Abrasive wear testing of steels in soil

Master Thesis


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University of Cape Town

A survey has been made of the quality and type of materials used for tillage tools in South Africa. Conclusions have been drawn regarding the inadequacy of the manufacturing processes used and the resultant quality of the tool material. A rig has been designed for the abrasion testing of materials in soil. The reproducibility of the method has been shown to be high and an evaluation has been made of the relative wear resistance of a series of ·heat treated steels. A medium carbon boron steel has been shown to have great promise as a tillage tool material because of its high wear resistance and toughness. The deformed surface layers and the mechanisms of wear of steels subjected to field and laboratory abrasive testing has been examined. The removal of material through predominantly ploughing or cutting mechanisms has been shown to be dependent on the heat treatment and composition of the steels together with the nature of the abrasive. White surface layers have been observed to form on medium and high carbon steels subjected to soil abrasion. Suggestions have been advanced for their formation. Attempts have been made to assess the transferability of data between field and laboratory testing.

Bibliography: pages 133-136.