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APandT has supplied automation equipment to upgrade the presses at the SKF Retainer plant in Gothenburg.

Spherical roller bearings from SKF are used in many different applications around the world.

In each bearing, the rollers are held in place by retainers produced in the SKF Retainer plant.

It is here that a steady stream of blanks is pressed into finished retainers.

Approximately 20 hydraulic and mechanical presses are used for the job, along with automation equipment from APandT.

The plant manufactures retainers in series of 50 to 5,000 pieces for SKF’s entire roller bearing production.

About 200 different retainer variants with diameters ranging from 110mm to 2m are pressed at the plant and are then transported to company plants in Malaysia, Mexico, the UK, Sweden and the US.

The majority of the manufacturing is now done in automated processes.

It is only with really small series that the presses are fed manually.

APandT has made more than 10 deliveries to the Retainer plant since 1996.

In April 2009, APandT installed two new automation systems.

One controls transport between two presses and replaces an old pneumatic system.

The other is used for feed in to a single press – an operation that used to be done manually.

In both cases, the investment increased the production rate while improving ergonomics for the operators.

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