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Aghile: genuine industrial versatility

GH’s new Aghile units are designed for both repetitive and variable multipurpose manual operations.
It provides an excellent substitute for highly inefficient traditional methods like flame brazing and resistance heating, which are difficult to control and uncomfortable for the operator.

Aghile can be used for:

Brazing and soldering copper winding for electric motor stators, HVAC system pipes, automotive pipes, cemented carbide for tools, etc.
Pre-Heating and Post-Heating. Sometimes pre-heating or post-heating of a piece is necessary to ensure the results of the primary operation. This is common in welding, for example.
Expansion for assembling or disassembling sets of metal components, such as bolting tasks in the mining, energy, and materials handling industries, or shrink-fitting shafts and gears.
Heat Treatment: Hardening, tempering, annealing, etc. Surface hardening of press dies, cutting dies, and hemming tools.
Any other heating application up to 50kW and 25kHz.

The Aghile family of equipment goes from 10 kW up to 50 kW with one or two outputs (for power lower than 30 kW) if two operations need to be performed simultaneously. The operating tool can be adapted to the desired application with highly ergonomic positioning options.

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The VBG Group. A leader in the development of solutions for trucks.

Fredrik Gustavsson is the Production Engineering Manager for VBG Group Truck Equipment AB. He is responsible for planning, developing and implementing the required technology throughout the factory.

The main plant is in Vänersborg, Sweden, with 180 workers and around 20 machines, including those for heat treatment. They produce 90,000 bolts a year, among other components. We talked to him during the machine pre-acceptance phase for the TVK-S350 for hardening and tempering bolts and bushings. VBG is a new GH customer, and a new market segment for GH.
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What is your company’s core activity?
VBG Truck Equipment is part of the VBG Group. We are a world leader in coupling systems for trucks with heavy trailers. In addition to the components, we offer complete, customized preassembled truck rear end systems (see illustration). Our main markets are Europe, and also New Zealand and Australia, where they use multi-trailer vehicles.
What are the consequences if the quality of the treatment process isn’t high enough?
The risk is component breakage. The correct functioning of a trailer coupling is crucial to road safety.
About the GH-VBG partnership, how long has VBG been working with GH? How did you find out about GH?
VBG has been working with GH for approximately nine months. We found out about GH when a GH sales person contacted us a few years ago. At that time, we didn’t have any need for induction equipment. When the need appeared, we contacted GH.
For Fredrik, visiting the facilities belonging to potential suppliers is mandatory to get a firsthand overview of the personnel, organization and management. All of these details help give a more realistic picture of a company.
What is your impression of the VBG-GH relationship?
GH and VBG have established a very good relationship especially between the GH Engineering people and the users of the machine at VBG.
In your opinion, what are GH’s strengths and weaknesses?dialog
Organization support.
A highlight has been the support we have received from the whole GH organization in order to understand the solution they were offering us. If we needed more information about cooling, someone from the cooling department met with us immediately; if we had a control question, the GH employee responsible for that was with us right away.
Application development.
Another very important factor was the application laboratory. Although the product they were offering was good, GH needed to show us they were capable of developing the application.
Information integrity between sales and project manager.
A further strong point is the integrity of the information exchanged between GH and VBG, since the GH sales person works very closely with the GH project manager.
We’re in the honeymoon period, though. Let’s talk again after the equipment is installed.
And what about the machine we supplied?
Different parts in same machine and tooling management.
The key benefit for us is that we can treat bolts and bushings and the management using RFID for inductors and tooling identification.
Reduction of inductor complexity and cost.
The treatment was performed previously using the single-shot method; now it’s performed with the scanning method, resulting in a significant reduction in inductor complexity and cost.
We’ve been able to reduce their number from 18 (one per type), to 6, since one inductor can harden several types of bolts.
Technological independence.
This machine gives VBG technological independence, because we can try different profiles and treatments per zone
for the same parts due to the scanning functionality and power control. In the past, we had to constantly ask our supplier to provide a new inductor adjusted for the part.
GH’s new values are: commitment, cooperation, innovation and passion. How did GH demostrate them in their interactions with VBG?
Regarding the values you mentioned, you can see them in:

INNOVATION: Product innovations like 3DPCoil and 3D printed showers.
PASSION: You can feel it.
COOPERATION: We have been working together to define the proper solution with periodic meetings.
COMMITMENT: GH has fulfilled every milestone in the project plan.

