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As good as new.

Leicestershire-based Cast Iron Welding Services has been awarded the contract to carry out restoration work to the lamp standard and balustrades on Tower Bridge in London.

Over the years, the balustrade handrails and bottom support beam have exerted excessive pressure on the lamp standards because of natural movements in the Grade l-listed bridge and rust building up in the expansion joints of the bridge's structure has caused the lantern balustrades to crack. Cast Iron Welding Services is removing the damaged castings one by one, using purpose-built jigs and hydraulic jacks to prevent unwanted extra stress on the bridge's concrete structure.

The damaged sections are transported to the company's workshop in Coalville for restoration. Decades of paint layers are removed to reveal the original casting before inspection and restorative welding process can begin. Restoration involves gas fusion welding, a process that requires the castings to be preheated at a controlled rate to achieve 600[degrees]C. This temperature is maintained throughout the welding process while the prepared area is subjected to intense localised heat with an oxyacetylene torch that turns the area to be welded into a molten pool. An operator maintains the pool and gradually fills up the area with a cast iron filler material of the same chemical composition as the original casting.


The result is undetectable to the eye and will have the same characteristics and strength as the original casting.


Application: The first production application of Infinitrak's traction epicyclic technology will be in a new transmission being finalised for launch in the outdoor power equipment market. "There is nothing on the market like this," said Rob Oliver, Infintrak's chief operating officer. "We expect that the ease of control, refined operation, low noise and enhanced durability offered by the new transmission will make it highly competitive."

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Title Annotation:TECHNOLOGY: APPLICATION; Cast Iron Welding Services has been contracted fo restoration job
Publication:Professional Engineering Magazine
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Mar 31, 2010
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