Eight years ago, a relative working in the agricultural industry came to Florian Weber, deputy CEO at family-owned company Weber Stahl GmbH, with a request for a new cultivator. Cultivators are used to prepare fields for sowing. They are fitted with pins at the front that loosen up the earth and a packer-roller at the back that packs the soil and evens out the surface. The whole machine is exposed to significant wear and tear.
Weber decided to produce the packer-roller in 6mm Hardox 450 to reduce wear and tear, a first for this type of machine. Using Hardox 450 also reduced the weight of the roller to only 400 kilos, as much as 30 percent lighter than rollers made out of conventional cast-iron parts.
“In addition to the reduced weight, Hardox gives the machine a much longer lifespan than conventional machines,” explains Weber. “Cast parts often break because they are not flexible enough, while this machine is still running after eight years without any problems or need for repair.”
Weber Stahl GmbH is one of the largest steel processing companies in the western part of Germany, serving customers all around the world. The company has been using Hardox in various applications for the last 17 years and at the beginning of the year, it became a member of the worldwide Hardox Wearparts network.
The agricultural industry accounts for about 15 per cent of its customer base, and Weber Stahl is planning to increase this proportion by growing its agricultural wear parts business with the help of SSAB technical support.
“High strength steel has not yet had its breakthrough in the agricultural equipment market, so we see significant growth potential in this sector,” says Weber. “The cultivator is a great success story for Hardox and we’re looking forward to find additional ways it can be used for hardwearing parts in agricultural machines.”