Effective shot blasting of steel weldments for rail cars as well as agricultural and construction equipment

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Surface preparation operations with improved quality, higher productivity and lower costs
To meet today’s demands for quality and long service life, complex steel weldments used in the production of rail cars as well as agricultural and construction equipment require a shot blasting operation prior to painting. The continuous feed spinner hanger shot blast machines RHBD-K from Rösler were specifically developed for the automatic processing of such large and heavy components. The sophisticated equipment concept produces not only excellent shot blasting results, but it also allows the linking with subsequent painting systems. The overall results are better quality, higher productivity and excellent cost efficiency.

Modern rail cars as well as agricultural and construction equipment must meet strict demands regarding quality, long service life and cost efficiency. In this context an efficient manufacturing process, including the shot blasting operations for frame sections, base frames, wheel suspensions, cross beams, etc., plays a key role. In line with the respective technical requirements the shot blasting operation guarantees an optimal surface preparation through cleaning, de-scaling and/or de-rusting of the components prior to painting. The continuous feed spinner hanger machines of the model range RHBD-K from the Rösler OberflĂ€chentechnik GmbH were specifically designed for the continuous, automatic blasting of high volumes of steel weldments with complex shapes. Thanks to the ultra-modern equipment technology surface finishes of SA 2,5 can be achieved with surface roughness readings between six and twelve (6 – 12) microns. The modular equipment concept allows adapting the size and technical features of the shot blasting machines precisely to the respective finishing job – be it as stand-alone units or the integration into manufacturing lines. Flexible power & free transport systems ensure that the components are continuously passing through the shot blasting, painting and drying systems without having to be loaded/unloaded multiple times.

High performance turbines guarantee a fast, efficient and energy-saving operation
The shot blast machines are equipped with the unique, particularly productive high-performance turbines of the model range Gamma G and Rutten Gamma. The individual turbine components can be supplied in different materials such as steel castings, tool or carbide steel or as combinations of these materials. Compared to conventional blast turbines, the special Y design and optimum curvature of the throwing blades in the Gamma G turbines produces a much higher throwing speed and a more precise blast pattern. This results in a significantly improved shot blast efficiency. At the same time the turbines save a considerable amount of energy – on average the energy savings amount to about 25%. Last-but-not-least, their special Y design allows using both sides of the throwing blades, resulting in an uptime that is at least twice the uptime of the throwing blades in conventional turbines. With the help of a quick-change systems the throwing blades can be easily exchanged without having to dismount the turbine from its housing. The turbine type, size and number of turbines are individually configured to precisely match the customer requirements regarding productivity, operating & energy costs and maintenance.

Sturdy equipment that is easy to maintain and offers a long service life
In front of and behind the blast chamber the RHBD-K blast machines are equipped with an inlet and outlet chamber. If required, the latter can be designed as a blast room for the manual post-blasting of particularly complex surface sections of the steel weldments. The blast chamber is made from wear-resistant manganese steel. Critical sections in the blast chamber contain an additional lining that consists of easily exchangeable wear plates, also made from manganese steel. This guarantees an optimal wear protection and ensures a long equipment life. Depending on the utilized blast media and the aggressiveness of the shot blasting process, other wear liners in the form of special steel castings and carbide steel are available. All equipment sections requiring regular service are easily accessible. This helps not only to increase the equipment uptime but also reduces the operating costs.

Smart Solutions – a digital approach towards a more efficient shot blasting operation
In its efforts to adapt the rapidly expanding digitization and intercommunication of equipment and manufacturing processes to the shot blasting technology, Rösler has developed innovative digital solutions. The respective soft- and hardware modules are available in the versions “basic”, “advanced” and “premium”. Depending on the individual customer needs combinations of these modules can be made available. For example, they allow pooling the shot blasting parameters turbine RPM, blast media throughput and blasting time into one single operational value called “shot blasting performance” and to record all factors affecting the shot blasting quality. The real-time monitoring of all consumptive values such as energy, compressed air and blast media usage provides valuable information regarding the actual condition of the shot blast equipment. At the same time, the archiving of the actual operating parameters allows detecting operational trajectories and trends. For the purpose of preventive maintenance and minimization of unscheduled equipment downtimes the run times and downtimes of each single turbine are recorded. This facilitates the preparation of maintenance schedules, which will result in higher equipment uptimes and improved production planning. Moreover, the recorded operational values help establish special lists with a “mail to” function for the procurement of needed spare and wear parts.