Somewhat skeptical at first about the new material’s published bending recommendations, André was not sure he could bend Hardox® 500 Tuf with the same tooling and the same design as used for Hardox® 450. To perform a proper test, he secured enough of the upgrade steel to manufacture 10 dump bodies for comparison.
“We quickly realized that there was no issue plasma cutting Hardox® 500 Tuf, and we did not have anything to change to our designs because we could use the same bending radiuses as for Hardox® 450,” Tremblay says. “Plus, the increased wear life allowed us to upgrade from Hardox® 450 6.35 mm (0.25 ’’) to Hardox® 500 Tuf 4.76 mm (0.1875’’) for the floors, front wall and tailgates and from Hardox® 450 4.76 mm (0.1875’’) to Hardox® 500 Tuf 4 mm (0.157”) for the sidewalls."
Additionally, production efficiency jumped up in the workshop primarily because using a thinner material required less tonnage to bend the upgraded parts.
“We also could weld faster and use less welding consumables,” Tremblay adds. “After the first 10 dump bodies were built in early 2019 and successfully tested, we decided to convert 100% of our production.”