Stress-Corrosion Cracking in Mixer Paddle Shafts
Small paddles used to mix pulp had experienced a high incidence of breakage through the shafts. In some of the shanks, shrinkage was found relatively close to the surface where threads had been cut all the length of the shaft. Chemistries were within normal CF-8M ranges. Metallography showed the parts to be correctly heat treated. Cross sections of several of the parts showed pitting corrosion, and beneath the pits, stress-corrosion cracks in areas where the shafts had been bent during use. All the samples showed deep SCC in the areas where bending had occurred. In several cases, centerline shrinkage from inadequate risering had decreased life by reducing the cross-sectional area. Type CF-8M is not resistant to chloride SCC where the chloride concentration is considerable. The biggest problem was the bending of these parts. Deformed material with high residual stresses would always be susceptible to SCC. Redesign to lower stresses was essential. In addition, change to a high-strength duplex stainless steel with its higher strength and greater resistance to chlorides was recommended. Finally, the part must be adequately risered to produce solid shanks free from shrinkage.