Nadcap & CQI-9 Compliance Made Easy


Rexnord Corporation, Indianapolis, Indiana

I believe we mentioned last year that Rexnord a manufacturer of gears, bearings, valves and couplings was closing their facility in Indianapolis. The plant closing garnered a tremendous amount of attention following comments from President-elect Donald Trump on Twitter, where he wrote “Rexnord of Indiana is moving to Mexico and rather viciously firing all of its 300 workers. This is happening all over our country. No more!” Obviously our interest in this plant has to do with the fact that it had a captive heat treating department. As a footnote to this story several readers send us this tale about one of the heat treat operators who worked at the plant.  It makes for rather depressing reading (and is rather long) but it still interesting to hear about the whole story from the perspective of one of the employees effected.®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0 October 17, 2017   

Leybold Increases The Energy Efficiency of its Diffusion Pumps

“The subject of energy efficiency of vacuum solutions plays an important role in all areas of application. Not least for this reason, the vacuum supplier Leybold from Cologne has continuously reduced the energy consumption of its product range in recent years.

 Diffusion pumps do not have any moving parts – their principle of operation is based on steamed propellants, thus enabling extremely reliable and low-maintenance operation. In addition, they are robust and offer an excellent cost / performance ratio for high vacuum generation. For decades, these properties have made them the “workhorse” in industrial applications. Many suppliers considered this technology to be mature and accordingly the technical development came to a standstill. 

The vacuum supplier Leybold has recognized the potential to raise this established technology to a contemporary level and has significantly reduced the energy consumption of the established DIP and newly developed DIJ diffusion pump series, with the aid of intelligent technologies and innovations. For further information, please contact: Christina Steigler, Corporate Communications T:  +49 221 347 1261 F : +49 221 347 31261  October 17, 2017   

Super Systems Inc. Mexico

“SSI Mexico will be holding their third technical seminar on 25 January 2018 in the Monterrey/Saltillo area.  The requirements of CQI-9 and NADCAP will be covered in all the topics.   October 17, 2017   

The topics to be covered are:

Atmosphere Verification

Oxygen sensor Troubleshooting

Generator Controls (AutoGen)


Metrology for Heat Treatment

Process Control in Heat Treatment”

Monday Morning Briefing

We will start off with people “stuff”-first up we see that Mr. Jin Xia who was Chief Material Engineer at Timken Bearings in Canton, Ohio is no longer with the company although we don’t know where he has moved to. Jin was metallurgist at Koyo Bearings (now part of Timken) in Bedford, Quebec, Canada before moving to the Canton location. Mr. Ross Hill who was General Manager of the Bodycote (commercial heat treating) facility in Newmarket, Canada is now working with another commercial heat treater, Atlantic Heat Treat in Ajax, Canada. David Faglioni who was with Heat Treatment Australia for many years most recently as Business Development Manager at the Brisbane, Australia plant has left the company. He is now  Director Of Operations at Universal Metals Australia in Brisbane where he will not directly be involved in heat treating but will be responsible for outsourcing in some cases. Jim McNeal who for over 20 years was International Search Partners is now Client Solutions Director at The Arbinger Institute. International Search Partners was and still is a recruiting firm in California which specializes in finding people for the heat treatment industry. Jim sold the company a short while ago.

Precision Heat Treat in Surrey, Canada has a new owner, Mr. Tim Thompson. Precision Heat Treat is a small commercial shop which was started and run for many years by John Davison and his wife for many years until they decided it was time to retire at which point they started looking at options. Our suggestion at “The Monty” was that they try and interest one of their employees in purchasing the business as in our opinion it would be difficult to find an outside buyer. As it turns Tim Thompson who owns another commercial heat treat in the area by the name of Nitrera stepped up to the plate and bought the company. Last Friday we had a press release about how German furnace builder ROHDE Schutzgasöfen GmbH in Hanau will very shortly be shipping a new Nitriding furnace to Mexico. At last count 6 readers had asked who the end customer is and our answer to all of them was the same-not a clue. Our good friend Mr. John Reger of Winston Heat Treating in Dayton, Ohio was just awarded the “Commercial Heat Treater of the Year Award by Industrial Heating Magazine;  “The award was presented at the MTI Fall Meeting Awards Dinner on September 16 in San Diego. The award given by Industrial Heating Magazine, in conjunction with the MTI Educational Foundation, is awarded to the company who demonstrates high levels of excellence in quality programs, pollution/hazardous waste controls, and community involvement/leadership. Winston Heat Treating owner, John Reger, stated, “This is truly an honor to be recognized by the industry for the hard work that our entire team puts forth every day in serving our customers and making a difference.  We love this industry and the impact we make locally and abroad.” In the photo below we have from the left; D. Posso, Industrial Heating Magazine, from Winston: K. Fourman, T. Hixson, J. Reger, D. Reger, G. Temple, and outgoing MTI President Tim Levy.

In India Thermovac Aerospace will shortly be opening a new, state-of-the-art heat-treatment plant in Bangalore. The plant, which will be AS9100 and Nadcap certified and hold all required OEM quality approvals, will offer a wide range of heat-treatment processes as well as the company’s proprietary process for aluminum brazing. The Dabaspet facility will be Thermovac Aerospace’s third plant in Bangalore, which is one of the largest aerospace and automotive manufacturing centers in India. The facility, which is scheduled to be operational by the end of November, will be capable of supporting large aerospace and automotive projects. It will also be involved in the manufacture of vacuum-brazed cold plate for technologically advanced components such as complicated transmissions In Rockwell, Texas aircraft engine repair company Air Concepts Repair Technologies is closing their doors and auctioning off the remaining equipment October 23. There is a couple of heat treat ovens including an oven and a vacuum chamber but probably not real exciting items to most hear treaters. Furnace builder CMI Industry Americas (a division of CMI Group of Belgium) must have landed some nice orders recently as they have announced they need to hire some more people; “CMI Group and CMI Industry Americas celebrated their rich histories this past week, but the Salem plant is looking to the future, too, announcing plans to hire 15 or more additional employees between now and 2018. “We’re expanding due to some contracts that the company just secured,” Human Resources Regional Manager USA Tricia Myers of the Salem plant said. The positions vary from shop workers to electrical, mechanical and process engineers, which she affirmed are all good-paying jobs. Potential employees can apply online at the company website at in the coming week. “CMI has a serious commitment to having an entity in the United States that specializes in furnace design and assembly,” she said. . In Mexico heat treater Technotrat with locations in Monterrey and Queretaro will be adding more batch IQ capacity. Technotrat is one of the larger commercial heat treats in the country and offers Salt, Batch IQ, Vacuum and continuous processing. The photo below shows one of their plants as we saw it last year.

And to round things out for today we have this press release about Mr. Jim Oakes of controls company SSi;At its September Fall Meeting in San Diego, California, the Metal Treating Institute (MTI), the world’s largest network of heat treaters in the world, recognized Jim Oakes from Super Systems in Cincinnati, Ohio with the Award of Industry Merit. This award is given to the MTI member in recognition of their current and on-going commitment to the betterment of the commercial heat treating industry with one of more notable accomplishments. MTI President, Tim Levy, stated during the award ceremony, “It goes without saying that Jim Oakes has contributed a lot to the heat treating industry.  He has always been there with his years of experience and support serving at every level in many organizations.  His service and contributions in the overall heat treating community is second to none.  This award is well deserved from his service and accomplishments to the industry.” MTI would like to say Thank you to Jim Oakes for his many years of service and accomplishments to the numerous organizations he has impacted in the heat treating industry. The Metal Treating Institute, established in 1933, is an international non-profit trade association for the heat treating industry.  MTI is based in Jacksonville, Florida with members in 38 states and 6 countries.” October 16, 2017   

ROHDE Sells Nitriding Furnace to Mexican Customer

Furnace builder ROHDE Schutzgasöfen GmbH based in Hanau, Germany sends us this press release about a nitriding furnace the company will shortly be shipping to Mexico. The company takes the opportunity to tell us about the birth of the owners second child, adding a personal note to this story.  October 13, 2017   

This picture shows Konstantin Alexander Rohde with his parents Natasha and Joern after the final check-up of a fully equipped nitriding chamber furnace for the treatment of automotive parts. After a successfull preliminary “hot” acceptance under real working conditions the furnace is now ready to be shipped to Mexico. Konstantin is the second son of Natasha and Joern and was born on October 2nd 2017.”  

SECO/WARWICK & The Aluminum Industry

“With the increase in aluminum consumption in the transportation industry, US aluminum mills are rapidly expanding capacity to meet this demand. According to  the Aluminum Association, “Since 2013, the aluminum industry announced U.S. plant expansions and planned investments totaling more than $2.2 billion to meet increasing automotive customer needs.” Frequently, the most expeditious means of meeting this increased demand is accomplished through plant modernizations.  Preventative maintenance keeps them operating at top efficiency. As a major supplier of original equipment to the aluminum industry for over 35 years, the SECO/WARWICK service team is active in major facilities throughout the world, specializing in the modernization and maintenance of aluminum equipment manufactured by SECO/WARWICK, as well as that from other furnace vendors. Since 2016, SECO/WARWICK has executed 11 modernization projects for the three major manufacturers in the continental United States.

“We have enjoyed a long term partnership with the aluminum industry that has afforded us the opportunity to continue to grow and advance our technologies to enable our customers to remain competitive in the global aluminum market,” stated Jonathan Markley, Managing Director, SECO/WARWICK USA.  “We have designed our professional service portfolio to ensure that our customers realize the maximum service life of their equipment and get total value from their capital purchase.” Learn more about SECO/WARWICK heat treatment solutions. Visit us at ALUMINUM USA, a trade show and B2B-platform for the aluminum industry.” October 13, 2017   

Fluidized Bed Line Sold

In our opinion any time a fluidized bed line is sold it is news! Perhaps we should back up a bit though. Young people in the industry might not be familiar with fluidized bed style heat treating, a technology which enjoyed some popularity 30 years ago. The technology actually produced good parts but it was messy (sand everywhere) and it has gradually follow out of favor to the point that virtually no new systems are ever built and used ones are worth what you can get. We actually had a very nice system on our site for a while, a system located at ACE Metal Treatment in Australia where the technology has lived longer than in most countries. While we had nothing to do with the sale we understand that it was just sold to a company in China proving that for every piece of equipment out there, there is a buyer somewhere in the world. October 12, 2017   

Diablo Furnaces, Illinois, USD

There is a relatively new furnace builder in Illinois by the name of Diablo Furnaces which we have run across a couple of times over the past year. The design of furnace they are marketing is very similar to the old Beavermatic design (Of course Premier Furnace Specialists Inc. of Farmington Hills, Mich., acquired the intellectual property assets of BeaverMatic Inc. of Rockford, Ill., back in early 2015). Well we certainly know why the design is similar, at least three of the employees at Diablo used to work at Beavermatic; Burk Glogowski, Richard Claeyssen and Sue Harrod are all ex employees of Beavermatic proving once again that for good or for bad people entering the heat treating industry rarely leave the industry or wander far from home which in retrospect is probably a good thing. October 12, 2017   

Helium Shortage? What Shortage?

Typically gas quenching in vacuum furnaces uses nitrogen, argon or helium. There are advantages to each but certainly helium has really excited a number of heat treaters over the years, the main disadvantage being that it is very expensive (which means that all heat treaters try to reclaim as much as they can). The reason helium is so expensive is that it is in very short supply, as a matter of act this is pointed out in the short case study further down which was done by Air Products for commercial heat treater Solar Atmospheres based in Pennsylvania, USA. However this might be changing according to this news report about a mammoth find in Africa. Yes we well understand that there is a big gap between discovery and coming to market but this certainly offers hope that down the line helium becomes more cost effective. October 11, 2017   

“New analysis of a gargantuan helium deposit discovered in Tanzania last year has revealed that there may be much more of the gas than initial surveys revealed. At the time, the find, called “life-saving,” was estimated to contain at least 54 billion cubic feet (1.5 billion cubic metres). To put that in perspective, domestic helium consumption in the US for 2016 was 1.7 billion cubic feet, and the US has total known helium reserves of 153 billion cubic feet. Now, according to new measurements taken of the helium, there could be a lot more than that – around 98.6 billion cubic feet, according to Thomas Abraham-James, CEO of helium company Helium One. “It’s pretty much doubled in size,”he told Live Science. The global helium shortage affects a lot more than blimps and party balloons. Helium is used to cool the magnetic resonance magnets in MRI machines, and it’s also used as a coolant for nuclear magnetic resonance and at the Large Hadron Collider. NASA uses it in rocket fuel, and it’s also used as a carrier gas in gas chromatography and mass spectroscopy.

Air Products, located in Allentown, PA has been Solar Atmospheres, Eastern PA sole supplier of liquid nitrogen, argon and helium since its start in 1983.  This relationship and Solar’s new application for the use of helium for vacuum furnace quenching has lead Air Products to do a case study on Solar. Air Products did the study to explain the engineering and processing advantages of Solar’s helium usage for a considerable percentage of its quenching needs.  The study was on the use of helium cuts against conventional gas quenching practices that use the much less expensive nitrogen or argon.  The case study features Solar’s new 24 foot furnace (50,000 lb. capacity) and new 10 bar, high gas velocity vacuum furnaces in its Hermitage, PA facility.  These furnaces illustrate the challenge and advantages of improved quench cycles by using helium. Through furnace engineering modifications and the use of helium, quenching times are better than anticipated.  The results for vacuum heat treated material have been spectacular. Air Products challenge is to supply helium gas while there is a world-wide production shortage.  Solar Atmospheres is confident of Air Products ability, the world’s largest producer and supplier of helium, to meet the expanded application of this gas for its customers in the heat treating industry.  Air Products long range planning has given Solar Atmospheres the assurance it needs to implement its growth strategy.” (the photo below shows one of the furnaces at Solar).”

Daewon Corp. Installs Nitrex Metal System

“Nitrex Metal successfully installed and commissioned an NX-1230 potential-controlled nitriding system for processing automotive springs. The customer, Daewon Corp., based in Korea, is a high volume automotive parts manufacturer supplying global automakers such as Hyundai, Kia Motors, GM, Chrysler, Volkswagen, and many others. Daewon previously used an outside supplier to nitride springs, but the company recognized that its interests would be better served by implementing this capability in-house. This new project is the result of Daewon’s past experience with a Nitrex-approved heat treater and their satisfaction with the reliability of the Nitreg® nitriding process that was key to the application’s success. Nitreg® nitriding of springs allows fatigue resistance to be improved for longer service life in automotive use. The technology also maintains tight dimensional tolerances (no distortion), excellent uniformity from part to part, and excellent repeatability between production runs. The system is capable of processing a load capacity up to 11,570-pound (5250-kg) and complies with the nitriding requirements laid out by AMS2759/10A.

 ABOUT NITREX METAL; Nitrex Metal,, is a worldwide partner offering modern nitriding / nitrocarburizing technologies, solutions, equipment and services. Our Nitreg® potential-controlled gas nitriding and Nitreg®-C potential-controlled gas nitrocarburizing (ferritic nitrocarburizing-FNC) technologies are applied in the precision parts, automotive, aluminium extrusion, defense, gears, tool & die, plastics, machinery, and many other industries.” October 11, 2017   

Business Opportunities

Please take a look at our most recent employment offerings.  If you see anything you like don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at or 905-271-0033. October 11, 2017   

Item # O334 Planning Technician
Item # O333 Process Engineer
Item # O332 Sales Representative
Item # O331 Process Metallurgist

Dual Spindle Induction Scanner Available

An advertiser of ours has just listed a used Induction Heating Scanner and indicated how this was a unique opportunity. This scanner is current technology and has been operating when it was replaced a couple of weeks ago. Most used induction equipment is older technology and many have been sold to dealers that may upgrade it or let it sit in inventory for months or years. Many come from high production environments that operate constantly for multiple shifts per day. This scanner was used moderately in a machine shop, only for some of the parts they produced. If this used equipment is repaired and upgraded with new controls the price will be more than twice as much as this one. Most of these used scanners are offered without any tooling, coils, spare parts or documentation.  The unique opportunity offered is a current design scanner with an (current technology) IGBT Power Supply and Dual Output Bus, Nine Coils (ID from 5/8” to 2 ½” Dia.), a spare control module and drawings and documentation. The Bus, Coils, spares and documentation have a replacement value of $20,000 or more.  It is a dual spindle model and has a 24” scanning capability. It has a 200kW, 30 kHz power supply. The control system on this scanner is an older type that is simpler than some of the newer PLC or PC types.  See the details in our “Induction Equipment For Sale” section.  October 11, 2017   

ALD Thermal Treatment/ Ramos Arizpe, Mexico

For the third year running commercial heat treater ALD Thermal Treatment in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico has been awarded received a “GM supplier Quality Excellence” Award by General Motors. ALD Thermal Treatment is part of the AMG Group out of Germany and their sister company ALD is one of the larger furnace builders in the world. The commercial heat treating division of which ALD in Mexico is part of consists of 3 locations, Mexico, Port Huron, Michigan, USA and Limbach-Oberfrohna, Germany and we at “The Monty” have had the privilege of seeing all three locations, all of which are very well organized with brand new equipment. It is certainly no secret that the US and Mexico operations primarily service General Motors while the German locations largely concentrates on automotive work from German auto parts manufacturers. October 10, 2017   

SSI Seminars

“Last week SSI was busy putting on technical seminars in Queretaro, Mexico and Shanghai, China.  Working with their local offices in those regions, Damian Bratcher and Jim Oakes provided technical content to quite large groups and it was well received.  This year they provided technical seminars in a number of locations including here in Toronto, Canada.  Look for SSI to announce dates and cities for 2018 in the coming months. SSi will of course be exhibiting in a couple weeks at the Heat Treat Show in Columbus.  You can find them at booth 2407 and they will be presenting a technical paper on FNC and Post Oxidation during the Technical Session on Tuesday as well as Process Automation at the Solution Center on Wednesday.” Jim Oakes, VP Business Development, SSi, Super Systems October 10, 2017   

Thanksgiving Holiday

Due to the Thanksgiving Holiday we will be closed with no news updates for October 9th.  Regular updates will begin on October 10th.  Enjoy your holiday! October 9, 2017   

Jamie Jones Presented With MTI Distinguished Service Award

“Solar Atmospheres president, Jamie Jones, was recently presented with the Metal Treating Institute (MTI) Distinguished Service Award for 2017, and nominated as Vice President / President Elect of MTI for 2017-2018.  Jamie has served on the Institute’s Board of Governors since 2013.  He has served on a variety of different committees including the Education Committee and NextGen Creative Team. Jamie was honored to receive the Distinguished Service Award, an award given for outstanding, significant, and well recognized contributions of lasting importance to the MTI. Solar Atmospheres has been a member of MTI since 1983. Jamie indicated that he was “very happy to serve the MTI in this capacity. I look forward to the challenges ahead and embrace the opportunity to build MTI to be an even more all-encompassing organization for commercial and contract heat treaters around the globe.” The Metal Treating Institute (MTI) is the world’s largest collection of commercial heat treaters with locations in 40 states, 8 countries, and over $1.2 billion in annual sales. More information can be obtained about MTI by going to additional information about Solar Atmospheres, please contact Mike Moyer, Director of Sales at 215-721-1502 x1207, or, or visit us at” October 6, 2017   

Roger Jones, CEO of Solar Atmospheres; Jamie Jones, President of Solar Atmospheres, Souderton.

