Conveyor supplier defies manufacturing’s “bleak” future

Veyance Belting will double the Flexsteel belt manufacturing capacity at the company?s Bayswater, Victoria facility later this year when a massive $32 million expansion project currently underway is completed. Production capacity of the company?s Glide underground conveyor belting will also be increased.

Veyance Belting is a subsidiary of Veyance Technologies, the exclusive manufacturer of Goodyear Engineered Products worldwide, including Goodyear-branded air springs, automotive belts and hoses, power transmission products, conveyor belts and services, industrial and hydraulic hoses, rubber tracks and moulded products.

The expansion project is comprised of three main components. The first was an expansion of cranage capacity that now allows Veyance to supply long length ?racetrack? reels to significantly reduce on-site installation time. The second is a new Siempelkemp steel cord press combined with Veyance?s proprietary individual cord tensioning system which will allow the company to produce twice the volume of Flexsteel ST10,000 high strength steel cord belts. This Flexsteel product allows for the highest lift or drop compared to any conventional conveyor belt and also gives the longest flight ? up to 40km ? without transfer points.

This is why iron ore, coal, gold, copper and nickel ore miners are so eagerly embracing the ST10,000. Over the long haul, eliminating transfer points results in less product degradation during transport and less maintenance for the conveyor system.

These factors can potentially lower capital costs on new systems and improve operations, resulting in a lower cost per tonne conveyed. As an example of its performance strength, you could transport 10,000 tonnes per hour of ore the height of the Empire State Building, which is 381 metres.

The manufacturing capacity of the Glide specialist fabric belting will also increase significantly, giving the company the greater ability to meet a rapidly increasing demand from customers. Glide is fully compliant to AS4606-2000 and is Fire Resistant Anti-Static (FRAS), meeting all stringent tests in accordance with Australian Standard AS1334. Because it is more flexible, smaller pulleys can be used. This not only reduces operational costs but conserves precious space in applications without sacrificing belt performance.

The third component is a new hot former extruder that will eliminate the need to schedule rubber covers and will significantly reduce (and in some cases eliminate) the need for cover joins, significantly increasing cover quality and appearance.

The complex steel fabrication and infrastructure expansion of the existing facility to accommodate all these new processes and systems is nearing completion and the whole expansion upgrade project is running right on schedule.

When asked why Veyance doesn?t appear to be facing the same high cost of manufacture problems others complain about, general manager David Stone said: ?The labour ratio component in our overall cost of production is much lower than many other industries ? it?s actually in single digits for us, where some others may be looking at closer to 25 per cent or even higher.

?Veyance Belting is the only vertically integrated Australian manufacturer with its own rubber mixing, compared to other manufacturers who import mixed rubber from overseas,? Stone continued. ?And we buy the raw compounds and materials we use in mixing in US dollars. So this, coupled with our comparatively low labour component, means we can keep production costs down. Transporting very bulky products such as conveyor belts by ship is very expensive as you can?t transport long length racetrack reels in containers because they?re way too big. You have to transport them on deck or in holds which is a very costly business. So I guess we?re lucky in some respects that our main product ? conveyor belting ? provides us with some inherent advantages in terms of lower production costs.?

The company has recently released a 92 page heavyweight conveyor belt guide publication which catalogues above and below ground and Flexsteel belt applications, as well as Cord Guard belt monitoring systems, skirting rubbers, selection criteria, belt analysis and production specifications. This is freely available from the company, tel 1300 782 237 or email

Source: Veyance Belting

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