ASHBERRY UK Ltd., located in
Hoar Cross, England, is a business specializing in Friction Welding
Machines, and the Friction Welding Process and Technology.
The company was formed in the early eighties to provide a support service to
existing users of Friction Welding Machines, which have been supplied by a
number of manufacturers.
Ashberry initially concentrated in the area of machine servicing,
Installation, Commissioning, and modification of machines to the latest
standards and control systems, re – tooling for new components, re – sitting
of equipment and the training of both operators and maintenance personnel.
Ashberry quickly became established as a major provider of service to users
of Friction Welding Machines throughout the world, and at times of overload
have provided Test, Installation & Commissioning support to other Friction
Welding Machine Manufacturers.
All of the key Ashberry personnel and Associates have worked with Friction
Welding for two decades and have considerable expertise in the Friction
Welding Process, Machine Design, Metallurgy, Hydraulics, Electronic Control
Systems and Project Management, and are used to dealing with a wide variety
of customers and cultures World Wide.
Ashberry recognised that there was an increasing need within a variety of
industries for competitively priced Friction Welding Machines, which led to
a new phase of expansion.
Ashberry now offer a wide range of second hand and re manufactured Friction
manufactured Friction Welding Machines
The re-manufactured friction welding machines are completely stripped to
base level, all of the working surfaces are brought to the ordinal drawing
The machines are then rebuilt, and any special customers requirements are
incorporated as are the latest improvements where applicable.
Invariable Hydraulic Systems and Electronic Control Equipment are provided,
the Ashberry PLC standard is Telemechanique / Modicon which would have a
Xycom style industrial terminal built into the control desk to provide the
operator with an easy to use visual display, which display’s machine status,
machine parameters and a fault finding facility.
Whilst Telemechanique / Modicon are the Ashberry Standards, Ashbery are
prepared to discuss & fit other control systems, for example :- Allen
Bradley SLC7 or a Siemens Plc system to suit the customers requirements.
Friction Welding: The Process
Friction welding is “a method for making welds in which one component is
moved relative to and in pressure contact with the mating component to
produce heat at the faying surfaces, the weld being completed by the
application of a forge force during or after the cessation of relative
motion.” (BS 6223:1982).
It is a completely mechanical solid-phase process in which head generated by
friction is used to create the ideal conditions for a high-integrity welded
joint between similar and dissimilar metals, and even thermoplastics.
In its simplest form friction welding involves holding two components in
One component is rotated and either one is advanced into pressure contact
with the other.
A light, ‘first’ frictional load is applied to minimise initial torque and
smooth surface imperfections. A higher, ‘second’ frictional load is then
applied to increase the temperature of the faying surfaces until they reach
a plastic state at which both the coefficient of friction and the
interfacial temperature are stabilised. The weld zone temperature is always
stabilised at a point below the melting point of the metals so that they can
never become over-heated using this process.
During this heating phase, softened material begins to extrude in response
to the applied pressure creating an annular upset. Because pressure must be
maintained at the predetermined level, relative axial movement results and a
predictable amount of material (called ‘burn-off’) is extruded. The rate of
‘burn-off’ is generally uniform. Surface contaminants not previously removed
by mechanical action are by this means also expressed from the interface.
Heat is conducted away from the interfacial area to metal behind the faying
surfaces to impart adequate ‘deep ductility’ for forging of the components
to take place.
At the optimum moment, the rotating component is brought to a controlled
stop. Bonding can now take place by the application of a ‘forging force’.
The original axial load is either maintained or increased, hot working to
joint to form a homogeneous full-surface, full-diameter high-integrity weld.
Ashberry Friction Welding
New Business Opportunities
Friction welding offers unique opportunities to reduce both material costs
and manufacturing costs of components without any compromise of quality and
reliability. In fact, friction welding can mean an improvement of quality
and reliability in many applications where standards of performance and
safety are crucial.
It does this by offering a way of making high-integrity welds that is
efficient, economical and capable of a high degree of automation and high
volumes of production and by creating new opportunities to re-specify both
the materials and the forms from which a component may be made.
World Beating Process
Friction Welding is widely accepted as a competitive and effective process
which is a valid and proven alternative to complex forging and CO2 / fusion
and flash-butt / resistance welding techniques.
From Axle cases to anodes and drill pipe to twist drills, friction welding
has proved itself a world beating industrial process. Today, it is used in a
tremendous variety of applications in every industry. Companies of major
international standing, including Ford, General Mosators, Rolls Royce and
Fiat have exploited the opportunities offered by Friction Welding – using
In the oil industry, friction welding is the preferred technique used by
Hughes Tool Co and Mannesmann, to weld API drill pipe. In the automotive
industry, virtually every important manufacturer in the world has adopted
the process as standard for the production of axle housings. Many automotive
industry applications are on safety-critical components, such as
friction-welded steering links.
In the hydraulics industry, all of the main manufacturers use friction
welding for the production of cylinders and pistons, for example as
incorporated in J.C.B’s earth moving equipment. In every instance, the
decision to adopt friction welding technology has resulted in substantial
The process has a proven capability to inspire manufacturing and valve
engineering decisions, such as flexible manufacturing systems, with
significant potential for radical changes in product concepts.
ASHBERRY FRICTION WELDING maintains an on-going close relationship with all
users of Thompson machines, and provides a comprehensive after-sales service
consisting of installation, technical advice, servicing and maintenance
documentation and support, service back-up and full spares supply.