Monday, March 25, 2013

Mad over Plate

It's that time of year again...March Plate Madness.  While one doesn't typically associate Bronze Plate with the same type of hysteria that Basketball evokes, for some of us, we get excited about Plate!  Of course, if Bronze was still comprised of Copper & Arsenic then we might find some customers truly experiencing madness. But luckily humans wised up and replaced that Arsenic with Tin! 
So why is Plate so neat?  Personally, I find that of all the Bronze Shapes (i.e. Cored Bar or Solid Bar) plate is the most versatile in both Method of Manufacture & Secondary Processes.  Now this is just my personal opinion so all the manufacturers of Bushings and Finished Machine products please don't eat me alive.

The plate that I usually come in contact with is made from one of the following methods of manufacture: Continuous Casting, Sand Casting, Hot Rolled, Cold Rolled and/or Forged.  And here is the kicker... the method of manufacture depends on the Alloy, Material Specification, size range needed, quantity and lead time.  Fun I know! And here are few of cool Secondary Processes that I have run across here at Atlas Bronze:

3 “D” Saw Cutting

Sure a lot of companies can saw cut and yes the cutting itself is neat to watch.  But it just so happens that Atlas Bronze is one of the only suppliers that can Saw Cut a Big Block of bronze plate on all (3) sides:  thickness, width and length.  Where in the past, a customer would have to Sand Cast a piece to a non-standard thickness or have several hundred (or even thousand) pounds run in a mill, depending on the alloy -- we eliminate that need by offering this specialty cutting. 

For example:  Take C93200 Plate -

What if you needed a 1.125" thick x 2" wide x 40" long BUT the mill only has standard sizes that they can offer.  They would offer you the next available size up -- 1.25" thick x 2" wide .......

Yes this can work but it's a lot extra material left over from milling that plate down.  A lot of extra material = more $ spent on the bar(s) + all that extra time invested in the milling process. 

This is where Atlas Bronze comes into play!
We take one of our Big Blocks-- in C93200 we have (2) different sizes to choose from:  6" thick x 18" wide (or) 10" thick  x 12" wide.  We take the block and then cut it on ALL (3) sides to get the thickness that the customer needs. 

So the customer winds up with the desired dimensions of:  1.125" thick x 2" wide x 40" long

I'm still working on getting some pictures for you folks so you can see exactly what I'm talking about but if you have any questions message us and we'd be happy to help!

Ground Plate = less time = less $ lost

This is where we take C932000 (Bearing Bronze Plate) or C954000 (Aluminum Bronze Plate) and grind it top & bottom to a +/-.002 on the thickness.  Why does this matter?  Because it reduces the amount of time one needs to mill or grind a piece down -- less time to machine = less money wasted.  Grinding Plate down is just a plain smart secondary process for the machine shop and end user alike.

Ground Plate

The Unique Diamonized Naval Brass Plate

As far as I know there is only (1) machine in the world that can produce the "Diamonized Finish" (see below).  Now let me say that out of ALL the plate that we carry, I find this material to be my favorite.  It is stunning to look at and it truly does look like you are staring into a mirror.  That aside, it's functionality is impressive as well.  It has excellent wear properties, corrosion resistance and softness.  It has a gauge tolerance of +0.000, -0.004 and much more!

Graphite Plugging

This secondary process, which is also considered Self Lubrication, is great when standard lubrication is impractical, including heavy load, high temperature applications. You do wind up spending a bit more money by having the plates plugged but now you have permanent lubrication built into the part.  Thus eliminating the need to stop the machine and re-apply lubrication.  Less Time = More Money!

Water jet Cutting

I love the idea that you can take a rectangle sheet and make the circles.  Okay this is hokey but it kind of reminds me of crazy Spirograph toy that I used to play with as a “e-hem, kid”.  So why is Water jet cutting a great secondary process, take a look:

Waterjet cutting has been around since the early seventies but was of little value to engineers as then it was only capable of cutting thin gasket and foam materials. Abrasive jets extended the concept about 10 years later.

Both technologies use the principle of pressurizing water to extremely high pressures, and allowing the water to escape through a very small opening (typically called the "orifice" or "jewel"). Water jets use the beam of water exiting the orifice (or jewel) to cut soft materials like confectionery and foam etc. but are not effective for cutting harder materials.  Abrasive jets use that same beam of water to accelerate abrasive particles to speeds fast enough to cut through much harder materials.

We frequently get requests for circles in Brass Plates calling for thicknesses that otherwise couldn’t be achieved in any other fashion, except to water jet. 

Decorative Purposes

This one is relatively newer to me.  Over the past few years we have supplied plate (all different alloys) that would wind up being included in some of the neatest places. An example of this would be we supplied plate that would be polished, water jet cut and then installed at the Main Entrance at Macy's Herald Square. (see below)

© 2013 is a registered trademark. All rights reserved.

We have supplied brass sheets that would be the decorative sheets to escalators and elevators, window and building facades, (such as the Novartis Building in New York) and much more.

DISCLAIMER:  While Maranatha Now, Inc. dba Atlas Bronze strives to make the content on this blog as informational and educational as possible,  Maranatha Now, Inc. dba Atlas Bronze makes no claims, promises, or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the contents of this blog, and expressly disclaims liability for errors and omissions in the contents of this site.


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