Cooperative testing strengthens product development and customer-supplier relationship
Bavarian company Bergauer and SSAB boast a long tradition of collaboration. The two companies engage in cooperative tests to find solutions that extend the useful life of parts and equipment, to the mutual benefit of both parties.
Founded in 1961 as a repairer of vehicle track shoes, Bergauer broadened its portfolio to include the production and repair of a wide range of other machine and wear parts, including excavator buckets, equipment for rock quarries, and wear parts like hammers and knives for the recycling industry. Because of the aggressive wear the machine parts are subjected to, the company always needs high-quality steels that exhibit high impact strength. Bergauer chose Hardox® for the first time in 1978, and has been a faithful customer ever since.
Cooperative tests on Hardox® have strengthened the bond between the companies. Robert Bergauer values the direct, active contact that he and his company have with SSAB and its technical support team.
“The tests enable us to analyze wear-related problems. Both SSAB and we work towards finding solutions that extend the useful life, which in turn translates into improved profitability for all concerned. Wear parts made of Hardox® wear plate last longer, need less maintenance, and lower the total lifecycle costs,” says Bergauer.
He recalls a recent example from a recycling company: “After only six months of service in a shredder for binders, files and office paper, the 40 hammers were so deformed and partially destroyed that the machine no longer worked. This happened even though the manufacturer had sent a set of spare parts free of charge.”
The manufacturer blamed the breakdown on “foreign objects.” But the problem was that the hammers with a hardness of around 320 HBW deformed and broke up when they struck the anvil. The splinters flying around then accelerated the damage to the shredder.
“In consultation with SSAB, we suggested using Hardox® 500 and 600. The machine has now been in operation for more than a month and the plant manager is pleased with both the speed at which we succeeded in solving the problem and with the competitive price we had quoted,” says Bergauer.
- Cooperative testing helped company analyze wear problems and find solutions to extend useful life of hammers
- Company provided better product and service to its end customer
- High-quality technical support from SSAB enabled Bergauer to solve wear-related issues, manage difficult orders, and find new fields of operation