The Hirschvogel Automotive Group, a leader in manufacturing forged steel and aluminum components, has adopted a new forging process that stands to revolutionize its wheel hub manufacturing.
To this point, Hirschvogel has produced its entire catalogue of wheel hubs through hot forging. Its latest hub has been produced through warm forging; a process that the company claims carries several benefits.
The warm forging process generates a fine-grained structure, with grain sizes between ASTM 7 and 10 (measuring between 0.032mm and 0.011mmin diameter). This, in its own right, is advantageous for the induction hardening processes that follows as the austenitizing process becomes shorter, meaning the martensite that forms is more acicular.
Hirschvogel also statest that due to the better tolerances of warm forging, compared to hot forging, machining allowances can also be reduced, and machining designed in a more cost-efficient way. On some geometries, soft machining steps may be omitted completely, with only hard machining steps needed.