Shear strength

Written by: Geraldine Faulkner | Published:

Geraldine Faulkner visits the TAURUS HQ in Italy to assess the recent partnership between Blue Group and shear baler and pre-shredder manufacturer C. E. G.

In terms of good omens, flying into Milan Malpensa airport last month to see at first hand the shear balers and pre-shredders that the Blue Group is going to be distributing on behalf of Italian company C. E. G., and reading in The Telegraph that PwC has predicted the UK economy is in a prime position for expansion, things couldn’t look rosier for both partners.

C. E. G. is an Italian company located in Daverio, near Milan, that designs and manufactures equipment for the metal scrap industry and boasts over 50 years in the metal recycling sector. Its current product line includes shear balers which are sold worldwide under the TAURUS BLULINE brand, while TAURUS REDLINE includes pre-shredders and hammermill shredders.

In the aftermath of the Brexit vote, forming partnerships with European companies might have seemed a bit of a gamble, but the Blue Group and C. E. G. are not letting that deter their budding relationship and, if the PwC report is anything to go by, their faith in the successful outcome of a new UK distributor is being justified.

PwC predicts Britain will grow faster than any other major advanced economy over the next three decades as the EU’s share of global output diminishes. The report forecasts that UK economic growth will outpace the US, Canada, France and Germany between 2016 and 2050 with average annual growth of 1.9%. So, no better time then to forge new UK-Italian relationships.

At the same time, C. E. G. is keen to expand the markets it sells into.

“We plan to expand in Australia, Philippines, Singapore. We have new distributors in Asia, USA, France, New Zealand, and we also cover India, Pakistan and Bangladesh,” says Gualtiero Rudella, C. E. G.’s managing director.

From January this year, the Blue Group has taken over the UK distributorship of TAURUS machines from Engineering Services (Bridge End), with which C. E. G. has enjoyed a 25-year partnership.

“We had a good, long, successful relationship with Engineering Services. However, the market has changed,” explains Edgar Root, C. E. G.’s area manager. “From our point of view, and since the general downturn in the recycling market, Engineering Services’ focus has been more on the service and refurbishment of older machines, while the Blue Group is very much sales-oriented. Added to which, the fact that the Blue Group sells Fuchs machines is good for us because owners of Fuchs machines who operate in the scrap metal market are our prime customer base.”

With over 700 machines worldwide with around 70 in the UK – similar to the number sold into the Italian market – Rudella says he is confident that UK scrap metal specialists will continue to be interested in the Italian company’s offerings.

“TAURUS has a good reputation for making good solid products that are durable. In this current climate of austerity, the fact that times are not so great have translated into an emphasis on more after-sales care, and the process of negotiation is longer. As a supplier, you need to be present in the market and to offer some kind of constant customer presence. Negotiations over the purchase of machines are becoming protracted, while investing money is a big decision. There is a perception that this is an investment that has to last a long time so you need to work with someone who has the right values,” opines Rudella, who goes on to make it clear the company is not content to accept the status quo and aims to strive for improvements.

Lead-in time for a TAURUS shear baler is currently four months, but with planned efficiencies in the manufacturing process, the C. E. G. management team aims to bring that down to three months.

As far as Rudella is concerned, the future for the brand in the UK looks bright. “With commodity prices growing, it’s creating a more positive climate in which to operate,” concludes the MD. “I am confident that our facility will be able to cope with the predicted expansion.”

Shear balers and the swinging wings system

A shear baler is a heavy-duty piece of kit created to work in scrap metal yards’ extremely robust working environment and designed to carry out high-volume scrap processing.

Able to shear, log and bale high quantities of material 24/7, the purpose of a shear baler is to give scrap metal dealers a higher ROI as sheared iron has a higher value.

The TAURUS dual wing compression system in its shear balers, originally conceived by the company’s founding partners, Giovanni Colombo and Dino Giuliani, is designed to offer a marked reduction in pre-compression times compared with alternative technologies. This, according to C. E. G., equates to a direct increase in production output, while the over-stroke function on both wings reduces wearing inside the squeeze box.

The independent movement and the geometry of the two swinging wings, hinged separately on the compression box, allows each wing to compress the bales with over stroke, as well as reducing processing times by 30% compared with other shear balers on the market.

The ‘two wing’ compression system (with each wing weighing up to 30 tons)incorporates the following features: over stroke found on both compression wings, increased lever arms and optimal positioning of the cylinders. The Italian specialist believes that the combination of these features results in reduced scrap preparation times, denser scrap and an optimal use of the ‘curved’ transmission forces.

“Both the internal and external surfaces of the swinging wings which come in to direct contact with the scrap are constructed of Hardox, a highly wear-resistant steel with a thickness between 40-50mm integrated into the wing structure itself. Coating both the inside and outside of the wings with Hardox steel combined with the internal honeycomb structure of the wings provides them with unrivalled strength, as well as the necessary flexibility to guarantee an elastic return in the case of twisting from high load stresses,” explains Root. “This elasticity prevents permanent deformation and twisting damage from the high stresses involved in compressing scrap metal.”

TAURUS shear balers’ USPs

  • Continuous metal base frame – no foundations needed, which makes the shear
  • semi-mobile
  • TAURUS says its shears are typically heavier than its competitors as they use thicker
  • (40-50mm) sheets of Hardox anti-wear plate and extra re-enforcement at critical
  • points of the shear
  • Rotary encoder on the shear wings precisely indicates the position of each wing to within a millimetre. By reducing the hydraulic pressure in the wing cylinders just before the end of their stroke, vibrations are significantly reduced. “Our competitors use positioning rods inside of the wing cylinders, which are not as accurate and prone to wear and tear,” states Root, C. E. G.’s area manager
  • Twin hydraulic cylinders on the shear head – for a more even cutting force and less wear and tear on the shear guides
  • Laser positioning. “This is more reliable than traditional proximity switches and also improves efficiency as the clamp and shear only return as far as is needed and not all the way up. This saves time and energy,” adds Root
  • Over-stroke compaction on both wings – a unique TAURUS (patented) advantage.
  • By over-compacting the scrap before shearing, a denser end product is said to be created
  • with less wear and tear in the squeeze box.

Case study: TAURUS in Iraq

A steel mill in Basra was using a shear baler that, according to C. E. G., was too lightweight and unable to handle the increase of demolition scrap generated by the ongoing war; furthermore, the mill said it wanted a shear baler that was mobile and which would give them greater flexibility.

C. E. G. was contacted by the Iraqi steel mill’s purchasing manager. This resulted in its sales manager travelling to Jordan to meet with the CEO of the steel mill to gain a better understanding of their requirements and to discuss the best solution.

After analysing the customer’s needs, both C. E. G. and the client agreed on a transportable TAURUS shear from the ACL range.

The Bluline ACL772 Corsair is a transportable shear baler with 700 tons of cutting force.
“The powerful shear can easily process the heavier scrap that they now need to process, and being portable gives them the flexibility to move the shear to where it is needed,” says
C. E. G.’s Root. “Furthermore, an integrated heat-reduction system ensures that the shear can operate all day without overheating in the challenging weather conditions characterised by high temperatures.”

Corsair ACL shear balers are equipped with four lifting jacks that aim to enable easy and fast loading and unloading from a mobile trailer.

Two additional hydraulic jacks at the rear of the shear are designed to provide extra stability during use.


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