About industry 4.0
At the end of the interview, we discussed Industry 4.0, and how each company needs to find the appropriate way to implement it. It is often confused with automation, but they are not the same thing. In VBG’s case, Industry 4.0 technologies could be extremely beneficial in the area of maintenance. Having the ability, for instance, to check in real time from the machine or other platform if there are spare parts in vendor stock, and buy them. Other examples are the use of augmented reality to facilitate operator maintenance, and being able to monitor the status of a machine or production on a wireless smart device

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SMART TVK-S350: THE EASIEST HEAT TREATING SOLUTION

VBG has invested in the compact TVK-S350 machine for small pieces, with the most advanced features to simplify its operation and maintenance (O&M), and ensure the quality of the pieces it produces for its clients, independent of the operator’s skills.

Sensors throughout the machine, and data exchange with the customer’s network.
Quality: Real-time induction process monitoring.
Quick diagnosis: Alarm supervision and troubleshooting guide using a colored diagram graphic of the machine.
Easy operation: Part reference change using an intuitive, step-by-step wizard with real images.
Remote management by GH technical experts.

GH Driveline Solutions. Experience, at your service

Millions of vehicles use CV Joints treated by the GH Induction Group.
In this video you can see different driveline parts being treated by GH machines, including inner and outer races, and shafts.

II Global Technical Support Meeting. Powering services.

powering-servicesThe global meeting for the GH Induction Group’s technical support engineer team was held on September 19–23. Representatives from Germany, China, India, Mexico, and the U.S. came together to share their experiences, and talk about the best strategies developed in each country for forging strong client partnerships.
At the GH Group’s headquarters, where the R&D department is based, initiatives have been developed that are aimed at sharing the company’s latest advances and exchanging ideas in order to update and implement this knowledge in the technical support we offer to customers.
Our international meetings are part of our corporate objective of increasing customer satisfaction, with technical support that can solve problems as quickly as possible, and a constant supply of improved solutions.

The GH Group’s Customer Service Manager, Beatriz Torrente, says:
“We adapted the training to our new market situation. Nowadays, our facilities are spread all over the world. A piece of equipment may be sold by GH in Germany, but its final destination might be China or the U.S. Because of this, our technicians’ abilities have to be as comprehensive as possible.
In the past, we were working only in certain areas. Now, more and more, our support staff has to work with many different technologies and applications.”

Upcoming events

India

India is one of the primary markets for the induction sector. According to Indian sources, India’s market share stands at $1 billion, and is growing at a rate of 12% per year. Among the global markets for heat treatment growth are the automobile, aviation, railway, heavy construction machinery, mining, metalworking, and tool and die industries.
GH has one of its main plants in India, and in the next few months will have a stand at the following events:

26th January – 1st February 2017. Bangalore. Stall no A106 Hall 1A.
“IMTEX 2017 will have a whole range of metal-cutting machine tool technologies, products and solutions to meet the demands of the manufacturing industry. With the global focus shifting towards India’s “MAKE IN INDIA” initiative, the manufacturing industry is poised for its biggest ever growth.”

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Industrie Lyon 2017 I’m going to assist

April 4th – April 7th. Lyon, France.
From the 4th to the 7th of April, 2017, INDUSTRIE Lyon 2017, the leading exhibition for production technologies, will showcase a wide selection of equipment, products, and related services, creating the optimal conditions to make a factory productive and competitive. Visitors will be able to observe the machines, robots, and equipment in operation and discover the latest technologies.

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