Kanthal Press Release

The motivation from the Jury is: “Sunfire GmbH has developed a process converting regenerative power, CO2 and water into synthetic gas or a crude oil substitute (Blue Crude) which has the potential to satisfy the key need for CO2-neutral transportation fuels for the sustainable society of tomorrow. Sunfire is nominated for their process which utilizes waste heat with the help of efficient high temperature flow heaters to maximize the overall efficiency.” “It feels great, I’m very motivated”, said Sebastian Becker, Sunfire GmbH. “Sunfire has a very motivated team and we are eager to make the world more renewable. Hopefully we have the right idea at the right time with the right people, and I think this can make us successful.” Dr Dilip Chandrasekaran, Head of R&D and Technology at Kanthal, and Chairman of the Jury, said: “Sunfire GmbH has with their technology fulfilled the key criteria for the Kanthal® Award, to promote innovation, sustainability and benefits on a global scale.”

The Kanthal® Award recognizes innovations related to new solutions in sustainability, quality of life and the field of energy efficiency. The Kanthal® Award includes a prize sum of 5000 Euro ($5500), a statuette and a diploma. The prize sum is, however, not for the winner to keep, but is to be donated to a charitable organization which supports the same criteria the Kanthal® Award is based. Sunfire GmbH will donate their award to the environmental organization Greenpeace. Kanthal is Sandvik Groups global brand in heating technology with access to Sandvik’s world-class resources, including research and development and advanced processing technologies. The company has a strong tradition in innovation and makes extensive investments in R&D. For further information please visit: October 6, 2017   

SECO/WARWICK Sells Vacuum Nitriding System Into Mexico

Interesting that this is the second time in two days that we have announced furnace builder SECO/WARWICK selling a “Zero Flow” gas nitriding system, yesterday it was India today it is Mexico. October 5, 2017   

“A global manufacturer of steel and specialty alloys has purchased a SECO/WARWICK nitriding system with vacuum purge and two tempering units to support their expansion in Mexico. The tempering furnaces will be paired with two existing systems, while the large nitriding unit will stand alone, equipped with ZeroFlowR gas nitriding technology. ZeroFlow technology is a critical tool to enable users to be competitive with traditional systems by reducing the total cost of ownership and producing high quality product. Since 2012, SECO/WARWICK has commissioned several dozen ZeroFlow installations worldwide. Customers using the ZeroFlow technology report savings in ammonia consumption over traditional methods on average while achieving better metallurgical results The two SECO/WARWICK standard box (chamber) tempering furnaces feature a rugged, heavy duty industrial design for uniform heat treating and tempering a wide variety of parts. Also included in this package were comprehensive Professional Technical Services including pairing the new equipment with existing systems, start up, and commissioning of the completed heat treating lines. “Serving our global partners is the primary reason that SECO/WARWICK has introduced both the ZeroFlow technology and the new Professional Technical Service program. This is a good example of our Service program in action, supporting our customers by pairing new equipment with their existing manufacturing cell enabling them to get the most value from their capital purchase,” commented Jonathan Markley, Managing Director, SECO/WARWICK, USA.”

Kyle Moore of Paulo Promoted

By way of background we should say that Paulo is the second largest commercial heat treater in North America. October 5, 2017   

Paulo is excited to announce that Kyle Moore has accepted the St. Louis Production Manager position effective October 2nd. Kyle joined Paulo in 2014 as a Corporate Quality Management Associate. He was influential in improving our quality management systems and performing audits for ISO 9001, AS9100, TS16949, CQI-9, and NADCAP across multiple facilities. Kyle was then promoted to Paulo St. Louis Quality Manager.  In this role he improved the customer experience, enhanced the service level of the quality system and systematically worked through well over 50 PPAP’s (Production Part Approval Process) in 2017.  His commitment to the Paulo team and our customers has been instrumental in the success of the plant.  His ability to lead process improvement, problem solve, and interface with customers will continue his success as Production Manager.  Kyle demonstrates excellent understanding and commitment to our mission of helping our customers succeed.

Tim Mohr, St. Louis Plant Manager, added, “As Quality Manager Kyle has made tremendous improvements to our Quality Systems.  I’m excited for him to move into the Production Manager role and continue to move the ball down the field.” Kyle commented, “We have all seen Paulo grow and change and I am very fortunate and proud to be a part of this.  I am excited about our future and the team we have assembled to get us there.  I look forward to continuing to build our relationships and make our team even stronger.” Ben Crawford, Vice President Operations, comments “Paulo’s commitment to developing talent internally remains.  I’m excited to watch Kyle flourish and the plant prosper from his growth and knowledge.” Founded in 1943, Paulo is one of the largest providers of heat treating, brazing, and metal finishing solutions in North America. Headquartered in St. Louis, Paulo operates six divisions servicing the Midwest and Southeast regions of the United States and northern Mexico.”

Kalyani Thermal Processing

We go to India for this brief news item about a company by the name of Kalyani who is involved in a number of different facets of the heat treating industry including heat treating in house and commercial and building furnaces. October 4, 2017   

“Kalyani Thermal Processing has been merged with parent company ‘Kalyani Technoforge Ltd’, however it will continue its commercial thermal processing business as a separate profit center division.  Our sister company Kalyani Technoforge has recently added a brand new gas nitriding vacuum furnace with zero flow technology purchased from Secowarwick. This furnace is of 1500 kg gross capacity with capabilities of ferritic nitrocarburising, nitriding. Regards, Mandar Bidawe, Business Development Head, Thermal Processing Business, Kalyani Technoforge Ltd, Pune, India”

Super Systems Inc. – Mexico

“SSI Mexico held the 2nd technical seminar in Queretaro, Mexico on 28 Sept 2017. The sixty plus attendees were provided a technical overview of CQI-9, pyrometry services including TUS and SATs, atmosphere generation, oxygen sensor operation and troubleshooting, generator diagnostics, furnace maintenance and aluminum heat treating and microstructures. SSI Mexico provided a product show room to demonstrate real solutions for the technical issues presented. And, as a token of appreciation, the event ended with tapas, cervezas and tequila. Super Systems agradece a todos los que vinieron al evento. The 3rd seminar has been tentative scheduled for 1Q2018.” October 4, 2017   

product showroom

“after party” and the 30 people that closed the bar!

Joe Saliba Hired by Onex Inc.

“Onex Inc., Erie, PA is very pleased to announce that Joe Saliba has joined our team and will be responsible for further development of the Blue Diamond Furnace Division. Onex, Inc. is an industrial furnace and service company that serves the heat intensive manufacturers in the surrounding region.

 Joe is a graduate of Niagara College’s Mechanical Engineering Technology Program and has been involved in the industrial furnace business for many years. He started his career off with an internship at H&S Heat Treating, Port Robinson, Ontario, Canada and then working at Can-Eng Furnaces, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada for 15 years. In his most recent role Joe was Sales Manager and utilized many innovative ideas developing unconventional customized solutions for customers.

 “I am really excited to be part of the team here at Onex. Our company is founded in service and our reputation for responding quickly to our customers’ needs and staying connected with them has led to very loyal business relationships. I’m very proud to be part of an organization that can provide full thermal processing service work. We are all really looking forward to further developing the Blue Diamond Furnace Division and showing new customers the quality furnace systems that Onex designs and builds.” October 3, 2017   

William Oliver Wright June 26, 1930 – September 26, 2017

While we never knew William Wright he gave some friends of ours a start in the heat treating industry. William Wright and his cousin had a manufacturers rep firm in the Chicago area specializing in the heat treat industry. Going back a number of years he hired a young fellow by the name of Jim Wilbur to assist him in the business which ended up with Jim buying the business. William Wright & Associates is now one of the top rep firms in the Midwest and along with Jim there is also KC Wright and Willy Wright. October 3, 2017   

“William Oliver Wright, 87, passed away peacefully surrounded by his loving family on September 26, 2017. William is survived by his loving children Kathryn (Andy) Roscher, Clifford (Celeste) Wright, David (Diane) Wright, his brother Clifford (Suzanne) Wright, numerous nieces and nephews, 9 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife Sheila. Interment will be private at Lake Forest Cemetery. A Celebration of Life gathering will be held at the Deerpath Inn, 255 E Illinois Ave, Lake Forest, IL on Tuesday, October 3rd from 4:00 to 8:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, gifts in memory of William may be made to Friends of Lake Bluff Parks, 355 West Washington Ave, Lake Bluff, IL 60044 847-234-4150. Please ensure that your gift is in memory of William Wright. Information at Wenban Funeral Home 847-234-0022 or”

Fluke Instruments & IDEMITSU

So what do Fluke (a supplier of Temperature measurement solutions for heat treatment processes) and IDEMITSU (a global supplier of lubricants and petrochemical products) have in common? If you said absolutely nothing we would certainly understand however in this case they do have something in common. Both are our most recent advertisers (their banner ads can be found on the top of the page and on either side of each page) and both will have very large exhibits at the upcoming ASM show in Columbus, Ohio later this month. Please take the time to have a quick look at what each company has to offer. October 3, 2017   

Monday Morning Briefing

October 6th/2017 there will be an auction of the remaining equipment belonging to RF Machining LLC., in Statesville, NC. Amongst a large collection of gear hobbers, shapers and associated equipment are a couple of Induction systems including a 50KW Pillar Induction Hardening System which in the pictures looks to be in pretty good shape. Speaking of auctions remember Donovan Heat Treating in Philadelphia? Very unfortunately this family owned commercial heat treater closed down and all of the equipment went to auction May of this year. We never did hear how successful the auction was but just this week a reader asked if we knew where the large 41’ car bottom furnace had gone to. His understanding was that “some guy in Ohio” bought it but as to the company he wasn’t sure. Anybody out there know who bought this furnace? Ken Lester who was in charge of the heat treating department at R. H. Sheppard Co., Inc. in Hanover PA retired this past week. R.H. Sheppard Company is a manufacturer of gears for power steering systems and has a large in house heat treating department consisting of a number of batch IQ furnaces.

In Australia Heat Treatment Australia is certainly doing well these days and is the result of a great deal of work, investment and foresight. Australia’s defence industry employs around 26,000 people. Most of them are employed by small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Some of those companies have found a niche doing something that is too specialised for a prime contractor, or which a prime cannot do in-house economically. And that includes some very specialised, high value manufacturing and process operations, which makes them vital parts of collaborative teams and the supply chains of the major prime contractors. For Dr Karen Stanton, Strategy Director at Heat Treatment Australia (HTA) in Brisbane, collaboration is essential. “As they say, necessity breeds invention, and the nature of our economy and markets (limited scale, niche markets, difficulties achieving critical mass) means that Australian companies must innovate and create in order to be successful.” The company specialises in heat treatment of aerospace components that is an essential step in the manufacturing process. Some of these processes could not be done in Australia before HTA developed the capability, and the knock-on effect for Australian industry has been significant, she believes. One example is a vacuum hardening process pioneered by HTA. This is the only process of its kind that is approved for certain F-35 undercarriage components; indeed, HTA is the only company in the 10-nation F-35 partnership approved to carry it out. “The F-35 program was the driver behind this innovation and it would not have eventuated if HTA was not involved in the program,” Stanton says. HTA is the only heat treatment business in Australia approved by Lockheed Martin and aerospace accreditation agency Nadcap, she says. Without HTA, components built by at least six other Australian F-35 suppliers would have to be treated overseas, putting their entire body of work at risk due to additional costs and risks such as hedging exchange rate fluctuations, transportation, time delays and travel.” French vacuum furnace builder BMI September 14th celebrated their 70th anniversary in business. To highlight the occasion the company hosted 64 people from 12 countries for an open house, a picture of the event can be seen below.

H.C Starck Press Release; “H.C. Starck‘s furnace group has delivered a uniquely engineered, high temperature refractory metal hot zone to one of its furnace customers. Collaborating with the customer on this project, H.C. Starck demonstrated its focused engineering resources and dedicated manufacturing team which has been used to design and engineer fabricated products for the furnace industry. With H.C. Starck’s portfolio of refractory metals, the team fabricated a 1600°C hot zone designed to operate in a vacuum, with certain inert gases or in a reducing atmosphere. By simulating the temperature of each layer, H.C. Starck’s engineering team ensured the proper materials were applied throughout the hot zone. ”H.C. Starck is excited to deliver the first of its kind refractory metal hot zone with our team of dedicated furnace and metallurgical professionals utilizing the latest technology to simulate and design superior products. We are committed to providing the best in excellence to our customers,” said Andreas Mader, President and CEO of the Fabricated Products Division.”

 Safed Press Release;SAFED Laboratory convinces Industry Leaders; The SAFED laboratory that opened last year in Mödling, Austria has spurred the interest of numerous businesses within the European heat treatment industry. The test plant is already contributing to the continued advancement of thermal processes, says Dr Herwig Altena, head of development and applications engineering at AICHELIN Holding in Mödling. AICHELIN, a subsidiary of the Berndorf Group ranges among the worldwide leaders for the production of industrial furnace plants.  “We are very happy about the numerous inquiries and the exciting and informative experiments that we are now conducting together with our customers. This way, we can test processes individually under real-life conditions and work on solutions tailored to our customers’ needs,” Dr Altena says, satisfied. Visitors to the laboratory are mostly European companies and leaders of the screw, fastenings, and coin industry. In most cases, they come with very clear ideas but want to gain valuable knowledge before making a definitive decision to buy, or they want to test critical precision adjustments and clarify detailed issues in practice. AICHELIN also benefits from these manifold tests. The company can enhance their profound know-how and will thus be able to use the added value gained in product development and process optimization to the advantage of their customers. The test plant is a cast link belt furnace, which is ideally suited for bright annealing, hardening under protective gas atmosphere, carburization or case-hardening, artificial aging as well as tempering. At temperatures of up to 1,100 degrees Celcius, steel components can be treated under any desired composition of protective gas atmosphere. The gas supply panels of the SAFED plant enable the supply of nitrogen, endogas, hydrogen, propane, natural gas, and air.  At a maximum loading of 30 kilograms per running meter, the cycle time is between 7.5 and 60 minutes. The plant also has a rapid cooling device, enabling cooling down to under 100 degrees within 2 minutes. When working with thin-walled components such as razor blades, customers are also able to use gas cooling in order to reach their desired results.” October 2, 2017   

The Golden Nugget: Bill Jones Speaks

“The Solar Atmospheres group of companies announces the October 2017 publication of the unique memoirs of its founder and owner, Bill Jones, an icon in his field. Part memoir, part technical guide, The Golden Nugget: An Entrepreneur Speaks, by William R. Jones and co-author Heather Idell, takes the reader on a journey through Mr. Jones’ life and career – from a curious, technically adept young man to becoming one of the most lauded and respected leaders in the vacuum furnace and heat treating industries. Providing insight into the mind of an entrepreneur, the book also chronicles the technical innovations that propelled Mr. Jones to the forefront of these in dustries. A must-read for metallurgists, heat treating professionals, and entrepreneurs, as well as students of business and manufacturing. For information on how to obtain a copy of the book, visit” October 2, 2017   

An Interview with Peter Schweighofer, CEO of Italian Furnace Builder, Cieffe International AG

Peter your route to the heat-treating industry has not been as direct as many. Could you tell us how you ended up here?

“Absolutely, it is more the result of many accidental factors. I joined Accu Holding AG, the former owner and mother company of Cieffe, as M&A manager and Head of Finance back in April 2014 just before the intended acquisition and financial integration of the whole Cieffe Group started. My first project therefore was to perform a due diligence of the acquisition target including a strategic analysis of the end markets with the corresponding economic potential. This gave me a broad and enhanced understanding of the major industry drivers, the structure of the end markets, the players as well as the cyclicality of order partners from different customers. Unfortunately, Accu got into serious financial troubles and was forced to divest all relevant assets.  Supported by the two remaining major shareholders, we decided to buy out Cieffe Group from the assets in liquidation and to launch a radical and far-reaching restructuring program. Consequently, I took over this challenging responsibility to lead this project as CEO of the new holding company Cieffe International AG in Zug (Switzerland).”

Please tell us what you can about Cieffe, the size of the company, markets served, the types of furnaces you offer, anything that you feel comfortable sharing.

“After downsizing the company in non-core segments and focusing on the core business we currently employ slightly over 100 people in Italy and a few selective sales agents in important strategic markets. Although our product portfolio offers a full range of products, from chamber furnaces to nitriding lines, we are currently unable to compete on a global basis in every segment. Therefore, we focus on our existing strong customer basis within Europe and to grow our platform through their global expansion. This approach requires a clear focus on innovations and technological developments to secure the competitive advantage for our customer and/or the OEM. The most recent example is the political development regarding electrical cars. This requires us to find efficient commercial solutions for processing smaller parts and/ or combining different materials at various temperatures.”

I don’t want to dwell on this but there were some issues in 2016 having to do with the ownership of the company. Could you address these issues?

