AEC Completes Replacement Elements for Seamless Pipe Mill

Automation Engineering Co. has replaced the handling equipment following the threading and hydrotester processes for one of the world’s largest steel producers. The material handling equipment will channel pipe through a number of processes, including blowout, rust inhibitor and stamping applications.

This high utilization material handling equipment was designed to handle 48-foot pipe used in the oil country tubular goods (OCTG) market. In fact, a duplicate of each module was manufactured to minimize downtime.

“This plant runs 24/7 with around a 30-second cycle time. It is running constant pipe,” said John Malsch, VP Sales. “If they are down, it doesn’t take long to lose a lot of money. With a whole set of spare parts, they simply untie the bolts, take out one assembly and move in another.”

The tubular operations plant, constructed in the early 1980s, is also replacing its gravity skids with chain conveyors. Set at a decline, a gravity skid uses flow rails to move pipe from one process to another. As pipe rolls down it strikes other pipe and creates a high noise environment, a greater chance for pipe damage, and potentially unsafe conditions for machine operators and line workers.

AEC’s heavy-duty pipe conveyor systems deliver smooth conveyance motion for this tubular operation in an area of the seamless pipe mill that lacks crane access.

“They need to control the movement in a very limited, tight space,” Malsch said. “We’re running something that is much more reliable.”

For more information on our custom finishing room material handling equipment, call 864-679-8024.

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