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Case Study: Hatchable Preheat Oven for Ship Engine Shaft Couplings  — K-450TL

This oven can be modified to suit your application, just call us at 888-763-6836

Customer Background:

Company:  Multinational Ship Repair and Conversion Company
Part to be Preheated: Ship Engine Shaft Couplings
Part Material: Steel
Part Dimensions: N/A
Part Weight: 48 lbs
Target Preheating Temperature:  350°F
Number of pieces to be heated at one time: 1
Required preheat  time frame: None specified

Project Background:

At Keen, we are committed to providing custom industrial ovens for a  variety of parts preheating applications.  We often receive requests from ship repair and conversion companies that need hatchable ovens, in other words, ovens that can fit through narrow hatches commonly  found on today's ships.  In this particular application, ship  engineers were performing an engine overhaul that required the preheating of couplings in n oven on location before bonding them to  a shaft.  The hatchable preheat oven needed to fit deep into the ship  and be available while work was being performed in the engine  room.   

The engineers had one of our popular K-450 electrode ovens  on the ship for welding electrode storage, and called us asking if it  could be lengthened and reinforced at the back and placed upright so  that it could fit in a tight space.  We gladly reworked the standard oven design and made it a top-loading preheat oven, the K-450TL.  The  ship engineers had two types of couplings - one would be top-loaded  into the oven, and one horizontally-loaded.  A shelf was needed for  the coupling that was loaded horizontally, and needed to be  removable.  

We apologize for not having more photos available of  this custom oven, but it was a rush job and production packed and  shipped it before the marketing department could take photos. For this particular parts preheating application we designed a custom  industrial preheating oven from scratch and called it the K-450TL.    To solve the unique logistical problem of installing the oven into  the hull of a ship, our engineers tack welded ring and pad eyes on  the front of the frame so the custom oven could be lowered through a series of hatches into the hull of the ship where the engine room was  located. 

The width of our standard K-450 already allowed the oven to  fit through ship hatches, so we were already set in that respect.   The oven just now needed to be lengthened to accommodate the  couplings.  Also, the element on our standard K-450 rests at the  bottom of the oven (when horizontal) so we needed to change the  wiring design and element location to the rear of the oven (when  horizontal) or bottom of the oven (when vertical).  We strive to  solve unique parts preheating challenges for our clients. The K-450TL custom oven is useful for a variety of purposes, not just  for ship engine couplings.  The temperature range can be modified for  any application.  A  dial-adjustable analog thermostat was installed  for this oven but we can use different controls to suit a variety of  applications.

K-450TL Industrial Oven Specifications:

Shelving Style: Perforated Steel - One Lower Shelf / One Upper Shelf
Temperature Control:
Analog Dial-Adjustable
50 or 60
1,100 Watts
On/Off Light: Yes
Thermostat Temp Range:
Interior Dims:19.5" Diameter x 20.5" Deep
Net Weight:
125 lbs.
Shipping Weight: 175 lbs.

Oven Construction


This is a round, barrel style industrial oven that can be positioned  vertically or horizontally.  The oven has a steel reinforced base  onto which an analog-style adjustable  dial thermostat is mounted.   No digital controls were necessary for this oven because the ship  engineers just wanted to leave the K-450TL oven on all the time at  one specific temperature. 

This dial thermostat is our standard  analog unit with a 150F-550F temperature adjustment range.  It's  important to note that the door hinges on this custom oven are tack  welded to the oven frame and not screw mounted.  This allows for a  long product life.  Always beware of any industrial ovens that do not  have welded hinges.  This oven is powder-coated - as with all our  ovens -  at our in-house paint facility and is highly durable for a  wide variety of industrial settings. .


The K-450TL custom oven is constructed of carbon steel and is  insulated throughout.  It has a 1000W heating element installed at  the back/bottom of the oven behind a perforated steel grate to  prevent the ship bearing from coming in direct contact with the  element, but at the same time to allow the heat to radiate into the  oven chamber.  There were no shelves installed this oven due to  interior dimension constraints, and because the ship engineers needed  all of the available space inside the preheat oven to preheat the  bearing.  The interior of the K-450TL  preheating oven is painted  with a reflective, galvanized paint and the interior welds are  touched up with high-temperature aluminum paint. All our preheating ovens are made in the USA and feature a 1-year  limited manufacturer's warranty.  Parts are readily available.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q.  Can this hatchable oven be modified for other applications?

A. Yes, absolutely.  Many of our custom ovens have resulted from  client requests to modify an existing oven they have seen on our  website, or to one of our standard welding electrode ovens that a  client may be using for welding applications.  The process usually  begins like this:  a client finds one of our ovens that has an  interior size close to what can accommodate the parts that need to be  preheated, and then inquires if modifications can be done.  Our  engineers get to work to provide suggestions to the client as to what  modifications can be done.  If the modifications are not suitable, we  design a new oven from scratch to fit the users needs.

Q.  What is a preheat oven?

A.  We use the term preheat oven to describe an oven that is used for  preheating parts before they are used in some type of application.   Most of our preheat ovens are custom-designed according to the  specific application being performed by a client.  Many processes  require the preheating of weldments before they are bonded to some  other type of metal.  This preheating is required to change the  property of the metal part and enable it to be installed onto another  part.  Our ovens are used in many applications.  The K-450TL  hatchable oven used on ships is just one example.  We have designed  ovens for bowl shafts, cylinder heads, cylinder blocks, military tank  transmissions and for many other types of parts.

Q.  Do you provide CAD drawings for review?

A.  Yes.  Keen's custom oven design process typically begins with a  discussion of the various solutions we are able to provide to the  client.   If the client wants to proceed, we then do a CAD drawing  for review that clearly outlines the custom oven design for the  client to review.

Q.  Do you manufacture gas-fired ovens?

A. No.  We only manufacture electrical ovens with a maximum  temperature range of 1000°F

Q.  Are your products made in USA?

A.  Yes.  We manufacture our ovens in Louisiana.

Q.  How long have you been in business?

A.  Henkel Enterprises, LLC, manufacturer of the Keen brand of  welding ovens, flux ovens, and custom preheat ovens has been in  business since 1923.

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For more information or to find a Keen distributor near you:
Call: (888) 512-2870 (USA only)
Email: Sales@keenovens.com

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