“You are referring to the bankruptcy of the previous owner Accu Holding. Unfortunately, the former CEO Marco Marchetti and majority shareholder had been remanded in custody for misappropriate use of funds and falsification of documents on April 11th, 2016. The subsequent investigation revealed multiple and severely punishable criminal offences. This resulted not only into the liquidation of Accu but also triggered massive financial distress in all other companies involving M. Marchetti as owner or executive. To protect us from regressive actions we had to financially restructure Cieffe, to put the companies into liquidation and to restore trust towards our customers by transferring all operating activities into a new structure. Therefore, we incorporated Cieffe Thermal Systems S.R.L.  as rescue company in October 2016. Since the 1st of April 2017 we are fully operational and independent.”  September 29, 2017  

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Rockford Heat Treaters Buys Ipsen Titan H6 Vacuum Furnace

“The original beta tester for the TITAN® vacuum furnace when it first launched – and the proud owner of more than 24 other Ipsen furnaces – Rockford Heat Treaters (RHT) remains focused on providing their customers with high-quality options so they can stay competitive in today’s market. As RHT continues to invest in their plant and equipment, they recently purchased a TITAN H6 to expand production capacity and cater to increased demand.  As a commercial heat treater, process versatility is essential in a shop where requirements change on a day-to-day, or even hour-to-hour, basis. Part of what appealed to the company about the TITAN product line is its high adaptability and part cleanliness. In fact, when they purchased the first TITAN furnace, it gave them the flexibility to expand their customer base and take jobs not previously possible. Their newest furnace continues in this tradition, and it will join many other Ipsen furnaces, including a complete atmosphere line of seven integral quench furnaces with ancillary washers and tempers, more than a dozen draw furnaces, a VFS® vacuum furnace and four other vacuum furnaces.

The TITAN H6 has a 36” W x 36” H x 48” D (915 mm x 915 mm x 1,220 mm) all-graphite hot zone with a 3,000-pound (1,361 kg) load capacity. Equipped with a diffusion pump, this furnace allows them to meet Aerospace requirements and process sensitive materials that require deep vacuum levels. RHT also took advantage of several Ipsen support offerings, including on-site inspection of the installation, equipment start up and personnel training. This support, coupled with Ipsen’s inventory of speculation-based TITAN furnaces, allowed RHT to begin processing customer parts within five weeks of issuing the purchase order. With the current option to trade in an old furnace and receive a $50,000 credit toward a new TITAN® vacuum furnace, other companies can invest in their customers while adding the latest innovations to their facility as well. The TITAN vacuum furnace incorporates years of customer feedback to deliver user-friendly features, all while maintaining a global platform, small footprint and short delivery times. Available in several sizes and horizontal or vertical configurations, the TITAN provides powerful performance for both experienced and first-time heat treaters. Learn more about this opportunity at

About RHT – With over 50 years of servicing an array of customers, Rockford Heat Treaters, Inc. knows what it takes to give customers the quality and service they need to be competitive in today’s market. Being family owned and operated, they ensure that the customer always comes first. They are continually moving forward to stay current with today’s technology and the environment. Learn more at

About Ipsen Ipsen designs and manufactures integrated heat treatment solutions for a wide variety of industries, including Aerospace, Automotive, Energy and Medical. With an extensive network of global locations in America, Europe and Asia, we continue to provide expert-driven solutions that strengthen heat treatment throughout the world. Learn more at” September 29, 2017   

Macsteel Special Steels, Dunswart, South Africa

For a number of reasons ranging from a downturn in natural resource prices, to political uncertainty and continuing all the way to a shrinking economy the South African economy is struggling these days but this is not to say that all companies are having a difficult time. Macsteel the largest steel distributor in Africa certainly sees the challenges but overall the company is doing quite well. The company has several location around the country but we saw the largest which is located in Dunswart close to the manufacturing center of Johannesburg  This location operates as both a captive heat treater (heat treating their own products) and a commercial heat treater processing parts such as fasteners, some auto parts and a large variety of mining components. This location covers the gauntlet when it comes to heat treating and their equipment reflects this, mesh belt austempering lines, batch IQ furnaces, vacuum furnaces, a pit furnace and numerous box furnaces. We would not describe the equipment as “state of the art” however the depth of knowledge at this location is very impressive and Daan Du Plooy, General Manager and his team obviously know their stuff, do a good job and run a good profitable operation. While we did not see an enormous number of captive heat treats in South Africa we understand that this is one of the larger ones. In the photos below you see Derrick Murphy, Manager of Metallurgical Services on the left, Daan Du Plooy and Gord Montgomery September 28, 2017   

SECO/WARWICK 20th Training Seminar

September 12-14th furnace manufacturer SECO/WARWICK held their 20th Training Seminar combined with an “Open Day” at their facility in Swiebodzin, Poland. Having visited the company we should correct that and say that SECO actually has 2 or 3 locations in this area, from the pictures I would say that this is the largest of their locations. These pictures show the plant and attendance. September 28, 2017   

Trifast PLC

Pretty well unknown in North America UK based fastener manufacturer Trifast with manufacturing locations around Europe and Asia is deciding that doing heat treating in house makes sense. To that end the company has just installed a brand new £1 million new heat treatment plant at their TR Vic location in Italy. This will be combined with new automated inspection and packaging equipment. Many a captive or commercial heat treater processing fasteners has found that combining heat treating, packaging, coating and sorting makes a heck of a lot of sense when combined into the same area. While Trifast does currently do heat treating in house the company has made it plain that the heat treating aspect of their business will be expanded. September 27, 2017   

KERN-LIEBERS Installing Expanite Technology in China

“Today it’s formally announced that the German industrial supplier KERN-LIEBERS with approx. 7,500 people working at over 50 locations globally will install Expanite’s patented technology for surface hardening of stainless steel. Driven by demand from one of the world’s leading manufacturer of automotive fuel pumps, the installation will be done at KERN-LIEBERS’ facility in Taicang, China, and shall be operational by November 2017.  Based on a license agreement between the two companies, KERN-LIEBERS will install equipment capable of executing Expanite processes in their Taicang facility. By this move, Expanite will be the first supplier of stainless steel surface hardening who can offer the same unique product in Asia, Europe and the US. Together, KERN-LIEBERS and Expanite will promote this technology to companies in the region.

Expanite is a pioneer within the field of surface hardening of stainless steel and titanium, and has in the recent years grown to become a proven supplier of surface hardening and heat treatment to industries such as food & beverage processing, consumer goods, medical device, pumps, valves and various industrial applications. With Expanite’s processes it is possible to increase wear and corrosion resistance of stainless steel beyond what was thought possible in the past.  “We are very excited about adding Expanite hardening to our portfolio of solutions to companies with presence in Asia and in the need of improving performance on stainless steel parts. This business opportunity, based on a well-proven yet innovative technology, will ensure that KERN-LIEBERS Taicang can continue its growth path of the last decade” says Richard Zhang, CEO of KERN-LIEBERS in Taicang.” September 27, 2017   

Donald Trump and the Heat Treating Industry

September 18th we had some comments about trade protectionism, US President Donald Trump and how much of the heat treating equipment used in North America originates in North America. This prompted some comments including this one.

“Hi Gord, Longtime faithful reader here. I saw your article about the potential impacts of protectionist policies as well as the reader follow-up and wanted to point out a few other risks of the US taking a  stance against free trade. For starters, your original article seems to imply that “America First” means “North America First,” and I don’t think that’s the case. The current administration seems to be staunchly opposed to NAFTA which means they could scrap NAFTA and impose tariffs on both Canadian and Mexican goods. That would have obvious impacts on a number of operations that manufacture furnaces (CAN-ENG) or fabrications in these countries as well as operations that move their commercial work to Mexico and back to save money. Then there are the manufacturers that build their products, including furnaces, in the former Soviet Block countries like SGL Carbon, Seco-Warwick, Nitrex and others. Obviously they would be put in a position of having to open manufacturing capability in the US or contract with a US manufacturer, both of which would increase their cost-basis. Finally, it’s highly likely that other countries would respond with tariffs on US-manufactured goods and while a number of companies have set-up shop in China for building their US-branded furnaces, China could restructure their tax laws governing wholly-owned foreign enterprises (WOFEs) resulting in a substantial impact on company profits. I believe it’s clear that the risks associated with protectionism and trade wars far outweigh any potential upside. A far better way to bring back more manufacturing is to revise the US tax code to encourage capital investments in US facilities. Just my two cents. -HM”  September 26, 2017   

Solar Atmospheres Greenville, SC Facility Is Now Nadcap Approved for Furnace Brazing

Greenville, SC, September 25, 2017 – Solar Atmospheres Greenville, SC facility has for the second successive year expanded its scope of Nadcap approval:  this time to include vacuum furnace brazing for the growing aerospace manufacturing cluster in the Southeast US.

Jon Collier, Quality Manager at Solar Atmospheres in Greenville, SC states, “Earning this Nadcap accreditation for vacuum furnace brazing reaffirms our commitment to providing our customers with quality services that meet the increasingly stringent requirements of the aerospace industry. This accomplishment speaks to the effort of the entire Solar team coming together to build and implement the additional systems required to achieve this expansion of scope.”

Mike Harper, Regional Sales Manager, Southeast states: “we are excited to once again demonstrate what Solar Atmospheres is all about, listening to the needs of our customers and responding with a solution to meet those needs.”

With thermal processing in furnaces ranging from those suited for small lots and development cycles to a 6-1/2 foot diameter by 24 foot long vacuum chamber capable of processing up to 50,000 lbs at 2400°F, Solar Atmospheres is backed by AS9100 and Nadcap quality systems to provide our customers the confidence that their product is being processed appropriately.

For additional information on our processing options and our capabilities in Greenville, contact Mike Harper at, and visit us at, or call 1-855-WE-HEAT-IT.   September 26, 2017   

Monday Morning Briefing

We start off the week in the UK where Vacuum and Atmosphere Services has this announcement; “VAS would like to announce that Gary Nicholls, & Pat Whitehead have joined the VAS team. With multiple years experience within the heat treatment industry, VAS are delighted to have Gary & Pat as an addition to the already vastly experienced engineering team at VAS. Both, Gary & Pat have firmly found their feet at VAS, & are helping combat the ever growing project order book both onsite, & within the VAS factory. VAS have seen a significant growth on every aspect of the business within 2017, & are still actively looking for engineers with experience on heat treatment equipment. Staying in the UK we also see that commercial heat treater Wallwork Group, one of the largest commercial heat treaters in the country has just hired a new Sales Manager, Mr. Dean Brinton. “Starting his career at Heat Treatment2000 in 1997, responsible for the continuous mesh belt process, Dean then moved to TTI Group in 2001. Here he gained detailed knowledge of vacuum hardening and tempering. Within four years he was promoted to TTI’s Birmingham PVD coating department and then on to production management.”

In Canada we hear that Dan Belanger has parted ways with commercial heat treater H & S Heat Treating in Port Robinson, Ontario. Danny has been with the company for as long as I can remember which  means it is quite a while. H & S is one of the larger commercial heat treaters in the country and specializes in Batch IQ and continuous processing. Also in Canada furnace builder Can-Eng must be pretty darned pleased with this picture which we have to assume was accidental. “As Alabama Governor Kay Ivey officially opened Kamtek’s (a manufacturing operation of global automotive supplier – Magna International) new manufacturing facility in Birmingham, Alabama one premium equipment manufacturer’s name could be seen above the backdrop; Can-Eng. Can-Eng Furnaces International Ltd. The new, $60 million facility for manufacturing aluminum castings is another shift in the automotive industry towards further lightweighting. “

In upcoming news for this week we have a couple of interesting items for you including an interview with the CEO of CIEFFE Furnaces of Italy, Mr. Peter Schweighofer and also a profile of one of the larger captive heat treaters in South Africa, a photo of which can be seen below.

Where are they now? Mike Wellham. Remember Mike? He was CEO of Bluewater Thermal a few years back when Bluewater was the second largest commercial heat treater in North America and really tuned the company around. He left Bluewater a few years back and just became CEO of Advanced Integration Technology. Mike was always a sharp, ambitious guy. A reader happened to send us this news item which caught our eye because the furnaces referred to in this note was a large ECM vacuum carburizing system, hard to believe it is 5 years ago now. “FALCONER, NY – A loan issued years ago to a major Chautauqua County employer was paid off last month and earlier than originally anticipated. As a result, around $812,000 in loans are available for more business expansion and investment locally. Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency officials recently announced that SKF Aeroengine in Falconer paid off an Al-Tech Loan they were issued 15 years early. The loan totaled $1 million for a 20-year period. “It was paid off after five years, which is way earlier than expected,” said Rich Dixon, IDA chief financial officer. The Al-Tech Loan issued by the IDA provides companies that are investing and creating new jobs with the ability to secure financing at below-market, fixed-interest rates. IDA officials say it allows companies to grow faster or plan larger expansions that need investment to retain or grow jobs. Along with other incentives, the Al Tech Loan was issued to the developer who bought 96,000-square-feet of property and built a new world-class heat treatment facility for SKF five years ago. SKF, a lead bearing and seal company, leases the facility. New hardening and carburizing furnaces were placed in the facility to suit the low volume, high precision aerospace product manufactured in Falconer. September 25, 2017   


“United Process Controls (UPC), a leading global provider of process controls, flow controls and automation solutions, is pleased to announce the acquisition of Atmosphere Engineering Company (Atmosphere Engineering), a USA-based, family-owned and operated business led by brothers Jason and Eric Jossart. Founded in 2002, Atmosphere Engineering designs and manufactures industrial flow control products, furnace control products and data acquisition software with a strong presence in North America, South America and Europe.  Atmosphere Engineering will bolster UPC’s product offering and technical competencies, adding brands like the FurnaceMeter™ and VersaMeter™ flow meters, the Endoinjector™, Exoinjector™ and EndoFlex™ gas generators and the dissociated ammonia generator DAGen™. While the acquisition expands the company’s customer base, it will also provide a platform to expand into new markets, extend market penetration in the flow controls market, and capitalize on cross-sell opportunities. 

Additionally, UPC has enhanced its organizational structure to align with the future direction of the company and its foundation for continued growth. As part of the new structure, Jason Jossart will serve as the company’s Vice President of Operations and report directly to UPC’s President, Paul Oleszkiewicz; Eric Jossart will join as Director of Sales, Heat Treat and report directly to Vice President of Sales & Marketing, Patrick Torok. 
“Atmosphere Engineering represents a great fit with our flow and process controls business and is in line with UPC’s strategic direction to expand its repertoire of products and leadership in the industry,” commented UPC President Paul Oleszkiewicz. “Jason and Eric run an incredible business, and we are excited to welcome them and the entire Atmosphere Engineering team to the UPC family. This acquisition shows our ongoing commitment to provide customers worldwide with a comprehensive portfolio of process and flow control solutions that optimize the quality, safety, and control of heat treating operations.” 

Jason Jossart, founder and President of Atmosphere Engineering commented “We at Atmosphere Engineering are very pleased to join forces with UPC. My brother Eric and I have worked hard to build Atmosphere Engineering’s brand and reputation and are excited to see it grow further as part of UPC. Together we will emerge as a leader in flow and process controls to the heat treat industry and address new market challenges and opportunities for technical innovation and growth.” 

ABOUT ATMOSPHERE ENGINEERING. Atmosphere Engineering Company designs and manufactures integrated flow control solutions for industrial applications. The company aims to continually develop and support systems that optimize the quality, safety, and control of each process while at the same time minimizing gas and fluid consumption to reduce production cost and eliminate energy waste. | 

ABOUT UPC. UPC provides process control, flow control, and automation solutions to furnace OEMs and customers with thermal processing equipment and operations. The company is now comprised of five brands – Atmosphere Engineering, Furnace Control Corporation, Marathon Monitors, Process-Electronic, and Waukee Engineering – with products ranging from probes, analyzers, flow meters, programmable controllers, generator mixing control systems, SCADA to complete turnkey systems. |”  September 22, 2017   

Kary Peterson, Beavermatic

Kary Peterson, a well known fellow in the North American heat treating market sent us this picture and story which dates back to 1986. September 21, 2017   

“Enclosed is a picture of me (Kary Peterson) in 1986 in Top Line Furnace located in  Paramount, CA. We had just purchased BeaverMatic IP from Barbra Beavers (Jack Beavers passed away in 1983). The rent had run out so I changed clothes quickly and started loading various assemblies on a truck to move back to Rockford, IL. Yes my hair color has changed, and from various theories!”

North American Furnaces Made in North America?

Last week we had some thoughts about “globalization” and how it effects the North American new furnace market. Specifically we suggested that most new furnaces purchased in North America are built by North American companies. A reader had these thoughts which differ from ours to some extent. September 21, 2017   

“In response to your assertion that most NA furnaces are made in NA I would say that you have only looked at only a slim piece of the pie when it comes to Vacuum furnaces specifically.

First, ECM is all in France and ALD is entirely in Germany and they account for an overwhelmingly large fraction of vacuum carburizing cells due to their inroads with automotive manufacturing. But manufacturing of furnaces isn’t even the right word for North American furnace shops – it’s more like “assembly” at these furnace builders. More and more standardized shells or vessels are being brought in from overseas suppliers in the far east, almost all vacuum pump manufacturers are overseas; Siemens and A-B PLC’s and components are made in the far east. Most graphite comes from Japan and other overseas countries, at least at some point in the actual “making” and not “fabricating”

The OEM’s are very much employing engineers and overseeing the final assembly in their respective shops, that much is true. But when you look at the true global supply chain, I think you’d find that many parts of the furnace have deep roots well beyond our own borders. Without free trade, the cost of a fully finished furnace from an OEM would skyrocket. Regardless of our political leanings – if we should end fair trade, the OEM’s of North America will suffer at a minimum exporting their product on the world market, and in the worst case be eliminated due to unburdened global competition.” Michael Lister, Senior Sales Engineer at Flowserve in Texas. 

Picture Day!

On a regular basis we change the photo display on our home page and today is the day. We would politely suggest that our assortment of equipment and people pictures from various captive and commercial heat treaters from around the world might be of interest. Always feel free to send us your own pictures and we will be happy to use them. September 20, 2017   

TD Coating Centre, South Africa

While our main focus at “The Monty” is heat treating we sometimes veer into coatings, shot peening and surface hardening because they are all so closely related (We will stress though that only occasionaly dIn this case we talk about a company by the name of TD Coatings located in South Africa, a firm that we have corresponded with for over 10 years now. TD was founded in 2000 by Mr. Jeff Ferreira and his wife Kerry-Lee Ferreira to offer Thermal Diffusion coating;  since that time their product offerings have grown to include PVD Coatings, Boriding, Nitriding and several other process all of which are described in detail at These services are offered mainly for precision-made small tooling and components from steels, tool steels or carbides. While the South African market is a small one we are very pleased to say that TD has grown from very humble beginnings in 2000 to a growing company of almost 20 employees in 2017 and without a doubt the foremost company in the country for TD Coatinds and Boriding. September 19, 2017   

Applied Process

With two plant in the US, Livonia, Michigan and Oshkosh, Wisconsin Applied Process is one of the largest commercial heat treaters when it comes to austempering and probably the larges when it comes to ADI (Austempered Ductile Iron. We mention this press release today mainly  because it shows the state of heat treating in North America, good and getting better. September 19, 2017   

“2017 has been a dynamic year with a soft start and a consistent build to our record months in May and June.  At the same time, we have honed our schedule management to achieve record high on-time delivery while maintaining our expected level of the highest quality in the industry.  Agriculture and Heavy Truck have led the way with double digit percentage gains both in historical business along with new product releases.  ‘Seeds’ (time and effort) planted between two and four years ago are now flourishing and we are reaping the benefit of assisting our customers in producing lower cost, lightweight parts with higher performance utilizing Austempered Ductile Iron and Steel.”

