KEW Foundries has successfully supplied its first SG Iron 4205mm Helical Gear Wheel to Baldmin Engineering Works who in turn have machined and delivered it to the Mopani Copper Mines in Zambia. Presently being machined at Baldmin’s site is 1 x 4990mm Girth Gear Wheel and 2 x 3692mm Spur Gear Wheels, also supplied by KEW, scheduled for delivery later this year.
According to KEW Foundry Director John Bryson, gear wheels in Southern Africa were predominantly made in cast steel and have more recently been accepted by the market in forged fabrication. However, the market place is now awakening to the benefits of using SG Iron castings due to lower prices of the casting and reduced machining costs.
Steel castings can take up to two years to deliver whereas KEW Foundries can supply SG Iron castings in weeks, inclusive of making the pattern equipment.
In agreement, Baldmin Engineering Works Director Max Giarnnoccaro adds: “SG Iron compared to steel is much cheaper and effective and requires less upgrading.” He also states that Mill Gear manufactures in Australia have been producing gears for the last 30 years in SG Iron with great success. Leading South African project companies have been using imported SG mill gears for their projects, however end-users have to learn the benefits of SG gears and change their mind set of replacing present gears with alternative products, which deviate from the original material specification.
KEW Foundries worked with Baldmin Engineering on the design and capability of SG gear wheels in order to develop an appropriate casting and pattern design. KEW Foundries and Baldmin Engineering Works have projects in place with other companies for the supply of SG Iron gear wheels. As a result of the relationship formed between Baldmin Engineering and KEW Foundries, the company is quoting on other products that are presently being fabricated and that can be cast at a much cheaper price.