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Tribology and lubrication group names president for 2023-24
Texas A&M University’s Hong Liang, an accredited educator, researcher and scholar is named president of STLE for 2023-24.
Lubrication event to discuss sustainability, environmental awareness
STLE's 77th annual meeting and exhibition brings lubrication and tribology professionals from around the world gather to connect, learn and achieve more sustainable processes and products
Top 5 Plant Engineering content: March 6-12, 2023
The top 5 Plant Engineering content from the past week covered lubricant evolution, condition-based maintenance, enterprise asset management and more. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers Opens Call for Presentations for Fall 2023 Technical Conferences
STLE invites industry professionals to present at 2023 co-branded events, the Tribology Frontiers Conference and Tribology & Lubrication for E-Mobility Conference
Open gear lubricants’ slow, steady evolution
How do you lubricate a 120-ton gear the height of a four-story building that sits outdoors or in a dusty plant environment, while meeting safety, environmental and operating cost constraints?
Additives and engine oil lubrication
Engine oils contain a complex blend of additives to minimize emission and aid efficiency.
Used oil analysis fundamentals
A quality oil analysis program with a series of consistently timed samples is key to successful preventive maintenance.
Crude oil to base stocks to base oils to lubricating oils
The refining process has improved throughout the history of crude oil use, with base stock quality continuing to benefit from new technology.
Metalworking fluid management program announced
STLE is hosting its annual Metalworking Fluid Management Program, at the University of Akron in Ohio from February 21-23, 2023.
Lubrication group names president, conference schedule
STLE announces a new president for 2022-23 and three conferences to help lubrication and reliability professionals in manufacturing, metalworking, transportation and power generation.
The basics of lubricant water contamination
Steps taken after water contamination is identified depend on the type of lubrication product and its intended use.
Controlling particle contaminants
Best practices for avoiding lubricant contamination are established and simple to implement — the key to success is follow through.
Air entrainment, aeration, cavitation and foaming: How are they related?
There are many causes and solutions to this foaming issue
Regrease properly to improve bearing life
A simple equation and a checklist of important considerations can help to optimize the greasing of bearings.
Flushing out air compressor lubricants
Picking the right lubricant for an air compressor can reduce downtime and prolong the machine’s life. Five lubricant base stocks are highlighted.
Tribology event welcomes return of in-person meeting and exhibition
Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers sets sights on Orlando for in-person lubricant industry event in May.
The value of lubricant cleanliness
Best practices for transferring oil from storage into use and keeping it clean in operation.
New and in-service grease testing
Experts discuss considerations for lubricating grease testing while formulating and in-service testing practices.
No two greases are the same
Physical characteristics include consistency, mechanical stability, oil separation, water resistance and low-temperature flow
EP and AW additives in rolling bearing lubrication
EP and AW additives in rotary screw compressors improve the service life of bearings in moderate and higher load applications.
Lubricants can provide answers to current manufacturing challenges
Manufacturing is dealing with major supply chain issues that have worsened during the two-year COVID-19 pandemic. Lubrication engineers and experts can help, but the struggle ahead is going to be a long one.
Grease performance testing methods
Lubricating grease tests help measure performance properties and there are many different types of tests depending on the application.
The drive to net-zero, sustainability and digital
Technologies create many new opportunities and challenges for the lubrication industry when it comes to sustainability.
The art of manufacturing grease
Research is ongoing to develop improved products and give them greater flexibility in manufacturing applications.
Emerging technologies advance condition monitoring techniques
Lubrication engineers extend machine life by integrating lab analyses with online-generated data.
How the NLGI HPM specification facilitates grease selection
Proper selection can be challenging as multiple criteria must be considered when selecting a lubricating grease.
Upcycling plastic waste into high-performing mechanical lubricants
A multi-institutional research team is working on upcycling plastic waste into liquid lubricants, including oil, hydraulic fluids, heat transfer fluids and greases.
Top 5 Plant Engineering articles July 19-25, 2021
Articles about how to take lubrication problems in industrial manufacturing, predictive maintenance best practices, properly sizing surge protective devices, and more were Plant Engineering’s five most clicked articles from July 19-25, 2021. Miss something? You can catch up here.
How to tackle lubrication problems in industrial manufacturing
Lubrication maintenance in industrial manufacturing is a job that requires years of experience, SOPs, safety precautions and attention to detail.
What’s different about grease?
Greases lubricate about 90% of all rolling element bearings.
Intermediate storage and handling of lubricants
Storing and handling lubricants is a lot like running a kitchen. Cleanliness, inventory management and safety precautions ensure efficient operations and save time and money.
Review lubricant and grease storage and handling practices
Following safety protocols and procedures while handling lubricants is extremely important.