New Vice President of Ipsen USA

We see that Mr. Peter Kerbel is now Vice President Sales at Ipsen USA. Peter has worked with furnace builder Ipsen since 2008 in a variety of sales positions. With the recent promotion of Mr. Pat McKenna to President of Ipsen USA we assume a few people will be moving up the ladder. Congratulations to Peter. September 19, 2017   

Donald Trump and the Heat Treating Industry

There has been a lot of talk recently about a “wave” of trade protectionism in the US under President Donald Trump. This could involve tearing up existing trade treaties such as NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement) between Canada, USA and Mexico, buy America policies, additional duties or taxes on imported items, penalties levied against country’s with too large a trade surplus with the US-you name it, it has been suggested. With this in mind are there many items heat treaters in North America need that comes from outside the US or North America that might be subject to some sort of penalties. And the answer is a resounding no which is rather interesting.  Almost all furnaces bought in North America are built in North America. Control systems are largely purchased from US companies, quench oil, salts, burners you name it most of these items are sourced from North American companies (yes we certainly understand that some of the largest furnace builders, Aichelin, Ipsen and Seco are all European companies but each has long established manufacturing facilities in North America). An exception would be some of the Japanese furnace builders but they restrict themselves largely to the Japanese transplants. Beyond that the only real exception to this would be high temperature alloy components sourced from Asia, primarily China which has been growing in popularity in North American because of lower costs and in many cases comparable quality. So North Americans in the heat treat industry can say with complete certainty that theirs is an industry which is still dominated by North American companies. September 18, 2017   

Pictures From The Past!

Today we have some pictures from the past.  September 18, 2017   

Steve Thompson, SSI, Don Longenette (at the time with Timken), Scott Johnstone, SSI

Dan McCurdy, Bodycote, Danny McWilliams (unfortunately we do not know the name of the woman in the middle)

Kyle Favors, Josh Harvey, Heat Treat Services Unlimited

What’s It Worth?

We were recently asked to give an opinion on this continuous brazing furnace as to value and how attractive it would be on the used market; “Rogers Engineering Continuous Brazing Furnace. Manufactured in 2007 by Rogers Engineering this an electrically heated, continuous, controlled atmosphere brazing furnace. System consists of an entry chamber with a manual door, two electrically heated braze zones, an Air-Jacketed atmosphere cooling chamber, manual door exit chamber and a Vac-U-Cool air cooling chamber. Parts are brought to a brazing temperature of 1112F (600C) then cooled in a controlled atmosphere to 482 F (250C). Each heating chamber is 7′ 4″ long. Maximum operating temperature of 1202F (650C). Like new condition. Asking $175,000 USD”. The furnace is relatively new, appears to be in excellent condition and is complete and ready to go. The price is reasonable, as a matter of fact probably fairly attractive the issue however is the number of potential buyers. At the end of the day a furnace like this with a very limited number of buyers can languish on the market for quite some no matter what the price is. On the other side of the coin if a buyer surfaces that needs exactly this size and style of furnace they can get one heck of a deal. We will keep you posted about what happens with this unit. September 18, 2017   

McLaughlin Services Installs New Nitrider

Commercial heat treater Accurate Steel Treating in Southgate, California has just installed a brand new gas nitriding unit provided by McLaughlin Services of Avilla, Indiana. When we say brand new we mean it-the furnace just started producing parts two weeks ago. The controls were provided by SSI of Cincinnati, Ohio. As far as we know this is the first gas nitrider McLaughlin Services has provided but it would appear to be a success with Accurate very pleased with the performance to date. September 15, 2017   

Hestia Heat Treat/Plant Manager Wanted

Remember how we told you not that long ago that Hestia Heat Treat in Racine, Wisconsin was sold? Well it looks as though the new owner is now looking for a plant manager. September 15, 2017   

“Hestia Heat Treat is searching for a dynamic Plant Manager to take on the responsibility of overseeing plant activities. The successful candidate will be accountable for all aspects of plant performance, with efficiency and safety, consistent with quality requirements. He or she will also delegate authority to key supervisors in production, manage all functions involved and direct and coordinate operations for the plant. Requires extensive knowledge of heat treating, operations management, metallurgy, inspection and customer needs through technical and advanced training, seminars, college, B.S.M.E. (metallurgy) and/or equivalent work experience.”

Heat Treating South Africa

Having absolutely nothing to do with heat treating we have this photo of Gord and Dale Montgomery during their time in South Africa seeing heat treaters (we have a couple of more profiles of South African heat treaters still to come). September 15, 2017   

Ajax TOCCO Magnethermic Retrofits Induction Heater

“Ajax TOCCO Magnethermic recently supplied a forestry products manufacturer with a compact remote transformer and low profile heating inductor to be used for preheating prior to GMAW. These items were sold as a field install kit that are compatible with and utilize the customer’s existing induction heating cables and accessories. The heating inductor floats above the weldment without making contact. Versatility and utilization of the 35 kW induction heater were immediately increased.  The customer had a need to be able to heat a rotating weldment with limited space between welds. Existing weld preheat inductors that roll on top of the weldment would not fit between the weldments, forcing the customer to rely combustion heating technology (torches).

Ajax TOCCO Magnethermic®, a subsidiary of ParkOhio Holdings Corp.®, designs and manufactures world-class induction heating and melting equipment for various industries and applications throughout the world. In addition, the Company provides a range of services including laboratory process development, preventive maintenance, equipment repair, and parts, coil repair facilities and installation services through its locations in North America, South America, Europe and Asia.  September 14, 2017   

Terry Bachmeier Retired

A heck of a lot of Canadians, a number of Americans and even a few Europeans will be quite familiar with Mr. Terry Bachmeier a long time heat treater based in Canada. Terry had his own heat treat in Canada which he sold many years ago before becoming General Manager of SCHMOLZ + BICKENBACH in Windsor, Ontario (directly across the river from Detroit). In it’s time Schmolz & Bichenback was one of the premier vacuum heat treaters in North America before it was closed down a number of years ago with some of the equipment moved to Carol Stream, Illinois (we still cry when we think of the enormous, almost new 12 bar Ipsen vacuum furnaces being cut up for scrap because the company was worried about any potential liability involved in selling them on the used market. If you can believe it holes were drilled in the vessels, the vessels cut in two and the separate sections sent to different scrap yards-absolutely true story, we saw it with our own eyes). After the company closed Terry spent a number of years as a manufacturers rep mainly for our friends at Rubig in Austria. Recently Terry retired leaving the industry poorer for the loss of his experience. September 14, 2017   

P.H Heat Treatment CC, Germiston, South Africa

And speaking of heat treating in South Afrcia lets look at the largest captive or commercial Sealed Quench (Batch IQ) processor in the country P.H. Heat Treatment CC. Cecil Zlotnick, started his career in heat treating by becoming a metallurgist trained at the university of Johannesburg before starting a short stint (3 years) at a steel mill and subsequently working for BOC where he helped develop nitrogen/methanol atmospheres for use in carburizing applications. In 1981 he bought a very small commercial heat treater by the name of P.H. Heat Treatment when he installed the company’s first sealed quench furnace. In 1984 P.H. moved to a new location and since then it has grown and prospered. The company today has 14 sealed quench units (most Ipsen through feed design), 2 shaker hearth furnaces mainly for processing fasteners and a Nitrex, Nitreg system. Interesting story about the Nitrex system; Back in 2003 Cecil attened a heat treat show in Indianapolis where he happened to run across some of the Nitrex fellows. A visit was quickly arranged to visit the Nitrex plant in Burlington,  Canada (this is now a Bodycote facility) and from there a visit to Montreal. The end result? P.H now has the only Nitrex system in Southern Africa.  Today the company has the ability to process 700 tons per month of carburizing, carbonitriding, neutral hardening, nitriding and several other processes and has roughly 50 employees making it one of the largest heat treaters in the country. These photos will give you an idea and in them you will see Cecil Zlotnick, Managing Director and Dale Boxshall-Smith, Works Manager. If you ever make it to South Africa Cecil and Dale are two of the friendliest guys you will ever meet. September 13, 2017   

Tim Mohr promoted  Paulo St. Louis Plant Manager

Tim Mohr has been with Paulo for 10 years. Since 2014 he has served as St. Louis’ Production Manager. In that role he was responsible for coordinating the daily operations of the plant. Managing shipping, scheduling, and the plant production team. Prior to that Tim was a corporate Project Engineer and Quality Management Representative. Tim has built great relationships with our customers and improved safety and productivity of the shop floor.  He will graduate from the Metal Treating Institute’s YES program this fall, a management training program for commercial heat treaters. September 13, 2017   

Bohler Uddeholm. Isando, South Africa

Without a doubt the largest commercial vacuum heat treater in South Africa and most likely the largest including captives is tool steel specialist Bohler Uddeholm with four locations around the country. We at “The Monty” only had the chance to visit the largest which is located in Isando which is a suburb of the largest city in the country and the manufacturing hub, Johannesburg. Bohler has been in the country since the 1960’s and this location offers plasma nitriding in Rubig manufactured furnaces, a very wide variety of salt processing furnaces and some very impressive vacuum furnaces, again mainly provided by Rubig of Austria. The most impressive of the bunch is a fairly new 10 bar unit. Bohler is one of a very few heat treating companies in South Africa which has the latest ISO accredidations. This is an impressive heat treat but having see a few Bohler plants around the world we were not surprised. September 12, 2017   

Danie Goosen, Manager Heat Treatment Isando, Gus Schroeder, Divisional HPM Manager

Mesh Belt Move Over?

Going back a number of years rotary retort furnaces (along with shaker hearth furnaces) was the furnace of choice for processing small parts, typically fasteners or chain components. Then along came mesh belt furnaces, a technology imported from Japan and rotary furnaces largely disappeared except for places like Borg Warner (timing chain), Blount (chain saw components) and Renolds Jeffrey (chain) to name a few. The reasons for decreased demand are many and varied but atmosphere control and the cost of retorts generally come up. For this reason we read with great interest a press release from furnace build SECO/WARWICK called; “Mesh Belt Move Over: Why the NEW Rotary Retort will be your next furnace. We at “The Monty” have no idea what the new style looks like but we are certainly curious.

SECO/WARWICK. Date and Time: Thu, Sep 28, 2017 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM EDT. This facts and figures webinar will show the math behind why rotary retort furnaces are quickly replacing mesh belts for specific parts and processes. It will also address the superior metallurgical results that can be obtained from this furnace. If you’ve never heard of a rotary retort furnace before, or if you remember the OLD rotary retorts, you’ll want to attend this webinar and learn why the all NEW rotary retort will be your next furnace.”  September 12, 2017   


Jim Senne, MetalPro Resources LLC

This will be a rather unique interview in that we are speaking with all three members of rep firm MetalPro Resources in the Ohio area.  The three members include; Jim Senne, Bill Andreski, and Steve Maus.   September 11, 2017   

Jim if it is OK with you I will direct my questions to you and you can decide how you would like to answer them, jointly or individually. First off I and our readers would be very interested to know the 3 members of your team and their backgrounds.

Jim Senne, who holds an undergraduate degree in Chemistry and studied graduate level Material Science, held many roles at Xtek, Inc. in Cincinnati during his 25 years there, including Process Metallurgist, managing the Metallurgical Engineering Department and the Heat Treating Operations.  His hands-on experience ranges from deep case carburizing of steel mill gears to salt bath FNC of automotive components.

Bill Andreski has an undergraduate degree in Metallurgical Engineering and an MS in Material Science and Engineering.  He has over 30 years of experience in heat treatment of steel and aluminum alloys.  His primary focus has been with all aspects of manufacturing of gears and gear drives, including forging, welding, heat treatment, material selection, etc.

Steve Maus has a BS degree in Metallurgical Engineering.  He was with what was Allison Gas Turbines, now Rolls-Royce Corporation for 17 years, eventually as Chief Manufacturing Engineer for Special Processes.  He was with furnace builder Lindberg in the 1990’s and in the instrumentation industry with Danaher Controls, and has been an independent rep for nine years.

I believe that you originally started the company Jim-when was that and when did Steve and Bill join you?

February 16, 2007 is the founding date, so we recently had an awesome 10th anniversary celebration in Cincinnati with our wives to commemorate.  I have to acknowledge Stahl Engineering in Indianapolis for giving me the start.  They were a very well known rep agency and they called on me at Xtek, where I ran the captive heat treat shop.  Bob Rodewald was the key to getting me involved in selling heat treating capital equipment.  I could talk for hours about that story, but I’ll leave it at that for now.  Steve Maus joined me on April 1, 2013.  I have known him since 1999, when he called on me at Xtek, and I had been stalking him to join me at MetalPro Resources since day one.  Bill Andreski joined us officially on January 1, 2016.  I have known him since the mid 90’s, when we were counterparts at head to head competitor companies.  I had been stalking him to join us since day one. 

Continue Reading . . .

Daniel Saenz, Fredericks Company

“The Fredericks Company, an industry-leading manufacturer of tilt and vacuum measurement products, is pleased to announce and welcome Daniel Saenz as Director of Sales and Marketing. In his new role, Dan will be responsible for developing and implementing strategic sales and marketing initiatives, defining new markets and business opportunities, and growing and strengthening our sales team worldwide. After graduating from Penn State University with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering, Dan began his career as an Electrical Project Engineer at Johnson Controls. From there he moved on to Bender Electronics Inc. where he made the transition from Applications Engineer to Sales Manager, eventually becoming the Sales Director for Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean.

With a strong background in both engineering and sales, Dan brings a unique perspective to the Fredericks team, as well as a proven track record as a skilled and tenacious salesperson.  “We’re excited to have Dan leading our sales and marketing team,” said Heidi McKenna, President of The Fredericks Company. “His technical expertise and application engineering background, combined with his sales and marketing experience, will equip him with the skills to understand the needs of our customers and provide new solutions.” September 11, 2017   

Harchris Heat Treatment/South Africa

The South African heat treatment market is a difficult one these days for a number of reasons, some political, some having to do with changing markets and some having to do with changes in the resources industries. South Africa being a country long dependant upon resources has been hard hit by these changes. In spite of that companies with experience, resources and drive continue on and will continue for a long time into the future. Harchris Heat Treatment is a very good example. One of the largest commercial heat treaters in the country it was founded in 1955 by the father of the current owner Mr. Errol Preston and continues on as a family owned business. The strong point of the company is stress relieving at which it excels. A typical example can be seen in the photos below which shows a part far smaller than their maximum capacity of a 60,000 pound part. September 8, 2017   


“PhoenixTM have recently supplied one of their ‘Hot Box’ systems to Nichidai Thailand, part of Nichidai Japan, and a major manufacturer of components for the auto and aerospace industry. The system will be used in their batch and low pressure carburizing furnaces where furnace surveys are a requirement for CQI-9 and AMS2750.  In the past this manufacturer has used ‘trailing’ thermocouples for TUS surveys, but needed to speed up and simplify the process of CQI-9 and AMS2750 report generation. The solution was a PhoenixTM survey system which is charged into the furnace as part of a normal load, and uses 2-way RF telemetry to monitor the survey externally. The system is able to operate in both types of furnaces, and when required can be fitted with a deflector shield to withstand the high pressure gas quenches. For more information contact: or” September 8, 2017   

Pyradia/Pratt & Whitney

Pyradia has strengthened its relations with Pratt & Whitney Canada with 2 new projects for facilities in Quebec, Canada.  The first project is to supply a low temperature conveyor drying oven for steel parts complying with AMS2750 standards. Secondly Pyradia received an order for a Bottom loading type furnace. The Equipment will be used for the stress relief of combustion chambers of P&WC aero engines. The unit will be a high temperature (2000oF) retort furnace using Argon/Nitrogen and Hydrogen equipped with state of the art batching monitoring/logging capabilities. September 7, 2017   

Unitrat Heat Treatment, Brazil

Remember how we had a little news item about Unitrat Heat Treatment in Brazil and their beginnings? Well now we can tell you the rest of the story which would appear to have a happy ending, this story is told by Marcio Magalhães, General Manger of the company. As part of a small business we can say that we are impressed by the determination this group has.

The end and the beginning; After Bodycote announced its decision to leave Brazil, all of the Plant Managers in Brazil had the difficult task of closing the company’s activities within 3 months, informing customers, employees and suppliers. We were told though that if there was a proposal to buy the business, this could be evaluated. In a personal effort led by Cassiano Horta we visited several competitors asking them if they would be interested in acquiring the business here in Brazil. At the end there was an agreement with a National group to acquire all the sites in Brazil and we worked with this group for a short period.

Acquisition of Unitrat; As you know, Unitrat is a commercial heat treater focused on Quenching, Normalization, Carburizing, carbonitriding and Austempering in Continuous Furnaces which was closed for two months in total bankruptcy. Due to outstanding debts we were able to acquire the company fairly quickly. We did not have much capital, in fact our money would only be sufficient for the first 3 months and with that we used loans from banks, friends and family and contradicting all expectations and predictions  we went to work. After 3 months we had 8 customers and the 3 largest were in default. With no money it was a very difficult year.  Despite these great challenges, we recertified the plant to ISO 9001, adapted the equipment to CQI-9, implemented VDA 6.3 actions and involved the team in daily production meetings using a methodology learned at Bodycote and the SQDP Board.

Results; Today Brazil is still experiencing a strong economic recession and the number of unemployed exceeds 13 million. Even with all the difficulties, after 1 year and 5 months we have gone from 8 to 45 customers. Billings have increase unbelievably 150% compared to 2016 (this year was already better than 2015 even with the plant closed for two months), and our customers are forcing us to increase our production capacity. All debts are being renegotiated with resources that the business itself is generating. In 2017 we will double the capacity of the Plant in Vargem Grande Paulista and there are plans to install more equipment. Only one thing has not changed, we still have no money, but today we can say that we have a healthy and expanding Comercial Heat Treatment. September 6, 2017   

Heat Treating South Africa

As a prelude to our upcoming profiles about captive and commercial heat treating in South Africa we have this photo of our Editor in Chief of “The Monty”, Dale Montgomery at Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe,  Africa. September 6, 2017   

Chris Hall, Accurate Steel Treating Interview

Today we are very pleased to have this interview with Mr. Chris Hall, General Manager of commercial heat treater Accurate Steel Treating in Southgate, California.  September 5, 2017   

First off Chris I am always curious as to how individuals get involved in the heat-treating industry-what is your background?

