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Product Focus: A novice’s guide to capstans and blocks Featured

This occasional section has shared information from very smart people on cutting-edge technology, only a changing industry has different needs. And one is that more people come to a company knowing next to nothing about a given field. That’s why the best help one can provide them is not articles about advanced techniques but basic—really basic— information.

And that is what ‘Got Grooves?’ by industry veteran Eugene Klein Sr., president of Parkway-Kew, does for the realm of capstans and drawing blocks. It will not turn new employees into industry gurus, but it will make them feel more comfortable when there is a discussion. In surprisingly few pages, he answers a range of potential steel process woe questions.

• What are grooves and how are they formed?
• How do grooves cause process problems?
• Why are grooves worse for high-carbon steel?
• If slip causes grooves, why is some needed?
• Can grooves be avoided?
• What are cold starts, short holing and block swapping?

Klein, who has previously written columns for WJI, also discusses treatment of blocks, the value of having spare blocks and resurfacing blocks. He also shares his thoughts, among others, about goodwill inside a plant, matching equipment to a product line and why a bottom-line focus can be short-sighted.

More importantly, this publication, which is small in terms of page numbers, will be appreciated by a new employee as it is the easiest of reads. In less than 20 minutes, the reader will have some basic knowledge, which is a good starting point. Further such publications are planned.

To obtain a copy, contact Michael J. Hoffarth, vice president of business development, Parkway Kew, tel. 701-306-5160, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For technical questions, readers can contact Eugene Klein Sr., at tel. 743-398-2100, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

3 bonus tips from past columns by Eugene Klein Sr. for WJI 

1. On a continuous machine, if the wiredrawing blocks are not filled with wire wraps for 66% to 75% of the face of the block, you are creating excessive slip and experiencing inferior line speeds. You may hear excuses that you have to do it that way, but the reality is the taper can be adjusted to eliminate this problem and to maximize production and minimize wear.

2. Water cooling is increasingly important as the carbon level of the wire is increased. Extraordinary production increases can be realized with higher carbon wires by making sure the interior water cooling is working properly. The use of an inexpensive infrared heat gun is invaluable in spotting problems.

3. Larger bundles can be realized on bull blocks by adding a step to the contour. If a step is already present, it can be enlarged. Grind the step angle on a 15-degree ramp so the wires do not overlap. Also, if necessary, increase the taper slightly after the step.

Editor’s Note:
This occasional section is meant to be a place where a company can discuss its technology in more detail than possible in the Products section yet not be a technical paper that has to go through the presentation process. Submissions can be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Read 330 times Last modified on September 2, 2022