Top 5 Plant Engineering articles March 29 to April 4, 2021
Articles about food grade lubricants, robot innovations, asset maintenance, digital transformation trends and remote automation success were Plant Engineering’s five most clicked articles from March 29 to April 4, 2021. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Annual lubrication meeting and exhibition going virtual
STLE's virtual annual meeting and exhibition will focus on many key topics for tribologists and lubrication experts.
Food grade lubricants and their regulation
Voluntary standards and third-party registration programs continue to grow regarding food safety for lubricants.
Grease chemistry is governed by thickener structure
Know the kinds of grease and laws that govern their use
Overcoming industrial automation lubricant challenges
Using the right lubrication in the right application is critical and so is looking at technological advancements designed to reduce bearing wear and corrosion.
Put industrial lubrication technology into practice
CFE Media and the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers (STLE) partner to bring you the 2020 Lube Guide
A tribute to the father of tribology: Professor H. Peter Jost
The contributions of this industry giant won’t be forgotten
Understand the fundamentals of oil analysis
Knowing normal depends on understanding the oil, equipment and operating conditions
Find the right products for diverse industrial lubrication applications
The 2020 Plant Engineering Industrial Lubrication Guide informs manufacturers with an understanding of market options and innovations
Analyze oil thoroughly
Individual results are not individual when it comes to maintaining the health of your machinery; this is why
Create a strategy to control industrial lubricant contamination
Identify the source, deal with it
Fundamentals of ferrography
Using ferrography fundamentals for oil analysis is an excellent condition monitoring technique to diagnose and predict equipment health without taking equipment offline
Find a common tribology perspective
When chemists, materials scientists and mechanical engineers work on the same problem, finding a common language can be difficult but rewarding
Survey says better test methods needed for industrial lubricants in manufacturing
Participants also pointed out workforce and operational challenges
Selecting lubricating greases: What you should know
Pay close attention to specifications and monitor your operations closely.
Aesthetics in lubricating greases
There are several kinds of lubricating greases available with notably distinct differences in colors, tackiness level and smell.
Top 5 Plant Engineering articles July 29 to August 4
Articles about lubrication advice, managing an engineering career, IIoT tips, maintenance process redesign, and smart manufacturing were Plant Engineering’s five most clicked articles from July 29 to August 4. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Plant Engineering articles June 24-30
Articles about lubrication and bearings, the 2019 Lubrication Guide, oil's return on investment, predictive maintenance obstacles, and worker safety best practices were Plant Engineering’s five most clicked articles from June 24-30. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Plant Engineering articles June 17-23
Articles about lubrication and bearings, the 2019 Lubrication Guide, predictive maintenance obstacles, worker safety best practices, and NFPA 70E expert advice were Plant Engineering’s five most clicked articles from June 17-23. Miss something? You can catch up here.
The R-O-I of O-I-L
Lubrication is an investment—so treat it like one.
Moving the needle on productivity
The 2019 Plant Engineering Lubrication Guide is designed to provide manufacturers with an understanding of all of the market options available and the innovations. See link to the Lubrication Guide.
Top 5 Plant Engineering articles June 10-16
Articles about worker safety best practices, lubrication for bearings, NFPA 70E expert advice, the state of manufacturing, and the benefits of clean oil were Plant Engineering’s five most clicked articles from June 10-16. Miss something? You can catch up here.
Liberating oil analysis data
Many factors can prevent end-users from getting more from their reports.
Understanding lubrication from the bearing’s perspective
Many factors can impact how proper use can avoid friction.
Clean oil is productive oil
The care of your lubricant stock is all about the basics.
FQMS 2.0 by Poseidon Systems
FQMS 2.0 units has the capability of detecting mechanical failures at the earliest point in time and monitor fluid quality real-time
LUBExpert by LUDECA
LUBExpert monitors each stroke of grease and its effect on bearing friction and temperature
Selecting the right industrial gear oil
Viscosity grade and speed are among the determining factors when making a selection for industrial gear oil.
Maintaining boiler safety
Short-term errors or long-term practices can cause boiler failures. Low-water trip switches should be checked regularly and never bypassed. Poor feedwater quality can cause corrosion and contamination. HVAC/SafetyRegard for personnel safety is an item that is first and foremost in the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of industrial manufacturing facilities.
Rustlick biostable semi-synthetic cutting fluids enable manufacturing plants to consolidate to one universal fluid. They are available in a non-chlorinated version – Ultracut 370R - or a chlorinated version – Ultracut 375R. The versatility of the fluids allow them to be used for both machining and grinding operation while providing optimum performance for a wide range of ferrous and...
Taking a Big Data approach to lubrication management
Maintenance is a perfect fit for an IIoT world.
