Sharing maintenance Tips & Tricks

Countless time-conserving, money-saving, aggravation-avoiding ideas for solving typical plant maintenance problems are used by our readers.


Countless time-conserving, money-saving, aggravation-avoiding ideas for solving typical plant maintenance problems are used by our readers. Unfortunately, all-to-often the knowledge base of these inexpensive, easy-to-implement probem solvers is not universal.

Sharing these simple, shortcut maintenance methods or procedures with others in the profession is the basic intent of Plant Engineering magazine's tenth annual "Tips & Tricks" article. Reader submitted maintenance suggestions selected by our review committee will appear in the September issue.

In addition to submitting the maintenance ideas, we want our readers to pick the "best" tip of 1998 from among those published. A reader service number will be assigned to each entry so that you can vote for the five that you think are the most appropriate or practical for solving your plant engineering maintenance problems.

The highest vote getter will reward the submitter with $1000. The two runners-up will each receive $250.

Entering the contest

Look around the plant, or call on past experiences. Do you see a shortcut for handling a maintenance problem, or recall a technique that worked well in the past? The ideas do not have to be a big deal, or even original. What is common knowledge or routine in one plant, industry, or area might be "new" elsewhere.

If you come up with a good idea, send us a detailed explanation. State the problem that existed, and then present the solution provided by your tip. Drawings or color photographs visually depicting the idea are extremely important to the impact and understanding of the idea. Also include a professional biography, company mailing and/or e-mail address, and daytime telephone number.

Send your submittals to Ron Holzhauer, Tips & Tricks, Plant Engineering , 1350 E. Touhy Ave., Des Plaines, IL 60018. Ideas can also be e-mailed to r.holzhauer@

Entries must be received by June 12 for consideration.

Previous suggestions

To get your thoughts flowing, here are a few of the problems solved by the 1997 entries:

- Removing head screws

- Locating fuse failures

- Finding overhead equipment

- Cutting pipe nipples

- Drilling in awkward positions

- Extending bit life

- Priming and modifying pumps

- Loosening sticky fittings.

Key concepts

Providing reader-submitted solutions to common problems is the underlying concept of this tenth annual edition.

Submit a tip by June 12 and you could win $1000.

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