Page 1

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



integrated performance


Tiger·tec® Silver ISO P Generation: new cutting materials plus new geometries! The combination of the unique Tiger·tec® Silver CVD coating with the completely new geometry family for an even greater range of applications makes the innovative performance marvel even more efficient when turning steel. That’s what we call pure performance – fully integrated into the processes of our customers.

Remarkable increase in performance: Competition Tiger·tec® Silver WPP10S

+ 75 %

See the product video: Scan the QR code or go to

Spectra Carbide Tooling Technology (PTY) Ltd 24 Desmond Street, Korsten, Port Elizabeth PO Box 2631, North End, 6056 Tel: 0860 23 23 23 Fax: 0860 33 22 33 Email: Website:


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

wal-0001-015_AZ_PRODUCT_Turning_T-TecSilver1_ZA_185x270_RZ.indd 1

13.10.11 17:49

September/October 2011

Contents Cover Story


Material Selection

Industry News

30 No Looking Back

4 Aces of Automation

Rijva Quality Machines (Durma SA) Byron Gueffroy and Robbert van Rijssen

Tel: (011) 827-0639 Fax: (011) 827-0643 Email: Web: www. (

33 SAIW News 34 International News 36 Industry News

9 The Titan of Metals

Surface Finishing 12 Green Pickling

Endorsing Bodies

TDM Today (Tool, Die & Mould Making) 17 CEO’s Comments 18 Competitiveness of Local Tool Market 20 Rollercoaster Trend Continues

Joining and Fastening

25 New Pipe Welding Process

Machine Tools

28 Supporting Quality Manufacturing

• SAIMechE (SA Institution of Mechanical Engineering) • AFSA (Aluminium Federation of SA) • CorriSA • NTIP • TASA (Toolmakers Association of South Africa) • Intsimbi


All rights reserved. No editorial matter published in “Advanced Materials Today” may be reproduced in any form or language without written permission of the publishers. While every effort is made to ensure accurate reproduction the editor, authors, publishers and their employees or agents shall not be responsible or in any way liable for any errors, omissions or inaccuracies in the publication whether arising from negligence or otherwise or for any consequences arising therefrom. The inclusion or exclusion of any product does not mean that the publisher or editorial board advocates or rejects its use either generally or in any particular field or fields.

The monthly circulation is 6 034 Proprietor and Publisher: PROMECH PUBLISHING Tel: (011) 781-1401 Fax: (011) 781-1403 E-mail: Website: Managing Editor: Susan Custers Editor: Raymond Campling Advertising Sales: Louise Taylor

DTP: Zinobia Docrat, Yolanda Flowerday and Lilian Kemp Disclaimer Neither PROMECH Publishing nor its endorsing bodies are responsible for the opinions expressed by individuals. Printed by: Typo Colour Printing Tel: (011) 402-3468

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Aces of Automation

Automation of production lines is becoming more common place due to the ongoing downturn in markets since the 2008 recession. This has spelt good news for Rijva Quality Machines as it supplies advanced, ready to automate machines to the sheet metal and structural steel fabrication markets.


n old saying goes, “one man’s meat is another man’s poison,” and this is particularly true of the machine tool market where certain niches are doing particularly well while others are battling to survive.

Overseas plants are highly automated so it stands to reason that our labour intensive processes are increasingly uncompetitive In a frank discussion with owners, Byron Gueffroy and Robbert van Rijssen, “Advanced Materials

Today” discovers that a move is taking place among fabricators to automate processes and even entire production facilities in order to gain a tactical advantage over local competitors and to compete on a level footing with global players in the market.

Less labour

“In the world of steel fabrication labour is expensive and can be unreliable at times. In order to compete, many of our clients are opting to minimise labour on the production line and rather employ machines to do the job faster, more accurately and reliably than humans. “If you work out the cost of a finished item including specified raw materials, production cost, machining, quality control etc and exclude labour, then it is clear that prices are similar until the labour component is added. Overseas plants are highly automated so it stands to reason that our labour intensive processes are increasingly uncompetitive,” says Robbert. He adds since the downturn began to ease late in 2009 a sharp trend emerged toward more advanced machines


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


and automation equipment purchases, such as loaders, that negate the need for semi and unskilled labour. “In most instances with our systems whether it be cutting, pressing, forming, bending or whatever is needed, you can have a single operator for up to four machines including stacking, loading and off-loading.

Smart business

This means labour can be redeployed elsewhere, or savings on labour can be redirected to buying more equipment and machinery to grow the business. “One of the advantages of our distributing technologically advanced best-brand machines is that we are capitalising on the trend towards achieving global standards among our fabricators and manufacturers. “The agencies we represent are all about efficiency and maximising production and have high emphasis on ease of operation and automation. Where possible our ranges complement each other with the aim of taking raw materials through production to a finished product in the most efficient manner,” says Byron.

requirements and means that hands do not need to touch a product from start to finish.

At the beginning

Currently product ranges like the Herrblitz Modular System (Italy) of pneumatic grippers feeders, as well P/A Industries’ (USA) range of press feeding equipment, are popular and many systems have been installed recently. These systems provide efficient, automated movement and handling of product to production points where required and dramatically speed up processes. But, even more exciting is the full automation offered to sheet metal fabricators with the Dimeco Alipresse (France) range which can be used to fully automate entire fabrication and production lines in the sheet metal industry.

The agencies we represent are all about efficiency and maximising production Full production

Although automation is an important consideration at the moment, it is still the production machine that is at the

The range includes NC feeders, stock decoilers, straighteners and shears (Cutto -Length lines) in pre-production and can be set to environment as well as production Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Heat Treatment Max 6.5m lengths Plus NDT services

Carbon & Alloy Speciality Steels 16mm - 400mm All conditions Cut to Size

Castings: Production and Jobbing Foundry 2kg - 1600kg SG Cast Irons Steel Carbon and Alloy Manganese High Chrome Iron

Laser Cutting Mild Steel 20mm Stainless 12mm Aluminium 8mm Max

Coil Toll Processing Precision Cut to Length 0.4 - 6mm x 1.8m wide Slitting 0.4 - 2.5mm x 1.2m wide

Bright Bar Producers Drawn 14mm - 65mm Peeled 70mm - 160mm Incl bearing tolerances

Flame-Cut Profiling 6mm - 300mm CQ 350WA Hardwearing

Closed-Die Forgings Max 250mm dia incl Shot-blasting and Machining

* We don’t promise service. We guarantee it. Call us and we’ll prove it.

Speed Merchants 011 392 1348 Speed Bright 011 827 4693 Speed Treatment 011 392 1348 Speed Point 031 700 4321 Speed Profiling 011 824 5501 Speed Forgings 016 933 3807 Speed Laser 016 931 0292 Speed Castings 011 894 7171 Email

Stock-holders, service centres and distributors of steel where speed counts 6


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


heart of the matter. Rijva Quality Machines top-selling Ter Hart eccentric presses and the Voortman range of fabrication and structural steel working machines remain firm South African favourites. These workhorse machines are designed for high production flows and in most instances the size and bulk of work carried out means that automation is a given. The Voortman range comprises everything from drilling, punching, shearing, sawing, coping, finishing and cambering, as well as marking machines. To round-off the offering to the sheet metal fabrication and structural steel industries, the worldrenowned Durma range of sheet metal machinery is sold from the under the same roof. Byron and Robbert are exclusive local agents for the Durma machines and since taking on the agency just over a year ago, the agency has been placed firmly on the map with burgeoning sales and healthy order books going forward.

One stop

As with their other agencies, the duo are firm believers in the “One Stop Shop” concept of dealing with client’s needs. “This covers all aspects of business. A client must get the product needed, the service needed, the terms needed and after sales back up all under one roof in order for it to qualify,” Byron adds. With the huge range of Durma machines now under the same roof they are able to offer their clients the one stop shop feel. Since its relaunch last year the Durma brand has done extremely well and built

up a solid reputation based on quality and the high levels of service already offered by the Rijva team.

