry Association in both printed and electronic formats. All rights reserved. The contents of this publication may not be reproduced in whole or part without the consent of the publisher. The publisher is not responsible for product claims and representations or for any statement made or opinion expressed herein. Data and information presented by the authors of specific articles are for informational purposes only and are not intended for use without independent, substantiating investigation on the part of potential users.



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Deep Dive on Trade Policy in The Biden Administration By Alex Perkins

There are a number of folks with trade-related responsibilities in any Administration – the State Department, the Department of Commerce, the Department of the Treasury– but the first among equals is the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), a 200+ team of trade experts housed in the Executive Office of the President. The current U.S. Trade Representative is Ambassador Katherine Tai, the first Asian-American woman to hold this cabinet-level position. Previously, she served as Chief Trade Counsel for the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Ways and Means, which has jurisdiction over international trade issues. In that role, she was the architect of the revisions made to the United States-Canada- Mexico Agreement (USMCA) text demanded by Democrats in exchange for supporting the NAFTA rewrite. Prior to that, Tai served in USTR’s Office of General Counsel as the chief counsel for China trade enforcement. Despite playing what would appear to be a partisan role in the USMCA process, she is liked and respected by stakeholders across the spectrum – from the Business Round Table to the AFL-CIO – which explains why the U.S. confirmed her nomination on March 17, 2021, by a vote of 98-0. Not Your Father’s Trade Policy So, after a little under 200 days into this Administration, what can we conclude about Ambassador Tai and her approach to trade- policy? Here are a few thoughts: At least rhetorically, this is not your father’s trade policy. In every speech that Ambassador Tai has given and in almost every press statement that USTR issues, they highlight the Ambassador’s efforts to reorient U.S. trade policy and make it more worker-centered and inclusive – essentially the translation of President Biden’s Build Back Agenda into trade-speak. Ambassador Tai most clearly defined what a worker-centered inclusive trade policy means in her remarks to the AFL-CIO back in June. Here are a few key quotes: “By bringing workers from all backgrounds and experiences to the table, we will create inclusive trade policy that advances economic security and racial and gender equity. We want to lift up women, communities of color, and rural America – people that have been systematically excluded or overlooked…” “Enforcing all of our trade rules is a priority for the Biden-Harris Administration. Those who work hard and play by the rules, you deserve to have the government on your side when faced with illegal and unfair trade practices...” “… a worker-centered trade policy means addressing the damage

that U.S. workers and industries have sustained from competing with trading partners that do not allow workers to exercise their internationally recognized labor rights…” Acknowledging that we have limited data to work with, it’s safe to say that a worker-centered, inclusive trade policy is as much about process as it is about substance – lifting up the voices of workers and domestic U.S. industry and limiting the influence of multinationals in shaping trade policy. And regarding that substance, if properly framed, almost any trade decision can be arguably worker-centered and inclusive. So, we won’t really know what the Ambassador means until she translates rhetoric into policy and puts more meat on the bone. With that said, there are some patterns emerging that are worth noting, which indicate that the Ambassador and the Administration are more interested in enforcement, especially of labor rights, and levelling the playing field for domestic workers and industry than increasing market access for U.S. exporters. Trade and Leverage The Ambassador likes her leverage, as she readily conceded in a Wall Street Journal article, back in March, when she stated, “No negotiator walks away from leverage, right?” Statements like these, as well as her actions, have quashed the hopes of those who thought that, given President Biden’s repeated rhetoric regarding the importance rebuilding bridges with friends and allies, she would quickly lift the Trump-era Section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the European Union (EU) and possibly, Japan and South Korea. Instead, the Ambassador deftly persuaded the EU to refrain from ratcheting up its retaliatory tariffs on a range of U.S. products from bourbon to boats, which were originally imposed in response to the Section 232 tariffs and scheduled to double in June, days before the President’s visit to Europe. In exchange, she made a vague commitment to negotiate the possible resolution of the tariffs by December 2021. This soft deadline to conclude talks does not appear tobe coincidental – despite record high prices, domestic stakeholders led by the unions remain steadfast in their opposition to lifting the Section 232 tariffs. But by December, we may have an infrastructure/reconciliation deal – a top priority of these same stakeholders given the expected increased demand for steel and aluminum it will generate – making the elimination of the tariffs more palatable, especially if the EU, as expected, commits to meaningful steps to address the root cause of the issue, Chinese steel and aluminum production overcapacity.



