Intermix, one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of concrete mixers, values innovation, flexibility and quality in its mixers. In early 2012, the German company launched a lightweight concrete mixer using 3-millimeter Hardox steel plates for both the concrete drum and the inner spiral. The new mixer already makes up 60 percent of the company’s sales.
For truck mixers, a minimal empty weight is crucial for business. Weight reductions increase payload and lower the costs of fuel, tires, fees and taxes. And in some countries, weight reductions help companies comply with regulations on empty and total weight.
Intermix wanted to optimize the payload of its vehicles since concrete is heavy at 2.4 tonnes per cubic meter. German road regulations allow a maximum total weight of 32 tonnes, while an average four-axle concrete mixer weighs about 14 tonnes empty.
Hardox constructions have been around for a while in dump trucks, but no attempts had been made to use it in a light concrete mixer. The company teamed up with SSAB to learn how to work with the thinner, highly wear-resistant Hardox plates. On January 16, 2012, the company received its Hardox® in My Body license.
“We are proud to be the first on the world market with a Hardox in My Body concrete mixer,” says Harald Schmidt, sales director at Intermix. “Considering the huge interest we’re seeing in Germany and other countries, we expect it to sell well in a large part of the European market in the near future.”
“Compared to the 4.5-millimeter standard steel that we used before, the lightweight version reduces the weight of the structure by as much as 18 percent,” continues Schmidt. “The most important part is that Hardox is so wear resistant that the lifetime of the concrete mixer stays the same even with reduced steel thickness.”
The new lightweight concrete mixer addresses precisely this point. Thanks to the excellent properties of Hardox in terms of hardness, toughness, strength, and wear-and-tear, these low sheet thicknesses achieve the same service life with a reduced empty weight.