The agency has been placed firmly on the map with burgeoning sales and healthy order books going forward The Durma range includes press brakes, shear s, punc hing machines, HD laser and plasma cutting machines, roll and profile bending machines, saws, ironworkers and notchers. Rijva Quality Machines (Durma SA), Byron Gueffroy or Robbert van Rijssen, Tel: (011) 827-0639, Fax: (011) 827-0643, Email:, Website: (

Engineer Placements Professional opportunities Our job board continues to display a wide variety of excellent job positions that you can review and apply for on- line. Keep your credentials on our secure and confidential database, update them at any time. We keep in touch with you. Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011


BLACK OR BRIGHT you choose

energy efficiency @ work

Taking energy efficiency light years ahead 16-17 November 2 011, Emperors Palace, Gauteng SAEEC2011EXHIBITORS

An exhibition hall packed with decision-makers, more than at any other event. Exhibition space available at affordable rates. EXHIBITION SPACE (3x3m2) Your exhibit includes: • Standard shell scheme cubicle • Standard company name on fascia • 1 x 15A power point with shared DB • 1 x double fluorescent light • Exhibitor manual for planning, installation, dismantling of booth R11,600 for corporate members (R13,200 non-members)

2x EXHIBITION SPACE (3x3m2) Your exhibit includes: • Standard shell scheme cubicle • Standard company name on fascia • 2 x 15A power point with shared DB • 2 x double fluorescent lights • Exhibitor manual for planning, installation, dismantling of booth R20,400 for corporate members (R23,800 non-members)



Full delegate: Student delegate: Group discount (5+): SAEE member delegate:

R4,400 R3,300 R4,200 R3,900

Registration fees include entrance to seminar sessions, registration pack, proceedings on CD, daily lunch and refreshments during break.

Enhance your company’s prominence and visibility at this niche event by taking up one of the range of sponsorship opportunities offered.

When booking quote: BW4SAM to qualify for a prize. PRESENTED BY:

For more information contact: Erika Kruger Tel: +27(0)18 290 5130 Cell: +27(0)82 428 7386 Fax: +27(0)86 512 7122 Email:

The Southern African Association for Energy Efficiency (SAEE), chapter of the American Association of Energy Engineers (AEE).

To register and view information about the SAEEC2011 logon to


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


The Titan of Metals Despite the fact that the commercial production of titanium has only been possible since the 60’s and then only by a complex and expensive process, its unique properties have resulted in major advances in industrial technology. However, the high outlay for raw material as well the processing cost, has limited its use to military applications, aircraft, spacecraft, medical devices, expensive sports cars, some premium sports equipment and consumer electronics.


itanium is a strong, light metal. It’s as strong as steel but 45% lighter. It is also twice as strong as aluminium but only 60% heavier. Not easily corroded by seawater, titanium is used in the marine industry in boat parts which are exposed to seawater. In the petrochemical industry, this highly-valued material is used in heat exchangers and reactors while its strength, low weight and resistance to high temperatures has made it a popular material for certain components in airplanes, missiles and rockets.


Titanium alloys themselves are highly specialised materials, but the fabrication process is even more so. To gain a glimpse into this meticulous process, “SA Mechanical Engineer” visits TiFab, titanium fabricators in Chloorkop near Johannesburg.

Titanium alloys themselves are highly specialised materials, but the fabrication process is even more so “The most important fact about titanium is that it cannot be welded to any other metal but itself,”

Ray Thompson of TiFab

says director of TiFab, Ray Thompson. “The other crucial factor is to keep oxygen away from the welding process otherwise the weld becomes contaminated, weakening it into one that simply won’t last.”

An uncontaminated weld on the left and on the right showing impurities in the weld

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



titanium because these are welded to each other,” he says. “In this case, the amount of titanium used escalates the cost significantly and therefore we use explosion bonding technology to affix a titanium liner onto a stainless steel tube sheet which can then be welded to a stainless or mild steel shell. The titanium tubes are then simply seal welded to the titanium liner, thus reducing the cost of the end product considerably.”


A Titanium component made by TiFab

Titanium is the only metal that physically talks to you Heat exchanger

To make his point about the trickiness of titanium fabrication, Ray explains how they would manufacture a heat exchanger. “If the tubes are titanium then the tube sheet as well as the shell has to be

Another point to bear in mind is titanium’s reactivity. “At elevated temperatures over 400 ºC it reacts, or combines, with almost any foreign matter whether solids, liquids or gases,” explains Ray. “This reaction at high temperature with air, water, grease, dirt, refractories, other metals and steels turns the titanium into a relatively brittle compound once it has cooled down again. Therefore all surfaces have to be cleaned thoroughly and air has to be shielded away from the weld until it has cooled to below 400 degrees.” When you see a welder surrounded by four to five workers holding pipes from an argon gas cylinder with odd-shaped little boxes at the end close to where the welding takes place, you know they’re working with titanium. This ‘huddle’ is formed to shield the oxygen from the high temperature welding area to ensure a lasting weld.

Shielding underneath and on the side while welding ensure a clean, strong weld that wil last a lifetime


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


The Titanium bicycle Ray built a couple of years

Purely for our benefit, Ray’s guys show us just how this is done in the workshop. They first make a contaminated weld which clearly shows up in the plate as circles of bright colours compared with a properly-shielded weld that leaves no tell-tale colours on either of the two plates being welded together.

A conversation

“Titanium is the only metal that physically talks to you,” says Ray with a smile. “Look at the colours that come up and it will tell you, hey stop, there’s oxygen around, or whoa, there’s dirt or it will tell you that it’s not being shielded properly. All greasy dirt is removed from the welding area with stainless wire brushes beforehand and then it’s just a matter of shielding oxygen-rich air away from the immediate welding area until it has cooled down a bit.”

TiFab has made a wide range of products from this ‘finicky’ metal Not everybody’s familiar with these procedures which is why Ray gets calls from fabricators who have tried but the weld keeps on failing, or even worse, they’ve been trying to weld stainless steel to titanium and can’t understand why the welds won’t take. “Titanium cannot be welded by gas, manual metal arc, flux cored arc or the submerged arc processes,” stresses Ray. “It can only be welded by the tungsten inert gas (TIG) or metal inert gas (MIG) processes. For the same reason we don’t use

plasma cutting and only cut plate with waterjet cutters.”

‘Finicky’ metal

But titanium is not just about welding plates together. TiFab has made a wide range of products from this ‘finicky’ metal that lasts a lifetime if handled properly. An example is the entire wet-end of a pump or valve that is typically used in the chemical processing industry. “Apart from several bicycle components we’ve even built a complete bicycle out of titanium just for the fun of it,” says Ray. “Then we supply the jewellery industry, knife makers and certain automotive sectors, and we also fabricate special heat exchangers for the mining industry. In addition, we have a programme on the go with certain universities whereby we introduce the metal to engineering students. This is important for the growing aerospace industry in South Africa.” Ray says in conclusion, “Titanium is sometimes applied wrongly by people who are unaware of the strict fabrications procedures involved but this material has established itself firmly in the market and if applied correctly, you have an end-product for life. With new fabrication technologies such as high speed machining being developed, I see the application range for titanium widening more and more into the future.” Ray Thompson, TiFab, Tel: (011) 393-1022, Email: rat@

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Green Pickling An innovative new process that pickles and phosphatises steel and requires no intermediate or end rinsing activity has been introduced into this country by German Industry Consulting South Africa (GICSA). With no emissions the new process is also said to be safer and more environmentally friendly


fter the pickling, phosphating and drying process, the treated steel is immediately ready for further processing fabrication such as varnishing and/or powder coating. The single Betona process achieves the cleaning and coating requirements for steel products without the need of a pre-, intermediate or final rinse process as required by conventional pickling and phosphating processes. It is sufficient to pickle and phosphate in one single treatment bath with final drying at ambient temperature. The steel metal parts are immediately ready for further processing and fabrication such as varnishing and powder coating as desired. The process is ideally suited for the treatment of unalloyed or semi-alloyed carbon steels and cast iron parts.

