Automatic Feed Company (AFCO) has announced its new heavy gauge straighteners designed for processing steel up to, and even beyond, 0.50” (12.7 mm) thick materials. This machine makes targets manufacturers of heavy gauge steel applications such as truck and automotive frames, wheels, and other heavy vehicle components. With a bridge load of 1,200,000 lbs, these machines can process coiled steel material at widths up to 78” (1981 mm) and thicknesses up to 0.50" (12.7 mm), while running at speeds up to 150 FPM.
These straighteners feature heavy-duty construction that withstands the excessive forces required for effective processing of heavy gauge materials such as hot rolled steel, cold rolled steel, mild steel, HSLA steel, AHSS, pre-lubricated materials, dry-lube materials and various others.
The machines feature nine work rolls -- four upper and five lower, at a diameter of 6.75” (171 mm) for precision material flattening. All rolls are driven through a common gearbox with multiple output shafts. This design feature helps to prevent material slippage, which causes material quality problems.
A kicker roll, located after the work rolls, assists with removing upturn from reverse wrapped coils. The kicker roll is beneficial when processing these products because upturn tends to be more prevalent in heavy gauge materials. The addition of kicker rolls can also make threading heavy gauge materials easier.
Each of the entry and exit sides of the heavy gauge straightener features an independent Pinch Roll Unit where the material is driven into and pulled from the heavy gauge straightener. Each pinch roll unit is individually driven by a 75 HP (56 kW) AC servo motor. The pinch rolls open/close with near/far side hydraulically actuated cylinders. These cylinders have proportional pressure regulating valves, which can be programmed per part recipe. Both the entry and exit pinch rolls, 12” (305 mm) in diameter, are separately driven and electronically speed-matched with the straightener work rolls.
These heavy gauge straighteners are equipped to run as an integrated straightener prior to a loop or supplied with an effectively sized drive train to run as a combination feeder-straightener mode. Each of these solutions for running thick heavy gauge materials are supplied to customers based upon production needs.