By Nick Gilbert
Kentucky Heat Treating has purchased two new vacuum furnaces from Solar Manufacturing to meet increasing customer demand associated with different fields of tool steel processing.
The two identical vacuum furnaces are Solar Manufacturing Model HFL-3872-10IQ and have work zones with dimensions of 24" W x 24" H x 72" D and with 2,000 lbs gross load capacity. The furnace insulation comprises a 1" thick foil-faced graphite board supported by three layers of 0.5" high purity graphite felt and all are supported inside a heavy-duty 0.090" thick #304 stainless steel structure.
The internal quench systems of the two furnaces are capable of achieving better cooling rates, thanks to the quench gas' very high velocity at pressures as high as 10 bar positive. Their internal radial fan wheel and 300 HP drive motor will enable the direct recirculation of the quench gas onto the workload in the hot zone through innovative tapered graphite nozzles and then via the high-efficiency, water-cooled, all-copper heat exchanger.
The furnaces have an optimum operating temperature of 2,500 °F and comprise a vacuum system that operates in the 10-3 Torr range utilizing Stokes Model 615 and Model 412 vacuum pumps. Solar Manufacturing's Vice President of Sales, Peter Reh informed that the company carried out extensive research and development work to demonstrate the success of the equipment and the process being utilized by Kentucky Heat Treating's customer. This exceptional mutual relationship helped the company in ensuring full hardness with minimal distortion across the entire load.
Ed Stenger, President at Kentucky Heat Treating, stated that the company anticipates that the two new furnaces will considerably upgrade the company's overall processing capabilities and help its customers.