Article | December 10th, 2019
Single-shot inductors can be successfully used for hardening not only components of classical cylinder geometries but other geometries as well. This includes workpieces of general conical shapes, such as elliptic, parabolic, hyperbolic geometries—and the list can grow. Ball joints (ball studs) are used in automotive, off-road, and agricultural machinery and can be different in shape and size, requiring noticeably different hardness patterns.
In any attempt to scan harden workpieces with appreciable diameter changes, the scan coil must have a sufficient gap to clear the largest diameter. When scanning the section(s) of the workpiece with smaller diameters, an inductor-to-shaft air gap might be very large, resulting in low electrical efficiency and potentially exhibiting difficulties in load matching as well as in controlling the austenitizing pattern along the length of the part producing “cold” and “hot” spots. Additional difficulties may appear in controlling the hardness pattern in regions (e.g., near geometrical irregularities) where good control is most needed.
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