This year the two strong partners Kurtz and Korkmaz Çelik completed successfully a joint low pressure die casting project with the Turkish supplier Altun Döküm Sanayi A.Ş. Altun Döküm was founded in 1977 by Ahmet and Mehmet Altun. Altun Döküm’s customers are widely spread around many different branches. Most of them are working in the energy sector, in automotive, in health or in cooling systems industry and aerospace. Altun Döküm is a typical jobbing foundry that means a very flexible foundry who is casting many kinds of alloys in gravity, high pressure, and of course low pressure. Yearly casting capacity is around 1,800 ton of aluminium. Besides casting and machining Altun Döküm has its own tool shop, casting simulation, laboratory, and heat treatment. How Altun Döküm was able to further increase product quality with low pressure casting is reported in an interview with Kenan Pulat, Assistant Production Manager at Altun Döküm.
Kurtz: How and when did you make first contact with Kurtz and Korkmaz Çelik? What challenge did Altun Döküm face at that time?
K. Pulat: We met at the GIFA fair in 2019. Some of my colleagues and I met at the Kurtz booth and talked to the Kurtz Automotive team. We got in-depth technology and machine information from the Kurtz and Korkmaz Çelik teams. We kept in lively contact and had discussions about our needs and ideas. Korkmaz Çelik took care of the communication in our mother tongue, supported us in technical topics, and accelerated the response process. Korkmaz advised us very well. Altun Döküm decided to invest and to move on with Kurtz.
Kurtz: What was the main criteria for Altun Döküm to decide working with Kurtz and trusting in their technologies? Did you face any challenges?
K. Pulat: We have been producing by low pressure die casting (LPDC) method for many years. Machines that we use are mostly outdated technology. New parts requests coming from our clients directed us to use newer technological systems. That is why we travelled to GIFA fair and searched LPDC systems. Kurtz foundry machines convinced us the most. Kurtz technologies are state of the art, have great references and are the most powerful on the market. We need a very flexible casting machine to produce our wide range of products, these were the key drivers we at Altun Döküm were looking for.
Kurtz: What was the main aspect when choosing the final equipment of the machine? Which castings are produced on the Kurtz foundry machine and which requirements had to be met?
K. Pulat: We connected with the Korkmaz Çelik team and explained them our present and future projects. Besides the parts in metal die, with and without sand cores, we also need to cast complete core packages in low pressure. We asked for a machine which can do both processes, metal die and sand core in one machine, which is not usual at all. Our projects have high quality requirements, lot sizes are mostly low. We are casting high weight products up to 700 kg and very light products up to 0.2 kg. According to our projects, the Kurtz team determined the machine’s requirements.
Kurtz: Which machine did you order?
K. Pulat: We decided for Kurtz low pressure machine, tailormade for our needs. This is the first Kurtz foundry machine for Altun Döküm. It is of type shuttle system, perfectly suited for changeable crucible furnace. We have to use many different kinds of alloys. Therefore a changeable furnace is a big advantage. We bought two 900 kg furnaces with different kind of alloys or for highly efficient casting, which means high quantity. One furnace can cast, and one furnace can be prepared with new material in parallel outside of the machine. We change the furnace with a crane. Kurtz convinced us with their cooling technology and the accuracy of the Kurtz low pressure control system. Based on that, we can cast structural parts, massive parts, and hollow parts. All we need to cast as a jobbing foundry. We are able to change dies fast and can store all the casting recipes on the machine. That means we are able to change from one product to another in a very short time.
Kurtz: How did the following project handling work out? Were you satisfied with the transport, installation, and other additional Kurtz services?
K. Pulat: There is an extremely professional manner at Kurtz starting from the specifying of machine’s requirements to the bid, layout plan, pre-acceptance procedure, shipping, installation, and training. Especially we would like to underline that we haven’t had any problems, even though we had the pandemic situation and a lot of restrictions due to it.
Kurtz: Some reference to internationality: Kurtz has a global service team. Service staff is sometimes travelling longer distances depending on the availability and project situation of the individual staff. Have you been satisfied with the Kurtz service team which in your case came from Kurtz Ost in Russia?
K. Pulat: The Russian team was planned and organized with the Altun Döküm team. The installation was completed on time and tests were conducted successfully. The worldwide Kurtz Ersa network is working very well. The teams are working hand in hand.
Kurtz: Are you satisfied with the Kurtz service for instance the machine service and the process support?
K. Pulat: Yes, we are completely satisfied. The Kurtz team solved all possible and unforeseen problems after and before the installation of our machine on the field. Remote service has been used and made problem solving possible in a very short time. Remote control was helpful for us because we wanted to have additional software features afterwards which could be handled via the remote control system.
Kurtz: Are there already any follow-up projects planned?
K. Pulat: Our first goal is increasing capacity of casting in terms of tonnage and improve our casting abilities. But Kurtz will surely be the first choice for our new projects.
Kurtz: Thank you very much for the interview and the insights and impressions you gave us about your cooperation with Kurtz Ersa, Mr. Pulat.
About the interviewee: Born in 1988, Kenan Pulat completed his bachelor’s degree in casting technologies at Gazi University in Ankara. Kenan is Assistant Production Manager at Altun Döküm Sanayi A.Ş. He is responsible for the cast part production. Since 2011, Kenan has been an integral part of Altun Döküm’s production and became an expert in the field of low pressure die casting.
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