All new process

Betona treatment plant

Simple ‘one-bath’ dip which degreases, pickles and phosphatises

Steel flange before treatment


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

GICSA MD, Vred von Ketelhodt, says that conventional mechanical and chemical rust removal systems have been around for many years and while they work well there is a continuous drive by industry, for a host of reasons, including space constraints,

Steel flange after treatment


environmental considerations and tighter economic conditions, to increase efficiencies and to improve performance. “The Betona process turns the conventional process – degreasing, rinsing, phosphatisation, double rinsing, passivation and drying – into a simple ‘one-bath’ dip which degreases, pickles and phosphatises. Of course the advantages are enormous,” says Vred. A Betona plant requires no environmental approvals. The investment in a Betona plant is typically a third to a fifth of the capital cost of a conventional pickling plant. With operating costs running at 60% of conventional pickling costs, the investment pay back period is achievable in less than one year. In addition, there are significant health and safety benefits: no atmospheric emissions and maximum permissible occupational concentration levels significantly below the legally acceptable limits.

Betona is set to alter the steel pickling industry in South Africa forever

How it works

A Betona plant consists of the treatment bath filled with Betona crystal mordant solution. A specifically designed filter and pump including strategically positioned jets and a heating system completes the system. Vred reports that since launching Betona earlier this year into the Southern African market, the initial response has been positive and has generated significant interest. “Working with our partners in Germany, we are confident that the demand for Betona systems can be met. We are uniquely positioned and are able to offer clients workable solutions incorporating this state-of-the art technology,” he says. “There is a great deal of mutual respect between South African and German business and we will pass this benefit on to our clients. Betona is set to alter the steel pickling industry in South Africa forever,” he concludes. GICSA, Vred von Ketelhodt, Tel: (011) 794-1651, Website: and

Don’t miss out! Contact Louise Taylor on Tel: (011) 781-1401, Fax: (011) 781-1403 or Email: advancedmaterialstoday@ to book your advertising space.

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011


Surface Finishing is an aesthetically pleasing enhancement of the aluminium surface. Aluminium is naturally corrosion resistant in a pH range 4 - 8,5. ANODISING:


Anodising is an electrochemical process that interacts with the aluminium surface to thicken and toughen the naturally occurring protective aluminium oxide layer. It forms a hard wearing, natural or coloured (bronze to black) film up to 25 microns thick that protects against atmospheric effects and enhances wear resistance.

Powder coating requires three interlinked processes: z A chemical pretreatment process. z Spraying electrostatically charged organic powder onto the aluminium profile. z Heating the surface in an oven to melt, cure and bond the powder to the pre-prepared surface.

Whilst other anodising colours (e.g. metallic red, blue, etc) are available for items such as picture frames, these surface finishes are not hard wearing and are not suited to external applications. They are purely decorative. SANS 999 is the local architectural anodising standard. It recommends anodising thicknesses for internal and external applications in various geographic regions in South Africa. Recommended anodising thicknesses: External z Coastal - up to 20km from shore line - 25 micron z Inland - 15 micron z High corrosion areas - 25 micron

A wide range of colours are available in various textures. The base colours are often easier to match when renovations are considered. SANS 1796 is the local Powder Coating application standard. It recommends powder coating thicknesses for internal and external applications in various geographic regions in South Africa. Recommended coating thicknesses: External and Internal z

Up to 5 km from the shore line - 60 micron thickness

Internal z 15 Micron is generally suitable

For high corrosion areas, generally within 5km of the coast, a single powder coat layer will often not achieve a 15 year lifespan. An epoxy or 5-8 micron unsealed anodising intermediate treatment is recommended. For two coat systems the minimum combined thickness is 110 microns. The need for additional protection is assessed on a case by case basis.

The anodising process should comply with SANS 999. Customers are advised to specify the geographic location to which the finished product will be exposed. Performance guarantees related to the application are available from the Surface Finisher (Applicator). The use of accredited Surface Finishers is recommended.

Coatings should be done in accordance with SANS 1796 using powders in accordance with SANS 1578. Customers are advised to specify the standard, the location and insist on a certificate and guarantee from the Surface Finisher (Applicator). It is recommended to use accredited Surface Finishers.

DIY QUALITY CHECKS: Checks for fabricator and installer to check finish quality Check anodising sealing quality by marking with a Koki pen. Wash off with Acetone - there should be no residue stain if the surface is correctly sealed. z Check anodising micron thickness with an Elcometer (available from your anodiser). z Colour coding - the anodising thickness is shown on the protective wrapping or label. z Check fabricator invoice to ensure that the anodising thickness is listed, appropriate and guaranteed. z


Check that powder coated surfaces are complete, uniformly coloured, of even gloss and smooth to the touch. z Check that powder coated surfaces do not include bubbles or gaps. z Check that the powder manufacturer's guarantee applies (based on approved applicator). z

Note: To achieve consistent texture, finish and colour it is advisable to use the same Applicator.

Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

Handling and storage: Once the surface is treated, the product should be protected from handling, packaging and transport damage. Items should be separated and stored in a dry, covered area.

The Aluminium Surface Finishers Association (ASFA)

After installation protection: The installed product should be well protected from building detritus, wet mortar or caustic brick cleaner. In the event that the installation is exposed to these products the surfaces are to be cleaned as soon as possible using mild detergents, avoiding abrasive cleaners or scraping.

Tel: 011 455 5553 Email:

Maintenance: Regular cleaning using mild non-abrasive household cleaners is recommended to keep the surface in good condition.

An Association operating under the aegis of the Aluminium Federation of South Africa (AFSA). Fax 011 455 5554 Web:

Additional advice on appropriate surface treatment can be provided by the Aluminium Surface Finishers Association. The Sustainability factor: No painting is required, making aluminium surface finishing an ecologically friendly alternative.



Alu Anodisers Tel: 011 452 8135 Fax: 011 452 8132

Alufinish Qualicoat Tel: 021 534 2255 Fax: 021 534 2299

Alufinish SANS 999 & ISO 9001:2008 & Qualanod Tel: 021 534 3047 Fax: 021 534 5064

Astro Coating Tel: 011 452 9748 Fax: 086 508 8784

Astro Anodising Tel: 011 452 9748 Fax: 011 452 8132

Cascolor Aluminium Finishing Qualicoat Tel: 011 626 2772 Fax: 011 626 2086

Cascolor Aluminium Finishing Qualanod Tel: 011 626 2772 Fax: 011 626 2086

Cascolor Aluminium Finishing (CT) Qualicoat Tel: 021 534 2255 Fax: 021 534 2299

Continental Anodisers SANS 999 Tel: 011 392 1065 Fax: 011 392 2321

Diri Aluminium Systems (Pta) SANS 1796 Tel: 012 666 9022 Fax: 012 666 8146

Hulamin Extrusions (Pmb) SANS 999 & ISO 9001:2008 Tel: 033 395 6911 Fax: 033 342 7811

Lite Epoxy Coating SANS 1796 & ISO 9001:2000 Tel: 031 569 2684 Fax: 031 569 2686

Star Anodising SANS 999 Tel: 031 468 6345 Fax: 031 468 8353

Polynam SANS 1796 & SANS 1274 Tel: 011 618 1055 Fax: 011 614 8536

Wispeco Anodising SANS 999 & SANS 1407 Tel: 011 389 0000 Fax: 011 389 0301

Wispeco Powder Coating SANS 1796 Tel: 011 389 0000 Fax: 011 389 0301

Wispeco Anodising (CT) SANS 999 & SANS 1407 Tel: 021 797 8114 Fax: 021 761 7639

Wispeco Powder Coating (CT) SANS 1796 Tel: 021 959 5400 Fax: 021 951 8725

Disclaimer: To the best of our knowledge, the information in this leaflet is accurate. AFSA and ASFA assume no responsibility whatsoever for errors in, or misinterpretation of, the information in this leaflet or its use.

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

CEO’s Comments Produced by: PROMECH PUBLISHING, P O Box 373, Pinegowrie, 2123 Republic of South Africa Tel: (011) 781-1401 Fax: (011) 781-1403 Email: Website: Managing Editor Susan Custers

Editor: Raymond Campling Advertising Louise Taylor Circulation Catherine Macdiva DTP Zinobia Docrat/Sean Bacher Disclaimer PROMECH Publishing does not take responsibility for the opinions expressed by individuals. Printed by: Typo Colour Printing Tel: (011) 402-3468/9


All rights reserved. No editorial matter published in “TDM Today (Tool, Die & Mould Making)” may be reproduced in any form or language without written permission of the publishers. While every effort is made to ensure accurate reproduction, the editor, authors, publishers and their employees or agents shall not be responsible or in any way liable for any errors, omissions or inaccuracies in the publication, whether arising from negligence or otherwise or for any consequences arising therefrom. The inclusion or exclusion of any product does not mean that the publisher or editorial board advocates or rejects its use either generally or in any particular field or fields.