Propane forklifts — 3 myths and truths
PERC discusses how propane remains a viable fuel
Technical program announced for annual lubrication, reliability exhibition
Advancements in manufacturing, metalworking, transportation and power generation to be featured at annual event for lubrication and reliability professionals.
Cutting through the fog on pneumatic lubrication
Choosing the right strategy to prolong the life of key equipment will have a major impact for your plant.
On-board lubrication and greasing monitor
LUBExpert creates an on-board lubrication and greasing assistant is designed to guide lube-techs before, during, and after re-greasing, resulting in optimal lubrication parameters on all assets.
Have the right information to make the right choices.
Valve system for pneumatic efficiency
Advanced Valve AV03 valve systems can arrange pneumatics decentrally and can control coils with a D-sub connection or Fieldbus connection.
Flash steam – What a waste!
Flash steam is pretty much inevitable in every steam plant – it comes from the hot condensate discharge from steam traps.
Switching PM gears for fast and furious maintenance
CMMS conventional wisdom tells us to schedule our machine preventive maintenance items on a calendar, but what if it's too early to check and replace a part?
Step-by-step on energy management software
When it comes to industrial energy and its relationship to the operational excellence model, energy directors and line of business leaders are constantly challenged with the management of energy procurement, use, and reporting
New tactics needed to develop a new workforce
Companies that invest in the right learning and development programs will better position themselves to accelerate skills development, improve organizational capability, and sustain business success
PMI index dips in March, but stays on growth path
Unexpected drop to 51.3% disappoints analysts, stock market
Reduced corrective maintenance is found money
Better management of corrective and preventive work orders means a more efficient maintenance team will provide workers more capacity and reduce unnecessary overtime
Liquid paddlewheel flow meter
The IC-LPM series of paddlewheel meters are designed to meet flow monitoring requirements for temperature controllers and chemical and water batching
ARC Report: Simulated training a growth trend
Projected growth to top 9% a year over next five years, study finds.
Centrifuge filter systems
The Hydroflow centrifuge filer system uses an open rotor bowl with a flexible liner.
Run your boiler at its best
Maintaining Efficiency Is a Continuing Goal
Microturbines in the news
Power Plus Heat with Reliability, Efficiency
Benefit from supplemental heat for industrial spaces
Systems improve efficiency, add comfort
Particulates, liquids, oxidation contribute to oil contamination
Oil discoloration should be addressed with high importance for optimal operation performance.
How often should PM strategies and tasks be reviewed?
The question is often asked "how often should PM strategies and tasks be reviewed?" Here are 3 processes an organization should have in place to support PM reviews.
Identifying the relevant NFPA standards on combustible dust
Combustible dust can be a dangerous hazard. Follow these guidelines to keep you and your workers safe.
ISM report: Manufacturing growth expands in April
Index reaches highest level since June 2011
Dual stage ac, dc filters
Dual stage ac and dc filters are designed with much higher inductance common mode coils to reduce excessive common mode emissions generated by high power Silicon-Controlled Rectifiers.
Video borescope systems
DCS1800 and DCS1600 video borescope systems
U.S. manufacturing rebound driving optimism for global growth
Despite challenges, economists at MFG Meeting find "a bright future"
Medium voltage drives growth in Brazil to outpace China
High growth in Brazil is predominately driven by oil and gas and mining expansion, as well as projects for infrastructure improvement
ExxonMobil works to introduce girls to engineering careers
National Engineers Week and the ExxonMobil Foundation are working together for the ninth straight year to present "Introduce a Girl to Engineering."
Pneumatic line expanded with tubing, fittings
The NITRA line of pneumatic components has been expanded with tubing and fittings, as well as blowguns and aluminum manifolds.
Troubleshooting boiler operation
Keeping an eye on boiler operations can lead to efficiency gains.
Asset analysis: The forgotten ROI from your CMMS
It’s one thing to use CMMS to manage everyday work orders and preventive maintenance schedules of assets/equipment.
Maintenance contracts can improve reliability, safety
Neglecting routine tasks increases the probability of unscheduled downtime.
2011 POY Finalists: Lighting
Finalists in Lighting in Plant Engineering’s 2011 Product of the Year competition
POY Finalist: Lubrication management
Finalist in Maintenance Software in Plant Engineering’s 2011 Product of the Year competition
Parity in 2015: Tipping manufacturing toward U.S.
Boston Consulting Group study shows 2-3 million jobs could be headed back to the U.S. from China as costs, productivity balance out.
High-performance lubricants offer greater energy efficiency
Mobil SHC gear fluids are approved for use in gearboxes and exceed nearly every OEM specification for industrial gearbox applications.
Making sense of third-party maintenance for your automatic welding system
Working with third-party PM providers allows more focus on core competencies.
