Sheffield Forgemasters casts component for one of the world’s largest counter-blow hammers

Sheffield Forgemasters has poured a vast, multi-ladle casting to supply a crucial component for one of the world’s largest counter-blow hammers.

The contract, with the Forged Products business of global specialty materials and solutions company, ATI, builds on a long-term partnership between the two companies. Sheffield Forgemasters has supplied multiple large castings to service ATI’s forging operations for more than ten years.

Weighing in at 155 tonnes, the lower ram for ATI Forged Products’ counter-blow hammer will be delivered to Cudahy Forging plant, which supplies the aerospace industry with titanium and nickel-based forgings.

Ryan Edmonds, Customer Programmes Director at Sheffield Forgemasters, said: “We have been working with ATI for more than a decade and through our close partnership, consider them to be one of our best commercial clients.

“The new order is one of a series of contracts that we have completed over the years for cast forging hammer components.

“The size of this latest casting requires it to be finish-machined in a CNC vertical boring machine, which is capable of operating up to five and a half metres in height.

“Sheffield Forgemasters has the only facilities in the UK with the dimensional capacity to finish machine a component of this size.

“In addition, our Foundry is the only one in Europe that can produce castings of this size and weight, a process taking months of planning and work, from building the casting mould, to computer simulating the cooling process to ensure the best material characteristics.”

Sheffield Forgemasters conducted a highly complicated, simultaneous multi-ladle pour to create the casting, requiring four ladles of molten steel weighing in at 380 tonnes.

Counter-blow forging hammers operate with two rams, which work in opposition to deliver the huge forces required for specialist forgings.

The casting will form the lower of two main rams, which drive the counter-blow hammer faces together and the finished cast component will measure 3.5m in height x 3.3m wide x 3.0m deep.

Both rams for this ATI counter-blow hammer deliver 125,000Mkg of forging pressure during operation, placing the Sheffield-made casting under immense stresses throughout its operational life.

The contract is due to complete for dispatch to the U.S. in 2023.

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