The NTI Programme is a Public Partnership Programme (PPP) between the Toolmaking Association of South Africa (TASA) and National Government through the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).


peakers at the 2011 Afrimold Conference and Exhibition, which took place at the Sandton Convention Centre, identified ‘clustering’ as the basis for the revival of the South African manufacturing industry. The National Tooling Initiative’s (NTI) CEO, Dirk van Dyk, spoke about the need for proper and adequate support infrastructure for South Africa’s manufacturing sector across all levels – local, provincial and national. Already, the South African government has pledged R120-million in support of the NTI, a private public partnership between the government and the Toolmaking Association of South Africa (TASA) that has as a national objective the rehabilitation of the country’s Tool, Die and Mould making industry. “We firmly believe that the road to recovery for South Africa’s manufacturing industry lies in clustering, by which we mean the joining together of separate companies with different skills to work together on one project,” explained Dirk during his presentation at the Afrimold Conference. “Creating an environment where tool rooms can work together, not compete against each other, is one of the ways we can draw back the business and the jobs that are currently being lost to our competitors in Europe and Asia.”

Start early and win the race

To establish clustering as a viable alternative to working individually, the NTI recently launched the Cluster Structure Development Project, which has seen the establishment of cluster management structures in six provincial locations, including more remote parts of South Africa. “We’ve had several queries around the establishment of the cluster management programme in Limpopo and Mpumalanga, but the fact is that both have strong minding industries, and we need to establish these clusters where the

Advanced Materials Today

Dirk van Dyk

demand for tooling actually exists,” Dirk explained. “Our long-term strategy is to strengthen the manufacturing industries in these provinces, and broaden the base of manufacturing to smaller provinces in South Africa. We believe it is possible for them to be sustainable and to profit and grow off a strong manufacturing base.”

The NTI recently launched the Cluster Structure Development Project, which has seen the establishment of cluster management structures in six provincial locations According to Dirk, there are many international tooling companies that are interested in investing in South Africa. And there is certainly enough potential. Dirk said that although South Africa had – and was continuing to –see the development of big construction and infrastructural projects such as the Gautrain, which could help revitalise the local manufacturing industry, these were simply not being taken advantage of in time. “We are losing billions or Rand’s worth of opportunities right now because we’re simply not ready to pitch for tenders and deliver the goods that the projects demand on time and to the highest standards of quality,” commented Dirk. “We need to start earlier – and work together – if we want to win the race.”

September/October 2011



Competitiveness of Local Tool Market South Africa and Europe’s leading tooling manufacturers gathered in Johannesburg for this year’s Afrimold Conference and Exhibition, which took place at the Sandton Convention Centre at the end of September.


athering expert speakers from across the world, the conference addressed topics related to the competitiveness of the South African manufacturing sector, with speakers highlighting that although the sector was improving, it was still not able to meet the growing local demand. Johan van der Merwe, Acting director general of the

We have made great strides in bringing young blood into the tooling industry.

Growing in size and status is the annual Afrimold exhibition

Gauteng Department for Economic Development, said that fewer than 20% of tools currently used in South Africa are manufactured locally. Johan also lamented the fact that the average trained toolmaker in South Africa is now 54 years of age, which is a point of concern for the industry’s future.

Young blood

However, he added: “We have made great strides in bringing young blood into the tooling industry. The demand for tooling is proportional to GDP, and as our economy continues to grow, so will demand. Tool making creates quality jobs that are sustainable in the long-term. In fact, for every R100million worth of tooling manufacturing in South Africa, an additional 400 jobs are created.” Johan van der Merwe, Acting director general of the Gauteng Department for Economic Development


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

South Africa has lost more than 80%


of local capacity since the mid-80’s, which has been relinquished back to the EU and Asia. And the gap continues to widen, with demand for tooling having doubled in South Africa since 2005. This is mainly due to the growth of the automotive sector in South Africa, as well as the packaging sector.

Clawing back

“We are virtually guaranteed to claw back this loss in market share if we can improve quality, timeliness and correct our costings,” added Dirk van Dyk, NTIP. “The manufacturing sector is the second biggest contributor to GDP in South Africa, and it is our aim to work with the government to regain some of Dirk van Dyk, CEO of The National Tooling Initiative Programme’s (NTIP) what we’ve lost. We do not want to find ourselves in the position of becoming a Yet the pass rate alone is not the only impressive country that outsources its requirements.” result. The student’s maths scores improved from

The manufacturing sector is the second biggest contributor to GDP in South Africa

an average of 54 to 76, while their science scores almost doubled from 31 to 61. “We have found that using high quality teachers is the most important attribute to the successful completion of this course,” Dirk concluded.

“One of the main reasons for the losses South Africa’s manufacturing industry has had to endure is skills erosion,” explained Dirk. “Yet we are already beginning to see a large turnaround in this with the development of a skills model that encompasses not only basic skills, but core and advanced skills too.”

Efficiency is key

In South Africa, more than 28% of tool room labour is unskilled. In Germany, this same figure is 0%. “Too often, we hear people say that old equipment is to blame for lack of delivery,” said Dirk. “But the real issue is that the equipment we do have is not used efficiently. The money for upgrades and new machinery will come as a result of successful tool rooms. Tooling manufacture is technology driven, so skills are imperative. We often see huge damage being done by unskilled labour – both in terms of productivity and hours lost.” Yet the NTI’s skills programme, the TDM Powered Programme, seeks to directly address this critical skills shortage and is one of the industry’s big successes over the last two years. “We plan to push 3600 students through the TDM Powered Programme by 2015, and are well on our way to achieving this,” said Dirk.

Facts and figures

In fact, of the 175 students that enrolled in this year’s foundation building phase, 142 passed the exam set by the US Institute for Metalworking. Only 32 of the students dropped out of the programme, and only one failed the exam. This 80% retention rate is the highest of all local manufacturing industry courses. Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Rollercoaster Trend Continues Wildly fluctuating visitor numbers at Afrimold 2011 probably reflect the effects of the rollercoaster economy that has plagued the manufacturing industry since the beginning of the economic crisis back in 2008. Exhibitors were left somewhat bewildered by the up-and-down nature of the show with extremely busy periods, where exhibitors had little time to breathe, which were followed by slow dreary periods where scarcely a visitor was seen in the aisles. Yet, despite fluctuating visitor numbers a lot of business was reportedly done and most machinery and equipment vendors told “Advanced Materials Today� that they were making sales or at least had solid enquiries on their products. See who was out and about at Afrimold 2011 on the following pages:

Wynand De Winnaar and Evan Shaw of AMT Composites


Levin Slabbert, David Goodman, Michael Ruhle and Corne Koen of Spectra Group

Catherine Burgess and Natalie Nelson of Mattman Trading

Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


Paul Dias and Martin Steyn of TD Coatings

Christabel Louw of TASA added some glamour to the Afrimold exhibition

Martin Brits (centre) and the team from Schmolz and Bickenbach

Brett Snymann holds the fort at a busy Retecon stand

Mickey Scheepers of Quad Precision Engineering

Carlos Barbosa and Maudie De Witt were on hand to explain how the National Tooling Initiative Programme is adding value to the tool making industry in South Africa

Pierre Palm of CNC Training Centre

A Swiss tool steel cheese courtesy of UTP Mould

Cecil Theron, Grant Hunkin and Andre Henn of UTP Mould

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Stoffel Schoeman, Sandra Hurlimann, Wendy Nettmann, Werner Hurlimann and Martin Wilhelm on the WH Machine Tool Services stand Gilad Bet-Halevi of Objet with Grant Ravenscroft of Demaplastech

Jiwei Jiang and Lifan Wan of Wenhzou Lixin Mould KEW Foundry Ad 1/2 PG.fh11 4/21/11 3:06 PM Page 1 Manufactory



Thulani Mayekiso, Samantha Evans and Simon Prevett share a smile at the Engen stand C

Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011








Russell and Margie Oosterlaak with Paul Gately on the 3D Solids stand

Letsoalo Letsoalo of Central University of Technology displays some of the centre’s technology capabilities

Adrian Sands of Halberg SA Christopher Schmid, Roxy Pretorius and Geoff Morris of Star Tooling

Lunch is served at Bohler Udderholm Africa Edmund Weng of Victor Fortune and Conver-Tek

Hestico Yudo stand

Visitor numbers ebbed and flowed through the day

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011




Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


New Pipe Welding Process Johan Pieterse, business manager application development at Afrox explains how softwareDriven RMD (Regulated Metal Deposition) and Accu-Pulse technology in multi-process GMAW equipment, improves deposition rates, and reduces heat input, labour time, spatter and fumes in the GMAW welding process.


ulti-process GMAW equipment is manufactured by Miller Electric Mfg. Co. of the United States and distributed in South Africa by Afrox.