Labor Rights Enforcement As noted previously, Ambassador Tai, while chief trade counsel for the Ways and Means Committee, was the architect of the changes to the USMCA that got Democrats on board with the updated trade deal. Possibly the most important change was the inclusion of the “Rapid Response Labor Mechanism” (RRLM), which she also touted in her recent AFL-CIO speech, stating, “[t]he Rapid Response Mechanism will help to protect the rights of workers, particularly those in low-wage industries who are vulnerable to exploitation. Because when we fight for workers overseas, we are fighting for workers here at home.” As Ambassador Tai suggests, the RRLM is not a symbolic change to NAFTA – it has teeth. Under the mechanism, violations of workers’ rights can be quickly investigated and if verified, sanctions can be imposed on the goods when the producer seeks to try and export them. These sanctions include tariffs, additional penalties and even import bans. The U.S. has already initiated two RRLM cases, one involving General Motors’ Silao truck assembly plant and the other involving auto parts maker Tridonex’s facility in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas. While the latter investigation is still ongoing, Mexico has already agreed to a remediation plan that revolves around a new union election at the GM plant. The detailed plan includes a new worker vote on whether to approve the collective bargaining agreement; that vote will be monitored by Mexican officials as well as International Labor Organization observers. It also requires GM to issue a statement of “neutrality and zero-tolerance policy for retaliation.” In announcing the plan, USTR stated “[if ] after the agreed-upon date for remediation, the U.S. determines that the Denial of Rights has not been remediated, the U.S. may decide to impose further remedies.” The handling of the GMcase underscores that USTR isn’t messing around. AWorker-Center Inclusive Trade Policy and Climate How a worker-centered inclusive trade policy interacts with the overall Administration’s climate goals will be born out over time. But so far, the facts suggest that while President Biden has identified climate as one of the two existential threats the United States faces – an ascendant China being the other – reducing greenhouse gas emissions has not necessarily taken precedence over the Administration’s worker-centered goals when the two policies cannot be advanced simultaneously. For instance, in June, despite the adverse impact it might have on solar panel supplies and the adoption of green energy in the U.S., the Administration added polysilicon used to make solar panels from Xinjiang, China to the Department of Labor list of goods made with forced labor. It also blocked the import of polysilicon manufactured by Hoshine Silicon Industry Co. and solar panels made with Hoshine polysilicon. Explaining the decision, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas said, “Our environmental goals will not be achieved on the backs of human beings in a forced labor environment…We're going to root out forced labor wherever it exists."

Similarly, in the section of the White House’s June supply chain report discussing lithium-ion batteries, rather than pull out all the stops and propose steps to get lithium-ion batteries into cars and trucks in the U.S. and capture the associated climate benefits as soon as possible, the Administration saddled these efforts with a number of additional worker-centered, inclusive policy riders. The report calls for the localization of lithium-ion battery supply chains to promote supply chain resiliency. It recommends the protection of the rights of battery production workers to unionize and proposes tighter Made in America requirements for electric vehicle government procurement. It suggests ensuring that any lithium-ion battery-related workforce opportunities are equitable, including for communities “historically underserved, marginalized, and adversely affected by persistent poverty and inequality.” The addition of these recommendations to the report seems to demonstrate the willingness of the Administration to prioritize their worker-centered agenda over their climate policy aims, at least up to now. The Congress and its Trade Priorities We’ve talked a lot about the Administration, but what about the Congress? Enactment of the American Recovery Plan, bipartisan infrastructure talks, and the prospect of a second budget reconciliation package are consuming much of the oxygen on Capitol Hill, but there has been some trade activity as well. In June, the Senate passed the S.1260, U.S. Innovation and Competitiveness Act, a massive bill designed to ensure that the U.S. can out compete and out innovate China. Hundreds of pages long, the bill includes a wide range of provisions, including ones designed to promote advanced manufacturing and strengthen supply chain resiliency. S.1260 also included several trade provisions crafted by the Senate Finance Committee, which has jurisdiction over trade issues, including provisions enacting the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB), retroactively reauthorizing the Generalized System of Preferences and reopening the Section 301 tariff exclusion process and extending certain expired exclusions for goods imported fromChina. Despite pressure to take up the Senate bill, the House is now going through the process of crafting its own version of the China competition legislation and it is unlikely that the House and Senate will agree on common language until the fall, and even that may be optimistic. It should be noted that while Ways andMeans Committee Ranking Member Kevin Brady expressed strong support for the Senate- passed trade provisions, the Ways and Means Trade Subcommittee Chairman Earl Blumenauer has since released his own package of trade bills, which includes alternative versions of the Senate- passed MTB, GSP renewals and updates, and reauthorizes the Trade Adjustment Assistance program. Notably absent was any mention of the Section 301 exclusion language the Senate passed, but we are hearing that many Democratic members have been pushing for the process to be reopened. Importantly, virtually no one in the Administration or Congress – Democrat or Republican - is calling for lifting all the 301 tariffs on Chinese imports -- these