Heat treating was certainly not something I planned for growing up.  Initially, out of school I needed a job and somehow found a company called Pacific Steel Treating in North Hollywood, CA.  That was in 1979.  With no formal training (in anything) I started as a receiving clerk of all things and just kept working hard and saying yes to the next thing I was asked to do, the result being I received a very well-rounded education in the heat-treating business.  Eventually I went back to school for metallurgical training and throughout my career I have taken, various quality, sales, management and accounting courses. 

I am very familiar with Accurate Steel but I am sure many of our readers know little about the company. Could you please give us the background of the company, when it was started, ownership structure, size etc.?

AST was started in 1962 as a small commercial shop.  In 1989 Ron Loynds acquired the company and along with Mike Bastian grew it into the preeminent commercial tool & die shop on the west coast.  Accurate Ion Technology was formed in 1998 initially as a joint venture with Lindberg Heat Treating.  When Bodycote acquired Lindberg in 2000 Ron decided to dissolve the partnership and carried on with 100% ownership.  I came to AST in March 2015 after working for Bodycote for 25 years to help the company with the transition to Aerospace heat treating, a completely different animal than commercial tool & die. Additionally, Mike Bastian was ready to retire so I stepped into his position as GM.

Continue Reading . . .

Labor Day Holiday.

Monday September 4 is Labor day which in many countries around the world I marked by a national holiday. For this reason the offices of WG Montgomery Ltd., will be closed that day with regular news items to resume Tuesday September 5.

Paulo announces new plant in Monterrey, Mexico

“Paulo has begun construction on a greenfield facility in Monterrey, Mexico. The new plant will be completed in the fourth quarter of 2017 and processing of heat-treatment will begin in the first quarter of 2018.  Paulo will initially occupy 50,000 sqft with expansion up to 110,000 sqft.  Monterrey was chosen for its robust manufacturing community with close proximity to major providers of Automotive, Agriculture, Aerospace and other industrial components. Paulo will continue to add equipment throughout 2018.  Initially the plant will serve the Automotive industry, processing high volumes with the same repeatable and traceable performance customers receive from our existing facilities through the use of our proprietary Production Information and Customer Service system.  The Monterrey plant is currently being staffed with local leadership and will be supported by our corporate engineers, metallurgists, quality and operations staff. Paulo will also leverage automation with multiple robotic loading cells to improve safety in material handling while leaning production steps. Paulo is an industry leader in heat treatment, plating, and coatings.  This new plant fulfills a strategic objective to become an international service provider while upholding our mission to help our customers succeed. To discuss partnering with Paulo in Mexico or elsewhere, please contact us. For more information about our new facility please contact Ben Crawford, Vice President Operations at 314.450.4401.” September 1, 2017   

ThermTech, Waukesha, Wisconsin, USA

A press release floated across our desks this morning about an acquisition. It referenced a Private Equity firm buying a company in Waukesha, Wisconsin by the name of ThermTech who does heat treating. Well there is a commercial heat treater in Waukesha with that name but something about the phrasing of the press release struck us as rather odd, namely that it also mentioned Thermal Oxidizers. As it turns out ThermTech the commercial heat treater and one of the largest in the area has NOT been sold and remains a solid family owned business which we like to see. September 1, 2017   

Mike Bastian Retirement

A good friend of ours and a well known figure in the heat treating market in California has just retired. Mike Bastian started at commercial heat treater Accurate Steel Treating in Southgate, California in 1964 and worked there until 1972 when he took a brief break from the heat treating industry. In 1974 he joined Continental Heat Treating in Santa Fe Springs, CA for a period of time before becoming General Manager of Valley Metal Treating in Pomona, CA. From Valley Metal Mike took a brief stint selling steel in the early 1980’s and then become Regional Sales Manger for Abar Ipsen and then back to Continental as General Manager in 1987. Mike sums up his next move; “In 1989 Ron Loynds, the owner of Accurate made me an offer I couldn’t refuse to run the company, the rest as they say is history. Heat Treating has been my life’s work-a lifelong process of being challenged and learning every day.” We wish Mike the absolute best in his retirement. August 31, 2017   

In the photos below we see Mike with his beautiful wife Laurie, Alonzo Lozano, Facilities Manager, Tom Kreun, Production Manager, Ron Loynds and Chris Hall, General Manager

UPC Partners with Eisenhower Center

“United Process Controls (UPC) has partnered with the Eisenhower Center, a non-profit organization in Milwaukee, WI that provides work opportunities to people with disabilities. Over the last few months, UPC has established a work program with the Eisenhower Center for packaging lubricant oil used in Waukee Flo-Meter™ flow meters. During a recent visit to the center, Danny Woodring, Operations Manager of Flow Products at UPC said, “I didn’t see disability. I saw people empowered to push beyond their boundaries; confident people who want to make a living for themselves. They are excited about this opportunity, and it’s an incredibly uplifting experience to be in their presence. Eisenhower Center is a good fit with the goals and values of our partnership, and we look forward to this continued relationship.” The vocational program at the Eisenhower Center provides education, training and jobs for the disabled through partnerships with local companies. To read more about their services or to become a business partner, please visit” August 31, 2017   

Mike Mercer Jr. Promotion

Mercer Technologies and Midwest Vacuum Pumps are proud to announce the promotion of Michael C. Mercer (JR) to the role of President for Midwest Vacuum Pumps, Inc. and Mercer Technologies, Inc.  Mike will remain the Chief Executive Officer for both companies as well.  Michael T. Mercer (SR) founded Mercer Technologies and Midwest Vacuum Pumps in Brazil, Indiana in 1994.  The companies then moved to their current location in Terre Haute, Indiana, where the family business continues to grow.  Michael T. Mercer has been involved in the heat treat industry for over 50 years and he will continue to own and develop both companies.  

Mike designed a heating element support and gas cooling nozzle system that is proven in installations today throughout the world.  He also created The Mercer Emergency Response Team to accommodate our customer’s needs 24/7. He believes in providing the customer with one stop shopping and began The Mercer Group, which is unity of Mercer Technologies and Midwest Vacuum Pumps, as well as, the Engineering Department and our In-House Machine Shop.  Whether the customer needs a leak check, custom parts, a rebuilt hot zone, vessel clean out, or a new vacuum pump or drum of oil…The Mercer Group works cohesively to allow the customer one-stop service…one phone call to take care of all your needs.  Mike is proud of the work his father began and is honored to build on that foundation as he also mentors another generation of Mercer young adults to continue with The Mercer Group in the future.  Mike loves his children and grandchildren alike.  He enjoys boating, fishing and is an avid Chicago Bears fan. August 30, 2017   

Ipsen Upcoming Events

Fall 2017 is slated to be full of events that focus on heat treatment trends, technology and training. As you prepare to hone your skills and expand your areas of expertise, here are a few items you should add to your calendar:

October 3-5, Ipsen U (with special atmosphere session)

Hosted at Ipsen’s facility in Cherry Valley, Illinois, Ipsen U courses provide attendees with a broad overview of furnace equipment, processes and maintenance, as well as a hands-on approach to learning. Those that attend the October Ipsen U can extend their training at no extra cost with an additional day dedicated to atmosphere equipment and processes. Register at

October 24-26, Booth #1801, ASM Heat Treat/Gear Expo 2017

For those that want to network, connect with customers and hear about the latest industry research and trends, ASM Heat Treat/Gear Expo 2017 is the event of the year. With three days full of educational sessions, opportunities for hands-on training and a multitude of industry experts, the opportunities for learning never end.

Whether you are interested in vacuum furnace maintenance and the newest developments with augmented reality or the key considerations for upgrading existing equipment, you do not want to miss the following educational sessions:

  • Key Considerations When Planning to Upgrade Existing Vacuum Furnaces

Tuesday, October 24, 11:20 a.m. (A213-215)

  • Maintenance Tips for Maximizing Your Furnace’s Life Span

Tuesday, October 24, 3 p.m. (Solutions Center, Booth #1631)

  • The Predictive Maintenance Experience: PdMetrics® with Augmented Reality

Wednesday, October 25, 2 p.m. (show floor)

  • Achieving Production Flexibility with Automated Multicell Systems

Wednesday, October 25, 2:20 p.m. (A220-222)

In addition to presenting the sessions listed above, Ipsen experts will also be available to discuss any questions you have at Booth #1801. The heat-treating industry is advancing at an accelerated pace. Make the most of ASM Heat Treat/Gear Expo 2017 by taking the time to visit the many booths, attend technical sessions and learn from your peers. August 30, 2017   

Time to Buy Alloy?

Most heat treaters are aware than nickel makes up a very significant portion of all high temperature alloy components such as base trays, baskets, fixtures and radiant tubes to name a few. 330 material commonly used in baskets is 34-37% nickel and it’s cast equivalent HT is roughly the same, making all of these materials which are so crucial to heat treaters very sensitive to price fluctuations in nickel. As you can see in the chart below the price has been reasonably stable for much of 2017 however in the past month we have seen a very significant increase in pricing with the result that some providers of alloy components have raised their prices on average 15% and the ones that haven’t yet will certainly be doing so in the very near future (this by the way is why every alloy quote is accompanied by a disclaimer typically “due to the instability in the Nickel Market pricing subject to review and adjustment upon receipt of order). While predictions are no more than educated guesses the consensus appears to be that nickel will continue to rise in the medium to long term for a variety of reasons one of them being lithium-ion batteries. Lithium-ion batteries commonly used in electric cars and cell phones contain a number of materials including cobalt and nickel. Cobalt has more than doubled in the past year making nickel a cheaper substitute. With electric vehicle demand expected to jump 20 times by 2025 this will put enormous pressure on the price of nickel to remain high and probably go higher. August 29, 2017   

Extended management at AICHELIN

Mödling, Austria. With the continued business success and the ongoing international growth of AICHELIN Group, management workload has been constantly increasing. For this reason, the owners of Berndorf AG and the management board of AICHELIN Group have appointed a new CFO into the executive board of AICHELIN Group. After a thorough selection procedure, Dr. Ronald W. Eibler has been added to the AICHELIN Group, as the new CFO and Managing director of Aichelin Holding GmbH.  Dr. Peter Schobesberger, CEO of the Aichelin Group, is looking forward to jointly leading the Aichelin Group on its continued success and growth path.  Dr. Eibler held a long international career at Philips Electronics, where he worked the previous 18 years abroad in numerous commercial management positions.  His last assignment  was CFO and managing director at Philips IT – Infrastructure and Operations in Eindhoven, Netherlands. Mr. Eibler is 50 years old and a Vienna native; he will start his new position in Mödling on 21 August, 2017. Photo; Dr. Schobesberger (left) welcomes Dr. Eibler August 29, 2017   

Monday Morning Briefing

Upcoming Auctions. We have run across two auctions coming up which feature heat treating equipment which should be of interest to our readers. The first which is an online auction starts September 12th in Venissieux, France and ends September 20th and features equipment formerly belonging to Bosch Rexroth. What will be of most interest are the two 1991 vintage IVA batch IQ furnaces and Ipsen Endothermic generators. At first glance the furnaces look to be a good size and in reasonably good shape. The second auction will be held September 19-20th in Chandler, Arizona and features the equipment from an Arizona based green energy company which has changed their process making the equipment redundant. Featured are a Brew vacuum annealer, a Harper rotary tube furnaces, a high temperature box furnace and a few other items all in very good condition. We will have more details about this auction in the very near future.

A recent market study had this to say about the Global Vacuum Heat Treating Market; “Research analysts forecast the global vacuum heat treatment market to grow at a CAGR of 5.32% during the period 2017-2021.” To find out all the details we would have had to fork over the $2,500.00 or so for the whole report which we certainly weren’t prepared to do because many of these reports are crap. Still if you can believe this it sounds like good times ahead. 3D Printing or “additive manufacturing” is a fascinating process but what it’s effect will be on the heat treating industry is totally unknown. However a commercial heat treater in the UK, Alloy Heat Treatment is betting they can make money from it with a mobile heat treating service-interesting idea. “Heat treatment specialist, Alloy Heat Treatment, is set to launch a pioneering new process to capitalize on opportunities emerging as part of Industry 4.0. The Dudley firm, the UK’s first and only specialist in the heat treatment of aluminium alloys, has developed an innovative mobile heat treatment service. The firm, a member of manufacturing alliance Made in the Midlands, is targeting the new service in support of the additive layer manufacturing market – especially in the aerospace and motorsport sectors. The additive layer manufacturing market – more commonly referred to as 3D printing – has undergone rapid development in recent years and is set to have a huge impact on the future of the whole manufacturing industry. Ian Perks, Sales Director at Alloy Heat Treatment, said: “The proposed service is currently being designed to be transported on the back of a fix-bed lorry. “We aim to fill a gap in the additive layer manufacturing market, as we feel that this innovation will provide a great benefit to aerospace, F1 and Moto GP organisations.” With the global metal addictive manufacturing market predicted to be worth more than $6.6 billion by 2026 , the firm is hopeful the service will attract plenty of interest.”

Specialty Steel Treating Fire. It would appear that one of the largest commercial heat treaters in the USA had a relatively small fire last week; “A fire left part of Eight Mile closed Wednesday afternoon as fire crews battled a blaze at a Farmington Hills heat treatment facility. Farmington Hills Fire Chief John Unruh said crews got the call just after 1 p.m. Wednesday of a fire at Specialty Steel, 31610 W. Eight Mile. Crews from three of the city’s five fire stations arrived and began working on the fire, which had begun inside the facility and gotten as high up as the ceiling, about 30 feet in the air. “We found a fire inside the building that had extended to the roof,” Unruh said. “Within about 35 minutes, the fire was under control and that’s where we are at right now.” The incident left part of westbound Eight Mile closed Wednesday afternoon while fire crews worked on the fire. Unruh said the department was still investigating what exactly caused the fire, but he did not know at the scene what caused it. “To give you an exact cause would be difficult at this point,” he said. He did rule out any suspicion of arson as the cause. No injuries were reported as a result of the fire, Unruh said.”

Nate Durham who has been a long long time Ipsen Employee recently recievied a promotion and is now Aftermarket Sales Manager for Ipsen in Rockford, Illinois. And to round things out Fine Sinter in Tiffin, Ohio will be adding sintering capacity as part of this expansion;  “Fine Sinter Co., Ltd., will invest $20 million in two new production lines at the headquarters of its North American subsidiary, American Fine Sinter (AFS), Tiffin, Ohio, USA. According to Masayuki Yamamoto, AFS President, the expansion is to meet the demand posed by the company’s continued growth. “Our business base is expanding, and we are thankful to have dedicated employees and the backing of the Tiffin community, which allow us to continue to advance,” stated Yamamoto. In addition, the expansion will afford the company the space and equipment to produce mid and torque carriers for the Toyota Highlander, RAV4 and Camry, using Toyota’s new technology, reportedly making its Tiffin plant one of only three facilities to use this technology worldwide.” August 28, 2017   

Vesco-McLaughlin, Inc./East Windsor, CT, USA

If you cast your eyes up towards the top of this page you will see a brand new banner ad from a company by the name of Vesco-McLaughlin based in East Windsor, Connecticut-there is a rather interesting story behind this company. Vacuum Engineering Services Co., Inc. was formed in 1983 by Jim Evans to provide support services to the vacuum processing industry. In early 2017 the owner decided it was retirement time and hired a firm to help find a buyer for the company. “The Monty” picked up on the listing and we had a brief mention on the website at the time. This brief mention came to the attention of Mr. Jeff McLaughlin a very ambitious individual who owns McLaughlin Services in Avilla, Indiana. Jeffs’s background is a lifetime in the furnace building/rebuilding business which lead to him forming McLaughin Services back in 2007 to rebuild, service and build new heat treating equipment. Jeff saw the opportunities at Vesco and a deal was quickly reached. The new acquisition compliments McLaughlin’s recent decision to set up a location on the west coast meaning the company now has locations on both the east and west coasts with the central location in Indiana. So if you noticed our mention that Jeff is an ambitious fellow you can now see why; from nothing to three locations servicing the heat treat industry in just 10 years is quite an achievement. August 25, 2017   

Exactatherm Ltd./Investments

Founded in 1978 by Dr. Peter Lidster, commercial heat treater Exactatherm Ltd., in Mississauga, Canada has always been a leader rather than a follower. Over the years the company has been one of the first in North America to embrace Plasma (Ion) Nitriding, NADCAP certification, advanced coatings and high pressure vacuum heat treating. The company makes our news section today because of the multi-million dollar investments the company has made very recently. In just the past two years Exactatherm has installed a brand new SECO/WARWICK 3,500 pound capacity, vacuum oil quench furnace, a SECO temper furnace, a 15 bar SECO/WARWICK vacuum furnace with working dimensions of 24” X 36” and a Plasma Nitriding furnace made by the company themselves with a load capacity of 20,000 pounds. We at “The Monty” are impressed by all of Exactatherm’s achievments but probably most impressed by the fact that the company has the ability to design, build and run what is a state of the art Plasma Nitrider- few companies have the ability to do this (although Advanced Heat Treat Corp in Iowa is another that comes to mind). Worth mentioning is the fact that this is a family owned business with 4 Lidsters now involved, Peter, Dan, Tim and Amanda. An impressive company that we will be hearing more about in the future. August 24, 2017   

Dr. Peter Lidster, Gord Montgomery

  Dr. Peter Lidster, Dan Lidster

Dr. Peter Lidster, Jordan Montgomery

California Heat Treating Costs

Yesterday we had comments about the heat treating costs in California, today we have these thoughts from Mr. Derek Dennis President of Solar Atmospheres one of the largest commercial heat treaters in the state. August 23, 2017   

“I saw your article on the website today and I thought I’d throw my two cents into the mix for what that’s worth… It’s true that the cost of doing business in California is more expensive.  With the electrical costs @ approx. $0.17kWh (Summer) & $0.135kWh (Fall, Winter, Spring) and the local regulatory mandates, it can be a little overwhelming.  But all this being said, it’s just the way it is out here and all the local manufacturers are in the same boat.  Very seldom and I mean VERY seldom do we run across a manufacturer that’s sending heat treat outside the state because of pricing.  Economically and logistically it just doesn’t make sense to do this. 