When a new welding process lowers overall heat input, spatter and fumes - and can lower welding costs while improving weld quality - people tend to sit up and take notice. That’s the case with Miller Electric Mfg. Co.’s RMDTM process. RMD is a unique, patented, advanced software application for modified short circuit transfer GMAW (MIG welding) that precisely controls the electrode current during all phases of the short (see Fig. 1 below). It is best suited for welding thin metal (especially stainless steels), overcoming less-than-ideal fit-up (gaps) and root passes on pipe.

Tolerant of gaps

cally maintains optimum arc conditions regardless of wire feed speed and contact tip to work distance. Unlike speciality welding systems from other manufacturers that offer limited process options, the multi-MIG inverter-based welding system for RMD provides unparalleled flexibility. It can create any GMAW output type imaginable; hence, RMD can be combined with other software generated processes or arc transfer modes from the same system. This allows selection of the best process for the application at hand.

This allows selection of the best process for the application at hand Example: Pipe Welding: RMD could be used for the root pass in pipe and Accu-Pulse used for hot and cover passes without changing machines or

Though RMD is a softBenefits of RMD ware-driven welding • Weld suited to thin materials process, it is important • Can replace TIG process in some to note that it is very applications user-friendly. In fact, RMD • Gap filling improves the performance • Spatter reduction of less experienced weld- • Provides less heat into work piece • Excellent performance on stainless ers as it is very tolerant steel of gaps, putting about 5 • Can be combined with other related to 20% less heat into the programmes work, and compensates • Minimise distortion for changes in contact tip • Use larger diameter wire on thin materials to work distance. RMD maintains optimum arc characteristics because secondary leads. In automated applications, RMD the electrode current is closely monitored and concould be used to weld thin sections or fill gaps, trolled during each phase of the welding process. and then switched using remote programme select Using RMD requires only familiarity with everyday to Accu-Pulse for higher travel speeds. welding terms. In fact, operators simply enter the wire type, wire diameter, gas combination and the Short circuit limits desired wire feed speed on the welding system’s As a welding process designed to operate at lower simple interface. The RMD software then automati- heat levels (most commonly 30 to 200 amps/16 Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



to 22 volts), standard short circuit transfer MIG is preferred for thinner metals. However, it has limitations, and Miller engineers designed RMD specifically to overcome them. To understand RMD benefits, a brief explanation of the standard short circuit process is necessary. In a standard short circuit transfer, the welding wire initially contacts the workpiece, creating a dead short (voltage = 0). At that point, the power source rapidly reacts to the short, attempting to maintain the preset voltage value by dumping current into the wire to clear the short. As the wire heats from resistance to high current flow, it forms a ball at the end and almost simultaneously an arc is created in the space created. The ball is then pushed into the weld puddle at the end of the wire. This happens repetitively 90 to 150 times per second. Observation of these events using slow motion video emphasises these reactions and they can be viewed as violent chaos that creates spatter and affects the next short circuit.

The fact that the weld puddle behaves much more calmly and ’freezes‘ faster with the RMD process is a critical factor Further, the excess uncontrolled current adds more heat. This increases the likelihood of warping on heat-sensitive metals such as stainless steel and, where the metal cannot support much heat (such as the edge of a thin plate or bevelled pipe); it can also produce burn-through. The combination of current spikes and spatter may also lead to engineers’ lack of confidence in fusion and/or consistent penetration. For this reason, some codes and specifications do not permit using short circuit MIG for certain applications.

Cool and in control

Miller points out that RMD operates similar to the short circuit transfer, but with some important differences. The RMD software programme, working with an inverter-based welding system and closed-loop feedback, closely monitors and controls the electrode current at speeds up to 50 microseconds (50 millionths of a second). By closely monitoring the

Benefits of Accu-Pulse

(Compared to conventional pulse)

• • • • • • • •

Shorter arc lengths possible Better puddle control More tolerant of contact tip to work variation Less audible noise No arc wandering in tight corners Narrow arc plasma column Allows weld to fill in at toes increasing travel speed and deposition More tolerant of poor fit up and gaps

Optional Software-based Welding Process


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

change in energy and understanding exactly how much is required for a specific wire diameter, speed and gas combination, it is possible to predict future arc conditions and control the metal transfer accordingly. Basically, a precisely controlled waveform is applied at critical points in a short circuit cycle. The desired result is that when the ball separates from the wire, it happens at a lower current level. This minimises total heat input burn-through, warping, spatter, and smoke while greatly improving weld puddle control and gap filling. As for predicting future welding conditions, Miller explains that the arc end of the weld wire has a heating history. How much heat is in the wire at the point of contact with the workpiece depends on how long it was in transit and the behaviour of the current during the transit time. Understanding these phenomena is what allows a great deal of latitude in fluctuating contact tip to work distance.

Controlling the arc

Miller has used the data from the heat history to create a method of controlling the arc. In the RMD process, a fine adjustment can be made based on this knowledge, giving the operator a range of adjustment to suit a technique or application. RMD is ideally suited for filling gaps in open-root piping applications for industries as diverse as transmission and process piping, fabrication, dairy, hospital and food industries; and where cosmetic, lower heat input welds are needed. The fact that the weld puddle behaves much more calmly and ’freezes‘ faster with the RMD process is a critical factor in successfully welding open-root pipe in any position. Miller notes that excessive positive (convex) and negative (concave) reinforcement inside the pipe has historically been an issue using conventional GMAW processes for pipe root passes. As RMD removes that critical chunk of energy while the ball collapses into the weld puddle, the puddle freezes faster in the desired position. Initial field tests with major engineering firms have been very positive, Miller reports.

Accu-Pulse has excellent out of positioncontrol

Accu-Pulse enables holding a shorter arc length


with more focused arc cone, regardless of electrode stickout. With this technology, the welder is no longer required to hold a longer arc to prevent short circuits. Whilst welding, Accu-Pulse allows the weld puddle to fill in at the toes of the weld much better than older technology. This results in an increase in deposition and travel speed. Accu-Pulse has very good out-of-position control.

Technology and reliability

Miller equipment is renowned for its reliability. All Miller equipment undergoes the following reliability testing and has a three-year warranty:

All other components are not exposed to airflow, which reduces the exposure to dirt and moisture.

Aluminium casing/housing

Certain models have their casing manufactured from aluminium. This provides two benefits: firstly, it reduces the weight of the unit, and secondly, it is suitable for working in corrosive environments.

Wind tunnel technology ensures that only the components that need direct airflow for cooling are in the air stream Fan on demand

• 40º C life testing - 60,000 hrs MTBF at rated load • Vibration testing

- -

Low frequency and high displacement

With Fan on Demand, the fan used to keep the unit’s internal components cool only operates when the unit reaches a pre-determined temperature. With this feature, the unit is quieter when idling, uses less power and does not draw in any unnecessary dirt into the unit whilst operating, thus keeping the inside of the unit clean and protecting the internal components.

