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Furnace repaired - Do I need a new initial TUS?

J Allen

Involved In Discussions
#1
We need to replace the retort cylinder in one of our pit furnaces. According to AMS 2750 a new initial TUS and SAT shall be performed after any of the following modifications or adjustments that could affect the thermal characteristics of the equipment.
I'm not a heat treat guy, but there is a very minor change in the diameter of the retort. It is now smaller in diameter by only 1".
I'm sure that a TUS will be required but do I need to perform a new initial TUS?
Thank you.
 
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Randall Beck

Starting to get Involved
#2
J - Yea this is a little bit gray as it does not clearly state retort changes shall require an initial TUS, but I think that a retort could be looked at as refractory thickness in a sense. In my opinion a NADCAP auditor would be looking for an initial TUS, and this as a Major furnace modification. It could be argued that if you were replacing with a replacement retort of same size and configuration and vendor as the original you could have the Quality Organization determine that an Initial TUS is not warranted. As Quality Manager and Pyrometry Planner here, I would however not attempt to put this repair/,modification in front of an auditor without reverting back to an Initial TUS. We replaced a hot zone in one of our Vacuum cells with the same configuration and very little variation overall, but I still reverted back to Initial status for it as I did not want to chance losing 24 month merit.

Moving the control T/C in some of our furnaces by 1/2" can make a big change in uniformity swing when tuning our furnaces. I would think that 1" change in retort could certainly effect your uniformity to some degree.

Keep in mind that if you do an initial TUS, you will revert back to normal frequency and that the new initial TUS does not count as one of the successive TUS's required in order to go back to reduced frequency.

Does anyone have a different opinion?
 
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