New position

Discussion in 'All Things Boats & Boating' started by Stumble, Jun 6, 2012.

  1. Stumble
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    Stumble Senior Member

    For the last few years I have been posting here quite regularly, and have learned a huge amount about boats, and construction techniques (though I still have a lot to learn). Up until now most of this information has had no commercial value to me, or limited value since my primary job has been as a corperate attorney in Louisiana. However as of today I have accepted a position as a salesman for Allied Titanium, and will be splitting my time between that and working as an attorney.

    Obviously this now puts me in a position where this forum could become a source of revenue for me, which brings up a conflict of interest as to my posts. At the same time it places me in a position to hopefully make titanium parts more accessible and cost effective for the forum members.

    If you are not familure, Allied Titanium is set up to make custom, and semi-custom titanium parts from either CAD files, or from our data base of existing parts, or we will provide the drafting services if you supply a part to duplicate. While titanium is an inherently expensive metal, the actual costs may surprise you, with delivered cost running roughly 25-30% more than stainless steel, not the 3-4 times many people assume.

    If I can be of any help in pricing, or ordering for you, please let me know. I will be happy to help with ay inquiry I can.
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  2. BPL
    Joined: Dec 2011
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    BPL Senior Member

    Congrats on the new position.
  3. TheMark
    Joined: Jun 2012
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    TheMark New Member

    Congrats from here too! I've been silently following this forum and therefore, your posts too so I decided to sign up to wish you all the best! Good luck with your new job!
  4. pdwiley
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    pdwiley Senior Member

    I can't see it being a problem if people know about it. Another forum I'm on is full of professional machinists, a lot of whom own their own businesses. Offering services etc is fine as long as it's not a business mining exercise over there.

    In fact it'd be a good place to hang out for you, maybe, as those guys are always buying metals of various sorts and in quantities from very small to quite substantial. If your company sells offcuts etc, even better.

    I hope it's a success for you.

  5. Fanie
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Fanie Fanie

    Geeeezzzzz... the last thing I was thinking of was a conflict of interrest !
    I was rather hoping I could learn something I didn't know yet :D

    Reminds me of the prof lecturing the students on the 101 positions there are but one student in the back insist there are a 102, finally the prof got to the missionary position, student at the back yells that's 103 positions then...

    Hope the new position works for you ;)
  6. Doug Lord
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    Doug Lord Flight Ready

    Congratulations, Greg-just saw this!
  7. Stumble
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    Stumble Senior Member

    Lol, well I didn't suddenly learn more, though I have been researching titanium pretty heavily recently.

    Basically for fasteners, and other products we mass produce the prices run around 30% more than 316 stainless.

    For custom parts, where the stainless has to be custom made, we can actually be price competitive. Since we are set up to do custom parts efficiently.

    The problem is where we have to custom make something, and you can buy it off the shelf in stainless. Then our prices are hard to swallow, somewhere in the 2-3 times the cost.

    The company is really trying to penetrate the marine market, and is trying to find wholesales and retailers that can place sizable orders, but it's slow going. Just the word titanium gets people thinking massively expensive, which is not always the case.

    And for the price difference you get a part that doesn't corrode, is more than twice as strong, and weighs half as much. If you design for it from the ground up, it can be the same strength, 70% lighter, non-corrosive, for 25% more.
  8. hoytedow
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    hoytedow Carbon Based Life Form

    Great news!
  9. Bamby
    Joined: Jun 2009
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    Bamby Junior Member

    Once upon a time I used to spend a huge amount of time on what many would consider the wrong end of a shovel. I often contemplated by mid afternoon weather it was actually the weight of all the materials being moved or simply the seemingly overweight shovel that had me close to whipped by that time of day. I do remember searching for a durable and sound lighter weight shovel without any success and often wondered why someone didn't offer one in a lighter metal such as titanium especially on days when I was shoveling materials up into a truck. But then again maybe titanium ain't a suitable metal for shaping into shovels anyway but I sure would have paid a premium for a shovel that would have made them days a somewhat bit easier for me. :D
  10. Stumble
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    Stumble Senior Member


    I can't think of a reason other than cost you couldn't make a shovel out of titanium. But the cost would be pretty crazy.

    Most shovels are stamped out of sheet metal on a forming machine, and the dye's to make that type of press are very expensive to make. Most of our parts are machined or cast, so for a one off shovel, we would probably have to cast it, which would be rediculously expensive compared to the efficiency of a stamping machine.

    Not to mention the cost difference between mild steel and titanium is even higher than the difference between stainless and titanium. I have no idea what the machine time would be, or the cost for dye's but I would guess until you are buying thousands of light weight shovels the production costs would be so high no one could afford it.

    Years ago the issue would have been even worse. When the US Government set world titianium prices (by buying 95% of the non-Russian titanium) there was no incentive to drive prices down.
  11. Angélique
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    Angélique aka Angel (only by name)

    Google ‘‘titanium shovel’’ and you'll be amazed what shows up and how cheap some are, try images search for a quick overview . . . :idea:

    It looks like they replace the steel sheet by titanium sheet and stamp the titanium shovels out of it just as they do to make stainless steel shovels as well.

    BTW Greg, do you sell titanium plates and tubes as well or only machined and cast items ?

