Custom Screening Steel: Specialist Steels from Miilux

The production of specialist steels for custom purposes such as mining equipment and screens is a specialized process. Masteel has collaborated with the Finnish speciality steel company Miilux to bring the highest quality steel screening products to customers in Ireland and the UK.

In the production of custom screening a certain amount of expertise is required in gas, plasma and laser cutting as well as heating and press quenching to attain the correct mechanical properties for the end product. Miilux has this expertise, and produces a wide range of abrasion resistant products for conveyors, crushers, buckets, screening, and grouser bars for mining applications.

Miiluxs’ success lies in its ability to process steels while soft, and to use its specialized hardening capability to create the final product in an ‘edge to edge hardened’ form. The company supplies steel in different grades ranging from Miilux® 400, which is provided in thicknesses from 5 to 120 mm and hardness in the range of 360-420 HBW to Miilux® 600, which is supplied in thicknesses from 8 to 40 mm and a hardness range of 570-640 HBW. Other Miilux grades are also supplied in different thicknesses to provide a range, which will meet customers’ requirements [1].

The Miilux Process

When producing a custom screen, the virgin soft steel

is cut and bevelled either by bevel robot (usually robotic mode is used for highest precision), or using plasma. Virgin soft steel is five times easier to machine while soft.

After attaining the final shape, one of two hardening processes can be used to develop the final, high-quality abrasion resistant steel product. Any soft zones formed during laser and gas cutting can be re-hardened by using precise temperature control in a heat treatment and quenching line. The best edge to edge hardened steel can also be ensured by a press quenching process.

Miilux uses press quenching, an indirect process in which the steel product blank is cut, produced, and trimmed in the cold condition and later subjected to heat treatment and then water quenched to obtain high strength and hardness properties [3]. Precision shaping/bending in a press is the final part of steel screen production that results in custom curved and angled steel screen shapes and this is then followed by surface finishing.

The Miilux Advantage

Miilux has extensive experience in specialist steel fabrication and is capable of manufacturing products to extremely specific requirements. The manufacturing process is much simpler after employing the after-hardening process. By carrying out the required machining and processing before hardening, while steel still continues to be soft, there is much more control and potential to make custom adjustment of the steel hardness.

In effect, it enables an upgrade of hardness from the traditional HB400 abrasion resistant grade of steel to HB500, HB450, or even HB600 (the highest hardness grade). This provides an extremely cost effective way to handle abrasion resistant steels, since no special equipment is needed for machining and the process is fast meaning a quick turnaround for customers’ orders.

References

  1. Miilux Screening Solutions
  2. Faßmann, H. Hoffmann, R. Golle& M. Schaper. “An investigation of the blanking process of the quenchable boron alloyed steel 22MnB5 before and after hot stamping process”, Journal of Materials Processing Technology 212, 437-449 (2012).
  3. Kurz, T., “New Developments in Zinc Coated Steel for Press Hardening”, in Insight Edition Conference, September 20–21, Gothenburg, Sweden (2011).
  4. Billur, E. & T. Altan, “Challenges in Forming Advanced High Strength Steels”, in Proceedings of New Developments in Sheet Metal Forming 2010, pp285-304, May 2–4, Stuttgart, Germany (2010).
  5. G. Speer, E. De Moor, K.O. Findley, D.K. Matlock, B.C. De Cooman, and D.V. Edmonds: Metall. Mater. Trans. A, 2011, vol. 42A, pp. 3591–3601.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Masteel UK Ltd.

For more information on this source, please visit Masteel UK Ltd.

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