Steel Mill Benefits from Furnace Door Winch

A sheet steel manufacturing plant needed to simultaneously raise and lower two access doors on an annealing furnace, but the intense heat from the furnace prohibited winch installation near it. Prolonged exposure to the heat could damage winch components so crews would have to shut down the furnace to carry out routine maintenance. A single winch solution from Thern, Inc., Winona, Minn., allowed for installation away from the heat source. Using directional sheaves to run wire rope from the winch to the doors, the winch was installed at a more accessible location, providing an optimal operating environment, extending the life of the winch, and offering convenient access for maintenance crews.

But mounting the winch away from the heat source created another problem: The furnace doors were now located at different distances from the winch. To open and close both doors in unison, the Thern configured the winch with two different diameter drum compartments to accommodate the differing line speeds needed to control both doors simultaneously. This single winch could fully open and close both doors in the same amount of time, eliminating the need for multiple winches or larger, more complex and expensive control systems.