High acceleration Afrox, Johan Pieterse, Tel: (011) 255-5000, Email: johan. • Dust chamber and drop testing, Website: • Monitoring and inducing electrical noise - ESD - HF chamber - Power up / power down Upcoming “Advanced Materials Today” features - Missing ground Jan/Feb 2012 - Random primary line loss - 2000 and 5000 volt input surge Castings, Forgings, Furnaces & Refractories – investment, die-casting, Certain models in the Miller range feature the folsand casting, die and hammer forging, stampings, moulding etc lowing patented technology: Design – Concept, simulation, CAD/CAM, FEA, PLM, Prototyping, industrialisation, etc Auto-line With Auto-Line, equipped with this feature, equipStockists & Service Centres – primary/semi-finished materials, ment can be connected to any global power supcutting, machining, bending, drilling, punching, advisory service, etc ply, between 120 volt to 575 volt (50 or 60 Hz, Machine Tools – Removal Machines – CNC, machining centres, single- or three-phase), depending on the model, lathes, milling, grinding, boring, broaching, drilling, wire & spark without changing the physical supply power cable erosion, saws etc connections within the unit. Contact Louise Taylor on Wind tunnel technology Tel (011) 781-1401, Fax (011) 781-1403 or Wind tunnel technology ensures that only the E-mail: components that need direct airflow for cooling are in the air stream. Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Supporting Quality Manufacturing Instead of heading for the hills in tough times many manufacturers are taking the fight to another level and rather than doing what they always did. They are upping the stakes and investing in high-tech machine tools that do the job better, faster and last longer.


o says Vaughn Hanwith-Horden, general manager of Jet Park based F&H Machine Tools, one of the leading broad-based suppliers of high-end machine tools in the country. It has been his observation that companies are spending money on the best machines they can afford rather than buying cheap.

It’s less about the price tag of a machine and more about cost per machined item

“In these tough times company heads are making decisions based on sound business principles rather than on off-the-cuff sales promises from suppliers who don’t have the right products and credentials.

Beyond the price tag

“Before the recession when things were booming companies were prepared to take chances and buy “cheap” because it looked like a bargain. Nowadays their appetite for risk is diminished and they have reverted to buying smart. Quality and service has become more important than merely looking at the price tag. ” Vaughn grins when he tells us that as a result of supplying only quality machines backed by “some of the best after sales service in South Africa,” the company has weathered the down-turn in machine tool sales better than most and are doing good sales. Despite figures being lower than before the 2008 bubble-burst the company did not need to downsize or cut stock holdings. In fact stock holdings of new machine tools is a luxury they look forward to, because since the beginning of the year the vast majority of machines shipped from their suppliers (as stock refurbishment) are sold on the water and never make it into their warehouse.

Meeting targets

As we talk Vaughn gestures to sales manager Richard Poalses, who nods in agreement, adding that the sales teams are easily meeting targets and are coming across more customers who are prepared to stretch budgets to buy quality machines from top suppliers. “Forest Engineering and Holmach Machines Tools are strong brands with long histories in the machine tool market. Under the banner of F&H Machine Tools we represent the pinnacle of technologically advanced machines and our service and support is legendary – that’s why buyers know they won’t go wrong with us. “Nowadays people are realising that it’s less about


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


the price tag of a machine and more about cost per machined item. Advanced machines generally get the job done quicker and better, take less time to set up and don’t break down nearly as often. If there is a problem our team of trained service technicians attend to it immediately and as a result lost production is minimised,” Richard explains.

Partnering for growth Vaughn continues that the company’s philosophy is to partner with customers and ensure that their production runs smoothly. “If there is a problem we do whatever it takes to get our customer’s operation running smoothly – no matter what time of the day or night.”

Vaughn is quick to point out that although the company represents some of the world’s best known quality brands, it is the after sales service that customers receive that makes them loyal clients. “I can’t say our offering is miles better than anyone else’s, but we can guarantee that our clients always get the best after sales service possible backed up by a large organisation with well trained sales and after sales service staff. “Clients also have access to the latest technology from our overseas suppliers and we make it our mission to help them solve whatever manufacturing dilemma they have – either locally or through our overseas parent companies,” adds Vaughn.

F&H Machine Tools sells a full range of metal forming, cutting and removal machines with specialised machines for grinding. Even gear cutting operations are catered for. The list of suppliers is staggering and as long as there is a demand for these types of machines the company will source the world’s best suppliers to fulfil local demand. The mainstay suppliers of the company include Okuma lathes and machining centres, Takisawa (Japan and Taiwan) CNC lathes, Quaser machining centres, Adira pressbrakes and guillotines, and Tos lathes, boring mills and specialised conventional machines. In addition to the standard ranges the company also represents other renowned specialised machine and accessory suppliers such as Gleason Corporation, Unisign, Berardi and Tacchella among others.

Best known brands

Most of the suppliers have worked with the company for many years and are familiar with local operating conditions and requirements. Each of the suppliers was initially chosen for their “best of breed” standing to match the requirements of local manufacturers and engineering concerns.

Spares and accessories

In order to ensure customer’s spares and accessory needs are catered for quickly and efficiently the company has a large stock holding locally and additionally has agreements with its suppliers to quick-freight non-stock items should they be required.

Clients also have access to the latest technology from our overseas suppliers F&H Machine Tools’ history spans back more than a half a century in South Africa. Its willingness to find machines that are right for the local environment and its steadfast belief in doing honest, fair business and building long-term relationships has clearly paid off. F&H Machine Tools, Vaughn HanwithHorden, Tel: (011) 397-4050, Fax: (011) 397-4210, Email:, Website:

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



No Looking Back It has been said that nothing in life comes free and that nothing in life worth having, comes without hard work, time and effort. Steel construction company B&T Steel knows this all too well, and over the past 15 years, they have proven that they are serious and passionate about their business.


n an attempt to change the steel industry, offering a better and wider service, B&T have pulled out all the stops in their pursuit to become what the industry needs. CEO Trevor van Vuuren shares his experiences with regards to the difficult and the flourishing phases that B&T has gone through

Most companies are fighting over the same bone

during their climb to the top, giving insight into the steel industry. He also shares helpful advice with other businesses who wish to be successful in the industry.

Major solutions

“A major challenge we faced this year, was the implementation of our ISO: 9001 accreditation,” says Trevor. In pursuit of this accreditation, all associated processes and procedures had to become a way of life for all B&T staff members. “We are extremely proud of the fact that we received our accreditation in only 8 months,” says Trevor. NCR (Non-Conformance Reports) are a very important part of ISO - they are there to ensure that no mistakes are made, as one mistake during the quality audit has profound implications. “It seems that for every ton of steel we produce, there is a ton of paper, but push through, as your business will benefit greatly from your hard work,” he adds.

Walk the talk

“If you want to get involved in the bigger projects, you have to ensure that your company is up to standard, ready and qualified to do the job.” This is one of the reasons why they obtained their ISO: 9001 accreditation. “Being BEE compliant is also important, so make sure that your company adheres to regulations.” B&T have had to work very hard to distinguish themselves as a worthy player in the ‘big pond’. “We always need to show clients why they should buy from us – our name means nothing if we are not ethical and reputable. Show that your company provides the best service, and that the customers’ projects are in the best, safest hands.”

Being competitive

Bigger projects don’t necessarily have bigger lead times. Larger projects, where the lead times can be in excess of 6 months from commencement


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011


to completion can create financial constraints for any company. B&T have found that after the recession, the market for “big projects” has slowed down and that most companies are fighting over the same bone. It has become a challenge to land the jobs on offer, which forces companies to become more competitive, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. “We need to be better than the competition and offer better service and better pricing,” says Trevor.

Expand your horizons “Another great aspect of our growth is that we have been able to look into new markets, like the mines and public sector.” Concerning the public sector, a company’s BEE status can sometimes prove to have restrictions.

professional, efficient and extremely passionate about the steel industry and that they can be taken seriously.

In order to be competitive in the mining sector, we needed our ISO accreditation “We have now set our sights on ISO: 3834 (welding), to add to the fact that we have our NOSA 5 star awards, a Noscar as well as the Internatinal SIC award. It gives us a huge advantage as our work is good.”

“In order to be competitive in the mining sector, we needed our ISO accreditation as well as the bigger machines, people skills and knowledge, which we fortunately do have.” B&T’s confidence has been boosted by the recent commencement of the Renexcon project, where they successfully manufactured large plate girders that required specific skills. “We build steel structures. That is our speciality but as a company you should never put restrictions on your expertise, as it is not wise to stick to one market only.”