    Good luck with the new job . . :)

  12. mydauphin
    Joined: Apr 2007
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    mydauphin Senior Member

    I too was hoping to learn a new position. But I will have to congrat you instead.
    I don't see you promoting your service and product info as a conflict. I dislike the ones that login under fake names to promote a scam and spam as the problem

    On titanium parts for boats, I don't think the weight difference is worth it for most. I think strength and corrosion resistance is key. My understanding on Titanium is that it is not easy to cast or well. How do you make parts?, water CNC?
  13. Stumble
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    Stumble Senior Member


    We currently manufactur over 50,000 different parts. And deal in everything from mill products like plate to finished parts like titanium fuel tanks. Basically if it can be made in metal, we can supply it in titanium, though there may be engineering justifications that don't justify it.


    I think the weight difference is really dependent on the application. In really high end racing boats I see it as an advantage, or if we can replace hardware at the top of a mast.

    But the strength and corrosion resistance is a pretty significant justification, particularly for those things that are mission critical. Chainplates for instance are a know weak point for sailboats. As predictable as a failure in them is, people are loath to replace them due to the cost of even inspecting them.

    However replacing a 316 Chainplate with Ti grade 5 results in a place that is roughly 2.5 times stronger, and is effectively immune to corrosion in the marine environment. If the part is designed to have the same strength... Well apparently the company as an experament did have a few chainplates redesigned to match the strength of 316, and they were so much smaller and lighter people didn't accept that they were just as strong. Basically they came out to be around 30% the weight of a comparable 316 chainplate.

    We actually have a number of different processes that we use depending on the part, and the number of parts in the order. A one off piece for instance will typically be made by machining, but as the number of parts goes up we often will move to investment casting.

    Casting is much less costly for large product runs, but requires a significant up front cost in the molds. So it is really a production decision to figure out the best and cheapest way to fill a specific order. We are also on the forefront of attempting new manufacturing processes they don't always work, but the aim of the company is to get the manufacturing process efficient enough that we can bring the product cost down.

    There are specific difficulties in casting titanium, a number of them tied to its very high melting point, and problems with oxygen embrittlement at very high tempratures, but Allied has found ways to work around these problems. I am just not at liberty to discuss them.

    Honestly the more I learn, the more intrigued I am getting. For instance I just specced out a new set of chainplates for a boat that had some corrode in pieces in the hidden portion between the deck. He needed two per side, two stern, and a bow plate to replace all of them on his boat. Even just at 7 pieces I was able to get him a volume discount that drove the price for the set down to around $700 including tax and shipping. Which is certainly more than he could have bought them for in stainless (the price he gave me was around $500), but short an impact or someone going after them with a saw they should last forever.

    For such a critical part of the boat it just made sence to him.
  14. Angélique
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    Angélique aka Angel (only by name)

    Is there a chance of a electrolytic reaction / galvanic corrosion when titanium parts are mixed with stainless steel parts in the rigging when wet ?

    And is there a electrolytic reaction / galvanic corrosion between titanium and other metals like steel or aluminium in a wet environment ?

    Just wondering . . . :confused:


  15. Stumble
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Stumble Senior Member


    Galvanic corrosion is a concern any time two different metals are touching. This is true of titanium as well.

    In any system where two different metals are touching there will be an annode (the part that corrodes) and a cathode (the part that causes it). Since titanium is the most noble (strongest cathode) metal used for structual purposes the corrosion will be in the stainless, or bronze, ect... Now the effect of this corrosion is determined by the relative size of the anode and cathode to each other. So a chainplates size relative to the amount of stainless in the wire rigging, terminals, ect is pretty small. And the corrosion will be dispersed over the leingth of the stainless.

    It is a problem, but since it solves the problem of crevice corrosion in chainplates (the leading cause of demastings) I think it is worth it.

    Also remember that in most masts there is already a galvanic circuit. Since most masts are made of aluminium, with stainless rigging. In which case the mast is actually acting as the anode, and absorbing the damage from the galvanic cell. But because the mast has a much greater mass of metal than the rigging the effect is minimal.

    There are also other ways to control this damage, like bonding the mast/rigging/chainplates to a sacrificial anode (a zinc). So long as there is a good electrical connection between the mast and the zinc, the zinc bears the brunt of the corrosion, protecting the more noble metals.

    Obviously this is a complicated subject, and I don't hold myself out as an expert on it, but I have done a fair bit of reading on galvanic corrosion trying to learn. But basically if you start with a titanium chainplate-->stainless rigging-->aluminium mast-->zinc the only corrosion that should occur is in the zinc.

    Obviously there are design limitations for titanium as with all materials, but it's benefits outweigh its trade offs. At least is some situations. But for chainplates which are often impossible or difficult to inspect, are asked to serve for decades, and when they fail, fail catastrophically, titanium really is quickly becoming the go to metal.

    In fact it is so much stronger than stainless that we had a customer reject an order because they were too light, and thin.... He was replacing the chainplates on a 60+ cruiser, and had an engineering company design them to equal the strength of the stainless. When he got them back, and they were 1/2 the thickness and 1/4 the weight, he just couldn't accept they were equally as strong. So we remade them at the same dimensions he originally had, but around three times as strong as the stainless they replaced.
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