Tires take shape with Eaton components
Eaton’s design expertise and customer responsiveness led to HERBERT’s selection of Eaton hydraulic components on its tire curing presses.
Whether you are driving a new or used car, the tires will eventually need to be replaced. This “constant” in vehicle ownership plays a dominant role in fueling the automotive industry. In fact, over 1 billion tires are produced annually in over 400 worldwide factories that are supported by numerous sub sectors such as producers of tire manufacturing machinery.
Eaton hydraulic components have an important function on tire-making equipment made by HERBERT Maschinen- und Anlagenbau GmbH & Company, KG of Hünfeld, Germany. HERBERT tire curing presses, which consist of molds that shape and vulcanize rubber tires, are equipped with an Eaton hydraulic power unit and six manifold blocks. The power unit supplies oil flow that raises and lowers the press, and the manifold blocks control cylinder speed and pressure.
In the early 2000s, Eaton operations in Wehrheim, Germany, began calling on HERBERT to discuss how Eaton could support its hydraulic component requirements better than other suppliers that were vying for HERBERT’s business.
“We needed to make HERBERT aware that Eaton could support both frameand column-type presses, as well as varying hydraulic component configurations that are specified by enduser tire manufacturers,” said Eaton’s Armin Heyer, application & project engineering manager — Central Europe.
“Overall, our mission was to prove that Eaton is a trusted supplier that could fully support HERBERT’s hydraulically driven presses, whether they were producing tires for cars, motorcycles, trucks or even aircraft.”Being selected as HERBERT’s hydraulic component supplier would generate more business for Eaton down the road, Heyer added.
“Tire manufacturers often specify the brand of components they want on their tire presses. Once these end users became acquainted with the quality and reliability of Eaton components, we were confident that they would eventually specify Eaton components.”
Eaton initiated the business pursuit by introducing its Application & Commercial Engineering (ACE)organization and how ACE engineers would study HERBERT schematics and make component recommendations.
“We explained that in some instances we may recommend a vane pump over a piston pump, since it could offer faster cycle time, making it less expensive to operate than a piston pump,” Heyer said.
“We also emphasized how Eaton’s Vickers® VHO vane pumps offer the lowest noise and lowest energy consumption than any competitive pumps, thereby offering important benefits to tire manufacturing plants.” Next, Eaton personnel explained the global manufacturing and availability of Eaton products that would ensure on-time deliveries to HERBERT’s global manufacturing sources.
“Overall, we stressed that Eaton’s strengths are all based on the responsiveness of Eaton people,” Heyer said, “whether they’re on the design, manufacturing,
application or the delivery side.”
With all of Eaton's strengths identified, ACE personnel went about the task of designing a power unit and manifold blocks for a column-type press. The design included Eaton pumps, motors, industrial control valves, filtration products and hose assemblies.
Eaton’s design expertise and customer responsiveness led to HERBERT’s selection of Eaton hydraulic components for the majority of its tire curing presses — a decision that has boded well for Eaton.
Based on their experience with Eaton products, five tire manufacturers are specifying only Eaton power units and manifold blocks on their Herbert tire presses. One tire manufacturer, in fact, specified Eaton hydraulic components on more than 200 Herbert tire presses at its production facility in Russia.
“The robust design of Eaton products has increased machine uptime,” Heyer said. “And Eaton’s global footprint enables us to service tire press end users
around the world with reliable spare parts supply.”