Solar opened this facility 1 January 2011 and since then, we have grown at no less than 30% per year.  We are currently 10% away from opening our second building that will more than double our internal capacity.  Even after this expansion, we are already looking for new ways to increase our capacity because the demand is there.  Aerospace is still alive and well in Southern California and this little Inland Empire company is working hard to keep up with the demand and still provide a quality product coupled with the highest level of customer service possible.”

Bill Jones, CEO of the Solar Group of Companies also has some comments to add.

“Before opening our Fontana (Inland Empire) California Heat Treating plant we had a dozen or so manufacturing companies shipping product for Heat Treating or Brazing to both our HT plants in Souderton, Pa. and Hermitage, Pa. This was several years prior to our decision to open Solar Atmospheres of California. The prime decision at that time was poor deliveries, less than desirable quality, price about equal, including our shipping costs, compared to locale competition. Prior to opening the California plant, as this was a major decision, several of our executives, including myself, made separate trips to visit our California customers. All gave us excellent vibes and promised business if we established a plant. Derek Dennis a lifelong Californian was selected as our start up President and he decided on Fontana and together we built a brand new “greenfield plant”. Fontana is 40 miles due East of Los Angeles and selected to avoid down town traffic and an available quality labor pool, preferring a less vigorous commute. William R. Jones, Owner, Solar Atmospheres Inc. Companies.”         

Paul Polesnak/Franklin Bronze Precision Components

Paul Polesnak has joined Franklin Bronze Precision Components, LLC (FBPC) as Quality Assurance Manager in Franklin, PA. Paul comes to Franklin Bronze with over 32 years of experience in quality and management systems, continuous improvement, and Lean/Six Sigma activities.  He is as a Certified Quality Engineer and held previous roles as a Process and Methods engineer as well as a Senior Supplier Quality engineer. About Franklin Bronze Precision Components Franklin Bronze Precision Components manufactures investment castings for glass container and many other industrial sectors. Franklin Bronze provides high-quality, consistent products supported by technical expertise, in-house tooling & machining, and automated processing.  Effective August 29, 2014 Franklin Bronze & Alloy Company, Inc was acquired by Wall Colmonoy Corporation.” August 23, 2017   

California Heat Treating Costs

While California boasts one of the largest economies in the world and is one of the nicest states in the union it is certainly not a cheap area for manufacturing as this article points out. The Inland Empire referred to in this article is an area of southern California. This news item caught our eye because as you can see one manufacturer in the region claims he was forced to outsource his heat treating to Michigan because of the high cost of heat treating in the state due to environmental regulations. We know for a fact that this is to some extent true but whether it raises the cost of heat treating so high that it make sense to ship product 3,000 miles to be heat treated? We have our doubts. Having said that though Aerocraft Heat Treating in CA has struggled over the past number of months due to concerns about harmful emissions, claims which the company vigorously denies. Over the next few weeks we have interviews with two heat treaters in the state coming up, we will have to ask them whether they feel environmental regulations are a real challenge. August 22, 2017   

“Manufacturing remains a bright spot in the Inland Empire, where the sector is doing better than in the rest of the state and the nation. For example, manufacturing jobs in San Bernardino County grew by 13 percent from 2009 to 2016 — from 49,000 to 55,500 jobs — according to Robert Kleinhenz, economist for The Center for Economic Forecasting and Development at UC Riverside. During the same period, the nation saw 3.4 percent growth in manufacturing jobs, and California had just 1.5 percent growth. The Inland Empire Economic Partnership’s latest Quarterly Economic Report, released in July, shows that manufacturing employment for the two-county region hit 100,000 in June, up by 1,300 jobs, or 1.3 percent, from June 2016. John Husing, IEEP’s chief economist, and Kleinhenz agree that one reason for the growth of Inland Empire manufacturing is that companies are relocating from Los Angeles County because land is cheaper here and they can design new plants that incorporate today’s more automated manufacturing processes. That’s a double-edged sword, of course. Automation will endanger many of the new jobs in 10 or 15 years, as Husing has noted. The Inland Empire is also attractive to manufacturing companies because they can hire workers for lower pay here than in the coastal counties, Husing said. Employees save time and money by giving up a long commute to L.A. County, so they’re willing to settle for somewhat lower pay. And local governments in the two-county region are receptive to manufacturers needs. That’s not true of state government. Husing has long complained that state environmental regulations hamstring manufacturers and the blue-collar workers they employ. That came up on a recent multi-day tour by Rep. Norma Torres, D-Ontario, of Inland Empire manufacturers to hear about the challenges they face. One manufacturer told her his company has to outsource a specialized heat treatment process to Michigan, where it can be done for a fraction of what it would cost here because of California’s strict environmental restrictions.”

Can-Eng Press Release

“Can-Eng Furnaces recently completed commissioning an electrically heated furnace line addition to a leading bearing manufacturer’s existing production line. Responsible for producing Planet Shafts and Pump Vane Products, the line now features a compact 1,000 lb/hr atmosphere temper and soluble oil system for rust prevention; designed for minimal impact on floor space. Can-Eng Furnaces’ Mesh Belt Heat Treatment Technology continues to be a stalwart performer of the Global automotive Heat Treatment Industry and an integral element of Can-Eng’s Heat Treating Technologies for the Automotive, Aerospace, and Steel Industries.” August 22, 2017   

Monday Morning Briefing

To start off we see that metallurgist Ehsan Ahi has made a move from Linamar Gear in Guelph, Ontario, Canada to Bell Helicopter in Mirabel, Quebec where he will be the corporate metallurgist. Linamar in Guelph has probably the largest batch IQ capacity of any captive heat treater in North America, Bell Helicopter actually does very little heat treating in house preferring to send it out. Armorworks in Chandler, AZ still has a few vacuum furnaces available. If you recall we mentioned this company quite some time ago when they were closing down the manufacturing mainly because they had something like 15 vacuum furnaces available. There are still a few left, we will have more details in the near future. In Michigan, commercial heat treater Heat Treating Services (owned and run by the Hynes family and one of the largest in the state which is saying something) is looking to the future by acquiring some adjacent land. Some property once owned by General Motors is being developed but the owners have no need for all the land with the result that the rest has been sold to Heat Treating Services. We have this photo of Steve Hynes, one of the owners of the company. August 21, 2017   

Cargill Heat Treat out in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma has added some more capacity. The founder and owner Mr. Steve Cargill earlier this year installed a 48” X 48” X 36” Beavermatic batch IQ furnace which has a capacity of 8,000 pounds. According to Steve he is able to keep it full which is impressed, a furnace this size has a very large appetite. We have this press release from Global Furnace Materials a supplier of metal products for the heat treating industry. “Global Furnace Materials believes in supporting and giving back to the communities that have shaped their company. In line with their mission to give back, GFM will be donating 1% of all profits to Warrior 360, a non-profit Veteran support program. Nick Suchoski, owner of GFM, a former solider in the US Army, was introduced to Warrior 360 by his former 1st Sergeant in the 82nd Airborne division. After a couple conversations with the management team at Warrior 360, a decision was made to donate 1% of all profit to Warrior 360.  “I believe in giving back to those that made me who I am. My core values were developed through my time in the military, so I feel compelled to give back to the warrior community. My time in the military is the main reason for my successes, both personally and professionally, so this is my way to say thank you, by helping these warriors and their families soften some of the hardships that they have endured.”

 Nitrex Metal Inc. Our friends at Nitrex Metal in Montreal have this to tell us today about a system they recently commissioned. “A European manufacturer of hard rock drilling tools has contracted to purchase an NX-820 gas nitrocarburizing (FNC) turnkey installation, complete with furnace, control system and technology, from Nitrex Metal Inc., The customer found in Nitrex a dependable partner who could provide a reliable technology for improving the wear and sliding resistance of its products. The selected NITREG®-C potential-controlled nitrocarburizing technology and customized process recipes meet the customer’s technological requirements for tool performance and reliability, while the ONC® in-process post-nitrocarburizing oxidation provides additional corrosion resistance to maximize tool longevity. The combination of these technologically superior treatments over the previously used salt-bath nitriding method will optimize the performance and cost of its applications, and achieved greater environmental compliance. The commissioning of the Nitrex system was completed in June 2017. ABOUT NITREX METAL INC; Nitrex Metal,, is a worldwide partner offering modern nitriding / nitrocarburizing technologies, solutions, equipment and services. Our Nitreg® potential-controlled gas nitriding and Nitreg®-C potential-controlled gas nitrocarburizing (ferritic nitrocarburizing-FNC) technologies are applied in the precision parts, automotive, aluminium extrusion, defense, gears, tool & die, plastics, machinery, and many other industries.

 SECO/VACUUM Technologies; 8 Furnaces; 2 Months: SECO/VACUUM Schedules Open House SECO/VACUUM Technologies, the newest company in the SECO/WARWICK Group of companies, reports a strong initial entry into the North American vacuum heat treating market. To-date, the new company which officially launched in early 2017 has received orders for eight new vacuum furnace systems in its first two months of existence. Mr. Warwick also announced that the company will host an open house in the second quarter of 2018. The open house will mark the opening of the company’s Vacuum Technology Showroom which will house production-scale demonstration equipment with the capability of running sample loads from customers. Exact dates of the open house will be released soon pending the delivery and installation of the company’s keystone product, a VECTOR® vacuum furnace. Backed by the industry’s most extensive R&D program to help validate current processes and push the boundaries of vacuum thermal processing, the company is dedicated to helping customers succeed.

 Paulo/Chris Benash. “Paulo welcomes Chris Benash to our Corporate Engineering team. Chris will be instrumental in working closely with the plants leading continuous improvement projects and sharing of best practices. Chris has over a decade of experience in the commercial heat treating industry. He has maintained and programmed a wide variety of heat treating equipment, implemented lean methods, and enhanced preventative & predictive maintenance programs. Chris’ experience allows him to contribute immediately towards our strategic goals and the creation of our future picture. Chris will report to Project Engineering Manager, Scott Herzing. Scott commented, “I’m excited to have Chris on the team, his experience with equipment, lean implementation, preventive/predictive maintenance, and continuous improvement activities will be a great addition to our team. I look forward to Chris’ leadership of our continuous improvement program.”

Ipsen Organizational Changes

As Ipsen focuses on supporting the industry, several strategic changes will be made in the company’s organizational structure to strengthen their position as the leading global provider of integrated heat treatment solutions. “We are in an exciting period of growth for Ipsen, which has been built on both innovation and exceeding customer expectations. The Ipsen Group focus ensures that we continue to strengthen Ipsen performance in all global markets, delivering the same quality and performance anywhere in the world,” said Geoffrey Somary. As part of this growth, Somary will leave his USA position and focus fully on his Group responsibilities with CEOs at all entities (Europe, USA, China, Japan and India) continuing to report directly to him. Somary started at Ipsen in 2005, and for the past four years, has held the dual responsibilities of Ipsen USA CEO and Ipsen Group COO. Jake Hamid, who has been with Ipsen since 2007, will also leave his position as Ipsen USA COO and move into the position of Ipsen Group Director of Global Product Development and Manufacturing.

Ipsen USA is pleased to announce that Patrick McKenna is promoted to Ipsen USA President & CEO, responsible for all entity functions including Sales, Engineering, Operations, Service, Finance and Human Resources. McKenna states, “My focus from day one will be on delivering the highest quality products and services to our customers and ensuring that the established Ipsen performance culture continues far into the future.” McKenna has both undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering and has served on the Metal Treating Institute Board of Directors for 10 years (2016 President). He worked at Ipsen as a Mechanical Engineer for four years before leaving to co-found a successful commercial heat treating and brazing company. He divested his interest in that company in 2015 and returned to Ipsen as Vice President of Sales.

Other promotions include Pete Kerbel to Ipsen USA Vice President of Sales, who takes on responsibility for sales of new equipment, retrofits and parts. Kerbel started at Ipsen in 2008 and most recently was the Director of Aftermarket Sales, which when combined with service, totals nearly 50% of annual sales for Ipsen USA. With 2017 expected to be the eighth straight year of growth for Ipsen USA, there is a new generation of experienced leaders that have earned their promotions (in addition to those listed above). The expertise and commitment of these individuals, and the entire Ipsen Team, will allow them to continue guiding Ipsen forward down a winning path – a path that always focuses on innovation and ensuring one satisfied customer at a time. August 18, 2017   

Pictures From The Past

As you would expect over the almost 20 years that “The Monty” has been around we have accumulated more than our fair share of pictures from the heat treat industry which we share on a regular basis. Here are three from days gone by. If you have a picture from the past you would like to share we are interested. August 18, 2017   

Gary Berwick on the left (Now Dry Coolers), Dennis Wagen, Jeff Smith on the right (SBS) 

Left to Right; Gord Montgomery, Bill Keough (Ex-owner AFC-Holcroft), Bill Disler (CEO AFC-Holcroft)

Tom Wright on the right (Wirco) 

Tremec Corp./Wixom Michigan

A year ago Tremec, an auto parts supplier based in Mexico announce a brand new plant in the Detroit, USA area. Plans have come to fruition and the new location is on the brink of opening. A burning question in our mind is whether this location will have heat treating in house. The new plant is over 100,000 square feet which is certainly large enough to house a respectable heat treated and the Tremec location in Queretaro, Mexico which we have visited in the past certainly boasts a very large in house heat treat department which includes batch IQ furnaces and pushers. We honestly don’t know whether this location currently has heat treating or will in the future but when we find out you will be the first to know. August 17, 2017   

“A Mexico City-based automotive supplier will invest $54 million to establish a manufacturing facility in Wixom, a move that will create 133 jobs, the Michigan Economic Development Corp. announced Thursday. Tremec Corp., a wholly-owned business unit of Kuo Group, plans to lease and equip a new building at 46643 Ryan Ct. to serve as the company’s U.S. headquarters, sales and technical center, as well as an advanced automotive transmission production operation, according to the MEDC. The project represents the company’s first major manufacturing operation in the U.S. Tremec, founded in 1964, established operations in Michigan in 1975 and today has 27 employees at its technical and sales office in Plymouth Township. The 1,450-employee company produces transmissions, torque components and powertrain products for high-performance vehicles, including passenger, commercial and heavy duty vehicles. The new facility will allow Tremec to make investments and create jobs related to the design, development and manufacture of transmission and other powertrain products for the North American automotive and heavy equipment sectors, according to the MEDC.” 

Different media for quenching metal explained

Commercial Heat Treater Paulo from time to time sends out interesting summaries about various aspects of heat treating-this is one.  August 17, 2017   

Quenching metal parts is a critical step in heat treating, and it’s only gotten more complicated over the years as an increasing variety of specified material properties drives the development of the differing techniques that deliver them. Here, we discuss the popular media in use in the industry and explain how metallurgists choose which one is best suited for certain parts.

 Different media for quenching metal explained; Quenching is one of the critical stages in the heat treatment because it’s during that process that added hardness is locked into metal parts. The concept is relatively simple: Heat a metal and then rapidly cool it to make it harder. But in terms of the chemistry involved, the process is complex and trade-offs abound as metallurgists must decide which quenching medium and method will achieve the specified finished qualities.

 Severity of quenchants; The severity of a quench refers to how quickly heat can be drawn out of a part. Different quenching media have different degrees of severity. Caustics are the most severe quenchants, followed by oils, then salts and, finally, gases. The makeup of metal parts, the parts’ cross sections and the specified hardness to be achieved dictate which quenching medium is used. Generally, low-hardenability parts made from carbon steel and low-alloy steel require more severe quenches to achieve a specified hardness. High-alloy steels, which are much more hardenable, are best quenched in less severe media.

 Caustics; The most severe quenches are executed with water, brines and caustic sodas. While these quenchants can pull heat out of parts more quickly than other quenching media, faster isn’t always better. Quenching in caustics dissipates heat so quickly that metal parts are at risk of cracking and warping due to the drastic variation in temperature between the part’s surface and its core. In addition, workers must take special precautions when using caustic materials because they’re harmful when inhaled or exposed to skin and eyes.

 Oils; Quenching metal in oil is the most popular method because it is relatively severe but with a diminished risk of cracking and warping. In addition, a wide range of parts quench well in oils because the temperature and blend of quenching oils can be adjusted to suit desired end results.

For example, if a part’s cross section and hardenability mean it’s best suited for fast quenches, “fast” oils are used. These oils are formulated to extend the amount of time during which the highest rate of cooling takes place. Quenching in fast oils is best suited for low-carbon steels and low-alloy parts. As the method’s name indicates, these quenches do not take long. Conversely, sometimes cooling needs to be slowed. Hot oils—which are kept at higher temperatures—cool metal surfaces, but not so quickly that a part’s core temperature and surface temperature differ too widely. High-alloy parts with intricate designs quench well in hot oils, as the method reduces the risk of warping and cracking associated with differences in surface and core temperatures. Quenching in hot oil is a slower process compared to quenching in fast oil. Because oil is flammable, workers must know the flashpoint of the oil in use as well as the load weight and surface area of the products in the workload to avoid fires during quenching.

 Molten salt; Quenching metal parts in molten salt (also called salt baths) comes with a further reduced risk of distortion or cracking of parts because they’re hotter than hot oils. This means cooling is more controlled and uniform compared to colder, faster and more severe quenches. The hotter the quenchant, the less severe the quench. The less severe the quench, the lower the risk of distortion. Different mixtures of salts have different melting points and working ranges, offering added versatility as a quenching option. On the other end of the spectrum, some salt mixtures have high melting points and working ranges and can be used to heat parts.  Salt baths are a long-lasting heat treating and quenching solution as long as they’re properly maintained. This includes ensuring oxides are regularly removed from high-heat salts and sledging out high-heat salts that contaminate quench salts on salt-to-salt lines.

 Gas; Quenching metal via gas in vacuum furnaces has become more popular for parts that require high hardness and specific finishes with significantly reduced risk of distortion. In gas quenching, parts are sealed in a vacuum chamber before being blasted with gases. The rate of cooling of a part can be precisely controlled by adjusting the pressure and speed at which the gas is delivered. Additionally, since gas quenches occur in vacuum chambers, parts emerge significantly cleaner compared to other quenching media. Nitrogen is the most popular gas quenchant due to its relatively low atomic mass, wide availability and low cost. Helium and argon are also used in gas quenching. Specified material properties dictate which gas quenchants are to be used. High-alloy tool steels and jet engine turbines are common examples of parts often quenched in gas.” 

