ABUS double girder crane at a production plant for stainless steel tubes in Finland
A town with two names and two languages
On the west coast of Finland, on the Gulf of Bothnia, you will find an area of towns and municipalities where both Swedish and Finnish are spoken. One of these municipalities is Jakobstad, or Pietarsaari in Finnish. The town was founded in 1652. At that time Jakobstad was on one of the most important shipping routes in the west of Finland and thus it comes as no surprise that shipbuilding and tar production dominated the local economy. At the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century the local economy saw further rise when a steam-operated sawmill and a tobacco company were being built. Today Jakobstad’s economy is dominated by companies in the timber and paper industries, by shipbuilding, and by companies in the metal industry: The OSTP (www.ostp.biz) is a manufacturer of stainless steel tubes, today in major part owned by Italian Tubinoxia and the minor owner is Outokumpu. With their 220+ staff they are one of the biggest and most important employers in Jakobstad, or Pietarsaari if you prefer.
OSTP is expanding
When OSTP were expanding their production facilities they needed an efficient solution for their material flow: the steel coils weighing up to 26 tonnes needed moving from the unloading area to their destination in the production. Several ABUS EOT cranes were already in operation in OSTP’s production plant. A solution favored at first involved forklift trucks, however, this was soon discarded in favor of an ABUS EOT crane. This crane is now going to be used for several steps within the manufacturing process: at first the coils will be unloaded from the trucks and transported to the stock area. When the coils are removed from the stock area they are then transferred to the uncoiler of the sheet metal slitting line.
The ABUS EOT crane solution with added benefits
ABB Service Crane Centre (www.abb.com/fi), the Finish agent of the ABUS Kransysteme GmbH, installed a double girder EOT crane ZLK with a load capacity of 32 tonnes and a span of 17.2 metres in the expanded production plant of OSTP in addition to the ABUS EOT cranes already in operation. The hoist used on this crane is a normal version double rail trolley of the DB type with walkway, i.e. it is very easy to reach the hoist for service and maintenance purposes. The hoist features a C-hook with counterweight to receive the coils. The crane also features crane lighting to give the best possible illumination in the unloading zone to provide additional safety. The crane is operated in a half-open building when unloading the coils. Therefore the drives of the crane as well as the panel have additional heating to allow save and trouble-free operation of the crane even in winter time with temperatures well below zero. The crane girder and the travel drives are also protected by a special paint system and canopies to better resist the inclement weather conditions. The crane operator controls the crane via radio remote control. The load on the hook is displayed via a large load display well visible form greater distances and quick and easy to read by the operator.
The bilingualism of the area around Jakobstad is also reflected on the crane: the lettering required for cranes operated by radio remote control is written both in Swedish and in Finnish. The crane documentation has been supplied in both languages as well. Apart from good references through prior deliveries of ABUS cranes, the success of this sale might have been thanks to the fact that the sales team of ABB Service Crane Center includes staff speaking Swedish and Finish which enables them to satisfy all their customers’ requests.