New 45MnB4 boron grade extends durability of agricultural blades
Boron steel grades from ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products offer a unique microstructure and hardness which can stand up to the most abrasive wear. With the release of a new grade in the range – 45MnB4 – long-term ArcelorMittal customer Blount Civray is exploiting the high hardness properties of this steel to create cutting blades with extreme durability. By innovating with 45MnB4, Blount Civray is also satisfying customer demand and putting themselves ahead of the competition.
Blount Civray contacted ArcelorMittal Europe – Flat Products when one of their customers expressed interest in creating a new product. The application, a cutting blade for a combine harvester, demanded higher hardness and durability than existing boron grades could offer. Developed by ArcelorMittal Sestao (Spain), 45MnB4 offered exactly the right properties.
Better hardness and durability with 45MnB4
“45MnB4 is a higher quality material with better hardness and durability than the 30MnB5 and 36MnB5 boron grades we use for applications such as lawnmower blades,” says Patrick Baré, general manager of Blount Civray. “Our customer has measured the performance of the grade and found that 45MnB4 extends the durability of the part significantly. We are undertaking more research into 45MnB4 as we believe it could be interesting for other applications in the future.”
After the steel is cut to the right shape, Blount Civray uses induction hardening to finish the steel. “We installed a new induction hardening line in July 2018 and created a completely new process to mass produce the part,” says Patrick Baré. “This offers our customer a more reliable product. We’ve doubled our consumption of 45MnB4 since the line became operational.”
While 45MnB4 is interesting for some applications, Patrick Baré notes that they will still utilise 30MnB5 or 36MnB5: “45MnB4 is a good answer for niche applications which require additional hardness. But the existing boron grades we utilise are a perfect compromise and have the mechanical properties most of our customers need.”
About Blount Civray
Blount Civray is the French arm of Blount International, a global corporation based in the United States. The company specialises in the design and production of equipment and replacement parts for cutting and other equipment.
In 2011 Blount International acquired PBL, a French company which has been producing blades for lawnmowers and agricultural applications since 1929. Now known as Blount Civray, the business is the only production facility for Blount International in Europe. Blount Civray supplies around 65 percent of the lawnmower blades sold in the European Union. The business also produces cutting tools for agricultural applications, such as combine harvesters, which are sold globally.
More info: www.blount.com