HORSHAM, PA - When faced with replacing technology, many companies prefer the status quo to dealing with upgrade issues. However, Tinius Olsen, a global manufacturer of materials testing machinery, recently helped a major producer of nonferrous investment castings automate materials testing and go paperless. The existing computer system wasn’t user-friendly and didn’t provide for automated data storage.

The castings producer, a supplier to many aerospace/defense companies, upgraded to keep up with demand. Its aluminum foundry pulls 356 and 357 aluminum alloy, as well as pouring and pulling beryllium copper test bars. According to the quality manager, “The capability to pull the size bars within the strength ranges we’re using had to be comparable to our old Super L.” The Super L is a Tinius Olsen tension and compression machine in continuous operation since the company has been in business.

Another Super L was selected to link directly to the new computer system and allow testing of more bars in less time. Notes the quality manager, “On the old machine, we were at one-and-one-half times the operation. Our operator had been doing calibration and pulling test bars. Now, he’s doing calibrations and many other things.” Workflow has also been streamlined. “Lab throughput is better because cycle time for pulling and reporting results is much faster. The time for the actual pull hasn’t changed, but set-up speed has improved. Now there is no paperwork.”

With over 50,000 square feet, there is space for expansion. With one technician doing the work of what used to require two, the testing process has come far. The new Super L has been operating for over six months and is an integral part of daily business. “It runs eight-to-ten hours each day,” says the quality manager, “and has made everyone a fan.”

Tinius Olsen is a global provider of materials testing solutions (equipment, software, and calibration services) with 125 years of testing experience.