Controlling pressure buildup in air motors
Problem: Air motors operate a variety of industrial equipment, including hoists, elevators, positioners, and tensioners. Airflow to the motor is controlled by a manual or remotely actuated valve.
Problem: Air motors operate a variety of industrial equipment, including hoists, elevators, positioners, and tensioners. Airflow to the motor is controlled by a manual or remotely actuated valve. Valves occasionally do not shut off tightly and let air leak by, which allows pressure to build up within the motor and it will "inch over" or rotate a slight amount. The process repeats and eventually the motor rotates enough to put excessive stresses on whatever it is connected to, which might lead to disastrous results. It is very possible that this movement might not be noticed by an operator because of ambient noise or the remote location of the air motor. The process might takes days, or even weeks, before stresses develop to the point of failure. Can this problem be headed off?
Solution: Drill a 1/8-in. hole in the air line between the valve and air motor. This hole prevents air pressure from building up in the air motor when sitting idle and keeps the air motor from rotating. The air motor can be operated normally when needed, and the amount of air wasted through the drilled hole during an intentional operation is negligible.
Contributor: C.R. Barr, Everett, WA
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Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey