Shaping the tipper market
A close partnership with SSAB Shape and the high-strength steel Strenx® is helping the trailer and tipper manufacturer Feber stay strong in the market – by reducing weight, costs and their environmental footprint.
Feber is a tipper and trailer manufacturer based in Poland that is well known for its high-quality products and innovative thinking. In their continual pursuit to become more competitive, the company has made it their goal to develop tippers that can contribute to lower fuel consumption and increased payloads. The challenge, however, was finding a material that allowed them to make the necessary design changes, while staying economical.
Lighter, more fuel-efficient tippers
For nearly 10 years, their winning strategy has been the use of Strenx® high-strength steel from SSAB. Strong yet thin dimensions of Strenx® allow them to manufacture lighter and more fuel-efficient end products. Furthermore, a close partnership with SSAB Shape for pre-processed components has helped Feber keep manufacturing costs to a minimum. Today, Strenx® can be found in nearly every tipper chassis that Feber makes.
“By partnering with SSAB and using Strenx®, Feber has been able to refine their chassis designs over the years in order to get the most out of the high-strength steel,” says Janusz Kuczynski, regional sales manager SSAB Poland. “The chassis that Feber manufactures today are some of the most advanced on the market, in terms of resistance to cracking and fuel efficiency; however, Feber wants to reduce weight even further.”
Improved crack resistance, weight reduction and less welding
Feber first decided to make the switch to Strenx® steel (originally called Domex) because the chassis, made from mild steels, were too heavy and prone to cracking. Feber chose to use Strenx® 700 and has continued using it when developing new, lighter chassis designs.
“Feber has been highly satisfied with their choice of Strenx® and now have the intention to go towards even higher grades like Strenx® 960 in the future. This may result in a further weight reduction,” says Kuczynski.
Another major benefit that Feber has realized from their choice of Strenx® 700 is better resistance against cracking. The high strength, consistency and excellent weldability of the steel allows for designs that would otherwise be prone to fatigue cracks.
“Overall, the amount of welding performed during the manufacturing of the tipper chassis has also been reduced drastically thanks to the thinner profiles,” adds Kuczynski. “The lower thickness of Strenx® equals lower welding costs.”
Yet another benefit is the reduction of costs thanks to prefabricated components from SSAB Shape.
SSAB Shape is a part of SSAB’s value-added service offering that begins with high-strength steel and provides a variety of refined services on different levels – from the simplest processing like bending and cutting to finished applications and patents.
SSAB Shape has been instrumental in the success of the tippers manufactured by Feber. They provided design assistance as well as deliveries of prefabricated flanges and webs produced by SSAB in Poland.
“By using SSAB Shape to produce the flanges for the trailer chassis, Feber not only gets a component that fully leverages the benefits of Strenx® steel, but one that they can quickly implement into the manufacturing process, thereby saving time and money.”
Bending and laser welding were other operations performed by SSAB Shape in order to supply Feber with components that need only a few steps to assemble.
“The result was that Feber has been able to produce and sell more sophisticated and innovative products that have changed industry standards and boosted their competitiveness.”
After such a long-term partnership with SSAB, technical cooperation is more or less a daily routine. Over the years, Feber has been able to achieve the highest design results in terms of weight and fatigue as well as a streamlined manufacturing process thanks to simple workshop procedures – and this means high-quality products with lower production costs.