Timken Plans Steel Capacity Increase

Ongoing improvements will add 120,000 tons/year

The Timken Company reports it plans to increase its annual steelmaking capacity by 120,000 tons across its three steelmaking operations in Canton, Ohio, by way of several improvement projects at the Harrison Steel Plant that build upon a $60-million rolling-mill modernization there in 2008. Timken is a specialty steel bar producer as well as a developer and manufacturer of friction-management (roller bearings) and power transmission products.

Timken has three electric steelmaking plants in Canton, where it is headquartered, with a combined capacity listed at 1.5 million tons/year of ingots. Finished products include alloy steel bars and billets, and carbon and alloy steel seamless tubing.

Since 2009 the Harrison Steel Plant has been the site of ongoing improvements that have helped Timken to reach new highs in steel output, “well beyond the new mill's original design,” it states. In the coming months more investments and operating personnel will increase output further and allow Timken to optimize production loads between its Harrison and Faircrest plants.

Timken announced a $50-million capital improvement program for all three steel plants in late in 2010, and it has invested over $200 million in the operations since 2006, including two heat-treating lines, a scrap logistics system, a long-length tube line, and a small bar mill. It plans to install a $35-million in-line bar rolling and forging press at Faircrest, to start in 2013.

Without detailing the specific changes that will “effectively create new capacity” at Harrison and Faircrest, Timken emphasized these efforts will support demand for finished bar products and billets for tubing, for customers in industrial, oil-and-gas, and transport markets worldwide.

"We are expanding our capacity to better serve customers who need high-performance steel," said Sal Miraglia, president of Timken's steel business. "We understand that it takes a nimble company to ramp up for economic recovery and also adjust production to serve our customers' most critical, demanding application requirements. These changes will give us greater flexibility in our processes, support our efforts to improve delivery performance, and provide much-needed capacity to serve growing sectors of the global marketplace."

He said the Harrison plant would reach the forecast output level within six to 12 months, depending on testing, product mix, specifications and other customer requirements.

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