tariffs are here for the foreseeable future. Moreover, it seems unlikely that USTR, which is in the midst of a China policy review with no deadline for completion, would reopen the Section 301 process unless Congress enacts legislation forcing it to do so. We understand that staff for Senate Finance and House Ways and Means staff are talking, but at this point, there isn’t an obvious, immediate path to resolution of the differences between the House and Senate trade provisions and their enactment into law. Some pieces could end up in reconciliation, e.g., Trade Adjustment Assistance, but others may need to wait to ride on the broader China bill or some other legislative vehicle. With the limited exception of some Republicans and a few Democrats, Members of Congress aren’t clamoring for Ambassador Tai to continue new free trade agreement negotiations with Kenya and the United Kingdom, which were launched by the prior Administration, nor are they urging USTR to initiate trade negotiations with other countries. And this aligns with the Ambassador’s and the overall Administration’s focus on enforcement and levelling the playing field as they promote their worker-centered inclusive trade policy. So, on the oversight front, much of the Hill activity, especially on the Democratic side, has revolved around enforcement, particularly of labor rights. Whether it is the enforcement of the USMCA labor provisions, or the Section 307 of the Tariff Act of 1934 forced labor

prohibitions, these issues are getting time and attention. Already this year, both House Ways andMeans and the Senate Finance have held forced labor hearings. While much of that forced labor focus is on Chinese forced labor in Xinjiang province, many Members expect U.S. Customs and Border Protection to vigorously enforce these rules globally. As mentioned at the outset, it’s still early days in the Biden Administration when it comes to trade. But as the forgoing indicates, certainly rhetorically, and at least somewhat substantively, Ambassador Tai’s focus is different than her predecessors, with increased focus on enforcement, levelling the playing field for domestic workers and industry and less apparent interest in opening new markets for U.S. exports of goods and services. In the coming months and years, we’ll see how this plays out and whether it holds true. ■ Alex Perkins Principal Mehlman Castagnetti Rosen &Thomas Phone: 202-754-1726 Email:



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The Evolution of Brass Forging By Mike Hoff aka “Mr. Brass”

Today’s presses employ in-press billet size and weight control, with a series of side cores to reduce forging weight, the need for secondary trimming, no reprocessing of flash, reduced post-forge machining due to near net sizing, and the ability to process lead-free alloys. We know that a forging has many advantages over a casting, but principle among them is the inherent porosity found in castings that result in occasional leakage and vessel failure under pressure. This requires that all casting be pressure tested prior to assembly and the fallout can be significant. Forgings have no porosity issues. This allows for leak testing to be performed on the finished assembly as opposed to the raw part. This is particularly beneficial in high brass content high-volume assemblies, like ball valves. Today’s high-tech presses are turnkey systems with all necessary components integral to the press. This is referred to as “foundry in a box”. The furnace, bar cutting, and press are an all-in-one design that requires minimal foundation and only a requirement of basic utilities brought to the system. The system can be run in a three- car garage and does not require an existing foundry, or extensive foundry infrastructure. The old traditional brass forging line required a minimum of five machines, twelve steps, six transports and three operators.

The European market, especially in Italy, has embraced hot brass forging for centuries while the North American market has traditionally relied upon brass production from bar, shaped bar, and green sand castings. Today, the tide is turning as near net shape forging options for light metals has progressed significantly. In addition, environmental concerns surrounding green sand foundries has sent traditional producers toMexico, or to sourcing fromChina. Producers, especially OEMs, that want to keep production in house, have now turned to forging as their European counterparts have for some time. Long gone are the days when brass forgings resembling a pancake of some kind.




Today, the landscape of brass forging is far simpler, with only one machine, five steps, two transports and the potential of one operator running three presses.



