BENEFITS FROM THE BEGINNING
The development of modern wear parts for buckets took off after World War II when extensive construction work began to rebuild European cities and their infrastructure. But if we look more closely at the old farm plows (the oldest form of tool to move the earth), we see that they had thought about the benefits of wear parts for several hundred years.
PREVENTING ABRASION FOR 600 YEARS
At the National Museum in Seoul, South Korea, there is a complete plow from the 1400s with a simple shaft containing wear parts. The Korean farmer faced the problem of his wooden plow wearing out too quickly. Abrasion is a well-known phenomenon when moving earth. To protect his plow and keep it sharp so that it could penetrate the soil better he got the local metalworkers to construct an iron tooth shaped like the tip of a modern pick. He tied this to the plow stick using leather straps.
THE BIRTH OF THE BOFORS GROUP
In 1646 a Swedish citizen named Paul Hossman received a royal privilege to build two bar hammers on the Boälven river close to Karlskoga. During the 1700s and 1800s Bofors changed its business, and the agriculture and forestry that were important in the company’s early period, were replaced with more sophisticated steel processing. Bofors also worked with the production of various specialty products for end users, and the company became known for its contribution to the industrialization of many important inventions.
THE LEGACY OF ALFRED NOBEL
At the end of the 1800s, the name of Bofors was associated with Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite and internationally known for his Nobel Prize. He wanted a steel mill to experiment with high-alloy armour plate and artillery projectiles. When Nobel died in 1896 the company was sold in accordance with his will to form the Nobel foundation. The financial return on the $9 million invested in his foundation was first awarded in 1901 and the Nobel Prize is still the most prestigious in the world.
INDUSTRY STANDARD FOR MODERN WEAR PARTS
The earliest modern wear parts were different versions of the bolted tooth. Bofors made its first attempt at producing a forged digging tooth towards the end of the 1920s. Parts from this time had some obvious drawbacks. For example, you had to throw away about 75% of the original weight of the material when changing teeth.
During the 1930s Bofors designed, manufactured and marketed their own wear parts for both the construction and mining industries. The continued development and increasing demands on product performance led in the 1960s to the company’s first patented tooth system, B-LOCK.