12 is the internal registration given to the main hammer of Manoir Bouzonville.
This machine, ”counter-blow” type, delivers an energy about 40,000kg/m and shapes steel for decades. It was originally manufactured and implemented in Germany, and was moved to Sweden after the Second World War.
In the 1970s, Ovako – the hammer’s new owner, a manufacturer of crankshafts – modernised the equipment, but then decided to invest in a maxi-press line, which was more suited to the large lower-weight batches produced for the automotive market.
At that time, Manoir Bouzonville’s only hammer (of 25,000kg/m) was fully loaded with parts up to 350kg whose grades sometimes required more deformation energy. After heavy use and a major breakdown, the factory decided to acquire a more powerful hammer to increase its capacity.
In 1991, after looking for a new hammer all over Europe, Manoir Bouzonville checked out a 40,000kg/m hammer available in Sweden; the decision was then made to acquire this new forging machine. It was called ”Albert”, which was the name of the plant manager.
This hammer was dismantled by the forging team of Bouzonville, then transported to Hukswagen in Germany, where the original manufacturer, Beche, undertook a complete overhaul of the hammer, including the addition of a brand new hydraulic system and new generation rams.
At the same time, the foundations for the hammer were installed at the factory, which represented a substantial technical achievement due to building of four piles of 800mm diameter and 24m deep.
In 1992, the production started with a forging capacity of 800kg, and then, in 1997, Manoir Bouzonville extended its weight range up to 1,200kg.
On 29th August 2019, the closed-die workshop was engulfed with flames, triggering the shutdown of the line. Tangible improvements and repairs have been matched to significant changes. A complete upgrade of instrumentation, the modernisation and automation of controls, and a new lubrication system will make it easier to handle the extended weight range of 1,500kg. This will strengthen technical proficiency and manufacturing processes, placing this equipment at the cutting edge of technology for many years to come.
Manoir Bouzonville and its teams invite you to discover very soon this fabulous equipment and its new features.