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Alcoa’s 50,000-ton forging press comes back to life.

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  • Alcoa’s 50,000-ton forging press comes back to life.

    Links to stories about USA largest forging press and a bigger press under construction by china.

    Alcoa’s 50,000-ton forging press one of America’s great machines comes back to life.
    http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/...on-giant/8886/

    In the December 2007, China has started the building of an 80,000-ton press forge
    http://aciers.free.fr/index.php/2012...ress-forge-us/

    http://boingboing.net/2012/02/13/machines.html

    http://aciers.free.fr/index.php/2011...raft-parts-us/

    http://www.archive.org/stream/plantp...ge/n3/mode/2up
    Last edited by Roger; 05-15-2012, 06:52 PM.

  • #2
    Interesting article about the 50. I grew up in Cleveland on the west side, not far from Alcoa Aluminum's plant on Harvard Avenue across from the now defunct Republic Steel/LTV Steel hot strip mill, now Servestal. I went to High School not far from the view of the Alcoa plant and the stacks of Republic Steel and served my apprentiship at a stamping company close by as well.

    I've been in the plant numerous times and I witnessed the 50 in action, cold forging Alcoa Aluminum truck wheels that go on Semi trucks. The wheels start out as a solid billet of heated aluminum about as big asound as a punch bowl and 10" thick and ends up as a wheel with, if I remember correctly 2 hits. The press has two stations side-by-side. The billet goes in hot and comes out really hot.

    The press makes no noise other than the hydraulics, it's basically silent and it don't move quickly like a regular stamping press. I used to watch the wheels being made..... before all the OSHA crap. The press is 6 stories high and is bolted into a concrete base that's anchored in bedrock in Alcoa's basement.

    Alcoa originally bought the plant from the Government for a dollar. The government used the plant for aircraft production (like Willow Run up here in Michigan) during WW2.


    Not exciting to watch because it don't move quickly but it's exciting to see the billet go in and a wheel come out. Amazing. I wondered if you could squeeze a lump of coal into a diamond in there..............
    So little time...So many machine tools.........
    www.flipmeisters.com

    Miller, Hobart & Lincoln TIG/MIG/-
    Hypertherm Plasma (Thanks Jim)
    Plasma-Cam DHC (coming shortly)
    Harris OA
    Too many motorcycles.............-
    sigpic

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    • #3
      Originally posted by SidecarFlip View Post
      Interesting article about the 50. I grew up in Cleveland on the west side, not far from Alcoa Aluminum's plant on Harvard Avenue across from the now defunct Republic Steel/LTV Steel hot strip mill, now Servestal. I went to High School not far from the view of the Alcoa plant and the stacks of Republic Steel and served my apprentiship at a stamping company close by as well.

      I've been in the plant numerous times and I witnessed the 50 in action, cold forging Alcoa Aluminum truck wheels that go on Semi trucks. The wheels start out as a solid billet of heated aluminum about as big asound as a punch bowl and 10" thick and ends up as a wheel with, if I remember correctly 2 hits. The press has two stations side-by-side. The billet goes in hot and comes out really hot.

      The press makes no noise other than the hydraulics, it's basically silent and it don't move quickly like a regular stamping press. I used to watch the wheels being made..... before all the OSHA crap. The press is 6 stories high and is bolted into a concrete base that's anchored in bedrock in Alcoa's basement.

      Alcoa originally bought the plant from the Government for a dollar. The government used the plant for aircraft production (like Willow Run up here in Michigan) during WW2.


      Not exciting to watch because it don't move quickly but it's exciting to see the billet go in and a wheel come out. Amazing. I wondered if you could squeeze a lump of coal into a diamond in there..............
      I think my favorite press line was Cadillac Gdand Blanc Stamping. GM had a line of 250 ton Bliss underdrive centrifugal presses in there. Those move fast and make lots of noise. I got to help dismantle them when GM converted to underdrive transfer bed presses (multi-station). I even have one of the solid cast Aluminum Bliss press nameplates in my shop as a reminder of a great American company.

      The bolster plates on the 250's were 14" thick hardened and stress relieved alloy steel and weighed over 90,000 pounds each and ther were 14 presses, all alike. All the ram guides were pressure lubticated bronze and the scrap went to the basement, carried off by a continuous conveyor system to an automated bailer house and loaded into rail cars.
      Last edited by SidecarFlip; 05-15-2012, 10:45 PM.
      So little time...So many machine tools.........
      www.flipmeisters.com

      Miller, Hobart & Lincoln TIG/MIG/-
      Hypertherm Plasma (Thanks Jim)
      Plasma-Cam DHC (coming shortly)
      Harris OA
      Too many motorcycles.............-
      sigpic

      Comment


      • #4
        For your reading enjoyment ....... go to where you see Spook2 posting, then read on. Outstanding pictures, also.

        http://www.hobartwelders.com/weldtal...ight=big+welds

        Then pick up here where the first one left off.

        http://www.hobartwelders.com/weldtal...ight=big+welds
        *** Disclaimer ***

        As I have no wish to toy with anybody's life, I suggest you take this and all other posts with a certain amount of skepticism. Carefully evaluate, and if necessary, research on your own any suggestions or advice you might pick up here, especially those from my posts, as I obviously haven't the skill and experience exhibited by some of the more illustrious and more successful members of this forum. I'm not responsible for anything I say, as I drank toxic water when young.

        Comment


        • #5
          Here's info and some pics of the MESTA 50,000 ton press from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers:

          files.asme.org/asmeorg/communities/history/landmarks/5488.pdf

          Here's the Loewy 50,000 ton press that went to Wyman-Gordon:

          http://files.asme.org/ASMEORG/Commun...marks/5662.pdf
          --- RJL ----------------------------------------------

          Ordinarily I'm insane, but I have lucid moments when I'm merely stupid.
          -------------------------

          Comment


          • #6
            I love the Alcoa plant in Davenport, IA. They do cool things.

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