The press style shown in the illustrations is the Neotecman press, built in Girona, Spain. Company co-founder Manel Domingo worked in the family forging business, Metalurgica Domingo S.A. During that time from 1981 to 2003, he developed seven different prototype hydraulic presses of this style and became a pioneer in this

field. In 2004, he startedNeotecman with partner Carles Esteve and offered this technology to the forging marketplace. This was the first brass forging system to integrate the furnace and bar shearing into the press proper.



But probably evenmore critical to the success of today’s brass forging presses, is the ability to program several die cores, to move the metal throughout the cavity (or cavities), producing near net forgings without flash. Mechanical presses of the past simple waited for the

delivery of a hot billet and then smashed the part with the upper moving platen, producing the fried egg of surplus brass surrounding the forging. Here is the control page to program the side cores. In this case, five of them:

Multiple cores also allow us to design dies to produce multiple parts per cycle, up to 5,000 parts per hour. Here we see a four-up die for brass elbows: (image at right) This has always been an advantage of a screw press, but it does not allow side coring or the elimination of the flash. The hydraulic side- core press is very comfortable with lead free brass as well. Critical to the uptime efficiency of a brass forging press running ECO brass, or other lead-free alloys, is a programmable, repeatable, and reliable graphite lubrication delivery system. The Neotecman forging system employs a series of 20 servo- controlled linear motor injectors to control dosing to the precision of 1/100 of a second. The 20 injectors are controlled with independent servo control and because it is a servo control, each cycle is monitored to confirm lubrication compliance. This allows the programming of the appropriate amount of lubrication with each cycle. Historically, when working with lead-free alloys, operators over lubricate, wasting graphite oil and over cooling dies that lead to premature wear and shorter life.



Recognizing that the graphite oil can be the most objectional ingredient of hot brass forging, the programmable features of a servo linear motor systemgreatly reduce the frustration that can arise from graphite dosing and air cooling. Unfortunately, graphite remains a messy necessity to the process and regular clean-up is required. In this system, the forging dies are relatively small and inexpensive. Most forging houses will also have a five-axis vertical machining center to produce these dies or have a local tool & die vendor with this capability. Although certain coatings can prolong die life, the lower die cost generally does not benefit directly from coating, unless the part has significant complexity causing turbulence in the forming process. Die changes are relatively simple and can be accomplished in less than 30 minutes. This is a meaningful advantage over typical mechanical presses that require upwards of two hours for complete die change. The die change for the Neotecman press only requires one person and generally the operator performs this function. While brass continues to be the main focus of this press technology, other light metals are produced regularly. Many aluminum and copper alloys forge well in a side core hydraulic press. Optional induction furnace technology will soon broaden the alloy potential. There are five sizes and styles of the Neotecman press, producing brass forgings up to 7.5 pounds. The raw bar input diameter range is from 12mm to 65mm. The challenge in the North American market is not so much updating older forging technology but converting existing production from casting and bar to forgings. With the simplicity of the new technology, foundries assimilate to this style of forging

seamlessly. However, significant brass usage at the screw machine producers makes conversion from bar an interesting possibility. Near net shape forgings reduce the amount of material used per part and greatly simplifies the machining by eliminated much of the roughing passes required from bar or shaped bar. When supplying rotary transfer machines to produce the same part from bar or forging, it is not unusual to spend over one million dollars less to machine the forging due to fewer machining units and smaller footprints. Forgings do not require expensive bar feeders and saws at machining and therefore, save the space that would be occupied with bar feeders. The grain structure of the forging is also superior to bar that can contain longitudinal stringers and other inclusions that lead to cracking and failure. The forging will machine easier and more consistently, providing lower perishable tooling costs. The move to forgings, or improved forging technology, provides several benefits worth your investigation. ■ Mike Hoff (Mr. Brass) Email: Phone: 937-238-2820



It All Comes Down to the Right Choice of Lubricant By Marius Schmid and Dr. Marcel Eberle