“Another challenge we encountered, which shocked us a little, is the stigma attached to the area of Delmas. It is regarded as a small community area and is not really taken seriously,” adds Trevor. B&T has to work extra hard to convince their market that they are Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Your bottom line

It is evident that B&T Steel are committed to making a change in the steel industry, and have made every effort to ensure that they get to the top with integrity, honesty and credibility.

We have come a very long way in the past, are hungrier and more equipped for work than ever before They have numerous large projects behind them, but remain humble and stay true to their values. Over the last couple of years, they have spent a considerable amount of money on the latest technology in machinery, showing their commitment to progression.


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

B&T remain confident, up beat and it appears that whatever obstacle they have faced along the way, and still have to face in the future, they have managed to successfully forge ahead.

Committed and passionate

From a personal point of view, Trevor feels that companies need to be patient, and give themselves far more credit. “We have come a very long way in the past, are hungrier and more equipped for work than ever before, we have a new corporate identity, we are enthusiastic, and we are professional. Miracles are easy – impossible takes longer.� B&T Steel, Tel: (013) 665-1914, Fax: (013) 665-1881, Email:, Website:

SAIW News Agreement signed

Cameroon’s leading industrial quality control company, Hydrac, and the Southern African Institute of Welding (SAIW) have signed a cooperation agreement in which the two organisations will work together to offer NDT training in Cameroon. David Ekoume, Hydrac director general, says that part of the agreement is Hydrac’s licence to use SAIW training material and authorisation to translate the material into French where necessary. SAIW executive director, Jim Guild says that, in ad- Jim Guild SAIW executive director and David Ekoume, director general of Hydrac, signing the cooperation agreement. dition, in light of the fact that Hydrac has a professional working NDT facility, which Hydrac agreement is a boost to this process.” is capable of magnetic particle, dry penetrate, ultra-sonic He adds that he is pleased that the agreement involves NDT and radiographic testing, it has also been accredited as an training. “The Institute is investing heavily in NDT equipment IIW Authorised Training Body (ATB). and personnel and we are keen to disseminate our services Jim says he is delighted that such close cooperation exists in this area,” he concludesd. between Hydrac and the SAIW. “The SAIW is determined Southern African Institute of Welding, Jim Guild, Tel: (011) 298-2100, to continue building ties with its African colleagues and the Email:, Web:

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011


International News CNC pioneer turns 50

NUM, a company with one of the most influential heritages in CNC machine tool automation, is currently celebrating 50 years of technical innovation. Its technology underpins many of the world’s most successful specialist machine builders, and today the company views continued innovation and customisation of CNC as crucial to the maintenance of a healthy machine tool sector. Those 50 years started with the development of the first numerical controller by mother-company Telemecanique in 1961. The first NUM-branded NC controller was launched in 1964, and NUM itself was spun-out as a separate company in 1978. Innovation after innovation has followed, from hardware breakthroughs such as the world’s first 16-bit CNC controller in 1983 and the first all-digital servo drive featuring digital current control in 1991, to groundbreaking software such as the first support for rotation tool centre point (RTCP) in 1986 and the launch of the pioneering Numroto tool grinding software package in 1987. A technological highlight of current times is NUM’s ultra-powerful CNC kernel, Flexium. This provides open programmability for easy customisation, together with an exceptional scalability that can be applied economically to control machinery ranging from the small and simple to the most complex - with more than 200 interpolating axes. NUM has customers in the rotary transfer machine market who often need to control more than 100 axes for example, and in one application the control requirement is in excess of 140 axes! NUM, Email:, Website:

NUM’s new Flexium platform

will continue to operate at K2 Plastic’s current manufacturing facility in New York. Gleason Corporation’s mission is to be the total gear solutions provider to its global customer base. Gleason is a world leader in the development, manufacture and sale of gear production machinery and related equipment. The company’s products are used by customers in automotive, truck, aircraft, agriculture, mining, windpower, construction, power tool and marine industries and by a diverse set of customers serving various industrial equipment markets. Website:

Machine tool industry meets at EMO Plastics merger

Gleason Corporation recently announced the purchase of K2 Plastics of Bergen, New York, a leading producer of precision plastic gears and other complex plastic parts. K2’s products are sold to a diverse set of markets, including electronics, medical equipment, power and air tools and others, using its “no weld-line technology” to achieve superior strength and accuracy for its plastic injection molded parts. K2 also provides comprehensive engineering consultation from design to material selection to prototyping. John Perrotti, president and CEO of Gleason Corporation says, “We are pleased and excited to have K2 Plastics join our company. Both companies are technology leaders within the gear industry and we believe that benefits from the synergies between the two will allow each to extend their market reach.” Gleason will retain K2 Plastic’s existing management team and Gleason’s newly-formed Gleason-K2 Plastics division


At the close of EMO Hannover 2011 recently exhibitors, visitors and organisers were unanimous in their praise of the event. In the course of the show’s six days, the order volume reached a minimum of €4.5 billion,” according to Dr Wilfried Schäfer, executive director of the German Machine Tool Builders’ Association (VDW), the organiser of the event. “Against the backdrop of an upswing in orders over the past few months, EMO’s positive outcome means an even stronger market footing for exhibitors,” he says. Staged under the motto of “Machine Tools & More”, the event in Hannover featured the latest machinery, solutions and services for every conceivable aspect of metalworking – a veritable tour de force by some 2 037 exhibitors from 41 different nations. The machine tools industry’s innovative capabilities were not only evidenced by impressive performance specs, but also in terms of highly functional and attractive design – an aspect that is just as essential to today’s highperformance machinery.

Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

Industry News Recipe for success

With nearly 40% of all EMO attendees coming from abroad, exhibitors were especially delighted with the event’s international turnout. The strong international appeal makes EMO unique throughout the industry, and is a key factor in its success.

The state of the global steel market is volatile, leading to a certain anxiety in the local market, but experience of the 2008 global recession has put companies in a better position to prepare for future fluctuations this time.

This accounted for a shift in foreign attendance, with an increase of more than 6.5% in the ratio of foreign visitors from outside Europe. EMO Hannover 2011 attracted some 140 000 visitors from more than 100 countries. The next EMO Hannover is scheduled for 16 to 21 September 2013.

This is the view of Byron Ferguson, managing director of Special Steels, one of South Africa’s leading special steels merchants. He says that for Special Steels, there were some key learnings that emerged from the recession which have helped to prepare the company for the future. “The recession was a steep, but necessary learning curve for many businesses, including Special Steels,” he says. “In hindsight, although it was tough, the company fared well – and we learnt a lot about how to prepare for a similar situation in the future.” Special Steels is an importer of certified engineering steels, predominantly round and hollow bar, for the mining and manufacturing sectors. “The risk you take, as an importer, is to buy stock at the wrong time, just before a fall in price. Steel prices are susceptible to a fall in demand,” Byron says. He sees strong opportunities in the South African steel market both from an export and a manufacturing point of view, because of developments in Africa, and the sustained global growth of the commodities market. “However, there is definitely a feeling of anxiety in the local steel market, which is why it is so important for companies to have a tightly monitored risk management process in place. In this industry, you have to learn to live with and manage volatility to the best of your ability,” he concludes. Special Steels, Tel: (011) 865-4939, Fax: (086) 555-3624, Email: sales@

Promech Publishing has a BEE rating of 168.75%

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011


Industry News Help at hand in auto sector

operatives, while stimulating business networking and a strong marketing platform. These issues have long been a challenge for SMMEs in all sectors.

A series of web based support services to the automotive industry has been developed by the Automotive Industry Development Centre (AIDC), a Blue IQ subsidiary. Blue IQ is an agency of Gauteng Provincial Government’s Department of Economic Development (GDED).

The third web based service is a database and web portal for the distressed companies helpdesk. Companies can confidentially log a distress call either by phone or internet. The call centre then provides advice and information about assistance and funding schemes (among others) from support organisations and routes the distressed company to the most appropriate support intervention.

