A large-diameter six-meter lathe is expected at Vesconite Bearings’ South African factory in the next few weeks.
The lathe will be able to machine extra-large-diameter bearings, which are in demand for marine mining, container ships, oil tankers, and equipment used to generate renewable power from tides, waves and currents.
The lathe has a ‘swing-over-bed’ of 1,630 mm and a bed of 6,000 mm, which means that it can machine a tube with a diameter of up to 1,630 mm and a length of six meters.
Other noteworthy specifications are that it has a ‘swing-in-gap’ of 1,890 mm, which means that it can machine short bearings and discs of that diameter.
At present, Vesconite Bearings has a vertical lathe that it uses to machine bearings with diameters up to 1.2 m.
The new machine will expand the company’s machining capability and increase the speed at which it is able to machine bearings.
“We will be able to supply customers quicker,” says CEO Dr Jean-Patrick Leger. “This is essential for marine clients, since keeping a ship in dry dock for repairs can be costly.”