ThermoFusion Adds Austempering and Marquenching Capability

“ThermoFusion, the pre-eminent supplier of brazing and heat treating services in Northern California, has announced the expansion of their heat treating services. ThermoFusion now offers marquenching and austempering, in addition to their annealing, hardening, vacuum and hydrogen services. Marquenching and austempering use a less aggressive quenchant, reducing the cooling rate slightly, and reducing distortion caused by rapid temperature change (thermal shock).  In high carbon material, these alternative processes allow for the formation of bainite instead of martensite, which allows spring steels to remain “springy” as they get hard. “Marquenching and austempering are not readily available from California heat treaters, due to their complex process parameters. We’re proud that we’re able to offer these expanded capabilities to our customers.”, said Glen Ottinger, President of ThermoFusion. For more information, contact Nils Kjell, Director of Sales & Marketing, at 510-782-7755 x225 or  Visit ThermoFusion on the web at” August 16, 2017   

Where Are They Now? Jeff Bell

We had several dealings with Jeff Bell over the years, during his times with Hinderliter, Lindberg and subsequently Bodycote. We always found him to be a friendly, competent guy which was why over his 38 years in the industry he held positions such as Regional Manager for Hinderliter (now Bodycote), Integration Manager for the acquisitions of Brasimet in Brazil by Bodycote and subsequently Group Operations Director for Bodycote Oklahoma, Texas and California. We lost track of him some time ago but just ran across him in a completely different industry. Apparently after he left Bodycote Jeff completely left the heat treating industry for the retail business, namely Home Brewind and Grilling. Now that is quite a change of direction. August 16, 2017   

Unitrat Tratamento Termico, Brazil

Boasting one of the ten largest economies in the world Brazil has long had a large heat treating industry both captive and commercial. The past few years have not been kind to the heat treating industry in the country and while things are improving Brazil has always had it’s own special challenges. For instance Bodycote invested heavily in their plants in Brazil but at the end of the day they never proved to be a profitable as hoped for  (profitable at all might be the question) and the company exited the Brazilian market some time back. We at “The Monty” have always had a fascination with the country so we were interested to learn recently that some ex Bodycote employees have been hard at work growing one of the local heat treaters. Marcio Magalhaes, who was the GM at the Bodycote,  Jundiai Plant and Cassiano Horta who was the GM at the Campinas plant bought a small, struggling heat treat by the name of Unitrat Tratamento Termico and have turned it into a growing shop concentrating on continuous furnace. We look forward to some more details about the company but we leave you with these photos from the Bodycote era in Brazil. August 15, 2017   


P.H. Heat Treatment/South Africa.

The article below from commercial heat treater P.H. Heat Treatment in South Arica (one of the largest in the country) caught our eye as in just 3 short weeks “The Monty” will be visiting this plant along with several others in South Africa and reporting on the heat treating industry in that country. “Since it obtained its licence from heat treating and manufacturing services company Nitrex, in Canada, heat treatment specialist P.H. Heat Treatment provides the automotive industry with controlled nitriding and ferritic nitrocarburising processes for automotive components, which form part of the Nitreg® range. “The difference between these processes and conventional gas and salt bath nitriding is the ability to control the nitride (white) layer hardness and thickness, overall case depth and hardness, resulting in excellent quality and repeatability. Further, each Nitreg® treatment is tailored to the requirements of each type of component,” says P.H. Heat Treatment managing member Cecil B Zlotnick. He adds that these processes are all carried out at low temperatures between 450 ºC and 600 ºC, compared with conventional case hardening. The Nitreg® processes result in hard-wearing, anti-seizure and corrosion resisting surfaces.

Zlotnick says that all automotive components are subject to stringent quality testing after heat treatment, supported by a fully equipped metallographic laboratory. “Here components or test pieces accompanying them are checked for case depth, microhardness and microstructure.” He notes that the Nitreg® process is applied to automotive components such as actuator housings, bearings and needles, brake pistons, camshafts, crankshafts, clutch hubs, engine valves, gears, piston rings, rocker arms, fuel injectors, seat tracks, wiper shafts and shock absorbers. P.H. Heat Treatment received the licence from Nitrex in 2004 and has been providing high-quality heat treatment on automotive components since then. Zlotnick further points out that, if manufacturers wish to extend or initiate high technology component manufacturing currently not produced in the country, P.H. Heat Treatment is able to support them with its expertise in a range of heat treatment. The company has also provided conventional processes for various industries, including automotive, such as neutral hardening, atmosphere normalising, carbon restoration, various case hardening treatments (gas carburised and carbonitrided), annealing and tempering, as well as subzero treatment.”  August 15, 2017   

Alcoa Commissions 3 “Hot Box” Systems

“Alcoa, Warrick IN, a major producer of sheet aluminum for ring pull cans, etc. have recently commissioned three PhoenixTM ‘hot box’ systems for monitoring the temperature profile of aluminum slabs through their pusher preheat furnaces.  Each system is embedded into a slab and gathers temperature data from thermocouples set deep within the product to ensure all parts of the slab have reached the specified rolling temperature, maximizing efficiency of the preheat operation and avoiding excessive roll wear.  A 10 channel data logger with two way RF capability transmits the temperature data out of the furnace to a PC running PhoenixTM ‘Thermal View’ software, allowing complete analysis of the process. As these processes are long duration and high temperature, the thermal barriers supplied used evaporative technology (evaporating water) to protect the data logger. Because the aluminum slabs rotate through 180° as they enter and exit the pusher furnace, the PhoenixTM systems were engineered to retain the evaporating water during the rotation, maximizing the thermal performance. The systems were designed to fit within the boundaries of the aluminum slab, and allowed easy access to the data logger when loading and unloading from the hot slab. For more information visit”  August 15, 2017   

Monday Morning Briefing

We start off in the UK with the Contract Heat Treat Association (The MTI Equivalent in the UK) with this announcement; The UK’s Contract Heat Treatment Association will again be partnering the Surface Engineering Association and Wolfson Heat Treatment Centre in co-sponsoring the second “Surface Engineering & Heat Treatment Industry Conference/Exhibition” on 13 October 2017. Staged in England’s historic Kenilworth, initial information about the event can be found at Offers of presentations on advances in industrial heat treatment processing will be welcomed by CHTA’s Alan J Hick at”  

Commercial heat treater Paulo in the US has these two mentions; Dustin Lawhon joined Paulo July 31st.  As our Nashville plant grows so does the customer base.  Dustin is tasked with strengthening our partnerships with existing Nashville customers and supporting them as they grow. Dustin will be based at the Nashville plant and reports to William Rassieur, Vice President Sales. Paulo is happy to announce Emily Rassieur is joining us effective July 31st. Her role, HR Management Associate, is a new one which is designed to provide exposure to a variety of HR disciplines and provide management training and experience. She will be based in St. Louis at Paulo Corporate Headquarters.” Commercial heat treater Byron Products in Fairfield, Ohio is adding some more mesh belt processing capacity in the form of an Abbott furnace.

If you are in the market for furnaces for processing aluminum wheels there is an auction coming up which includes a number of aluminum ovens all made by Major Engineering in Australia. The only catch is that the auction is in Australia which is not going to be of interest to most people. Now here is a scary sight, heat treat rep Marty Keylon in CA assembling flow meters! Now that we have had our fun at Marty’s expense this is what he has to say; “I spent a week in Milwaukee “Waukee Engineering” and Cincinnati “UPC United Process Controls” doing some rep training. I learned all about Instruments “well I knew a little” UPC’s many different models and all the Oxygen Probe’s they have. Spent some time in the factory building probes and looking at all the different processes they do to calibrate and test the probes and instruments.”


Induction company Ajax TOCCO Magnethermic has a new manager for Tubular Products; “Ajax TOCCO Magnethermic (ATM) announces the promotion of  Donald Gibeaut to “Manager Tubular Products.” Don has worked in the induction industry for over 36 years and has achieved great success in the pipe and tube markets. In his new position, Don will work with all ATM brands to promote and increase market share in the tubular industry including Heat Treat, Quench and Temper lines, Emmedi welders, coating systems and all other associated tubular processing products. Don has a background in Electrical Engineering from Ohio State University and has participated as FIA Instructor, Tenaris University Instructor and presented many papers for AMM, FIA and Brazil Senafor Conference.”

 “Solar Manufacturing Receives Vacuum Furnace Hot Zone Improvement Patent; A new U.S. Patent, No. 9,702,627 B2, was awarded on July 11, 2017 to Solar Manufacturing, Inc. for an innovation in vacuum furnace hot zone design.  This hot zone improvement centers on the configuration of heating element supports, providing for simpler, streamlined manufacture of the support assembly.  The new design further provides for easy assembly and disassembly of heating elements, a significant improvement over prior designs. Inventors are Robert Wilson, Solar Manufacturing’s VP of Engineering, and Mark Hughes, Senior Design Engineer. Copies of U.S. Patent No. 9,702,627 B2 may be obtained by visiting  For additional information about Solar Manufacturing, visit, or call Keith Reim, Corporate Marketing Manager, at (215) 721-1502.” August 14, 2017   

Ipsen Press Release

Shipping 15 atmosphere and vacuum furnaces last quarter, Ipsen USA continues to provide diverse, effective heat-treating solutions to customers around the world. This equipment was sent to China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Saudi Arabia and the United States – all in support of the Aerospace, Commercial Heat Treating and MIM industries. The shipments included:

  • Two large, vertical (bottom-loading) MetalMaster® vacuum furnaces, each with a 120” (3 m) diameter work zone and 10,000-pound (4,500 kg) load capacity.
  • Five standard TITAN® vacuum furnaces complete with PdMetrics® (Ipsen’s cloud-based predictive maintenance platform that provides real-time diagnostics, text alerts and peace of mind).
  • Debind and sinter vacuum furnaces for the MIM industry.
  • ATLAS integral quench atmosphere furnace, which was delivered six weeks after order placement.
  • Several sophisticated, custom-built vacuum furnaces that will process parts for the Aerospace industry.

Several customers also took advantage of the ICS (Ipsen Customer Service) Team’s aftermarket support offerings, ordering spare parts kits to help keep the furnace running smoothly. Ipsen’s global ICS Team provides comprehensive, ongoing support throughout the equipment’s life span for any brand of furnace. This includes facilitating system installations, as well as providing startup assistance, expert training, spare parts and maintenance  programs. You can learn more about the extensive support and training they offer at For immediate technical support, to order parts, schedule service and more, call the Aftermarket Support Helpline at 1-844-Go-Ipsen (1-844-464-7736). August 11, 2017   

Why nitriding steel is growing in popularity/Paulo

Summary; Nitriding has continued to evolve from its roots of accidental discovery in early 20th century metallurgy. Today, the process is becoming chosen for a broadening variety of parts and applications across industries due to its relatively low temperature and precision.

Why nitriding steel is growing in popularity; A case-hardening technique in use since the early 20th century, nitriding steel has been an effective lower-temperature heat treatment for workpieces since even before engineers and metallurgists fully understood it. Its appeal lies in the ability to harden a part by dissolving nitrogen into its surface without austenitizing, thus all but eliminating the risk of distortion. That opened the door for improving an ever-widening variety of parts. Its popularity grows as the industry realizes the technique is effective across a broad variety of parts and applications.

Origin of nitriding steel; Metallurgist Adolph Machlet developed nitriding by accident in 1906. That year, he applied for a patent that called for replacing atmosphere air in a furnace with ammonia to avoid oxidation of steel parts. Shortly after he sent the patent application off, he noticed that treating parts in an ammonia atmosphere at elevated temperatures caused a “skin, casing, shell or coating” to develop around a piece that was extremely difficult to corrode or tarnish. Also in 1906, German metallurgist Adolph Fry led a research program during which he made the same discoveries Machlet made. He also noticed that adding alloying elements to iron heavily influenced the results of nitriding. Machlet’s patents for nitriding in the U.S. were approved in 1913 and 1914; Fry received patents in Germany for his process in 1924.

How it works; The process of nitriding steel begins by heating parts in a furnace to a relatively low temperature (between 950 and 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit, depending on a part’s intended use) compared to other heat treatment methods. At these low temperatures, the iron remains ferritic—that is, the phase changes that alter the structure of the iron do not occur. But the temperature is high enough for ammonia molecules injected into the furnace to break apart once they contact the workpiece. That breakup releases nitrogen atoms, which dissolve in the steel and form the desired diffusion zone. A minimal intermetallic compound layer also forms. One benefit of nitriding steel as opposed to using other heat treatments is that modern nitriding equipment allows for computer-controlled injection of ammonia to achieve varying case depths. Another is that parts are slow cooled rather than cooled rapidly via quenching, a process that further limits the risk of distortion. The precision of the process is such that parts’ intended qualities are achieved in a single step; they do not need to be softened down to specifications via tempering.

Increasing popularity; Because nitriding steel workpieces offers superior surface qualities with minimal risk of distortion, the process has become a mainstay treatment of parts across a variety of industries:

  • Manufacturers of automotive parts choose to nitride gears, crankshafts and valve parts because the process imparts hard diffusion layers to the part surface. The increased fatigue strength resists the formation of surface and subsurface cracks.
  • Nitriding has become an attractive heat treatment option for makers of tool steels and forging dies because it imparts added surface hardness without the risk of distortion and resists tempering on forging dies and soldering on aluminum casting dies.
  • Makers of firearms nitride components such as gun barrels and slides because the process decreases friction coefficients, increases wear resistance and fatigue strength and imparts moderate corrosion control.

Expect to see the popularity of nitriding to continue to increase. The techniques and technologies in play will only get better; the process will only become more precise. If engineers haven’t considered new material and design possibilities that can arise from specifying nitriding, now is a good time to start. August 11, 2017   

Linamar De Mexico, S.A.

Auto parts giant Linamar has just closed the heat treating department at their facility in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico. This location was founded in 1998 and has always included a fairly large captive heat treating department consisting of a number of Lindberg batch IQ furnaces, a picture of which can be seen here. The heat treat department was always a well run asset for this location however with a change in the material the heat treating department became redundant. The furnaces have all been sold and are going to another company in Mexico. August 10, 2017    

AMG Financial Results

Not familiar with the name Advanced Metallurgical Group? Perhaps heat treaters will be more familiar with ALD and ALD Thermal Treatment of which AMG is the parent company. The group just announced their second quarter financial results a summary of which can be found here. ALD Thermal Treatment operates three commercial heat treating facilities, one in Germany, one in Mexico and one in the US which is also the single largest commercial heat treat in the US. ALD the furnace company offers vacuum carburizing systems, vacuum nitriders, and vacuum furnaces amongst other offerings. August 10, 2017    

“AMG Advanced Metallurgical Group N.V, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, has reported fiscal results for its second quarter 2017. According to the company’s report, it recorded a total revenue of $262 million for Q2 2017, up 6% from $248.3 million in the same period 2016. EBITDA for the second quarter 2017 was $31.9 million, a 22% increase from $26.0 million in the second quarter 2016. Net income attributable to shareholders slightly decreased to $13.1 million in the second quarter 2017 from $13.4 million in the second quarter 2016. Dr Heinz Schimmelbusch, Chairman of AMG’s Management Board and CEO, commented, “We are very pleased that AMG’s strong cash flow generation for the first six months of 2017 enabled the company to end the quarter with net debt in line with the prior year end, despite substantial capital investments in the first half of 2017 in AMG’s lithium project in Brazil, and titanium aluminide expansion in Germany.” AMG Engineering; AMG Engineering designs, engineers, and produces advanced vacuum furnace systems and operates vacuum heat treatment facilities, primarily for the transportation and energy industries. The segment reportedly signed $76.9 million in new orders during the second quarter 2017. According to AMG, the Engineering segment continues to experience strong demand for turbine blade coating, Powder Metallurgy and plasma remelting furnaces for the aerospace market and heat treatment furnaces for the automotive market. “The strong results in AMG Engineering reflect our efforts to diversify our product offerings in recent years, including the introduction of powder metallurgy and SyncroTherm in-line heat treatment furnaces,” stated Schimmelbusch.” 


Metal Treating & Research Company Fire

Commercial heat treater Metal Treating & Research Company in Denver, Colorado suffered a very serious fire recently, the details such as they are, are below. Metal Treating & Research is one of the few commercial heat treaters and certainly the largest in Colorado, a beautiful state but not known for manufacturing.

“ADAMS COUNTY – A metal treatment facility was evacuated Wednesday afternoon as crews from multiple agencies worked to put out a fire. Adams County Fire tweeted about the blaze at around 1:30 p.m. As of 3:30 p.m., firefighters said the blaze was mostly out, but crews are still working on hot spots.  One firefighter is being evaluated for minor injuries. Smoke was seen billowing from the building, and at least one wall suffered heavy damage.” August 9, 2017    

Mainstream Engineering/Rockledge, Florida

“A controlled atmosphere aluminum brazing (CAB) system has been installed by Mainstream Engineering. This system will be used in the manufacturing of advanced heat exchangers and cold plates for military, government and commercial applications. This system allows Mainstream to braze a wide assortment of very large cold plates and heat exchangers using a variety of aluminum alloys. On a selective basis, Mainstream will also be offering tours of their CAB facility to those with an active interest in aluminum brazing. According to Mainstream Engineering’s Technology Leader for Thermal Control, Dr. Josh Sole, ʺWe’re pleased to expand our research and production capabilities with the addition of a new system that enables us to process a wide variety of products quickly and efficiently.”  SECO/WARWICK Corp. Managing Director Jonathan Markley remarked, ʺSECO/WARWICK is committed to delivering brazing technology that provides our customers with the flexibility they need to meet the ongoing challenge of adapting to new alloys and customer requirements.”

Based in Rockledge, FL, Mainstream Engineering is a solution-oriented business specializing in manufacturing, and research and development. They have been manufacturing equipment and performing R&D for most U.S. government agencies as well as many government prime contractors for over 30 years. They are new to the CAB industry and just purchased their first CAB furnace to produce heat exchangers and electronic cold plates that will integrate with their high-heat-flux active thermal control systems. Bringing the CAB system in-house improves quality by providing process control of all variables, ensures confidentiality with sensitive military solutions, and lowers costs and lead times.