The services are aimed at sustaining and creating jobs with a focus on small business development, in line with Gauteng’s provincial priorities. The web based services are: a Retrenched Workers Database and Web Portal; a Database and Web Portal for SMME’s and Co-operatives; and a Distressed Companies Helpdesk. All these services are available on www. or through a tollfree call centre: 0800-Workhelp (0800-9675-4357). Dr Sydney Mufamadi, AIDC chairman, says that the retrenched workers database and web portal is a data repository for retrenched workers, many of whom were retrenched during the global credit crunch. “The database aims to create a candidate pool that can be used by the corporate sector for sourcing and placement of staff. The second service provides a platform for quick market access to the goods and services of SMMEs and co-

Blue IQ, Stephen Watson, Tel: (011) 689 -600, Website: www. AIDC, Dineshan Moodley, Tel: (012) 564-5254, Email:, Website:

Anti-ballistic spray

Specialist safety and security solutions company Techpro recently acquired the rights from Israeli company GG Defence to supply the South African market with anti-burn, anti-ballistic, anti-blast and anti-grind solutions. The highly developed, chemical tolerant Polyuria is a combination of normal Polyurethane, similar to rubber, and hybrid compounds, giving this product the unique properties to combat fire, ammunition, grind and explosives. This fastdrying product is completely organic with no toxicity or toxic vapours and is sprayed to the earmarked area by highly trained professionals with specialist equipment which ensures the longevity of the product. The Anti-Ballistic option has been developed in two thicknesses, 9mm and 22mm. The 9mm solution is sprayed on either side of kevlar, allowing the Polyuria to be sprayed as thinly as possible. This application is not suitable for vehicles due to the window mechanisms and its thickness. However, a thin coating of Polyuria with a layer of kevlar is a possibility for light


Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

Industry News industrial vehicles. This solution can stop a 0.9mm bullet. The heavy duty option is suitable for industrial and military vehicles such as Kaspers or armoured vehicles. These allow for a 22mm layer of Polyuria to be sprayed directly to the vehicle. The 22mm layer can stop rounds from an AK 47. During testing to prove the competency of the Anti-Blast, a concrete wall sprayed with Anti-Blast withstood an explosion of 100kg of Trinitrotoluene (TNT). Anti-Blast can also be applied to server rooms and energy management rooms to ensure the safety of property and information. Techpro, Pierre Malan, Tel: (011) 251-4860, Email: pierre@techproza. net

existing Crippa installations and exploring new business opportunities and relationships with First Cut. “It has been a very valuable exercise and, having identified at least fifty bending machines, we have a much clearer understanding of the market, who the players are and where the opportunities lie,” Marco says. “It was important to meet and get to know both existing customers and potential customers”, he continues, “there is a huge market here in South Africa and we are excited about the investment opportunities.” Since cementing the relationship with First Cut, four Crippa installations have been successfully completed, the most recent being a CA 520 tube bending machine for local automotive components manufacturer, Smiths Manufacturing, based in Durban. “This CNC machine, with the capacity of bending tubes up to 20 mm in diameter, has already become an integral part of the company’s production line of pipes and hoses for motor air conditioning systems. Smiths are very active in the local automotive industry with contracts with all motor plants based in South Africa. The company also exports components to Europe and Canada,” says Steve Van Wyk, director at First Cut. First Cut, Andrew Poole, Tel: (011) 614-1112, Email:

Welding machine doubles capacity

Multotec has just commissioned a second cylindrical welding machine (CWM) for producing wedgewire cylinders for cylindrical interstage screens. Based on its pioneering original unit developed several years ago, the new CWM is capable of producing seamless wedgewire cylinders of 1.9 metres in diameter and up to 3 metres long. This diameter is believed to be the largest of its kind available worldwide.

Italian bending machines

A big industrial sector, a healthy export market and good technical support make South Africa a market with very promising investment opportunities. This is the view of Marco Tommasi, area manager of Italian tube bending machine manufacturer Crippa. Crippa, a well-established Italian family business, has exported tube-bending machinery since 1948, mainly for the automotive and aerospace industries. The company began to grow its footprint in South Africa since establishing ties with its sole agent, First Cut two years ago. Marco, who visited South Africa recently, spent time visiting

Multotec’s Derrick Alston says the new machine, which is already in operation alongside the existing CWM, effectively doubles production capacity and reduces lead times, and is expected to meet market demand for the next decade. About 40% of the company’s wedgewire cylinders are produced for the export market. The existing CWM produces wedgewire cylinders with a maximum diameter of 1.7 metres and a length up to 6 metres. Multotec worked alongside its German partner Derrick Alston, managing director of MultoSteinhaus some eight tec Manufacturing

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011


Industry News in carbon-in-leach (CIL) and carbon-in-pulp (CIP) processes in the gold industry. “One of our foremost users is Kemix who, in conjunction with Anglo American, some years ago developed an innovative technology for interstage screening in the gold extraction process. Used in CIL or CIP applications to separate activated carbon from pulp, its Mineral Processing Separating and Mineral Processing Separating Pumping screens are today considered the benchmark in interstage screening.” Multotec Group, Bernadette Wilson, Tel: (011) 923-6193, Multotec recently commissioned its second cylindrical welding machine which is Website: believed to be the largest of its kind worldwide

years ago to develop the original machine to produce wedgewire cylinders for the coal, gold, diamond and brewery sectors, but specifically with a view to producing robust, long life wedgewire cylinders for interstage screening applications

Subscription - 2012 Please fax us if you wish to subscribe to “Advanced Materials Today” at R405,00 (incl postage and VAT) per year; R1020,00 per year for Africa/Overseas. We will post you an invoice on receipt of your fax.


Fax No: (011) 781-1403

From:......................................................................................... (insert your name) Title: ..........................................................................................

New 3D materials

Leading 3D printer manufacturer, Objet, recently announced that the 3D printing materials it recently released are now available on additional Objet 3D printing platforms and in more territories. Objet VeroWhitePlus, a new rigid white material with enhanced dimensional stability, is now available worldwide for all Objet 3D printers. Objet VeroClear, a new rigid, water-clear transparent material is now available for all Objet Eden and Connex 3D printers. Finally, Objet ABS-like Digital Material (RGD5160-DM), a composite material for simulating ABS-grade engineering plastics, is now available for all Objet Connex 3D printers, including the new compact, multi-material Objet260 Connex. The ABS-like Digital Material was recently used to print a fully-functioning skateboard deck and a folding stool sitting 48 cm off the ground and able to sustain over 100kg in weight. Commenting on the new material availability, Zehavit Reisin, head of consumables line of business at Objet says, “By widening our material availability to additional platforms and regions we are constantly enhancing the prototyping capabilities for all our customers on all our platforms, both new and old.” With the new materials introduced in the first half of 2011, the number of Objet 3D printing materials is brought to a total of 65, including 51 composite materials (Digital Materials). Objet 3D printing materials are suitable for a wide range of rapid prototyping purposes, from realistic product visualisation all the way to advanced functional verification. Demaplastech, Grant Ravenscroft, Tel: (011) 462 2990, Fax: (011) 462 8229, Email:


Company: ................................................................................. Address: ................................................................................... .................................................................................................... ......................................................................Code: .................. Telephone: (.......) .................................................................... Fax: (.......) ............................................................................... Email:........................................................................................

Index to Advertisers Afsa 14, 15 Barpro 33 Engineer Placements 7 F&H Machine Tools 16 GTI Inside Back Cover ILS Outside Back Cover Kew Foundries 22 Mecad Systems 35 MTMA 24 Opticore 13 Oriole Consulting 33 Plastix Portal 20 Rely Intra Cast 19 SAEEC 8 Schmolz + Bickenbach 17 Sovereign Steel 6 Spectra Inside Front Cover Rivja Outside Front Cover

Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

Advanced Materials Today

September/October 2011



Advanced Materials Today September/October 2011

Advanced Materials Today Sep/Oct 2011  

“Advanced Materials Today” focuses on materials, processes and machines for the design and manufacturing industries. It is endorsed by the...

Advanced Materials Today Sep/Oct 2011  

“Advanced Materials Today” focuses on materials, processes and machines for the design and manufacturing industries. It is endorsed by the...