Pacific Shredder, located in Newcastle, New South Wales, was looking for a steel that was stronger and lasted longer. Normal steel is prone to cracking and wear, and has to be replaced often.
“A car shredder is basically a 60-tonne drum made of eleven rotor disks, with twelve or sixteen manganese hammers attached to it,” explains Joe Beentjes, owner of the company. “The rotor rotates at 500 rpm and the hammers smash the car against a series of anvils, breaker bars and grids. The inside is armored with wear plates that stop the flying metal from simply eroding the whole structure.”
In a business where a breakdown doesn’t just mean a loss of productivity — a 200-tonne crane must be hauled in to lift the rotor out and repair it — durability is paramount.
“Steel recycling is all about dollar-cost per tonne," says Beentjes. “The cost of scrap and the price for recycled steel are pretty much fixed, so one of the only ways to boost the bottom line is by improving the life of the shredder. This is why we use Hardox® HiTuf steel for our components.”
He continues, “SSAB’s steel is the best we’ve ever used for these components, for a number of reasons. First, it’s simply the best high-tensile wear-resistant plate in the world. The stuff from the competition just doesn’t have the through-hardness that you need in a shredder.”
“Secondly, SSAB is the only manufacturer that produces this sort of highly resistant plate in the 100 mm and 120 mm thicknesses we need. This is critical to our designs because the extra thickness and extra toughness gives our shredders much longer life. Our wear plates and rotor disks keep on going when others have turned into scrap themselves.”
Pacific Shredder also praises SSAB’s technical expertise and support. “Whether it’s machining, welding, cutting, they make sure we understand everything we need to know about pre-heat, post-heat, welding wire types, and so on.”