Why AreThere Lubricants in Forging? Every employee in the forging value chain has a different answer to this question, and yet they all have one thing in common: all the answers are correct. The advantages for using a lubricant in forging range from reduced wear of the press, to the surface finish of the forged product, to cost savings due to a longer die life. In detail, the advantages become clearer. Due to reduced friction, the press force can be set lower, which reduces the load on the machine and its components. With an improved sliding effect of the material in the die, wear and small cracks are delayed. This not only extends the service life, but also improves the surface quality of the components over the life cycle of a die. Finally, yet importantly, it is also possible to shape difficult-to-flow alloys, e.g. chrome, nickel or titanium, in a forging process so that all corners and shapes of the finished component are completely filled. So, one thing can be said with great certainty: Die forging cannot be done without a lubricant/release agent. What Properties Does a Lubricant Need for Forging? The criteria that a die lubricant needs to match are numerous. The most important are a good sliding effect, excellent separating properties and a temperature resistance that corresponds to the process. Besides the fact that a smooth production process must be established, the well-being of the employees and the environment should also be considered. What Types of Lubricants AreThere in Forging? In order to better divide the selection of a suitable lubricant, lubricants are roughly categorized into three groups: Coatings; Graphite Products; and Synthetic Products. 1. Coatings Coatings are protective films that seal the surface of the alloys. The closed protective layer reduces hot gas diffusion, which improves the surface quality of the manufactured component. In addition, the heat is better retained in the component and cooling during transport between the furnace and the press is prevented. Glass Coating range is most commonly used in aerospace applications. The glass protects the titanium or nickel alloys from the reactive oxygen and a clean and, above all, defect-free surface is achieved after forging. The glass coatings are applied to the workpieces by brushing, spraying or even by an electrostatic application process. The user can adjust the thickness of the applied glass coating to the respective process by diluting the product with water to the appropriate consistency on site.

Turbine blades forged with Coating Product

2. Graphite Products Black products get their color from the graphite they contain. This naturally black solid has excellent properties that make it valuable for lubricants. In addition to a good lubricating effect, these also include outstanding separation performance. With graphite- containing lubricants, the carrier fluid can be varied; there are both water- and oil-based products.

Crankshaft forged with Black Graphite product.

2.1. Water Graphite The water used is cooling the parts which it comes in contact with and prevents the die from overheating. These products can be mixed with water on site, allowing the user to mix his own suitable concentration depending on the complexity of the part, quality of the die, and application method.



2.2. Oil Graphite An oil graphite, as the name implies, brings with it the benefits of graphite and also lubricates slightly better than a pure water graphite does, due to the oil content. In addition, the machine is protected against corrosion. Depending on the requirements, products with different viscosities are available. 2.3. Hybrids Practical experience has shown that there is a need for lubricants that can cover both processes with and without graphite. These products are called hybrids. The fact that the degree of deformation of the produced parts varies is often the reason for using several lubricants. Hybrids are lubricants that combine the advantages of graphite-free and graphite- containing lubricants. They are therefore particularly suitable for forging companies with a wide range of products. Hybrids can be matched in such a way that by introducing them into production, one lubricant can be used for all forging processes. This ensures that all components can be lubricated with just one medium. This not only helps employees, as there is now only one product on the shop floor, but also reduces costs in terms of inventory and ordering procedures. In addition, a lower proportion of graphite in hybrids means that fewer particles are left in the circulating air, the periphery of the press and on the surface of the components. 3. Synthetics Many forging companies are willing to "remove" graphite from production and give white products a chance. White products are applicable to steel and steel alloys, aluminum, titanium and titanium alloys, and nickel and nickel alloys. The advantages of "white lubricants" are mainly a cleaner production environment and less post-processing due to cleaner surfaces with almost identical lubricating properties compared to graphite products. The type of products varies, depending on the material used and the application. You can also run our salt product in circulation

3.1. Transparent The water-based transparent lubricants form a white release film in the die. They are pigment-free and very well miscible with water and can therefore be applied in good doses by automatic spraying machines or also manually. The contained ingredients ensure good wetting of the die. Due to its excellent driving and release properties over a wide temperature range, it is ideally suited for demanding hot and semi-hot forming operations. 3.2. White Lubricants Water-based white synthetic lubricants are available specifically for hot forming of aluminum. These can be diluted by the customer to the required application concentration and then applied with all standard spray equipment.

Typical Steering & Suspension forged with Graphite-free White Products 3.3. Circulating Lubricants Special transparent fluids are available for horizontal high speed forging.They are very well miscible with water and produce colorless solutions. Good wetting of the components is ensured by the very low foaming behavior circulating.

