New high-definition plasmacutting technology has been introduced by Tomago based T.W. Woods Group to optimise efficiency and quality in the production ofchutes, bins, loaders, tanks, silos and other materials handling and metalfabrication tasks involved in creating long-life, low maintenance products.
The new Lincoln Spirit 400 machine – now operating in the company’s 400sqm plate processing facility – was specified to deliver industry-best standardsof cut quality on standard and specialty steels, including stainless steels andheavy duty chromiumcarbide protective plates up to 60mm thick.
T.W. Woods Managing Director, Tom Woods said high quality wear and impact-
resistant materials are now in high demand as coal and mineral processingplants place new emphasis on long-life products that avoid delays andbreakdowns as mines step-up production.
The same quality, traceability andaccountability standards are being required by private and state organisations involved in the energy, marine, oil and gas, water and waste water and defencesectors, where safety and durability are paramount.
The investment in state-of- the-art plasma cutting technology has also beencomplemented by the installation of a new Truflow spraybooth and bake oven to deliver best quality protective finishes for customersin industries including defence, energy, manufacturing, mining, mineralsprocessing, materials handling, metals, process engineering and water andwaste water.
Truflow technology – the same type used by industry leaders includingSiemens, Bombardier and Veolia – is used by T.W. Woods to apply qualityfinishes ranging from camouflage patterns for defence projects, to protectivecoatings for mining, energy and bulk handling equipment used in aggressive,marine, chemical and mining environments.
“The optimised work flow and range of production facilities available on theone site means even the most complex jobs can be handled efficiently andexpeditiously, without elements of the work having to be sent off-site with theattendant delays and potential lack of uniformity of quality standards,” Tom said.
“We are also able to fully utilise the skills base of our staff team, which wehave built up over 50 years and three generations of family ownership. Wehave a tremendous asset in our staff loyalty, great staff skills and ourinvestment in comprehensively equippingourselves to handle completeprojects on-site.”
Materials handling system efficiencies are further enhanced by innovativedesigns from T.W. Woods partner engineering group Chute Technology, whichuses advanced engineering technologies, including discreteelement modelling, to optimise and translate into reality materials handlingconfigurations that minimise problems such as impact and abrasion zones andwhich smooth the flow of material within such systems.
“We are finding that quality and safety-conscious clients are requiringincreasingly higher standards of design, construction, finish and qualitycontrol to ensure the best lifespans and least maintenance achievable in theirindustries,” Tom said.
“Companies and utilities are increasingly aware of the high costs oflost production and safety hazards involved in systems that are prone to wearand breakage. Failure-prone systems can entail high labour costs andsignificant hazards involved in having to continually clear stoppages andinstall new materials handling facilities to tight production deadlines.”
Housed on the company’s two-hectare site with Hunter River frontage, the newfacilities complement 4,000sqm of workshop area in which the company undertakesmedium to heavy steel fabrication, plate rolling and pressing and manufacturing ofmaterials handling equipment including chromium carbide clad plate hardened steelproducts.