Tag Archives: adi

Demand for Austempering Remains at Record Levels

Our Mission is to Grow the Pie for Austempering……and BOY is the pie growing!  Demand for Austempering remains at record levels.  Producers up and down the supply chain are straining their capacity, resulting in a flattening out of US manufacturing growth.  With certain parts of the economy still in recession, manufacturers have been slow to pull the trigger on capacity-expanding capital expenditures.  Orders in the capital equipment business have now increased, but the entire US manufacturing industry is the bottleneck right now……Applied Process Inc. included.  It will take several months to right-size capacities with demand but accelerating growth in US manufacturing is expected in 2012.

In a longer-term view, SAE Off-Highway Engineering magazine reported on recent comments by John Deere’s Chairman and CEO, Samuel Allen.  Mr. Allen stated that, “A steadily growing population will result in at least 30% more people to feed, shelter and clothe in the next 40 years.  This must be done with basically the same amount of land, water and other inputs such as fertilizer”.  Just think of that….a 30% increase in per-acre productivity.  Mr. Allen further stated that, “Largely as a result of productivity advances, the typical US farmer today feeds over 150 people; six times more than in 1960”.  In the 1930’s approximately 40% of the US population was directly employed in the production of our food.  Today, less than 2% of the US population is feeding the US and exporting food worldwide.  So dramatic productivity increases are not new to US farmers and ranchers.

John Deere is the leader in the US agricultural equipment industry.  The Agricultural equipment industry, worldwide, will play a central part in future productivity gains in food production.  But whether the equipment is green, red, yellow or blue; Austempered Steel, Carbo-Austemperedsm Steel, Austempered Ductile Iron (ADI), Carbidic Austempered Ductile Iron (CADIsm), Austempered Gray Iron (AGI) and Locally Austempered Ductile Iron (LADIsm) processed by the Applied Process companies and our affiliates will be getting the job done.

Manufacturing Surge Evident at GIFA: More Growth in Store for Austempering

The quadrennial metal casting exhibition, GIFA, was held in Dusseldorf, Germany June 21 through July 2.  Coincident shows included NEWCAST, THERMPROCESS and METEC.  This massive show covered 12 convention halls with 900 exhibitors (54 from North America) and 53,000 visitors from all over the world.  The European technical organization CIATF sponsored 54 technical papers.  Applied Process Inc. and its affiliates ADI Treatments, ADI Engineering, HighTemp, AP Suzhou and Jilin ADI sponsored a booth in the NEWCAST pavilion.  Hundreds of visitors stopped by our stand to discuss potential applications of Austempering, with specific interest in ADI and CADI™.  (They’re discovering that Ausferrite is AWESOME).

The worldwide mood in metal casting and related manufacturing is one of cautious optimism.  European markets have recovered to over 80% of their pre-recession business levels, the US and India are experiencing best ever business levels.  Australian manufacturing is suffering.  Chinese manufacturing has recovered fully in sales levels but is being hit with a high currency valuation, high energy prices and double-digit wage inflation.

We were pleased to announce at NEWCAST the upcoming commissioning of the production Austempering line at Hightemp’s Pune facility.  Pune is the automotive manufacturing capital of India and scores of Indian visitors to our booth expressed unvarnished optimism for the near-term growth of manufacturing in India.

ADI Treatments (UK) hinted at the commissioning of their planned German sister operation, ADI Technik, perhaps in 2012.  This would put leading edge Austempering technology in the heart of Europe where demand remains strong for high-tech conversions to ADI from steel and aluminum castings, weldments and forgings.

The feedback from Washington this week was grim, with very few new jobs being created (overall) and national unemployment rising to 9.2%.  In contrast, since the recession, US manufacturers have added hundreds of thousands of jobs and all the feedback from North American manufacturers points to growth at least through the middle of 2013.  That’s good news for Austempering, which is already breaking new records.  We are fulfilling our mission to “Grow the Pie” for Austempering…..and we’ll continue to do so.

On another note: Hat’s off to our Australian friends for another fantastic Aussie Boat adventure on the Rhine River near Dusseldorf’s Alt Stadt (Old City).  They sure know how to work and play hard.  They are now even more familiar with Hostile Duck Iron and our www.appliedprocess.com website.  Several Australian foundries have, in fact, joined the US-based Ductile Iron Society (www.ductile.org ).  They include: Graham Campbell Ferrum (parent company of ADI Engineering), Intercast & Forge and Trigg Brothers Foundry.

Growing the Pie- The 115th AFS Casting Congress

The Applied Process team is just back from the 115th American Foundry Society Casting Congress in Schaumburg, Illinois and it was a good one.  Everybody is bouncing back nicely from the Great Recession and demand for castings is rising smartly.  Demand for Austempered Ductile Iron (ADI) is no exception.  Visitors stopped by the AP booth and shared their experiences (and Dr. Kathy’s home-made cookies).

Numerous attendees were actively looking for equipment to increase the throughput and productivity of their metal casting plants.  At the Hoyt Memorial Lecture, Denny Dotson, of Dotson Iron Castings (www.dotson.com ) raised the curtain a bit on Saugus 2, a collaborative “foundry in a box” that is slated to be the first greenfield cast iron foundry in the US since 1974…….principal customer, location and collaborators to be announced…..but he claims they’ll be “pouring iron in 2013”.

Kathy Hayrynen chaired panels and presented on the AFS Cast Iron Committee’s activities while I presented the paper “ADI- A Green Alternative” in both design and marketing sessions.  Vasko, Justin and Henry visited with customers both existing and potential.

Discussions abounded about conversions from steel and aluminum castings, weldments and forgings to ADI……and we’re up to the challenge.  I don’t know yet what the final attendance was but the papers were well attended, the show traffic was steady and the mood was positive.  It’s great to see our metal casting industry smiling again.

A Hub of ADI Activity

Every once in a while you get the opportunity to work collaboratively with a company in a way that stimulates both concerns to grow.  Call it synergy or what you like.  One of those companies for me is Walther EMC where Chris Walther and Phil Fensel have built a company on sound engineering and a straight forward business plan; to build wheel-ends and associated components for heavy vehicles.  Their cornerstone product, Austempered Ductile Iron Dura-Light® Hubs replace premium aluminum hubs at equal weight.  (Huh? Iron hubs can replace aluminum at equal weight?).  But, SURPRISE, this little company, tucked on a hillside in Franklin, Ohio USA is not what it would appear.  Inside robots load and unload components in automated machining cells.  Satellite stations have various new products under development.  If you think what they make now is cool.  You ain’t seen nothin yet.  www.waltheremc.com .