Table: Material &Chemistry Selection


Water Graphite Salt-basedWhite Products Polymer Based Lubricants

Oil Graphite



• Steel • Aluminum • High Strength Alloys

• Steel • High Strength Alloys • Specialty Steel Alloys

• Aluminum • Steel

• Nickel Based Alloys • Titanium and Titanium alloys • Special steel alloys

• Specialty Steel Alloys • High Strength Alloys • Non-Ferrous Metals



In the next issue of the magazine, it will be all about the advantages of using a white lubricant for steel and aluminum. How can costs be saved? And how difficult can forming be with a white lubricant? oelheld GmbH can look back on 130 years of tradition and experience. Since its foundation in 1887 by Carl Christian Held, oelheld GmbH has established itself as a lubricant specialist. Partnership, research, and human technology are our core values and are traditions that we are proud of. We are working closely with numerous machine manufacturers and universities to develop products that are designed to meet the specific requirements of their machines. This kind of cooperation allows us to meet the needs of our customers and adapt our fluids to the different applications. Our laboratories are equipped with state-of-the-art analysis and testing devices that meet the latest industry standards and help us to satisfy our customer’s needs. ■

Marius Schmid Forging Product Specialist

847-531-8501 (pictured left) Dr. Marcel Eberle

Research &Development

847-531-8501 (Not pictured)

AirForge | Forging Lubricants by

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Maintaining Die Space Parallelism on Forging Presses By Jeff Fredline

Now more than ever, die space parallelism is critical in manufacturing today's complex parts. As the industry moves toward tighter tolerances and the goal of cost reduction due to net forgings, die space parallelismwill play a major role. The allowable tolerance for parallelism left to right and front to rear in the die space is .001" per foot of span. On metal stamping presses there are more methods of controlling the slide path. In a forging press you have several areas that must be maintained properly to control your die space parallelism. • Hard Plate • Wedge Surface • Ram Face • Lower and Upper Ram Way Surfaces and Related Ram Guiding Hard Plates The hard plate is a renewable surface that can be ground and changed out as the surface wears. The plate can be ground top and bottom to clean it up flat and true and then reinstalled. Wedge Surface and Assembly One of the typical problems in the industry is wedge assembly maintenance. When you're in a production environment with time pressures, it is difficult to schedule the down time to maintain the wedge assembly. There are different wedge designs dependent on the manufacturer. Ajax machines use a single front to rear wedge assembly. The common wear surfaces are the sides, top and bottom of the wedge. Repairing the wedge is not too difficult; normally pad welding surfaces on the side and perhaps the bottom, stress relieving and the machining to fit the mating surfaces in the frame. Repairing the surfaces in the press frame itself are more difficult and can involve welding and portable machining of the wedge mounting surfaces. Failure to maintain the surfaces will allow the wedge to shift left to right during the forging process and could cause your bolster assembly to move. National Maxipres uses a two wedge assembly, main and auxiliary wedges. You control the wedge height by adjusting the auxiliary wedge in and out. Due to the forging environment contamination is often the problem as it relates to any moving components on the press, particularly the wedge assembly. Like the Ajax wedge assembly, as the components wear and become inoperable the wedge assembly becomes unusable and then the only method to adjust the die space is using shim plates.

Figure 1: Double Wedge Construction

Ram Face There is usually a plate mounted to the face of the ram also, which provides a renewable surface to work with. This plate can be removed, ground top and bottom and installed to maintain the ram face condition. In addition to the ram face, the ram way surfaces are critical to the maintenance of the die space.

Figure 2: Eccentric Shaft, Pitman and Ram



RamWay Surfaces Ajax and National Machines Even though the ram designs differ between Ajax and National Presses, the design principles are much alike. The press ram in a forging press fits into the frame with pre-set clearances. There are two wear plates on the right and two plates on the left. One side is designed to be adjustable and other side is designed to be fixed.There is a direct correlation between the lower ram box and the upper ram box. The relationship between the way surfaces on the lower way surfaces and the upper way surfaces must be parallel. Unparallel loading of the ram during unsupported operations can cause cracks in the ram tail. Normally all dimensions are taken from the centerline of the machine left to right. In the National Maxipres and the Ajax forging presses there is a relationship that must be held between the upper and lower ram boxes. When the ram is placed in the press frame and is forced back against the rear front to rear way surfaces a dimension can be established for the upper box. There are (2) different designs, the Ajax Press Ram has the ram tail stock at the rear of the press and the National Maxipres Press Ram has the ram tail stock at the front of the machine. The following steps should be followed to set the ram clearances.

