Welcome - May 2019 Newsletter

Dave Haimbaugh, President
Dave Haimbaugh

In this edition of the IHT Newsletter we will provide an overview of one of the more challenging materials to induction harden – cast iron. We will also provide updates on IHT events as well as introduce you to a husband and wife team on our staff, Meche and Gerardo Mendez.

Thank You,

Dave Haimbaugh



Material Overview - Cast Iron

The following story is expressed in layman’s terms. It is a simple expression of a complex metallurgical story.

Of all the materials that we induction harden, the most challenging are the cast irons. The most common in this group include Ductile, Grey, and Malleable irons. In the as-cast condition, microstructures exist in which carbon can be locked up in graphite flakes or spheres. Carbon in this form resists transformation because of the short heat cycles of induction which then yields low hardness.

The best way to create a microstructure that can be readily hardened is to heat it in a furnace in a neutral atmosphere. It is the combination of heat and time that disperses carbon homogeneously and produces a (pearlitic) microstructure that can be easily induction hardened.

Carbon contained in graphite spheres (at 100X)

Carbon contained in graphite flakes (at 500X)

Sometimes in order to compensate for short heat times, higher temperatures can be applied to stubborn microstructures. This practice can cause graphite to decay and release carbon but is risky and can lead to undesirable results such as melting, cracking, retained austenite, and enlarged grain growth.

In the development process for induction hardening cast iron parts, one must consider that every heated part will behave differently to additional heat cycles. This is why recipes developed for furnace refining of microstructures must be closely repeated every time. Once it has been hardened, a cast iron product cannot be reheated without first furnace annealing or the result will produce cracks.

IHT Exhibits at the Design 2 Part Show

On May 8th and 9th, IHT exhibited at the Design 2 Part Show in Schaumburg, Illinois. Design 2 Part is a trade show that showcases manufacturing and engineering solutions and is attended by thousands of engineers and manufacturing managers from a wide variety of industries as well as academia.

IHT used the time at the show to talk to customers, prospects, and companies in complementary industries about what trends they are seeing in their industries, as well as any challenges they may be experiencing. It also gave IHT an opportunity to see, first-hand, what advancements are being made, not only just in our own industry, but also throughout an array of industries.   

Employee Profiles
Meche & Gerardo Mendez

Gina Braun
Meche & Gerardo Mendez

Where did you meet?

Meche and Gerardo – We met at IHT.

Where was your first date?

Gerardo – We went to a trampoline gym with our kids.

Meche – I don’t remember that but…maybe we did.

How many years have you been married?

Meche and Gerardo  - 7 years

Tell us about your family.

Gerardo and Meche – four sons, Martin, Gerardo, Julian, and Davey.  One daughter, Julissa.

We have a very happy family.

Do you have any pets?

Gerardo - No (by orders from Meche)

Who has the more demanding job?

Gerardo – I think I do.

Meche – I think I do.  Do you mean overall or at IHT?  At IHT I think Gerardo does.

Where do you vacation?

Gerardo and Meche – We have been to California, Oklahoma, and the Wisconsin Dells.  This year we are traveling to Florida.

Favorite thing that you like to do on your weekends?

Gerardo – I like attending church, visiting friends, fishing, and playing soccer.

Meche – I like attending church, and I enjoy dressmaking, fishing, and going to Gerardo’s games.

Gerardo & Meche – We give each other the space to do things individually, which is very important.

IHT Summer Barbecue

IHT’s annual barbecue will be held at the facility (775 Tek Drive, Crystal Lake, IL) on June 13th from 11:30 – 2:00. IHT President Dave Haimbaugh will be grilling Jamaican style jerk chicken served with red beans and rice and fried plantains for employees, customers, suppliers and friends.


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