Two factors used to determine quality of bale wire are tensile strength
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and elongation. Good bale wire (black annealed) will have a tensile
strength of 69,000 to 75,000 PSI. Elongation is the ability of the wire
to stretch before it breaks. A bale wire with good wire elongation
would be that of 25 per cent or more. Less expensive bale wire on
average has an elongation factor of 15 per cent. It's important to note
that baler manufacturers produce balers more powerful than earlier
models, so these factors are especially critical now.
Bales expand when ejected from the bale chamber and the amount of
expansion depends on the products baled. Whenever a metal is worked it
will harden and lose some of its elongation and strength. If the
original bale wire has low elongation, that of 15 per cent or less, the
wire beside the knot on your bale will have insufficient elongation to
withstand bale expansion and will break. Proper tensile strength and
good wire elongation result in the ability to produce and contain
denser bales. Producing denser bales results in lower wire costs (due
to less wire use). Denser bales also lower handling costs, storage
costs, freight costs, reduce maintenance on baler auto-tier and reduce
wear and fuel usage on the forklift.
To properly evaluate the cost of bale wire it is important to examine
the "cost per baled tonne." Productivity is measured in tonnage so it
should also be the unit of measure when costing wire. Using black
annealed bale wire as an example, the purchase price for quality bale
wire (one with a higher elongation factor and tensile strength) is 44
cents per lb. verses a lower quality wire at 42 cents per lb. The
better wire can hold 2,600 lbs. of re cyclables (based on a 42-inch x
65-inch bale) so the cost would be $2.00 verses $2.37 per baled tonne
of the cheaper wire.
The new KleenGreen bale wire has been engineered to incorporate the
better characteristics of the black annealed wire such as less breakage
and greater elongation, along with the best characteristic of the
galvanized wire, a clean finish.