Safety First

In all cases, even if not specifically mentioned in the writeups, verify that the tip does not violate any relevant code, standard, or practice. Always use the appropriate safety equipment and procedures when applying the maintenance tips.


In all cases, even if not specifically mentioned in the writeups, verify that the tip does not violate any relevant code, standard, or practice. Always use the appropriate safety equipment and procedures when applying the maintenance tips.

Quick shaft fix

Problem: A bearing becomes loose on a shaft and a spare shaft is not available. How can you quickly rework the shaft and provide a tight bearing fit?

Solution: Remove the bearing from the shaft. Using a hammer and center punch, pit the shaft uniformly around its circumference in the bearing area (see detail). The impact of the center punch creates a small crater surrounded by a ridge. The ridges hold the bearing in place and minimize downtime.

Contributor: Luc Raeckelboom, Curing Engineer (retired), Michelin Tire Co.

Cleaning paint rollers

Problem: Cleaning paperboard core paint rollers is a time-consuming job. Is there a faster, easier way?

Solution: Shove a short extension handle into the ground and screw a paint roller handle onto it. Slide on the dirty roller. Using a garden hose and sprayer, saturate the roller. With a strong spray stream, get the roller to spin quickly, throwing off the paint. (You may want to stand to the side during this operation). Stop rotation with the spray, resoak the roller, and spin it in the other direction. When thoroughly clean (usually three or four spins), let the roller dry. It will look as though it just came out of the wrapper. Note: this method only works for water-based paints.

Contributor: David Fischer, Plant Engineer, Loparex, Inc.

Moving heavy ladders

Problem: Fiberglass ladders are safe to use in most applications in a plant, but they are heavy. Is there a way for one man to easily carry them?

Solution: Take a piece of scrap, 11/2 in. thick, rigid polystyrene foam insulation and cut it for a tight fit inside the upright channels of the fiberglass ladder. Place one piece on each side of the ladder at the balance point. This makes a nice cushioned pad for setting the ladder on your shoulder while carrying it.

Contributor: Frank Kerkvliet, Maintenance Engineer, Sterner Lighting Systems, Inc.

The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
Doubling down on digital manufacturing; Data driving predictive maintenance; Electric motors and generators; Rewarding operational improvement
2017 Lubrication Guide; Software tools; Microgrids and energy strategies; Use robots effectively
Prescriptive maintenance; Hannover Messe 2017 recap; Reduce welding errors
The cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Mobility as the means to offshore innovation; Preventing another Deepwater Horizon; ROVs as subsea robots; SCADA and the radio spectrum
Research team developing Tesla coil designs; Implementing wireless process sensing
Commissioning electrical systems; Designing emergency and standby generator systems; Paralleling switchgear generator systems
Natural gas engines; New applications for fuel cells; Large engines become more efficient; Extending boiler life

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

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
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This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
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