SECO/WARWICK’s Universal Batch CAB line is a standard CAB product offering. This line offers versatility through its ability to braze products in both horizontal and vertical orientations. It provides tight temperature uniformity, atmosphere integrity, and can be used as a batch R&D line for periodic production or as a production line working 24/7. It also has faster heat-up rate abilities which will allow braze temperatures for trials to be prepared within hours instead of full shifts.” August 9, 2017    

ECM USA Vacuum Furnaces

ECM USA Vacuum Furnaces, have recently purchased a PhoenixTM through furnace temperature monitoring system for their new ‘Synergy Center’ R + D plant in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin. The system will be used in their NANO furnace for developing heat treatment recipes for customer products, furnace development, TUS surveys, and commissioning at customer plants. The PhoenixTM system will operate in low pressure carburizing and carbonitriding environments using a PTM12 series 20 channel data logger to store and transmit (via RF) data directly from inside the furnace. The RF telemetry used in this system is capable of two way transmission, allowing reset and data ‘catch up’ when required. The PhoenixTM system is particularly suitable for temperature profiling in LP carburizing furnaces where trailing thermocouples are time consuming and difficult to use, as it can be charged and discharged to the furnace as a normal load. August 8, 2017   

Related technical paper: For more information visit

PhoenixTM TS02-130-1 ‘hot box’ system with 20 channel data logger)

Automotive Corporation’s Bearing Division Bolsters Production

A global automotive corporation’s American based bearing division placed an order with Can-Eng Furnaces International for a mesh belt furnace system for heat treating thrust races, retainer/cages, and washers. The new, CQI-9 compliant production line features built-in flexibility that allows for both neutral hardening and carburizing. Included with the system is: An atmosphere controlled hardening furnace, salt quench, two-stage post-quench washing system, salt reclamation unit, temper furnace salt holding tank and CAN-ENG’s Level 2 SCADA system – PETTM. The electrically heated system utilizes unique loading combinations on its belt to meet production requirements while achieving the customer’s required low residence times for the system’s hardener and quench. Additionally, through the integration of CAN-ENG’s PETTM System, the automotive supplier gains access to vital tracking of products’ status, detailed process data for continuous process improvements, comprehensive equipment diagnostics, cost analysis, & inventory management. August 8, 2017   

Canadian Civic Holiday.

Due to the national Canadian Civic Holiday we will be resuming regular updates on Tuesday August 8, 2017. August 7, 2017   

Press Release from Waukesha WI

To this brief press release we will also say that Therm-Tech is one of the largest commercial heat treaters in the US Midwest with over 100 employees. August 4, 2017   

“Therm-Tech of Waukesha successfully completed the API Q1 audit from the American Petroleum Institute. The API Q1 quality standard is developed and published by the American Petroleum Institute. API Q1 certification is intended for organizations that supply products and services to the oil and natural gas industries. API Q1 is related to the ISO 9001 standard and places a heavy emphasis on Risk assessment, risk management, management of change and contingency planning. Therm-Tech is one of the only commercial heat treating companies in the US to achieve this certification.”

Bloom Engineering Press Release

“In an effort to allow for better focus on key industry sectors of aluminum and steel, Bloom Engineering has reorganized its sales team into two industry focused teams.  Don Whipple and Scott Brown will head the aluminum and steel teams respectively.  Each team will focus on its own area of expertise, and will be able to provide better support to existing industry customers.  Furthermore, it will be easier to coordinate efforts to capture more market share and to bring in new customers. Mr. Whipple has spent his entire career in combustion with a particular focus on the aluminum industry, and has designed, commissioned and fixed countless systems for all facets of aluminum production.  Mr. Brown comes to Bloom from a furnace OEM, bringing a depth of knowledge and experience of steel making, with a particular focus on processing lines such as galvanizing and annealing. Michael Black, Vice President of Sales is excited about the possibilities.  “Scott and Don bring a tremendous wealth of experience in their respective segments of steel and aluminum; [the new sales structure] should help us spread their specific application knowledge within the group, and more importantly to our customers.”Matt Valancius has been promoted to Director of Marketing and Aftersales Support, including all spare parts sales and service support.  Mr. Valancius earned a Bachelors and an MBA from University of Pittsburgh, and has held various positions in Bloom over the past twelve years.  He ably led the marketing group immediately prior to the promotion; his expanded role will allow for a cohesive approach to aftermarket activities for a smoother customer experience.” August 4, 2017   

Where Are They Now? Chris Bixler

After many years with Applied Process in Livonia, Michigan most recently as Manager of Engineering, Quality and Information Systems Chris recently became Plant Manager of Metlab in Wyndmoor, PA. Applied Process has two locations in the US with the second in Oshkosh, WI. We have always considered the term “recognized industry leader” to be a very overused phrase but in this case we have to say that when it comes to salt quenching and particularily the ADI process it does apply to Applied Process. Metlab is a long established commercial heat treater who has some of the largest pit carburizing furnaces in North America. August 3, 2017   

Are Things Picking Up in Texas?

It’s been tough times in Texas over the past few years due entirely to the oil and gas industry slow down but are things picking up? The general consensus is that the future is looking up and at least one heat treater has decided that more capacity is in order. Texas Heat Treating Inc., based in Round Rock and with a location in Fort Worth has just added more capacity in the form of a Surface Combustion 36” X 72” batch IQ furnace bringing the total between the two locations to 15 not counting their Super 30 line or pit furnaces. Granted this was a furnace which was actually bought new a couple of years back but the fact that Texas Heat Treating is now brining it on line tells you they see business growing. By the way both of their labs are now 17025 accredited which they are pretty proud of. August 3, 2017   

Hauck Heat Treatment/Dzierżoniów, Poland

From Hauck, one of the larger commercial heat treaters in the world we have this press release about a new wash system the company has just installed in their facility in Poland. We had the opportunity to visit this plant when it was brand new and it is a beauty as you can see in the one photo below. The new wash systems compliments an already impeccable facility.  “In June 2017, due to the continuous development of Hauck Heat Treatment Dzierżoniów and our desire to improve process quality, we installed a new EMO Oberflächentechnik cleaning and degreasing machine (model VAIOCS S), with a batch size of 1220mm x 910mm x 760mm.” August 3, 2017   

Metals India earns Aerospace accreditation, bags govt. contracts

For years now one of the largest readership areas for “The Monty” has been India and their growing heat treating market. As a consequence we received this press release from Metal India one of the largest commercial heat treaters in the country and one whose banner ad can be found on this page. August 2, 2017   

“Metals India, North India’s largest heat treatment services (for automotive industry) provider, is pleased to announce that it has earned AS9100C quality management certification for aerospace industry following a recent audit. Metals India has long served India’s automotive manufacturers. The certification is a part of the company’s ongoing expansion strategy to foray into the aviation sector. Aerospace companies, right from small component manufacturers to aerospace primes, can now avail highest quality heat treatment services at competitive prices.

The 38-year-old firm has also bagged prestigious government contracts in the aviation industry. Metals India recently also joined hands with the country’s first private small arms manufacturing plant to provide heat treatment services to components of small weapons like X95 carbine and assault rifle, Galil sniper rifle, Tavor assault rifle and Negev Light Machine Gun (LMG). This is a part of India’s first JV with the Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) under the “Make in India” campaign. About Metals India: Metals India specializes in providing heat treatment services for the complete manufacturing industries, including Defense, Railway, Aerospace, Automobile, Surgical, plastic molds, tools & Dies etc. The company has acquired an enviable position in the Indian industry since last 3 decades as a commercial heat treater. The Indian company brought about a revolution in heat treatment space with latest technology in Vacuum Furnaces, Plasma Nitriding and Induction Hardening. It has been widely recognized for high standards, quality and service. Metals India, under the leadership of Chairman Mr. Rakesh Gupta, also heads ASM’s North India Chapter and is instrumental in building trade synergies among materials professionals and organizations.”

Ajax TOCCO Press Release

“Ajax TOCCO Magnethermic has completed the installation of a twin bead weld preheat system for SAW (submerged arc weld) process at a manufacturer of high capacity heavy duty fork / lift trucks. This is the second installation at this facility for Ajax TOCCO. The first install was single bead preheat system. The new twin bead floating inductor weld preheat system simultaneously heats two corners of a 30-foot long, 5-ton weldment at a rate of 28 inches per minute to 250 degrees F. The sections of the weldment that are joined are 1-inch thick. Preheat time has been reduced from 2 hours down to 10 seconds. Over 700,000 BTU’s worth of natural gas-fired infrared heaters have been replaced with a single Ajax TOCCO 35 kW TOCCOtron AC induction heating power source. Total fabrication time was reduced by over 60%, allowing the manufacturer to produce one weldment per shift versus one weldment every 2.5 shifts. For more information; Ajax TOCCO Magnethermic Corporation,” August 2, 2017   

Ion/Gas Nitriding Comparison

From Michel Korwin, founder of Nitrex we have these very interesting thoughts about Ion Nitriding as opposed to Gas Nitriding. August 1, 2017   

“A few weeks ago, I read an interesting article written by Edward Rolinski, in which he presented in a very accessible and professional manner the basic differences between Gas and Plasma (Ion) nitriding technologies. As you certainly know, Nitrex has been specializing in Gas nitriding/nitrocarburizing technologies for over 30 years. In fact, I built our first Gas nitriding furnace in 1984, with fully automatic controls based on PLC and a PC running an early DOS operating system, and it ran successfully for 15 years. Over the years we installed close to 500 nitriding systems in more than 70 countries and also spent over $15M on R&D developing nitriding technologies together with furnace hardware and supporting software and controls.

Today, Nitrex is more than a supplier of turn-key nitriding installations; it also operates a large international network of commercial heat treating plants. We not only offer the largest Gas nitriding capacity in the US, but also a significant amount of Ion nitriding services as well. Based on our accumulated experience with both technologies over the years, I thought it would be interesting to elaborate on the differences between these two. Ion or Gas nitriding each have their own ideal applications, but neither of them is a universal solution for all applications. For instance, Ion nitriding is the only choice for nitriding powder metallurgy parts with low density and it is also very efficient for parts with very large masking surfaces, while Gas nitriding is unbeatable with low and medium carbon steel as well as cast iron.

In Mr. Rolinski’s article, details about emission control have been overlooked and I believe it’s important to clarify a misconception on the subject. Even though Gas nitriding uses ammonia in the process atmosphere, there are high efficiency neutralizers like the Nitrex IN Series that eliminate the effluent gas problem and thus make the process compliant to the most stringent international emission standards. In the case of Ion nitriding, it needs to be mentioned that although it does not use ammonia in the process, it uses nitrogen and hydrogen, which by reverse reaction produce ammonia at the exhaust end of the furnace. When comparing the two technologies it is also important to note the following;

  • the requirements of batch washing is very similar for both technologies
  • the preparation of a batch is much simpler for a gas process and therefore the preparation costs in most cases are lower
  • Rolinski writes that a traditional Gas nitriding furnace, even with automatic control, can consume up to 100 times more than an Ion one. This, however is incorrect with respect to advanced Nitrex technology. Our furnace consumes a very similar amount of gas to what an Ion one does for a comparable batch.
  • The common marketing argument used by Ion manufacturers is the shorter processing time for Ion. This also is incorrect when comparing it with an advanced Nitrex system for which process times from floor to floor are shorter.
  • An important element for users is CAPEX and ROI. The initial investment cost for an Ion installation and a very good quality Gas Nitriding System like Nitrex, is very similar. The difference in ROI is 2-3 times faster in advanced Gas than in an Ion system with the assumption that the selling price is the same per part treated. This is due to the ability of 2-3 times the density of the Gas vs. Ion charge with the ability of obtaining the highest homogeneity and repeatability.
  • Due to the lack of basic elements of thermochemical control, which perhaps does not constitute a major obstacle for repetitive loads, but is definitely a major difficulty for varying charges, Ion nitriding requires operators with very high qualifications. With Nitrex Gas nitriding, on the contrary, the operator is not involved in any technological decisions and his qualifications not relevant.

Both technologies have greatly improved over the years and surmounted many of the problems encountered in the past. Today they are complementary in many ways; however, neither is necessarily the best solution for everything. One still has to weigh the benefits and shortcomings before using either method. Finally, I hope that these comments have further shed some light on the subject of nitriding and will instigate even more interest in these technologies.” Best regards, Michel J. Korwin

Monday Morning Briefing

Just last week global commercial heat treater Bodycote announced their Interim results for the six months ended 30 June 2017, a very brief summary of which can be found here with the complete report available at The markets loved the results by the way with the share price either at record highs or pretty close to it; Bodycote achieved strong revenue growth in the first half, with good momentum in virtually all parts of the Group. Notably, the General Industrial business, which represents almost 40% of Group revenues, experienced a broad based recovery after over three years of decline. Automotive and Aerospace also moved ahead. Bodycote revenues grew 18.8% to £345.7m in the first half (2016: £291.0m) corresponding to a growth of 8.3% at constant exchange rates. The five sites acquired in 2016 provided 3.5% of the constant currency growth such that organic constant currency growth was 4.8%. The contribution of recent greenfield investments made up 2.0% of the growth at constant exchange rates. The remaining 2.8% of the constant currency growth stems primarily from the macro-economic tailwind the Group has seen since the second half of 2016. Oil & gas remains a drag on growth although now much less pronounced than in previous periods. The onshore business in North America did register strong growth in the second quarter but subsea continued to decline.” Diamond Heat Treat in Rockford, Illinois, USA recently announced that they had purchased a new Ipsen “Titan” vacuum furnace, we now have a photo of the unit installed. Diamond if you recall was purchased earlier this year by a venture capital firm by the name of Calvert Street.

Centre for Heat Treating Excellence Award. “Columbus resident and Cummins Inc. employee Steve Ferdon received the Distinguished Service Award from the Center for Heat Treating Excellence at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. The award is presented to an individual who has made a significant, commendable and long-standing contributions to the promotion of CHTE as well as the heat treating industry. Ferdon is the director of Global Engineering Technology in the Fuel Systems business unit as Cummins. He has been a member of CHTE since 2010 and has served as chair of its board of directors since 2012. CHTE is an academic-industry partnership headquartered on the campus of WPI in Worcester, Massachusets.” Precision Heat Treat out in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada has been sold. Precision is a reasonably small commercial heat treater (which reflects the amount of manufacturing in BC) which has been owned and run for the past 20 years by Helen and John Davidson. They have been looking for a buyer for some time and we are pleased that it finally worked out for them. John Levensky has been in the heat treating industry for many years, typically in a sales position for companies such as Bodycote, Solar Atmospheres and until recently Accurate Steel Treating in Southgate, California. John very recently made a move and is now Business Development Manager for Delta Heat Treating in Huntington Beach, CA.

Wallwork Press Release. “Wallwork Group are at Offshore Europe 2017 on Stand 3C147. Many manufacturers in the oil, gas and energy industries rely on the company’s services to ensure that their engineered components meet the stringent quality standards needed in such harsh environments. The company is Schlumberger approved and operates to ISO9100 and ISO9001. As a major supplier of heat treatment services to the aerospace industry, they also enjoy main tier manufacturer approvals. Wallwork use their own fleet of vehicles from three locations and provide a nationwide 24/7 operation to ensure fast order turn-around. Hardening and tempering imparts optimum hardness, strength and toughness. Sometimes this can help component designers save weight and material by avoiding unnecessary over-engineering. Another advantage is a potential to eliminate additional final finishing processes – saving both time and money. Plasma and gas nitriding has many benefits for the oil and gas industry manufacturers. Particularly, increasing wear and anti-galling properties significantly improves finished part performance. Tufftride and Quench-Polish-Quench services produce parts that are exceptionally hard wearing and resist fatigue whilst ensuring there is minimal or no dimensional change. Also, surfaces begin to exhibit a self-lubricating behaviour.”

Commercial heat treater Paulo has been making some very large investments in their Nashville, TN, USA facility over the past couple of years; The past two years Paulo has significantly invested in the Nashville Division. The facility was expanded, adding 30,000 sq ft. from an adjacent building which was connected to the existing facility. Updates to the vacuum department include a SECO vacuum furnace capable of low pressure carburizing and the installation of a GM (60″x36″x36″) vacuum furnace with 15 bar quench and an 8000lb capacity. Also added were two deep freeze units and 8 Paulo designed tempers. The atmosphere department has also grown.  The integral quench line has been expanded by purchasing and installing two new AFC 36X48X36 furnaces. The furnaces are fully equipped to provide conventional heat treat processes as carburize, carbonitride, neutral hardening but has been expanded to include hot oil quenching and ferritic nitrocarburizing . Three Paulo built tempers were added to support the increase in capacity. A pass-thru washer has been purchased and will be installed in the 3rd Quarter of 2017.  As far as the future goes Paulo has this to say; “The final vacuum furnace is being installed and will be released for production in August of 2017. Coming soon are new office spaces including plant management offices, conference rooms, customer experience center, and a remodeled quality laboratory. Our Nashville team has grown with the plant, from 46 employees at the end of 2015 to over 60 today.” July 31, 2017   

Summer Holidays

The offices of WG Montgomery Ltd., (The Monty) will be closed for summer holidays from Monday July 24 until Monday July 31 when regular news items will resume. July 24, 2017   

Ipsen 1 Million Dollar Investment

Ipsen believes that one of the most valuable things a company can do is invest in others. They are also committed to advancing the heat-treating industry with the latest innovations and updated equipment. As part of that commitment, they are investing $1,000,000 in the industry this year. Companies can take advantage of Ipsen’s investment by trading in their old furnace to receive a $50,000 credit toward the purchase of a new TITAN® vacuum furnace (applies to the 2017 list price of any TITAN model). Ipsen will accept a trade in of any brand heat-treating furnace (vacuum or atmosphere) in any condition. To receive this credit, transactions must take place by October 31, and the new TITAN furnace must ship from Ipsen’s facility by December 31, 2017.

The TITAN vacuum furnace comes complete with PdMetrics®, an advanced predictive maintenance software platform, and it incorporates years of customer feedback to deliver user-friendly features, all while maintaining a global platform, small footprint and short delivery times. Available in several sizes and horizontal or vertical configurations, the TITAN provides powerful performance for both experienced and first-time heat treaters. It is Ipsen’s hope that this investment results in future growth and innovations – for you, your customers and the industry as a whole. Learn more about this opportunity at  

About Ipsen                                                                    

Ipsen designs and manufactures industrial vacuum and atmosphere heat-treating systems, supervisory controls systems and predictive maintenance software platforms for a wide variety of industries, including Aerospace, Automotive, Commercial Heat Treating, Energy and Medical. With an extensive network of global locations and partnerships in America, Europe and Asia, along with representation in 34 countries, we continue to provide expert-driven solutions that strengthen heat treatment throughout the world. Learn more at www.IpsenUSA.comJuly 24, 2017   

Thermotec 2017

Thermotec 2017 is the largest heat treat show in Japan and similar to Thermprocess in Germany it is also held every 4 years, this year it is July 19 to 21 which means it is just starting. Ian Chen who is in attendance very kindly sent us these photos. July 21, 2017   

Ian Chen and Dick Lu of Marstate Industrial Corporatio

Ian Chen and Xiao Jun Zhu (General Manager of Fengdong Corporation)

Ian Chen and Johnny Xu ( general manager of Marathon China)

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