CPT International 01/2019


The iron foundry was able to

ensure mold stability with the

fully automatic coating pools

from Foseco.

of the personnel shortage, however, is

of fundamental importance for increasing

yield with the help of the new

technical equipment in the machining

shop: “I currently have five machines

but only four operators,” the Managing

Director points out.

Five processing centers

are currently in operation

– and there is

already one operator

too few. Machining is

nevertheless to be


A forklift counterweight

with sprues and

burrs in the fettling

shop. Most of the work

here is done by agency


The casters from the Swabian Alb

Work in the production hall is now in

full swing. Most of the space in the hall

is taken up with the semi-automatic

molding plant. Finished drag boxes containing

cores for STILL counterweights

are currently being transported to the

closing machine, where the cope and

drag boxes are automatically put

together. The boxes are perfectly flush

with one another and are then transported

to the casting line opposite,

where they are shot. 65 to 80 molds are

thus filled with red-hot melt every day

– the largest counterweights weigh six


To the left of the molding plant the

drag boxes are prepared for casting,

coated, provided with cores, and secured

against the lifting force. An older

employee is currently hooking a bulky

core to a hall crane and can thus effortlessly

transport it to the waiting drag

box. Elsewhere in the foundry it also

becomes clear that most of the workforce

have already passed the height of

their productive capacity.

In order to get to grips with the personnel

problem, Ploch first got in touch

with his own contacts in the Swabian

Alb. As in the case of his 56-year-old

pattern constructor, who originally

managed a family-run company in

Aalen but had to give it up because he

could not find a successor. Thanks to

Ploch’s persuasive power, the man now

works here in Dinklage.

Trainee Mario Faiss also came to the

small Lower Saxony town from the Swabian

Alb to start his career. He is in his

second year of training to become a

foundry mechanic, and is being introduced

to the profession in the works by

trainer Fred Säwert. He completed his

vocational college work in block lessons

at the Wilhelm Maybach College (WMS)

570 kilometers away in Stuttgart,

although there is also a foundry academy

in nearby Varel. “They do not,

however, have a training foundry of

their own, and that is important for

me,” stresses Ploch, who also learned

his trade at the WMS. “The Maybach

College also explicitly trains casters –

training is divided into pattern constructors

and casters. That is different

from a general vocational school, where

the subject is only available as an elective,”

he adds.

The iron foundry pays for Mario’s

apartment, in addition to his normal

pay packet, in order to make his training

more palatable. Ploch also sent the

21-year-old to the STILL works in Ham­


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