running clearance for the side and front to rear wear plates will be .0005" x width or depth of the ram. Example: If the ram at the bottom across the front of the machine measures 60" wide then multiply 60" x .0005" = .030" total clearance or .015" per side. 3. Deburr and polish the wear plate surface on the face of the ram. Deburr all vertical wear surfaces, clean and prepare for installation in the press frame. 4. Provide two steel risers that are flat and true of identical height to set on top of the press bed and the face of the ram. Once the ram is in the press, lower the slide on the risers and push the ram toward the rear way surfaces until the ram is flat against the lower way surfaces. Check with feeler gauges. 5. With the ram in the lower box, you can now measure the frame wear plates for the tail front to rear. The front to rear plate should allow for zero clearance. You will set the clearance with the cover. Once you have established the wear plate thickness you can slide the ram back to allow for installation of the wear plates. 6. Next, set all side running clearances on the lower and upper box. 7. Once all clearances are set left to right, install the front gib box covers allowing for the front to rear clearance on the machine. Set the upper box clearances the same as the lower box clearance so that you don't put the ram in bind. 8. Verify lubrication to all ways surfaces. 9. Assemble the remainder of the press and test operate. It is not a difficult job to set the clearances and maintain them, however it is critical to the proper operation of your press. Once the press is assembled, and the counterbalance cylinder pressure is applied to hide the lost motion clearances it is time to place the ram on bottom dead center and perform parallelism checks. The goal is .001" per foot of span, left to right and front to rear. If the press die space is not close enough for running after checking the best method of correction is to lock the lower box down and obtain or hire in a portable machining company. They will then mount a portable mill normally to the face of the slide and reach down to machine the top of the hard plate for minimum clean up flat and true with the ram face. Good luck with your forging press maintenance adventures! ■ Jeff Fredline Sales Engineer MECO Corporation Email:

Figure 3: Slide Liners, Gibs and Wedges 1. The rear wear plates should be ground flat and true and installed with the way surfaces parallel in the same plane. Plates 4 and 5 in Figure 3. 2. Next the wedge and hard plate should be free from wear and surfaced flat and true. Verify that the rear way surfaces are perpendicular with the top of the hard plate on the wedge. The side wear plates should also be surfaced flat and true. Once this has been established it is now time to introduce the ram to the press. Normally the left to right



Forge Fair 2021 Equipment & Technology Highlights Check Out These Products on The Show Floor

Inductoforge® Modular Billet Heating System Inductoforge ® Modular Billet Heating Systems by Inductoheat The Inductoforge® Modular Billet Heating System disrupted the induction forging industry nearly 17 years ago, as the first to offer independently controlled power modules and use them to precisely control billet temperatures. Today, the Inductoforge® continues to redefine the forging industry by offering the latest advancements such as, true “stopped line” stand-by function, automated billet push-out systems, and next-generation forging coil design. The Inductoforge® gives our customers exactly what they want.... more reliability, more efficiency, and more control over their production. Visit booth #313 to see the Inductoforge® Heating System in person.

DEFORM® The DEFORM® system is the premier engineering software for the analysis of metal forming and heating processes. Popular applications including hot/warm forging, cold forming, rolling, heat treatment, machining and mechanical joining. The finite- element analysis software allows trials to be performed on the computer instead of the shop floor. Companies ranging from large multi-national corporations to small family-owned businesses have relied on DEFORM for decades. It is trusted for its unique combination of state-of-the- art technology, easy-to-use interfaces and world-class support. Countless companies have achieved shorter lead times, lower costs and improved quality thanks to DEFORM solutions. To see DEFORM in action, please visit Scientific Forming Technologies at booth #215.

PULS Solution The future of cold forming – Henkel’s next generation Boron- free PULS solution. Cold forming is well established process for manufacturing metal components with high tensile strengths to very close tolerances and high accuracy. The extreme surface pressures involved have made lubrication an essential to cold forming, but the traditional Zinc Phosphate coating process is complex, requiring numerous stages and the use of corrosive chemicals. Henkel’s breakthrough innovation transformed cold forming, with the introduction of PULS, an alternative process that reduces waste, costs and complexity.Thanks to an exclusive polymer lubrication coating – Bonderite L-FM FL – the PULS process offers a simpler and more cost-effective approach that reduces the stages in cold forming to just three steps. Visit booth #512 to find out more about Henkel’s Boron-free PULS solution.


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