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innova iovations CASTING


Supply Chain Collaboration Streamlines Part Logistics


I


n 2015, Monarch Industries Ltd., Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, began work with a customer to convert a large family of diffi cult- to-produce and costly weldments


into three common machined, painted and partially assembled ductile iron castings. T e parts are used in agri- culture equipment that includes fi eld cultivators, soil fi nishers, chisel plows, disc chisels, and air till drills. T e “walker” provides the main mounting structure for the wheels of the tillage equipment, allowing tandem wheels to walk or pivot around the central bore as it rolls over rough ter- rain. Most of the weight of the equip- ment is supported by this part. Over time, as the manufacturer designed new pieces of equipment or


new sizes and variations, new walker weldments were designed with slight changes to width, length, bore, offset angles, and other specifications. Each weldment contained an average of eight different pieces of square or round tubing and plasma/laser cut plates. Eventually, this family of weldments grew to 17 different part numbers with 136 subcomponents. Each of the 17 weldments were needed in inventory for production and service requirements. Monarch Industries approached its


customer to help convert the weld- ments to castings, with the walker identifi ed as a fi rst project to work on together. T e goals to redesign the walker into a casting were to: • Reduce the number of distinct


weldments to as few as possible.


• Remove the need for left- and right-hand versions.


• Commonize coreboxes. • Reduce the amount of machining required.


• Increase the strength of the part. • Decrease costs. • Provide a ready-for-assembly part including full machining, painting and preassembly.


After providing estimates to con-


fi rm the project made sense fi nan- cially, castings were designed and then revised through web-based meetings where solid models could be viewed and manipulated and design criteria could be discussed and understood. At the same time, machining and assem- bly criteria were discussed.


48 | METAL CASTING DESIGN & PURCHASING | Jul/Aug 2016


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