In 2010, Bulgaria’s leading railroad car producer, Transwagon, developed two test cars, using SSAB’s Hardox 450 and Weldox 700 plate material. After presenting the samples at a German rail fair, the company received an order for 50 FALNS cars from German freight wagon leasing and rental company, On-Rail. The customer demanded that only Hardox 450 was to be used in the order.
On-Rail went on to order a further 31 cars in the summer of 2012 and, despite stiff competition from three other steel manufacturers, On-Rail and Transwagon ultimately decided to continue using SSAB and Hardox 450 for their future product development.
“My contacts at Transwagon tell me that Hardox is unlike anything they’ve worked with before,” says Dimitar Delchev, Regional Sales Manager, SSAB Bulgaria. “The quality of the plates, in terms of hardness, toughness, elastic deformation and surface tolerance, has been a positive surprise for them.”
“The cars have been in use for almost a year and we’ve had no issues with the Hardox material,” adds Eng. Nikolay Koldamov, Technical Director, Transwagon. “There’s no doubt that the quality of SSAB’s delivery has been on a different level from what we’ve experienced with other manufacturers – in terms of everything from the size and mechanical properties of the plates to markings and timely delivery.”
SSAB is in the process of manufacturing approximately 100 tons of plate material for Transwagon and Dimitar Delchev confirms that he is expecting orders for an additional set of FALNS wagons in 2013.