Rep. Manzullo: Jobs bill needs further work, more incentives
In an era of polarization in Washington, there is a Manufacturing Caucus headed by U.S. Reps. Don Manzullo (R-IL) and Tim Ryan (D-OH) that works to bring legislation to assist manufacturers.
Industrial inspection camera released
RIDGID's SeeSnake nanoReel is designed for ultra-small diameter lines and has the ability to make tight turns for specialized applications.
On the floor: Making magic by keeping machines running
The machine maintenance department is a plant’s backbone.
Gas Technology: Floor heating finds new friends
Radiant Systems Ideal for Industrial Environments
Gas Technology: Natural gas-powered trucking
Diesel and Gasoline Alternative Gains Popularity in North America
Gas Technology: Big fans make a big difference
HVLS Fans Cool in Summer, Distribute Heat in Winter
Proper lubrication plays a role in energy efficiency
Many factors come into play when selecting a lubricant, including the desired performance of the gearbox within an application.
Process availability can pay big dividends
Does a making an investment in process improvement to increase system integrity during an era of reduced operating and capital budgets make sense?
Best Practices for Condensate System Piping
The best method for improving steam system energy efficiency, reducing chemical costs, and reducing make-up water costs is to return the maximum quantity of condensate to the boiler plant.
Concentrate on condensate
Manage the many factors that contribute to steam system efficiency
Focusing on internal process efficiency pays off for Grundfos Pumps
Grundfos Pumps describes 2010 as best year ever after posting record revenue due to changes in internal process efficiency, global sustainability; profit will allow for even greater investment in 2011
Explosion proof hazardous light fixture
Larson Electronics’ Magnalight adds hazardous area light fixture, with bracket mounting options to family of products
Bearing isolator for flooded, oil mist applications
The environmentally friendly EnDuro, a bearing isolator from Garlock Sealing Technologies, LLC, features a biconcave surface incorporated within a fluorocarbon stator to provide long-life and reliable bearing protection.
Fulton gears up for AHR 2011 Expo with new products
Fulton to introduce including a signature boiler honoring the company’s founder
Sweet Home, Alabama: ThyssenKrupp opens steel manufacturing facility
Calvery plant to employ 2,700, expand company's footprint in the Americas; ThyssenKrupp is entering a new dimension of its history,” said ThyssenKrupp AG CEO Dr. Ekkehard Schulz
2010 POY Finalists: Fluid Handling
Plant Engineering's 2010 Product of the Year finalists featured in the Fluid Handling category.
Sound safeguarding practices improve ergonomics, safety
Specific regulation regarding the ergonomics of machine design is somewhat lacking; many safety standards only go so far as to dictate that ergonomics must be taken into consideration. However, safeguarding equipment such as two-hand control and safety light curtains can be employed to promote ergonomics and relieve a degree of the stress placed on operators—and their employers as well.
GAS TECHNOLOGY: Engine-Driven CHP Makes Inroads
New Technologies, New Applications
Getting down with heat
Air destratification can reduce heating costs in winter
GE Energy to acquire Dresser Inc.
Acquisition of Dresser's compression, flow technology, measurement and distribution infrastructure to bolster GE's growing energy portfolio
Optical technologies monitor leak detection, fugitive emissions
A study published by the American Petroleum Institute in 1997 (API Publication 310 Analysis of Refinery Screening Data) found that fewer than five percent of the components in refineries accounted for more than 90 percent of fugitive emissions. It was further shown that these components were leaking at rates of 10,000 ppm or more, well beyond the leak definition or allowable levels.
Winning the race against equipment failure
While no technology can prevent normal equipment wear or the need for maintenance, Predictive Analytics and the latest advances in Predictive Diagnostics now are helping plants to overcome their challenges by detecting impending problems early and allowing plants to take control of their operations.
GAS TECHNOLOGY: Linkageless boiler controls take over
Benefits of microprocessor-driven linkageless burner controls include optimized combustion, repeatability, improved safety control, maximum turndown, fuel and energy savings, and reduced emissions. Modern linkageless control systems include combustion sensing equipment, precise modulators for fuel and air and, ideally, an exhaust gas analysis feedback system.
Plastic pipe coupling
The Style 296A coupling for fiberglass-reinforced plastic (FRP) pipe offers more efficient installation than the alternative methods of butt-and-wrap and adhesive bell-and-spigot pipe joints. It is ideal for industrial applications such as fly ash, slurry systems, cooling water, waste water, condensate, mild acids/chemicals, oil lines and drainage systems. The coupling engages into pre-manufactured patent pending Advanced Groove System (AGS) grooved built-up FRP pipe ends to form a secure, rigid pipe joint for pressures up to 150 psi/1035 kPa.
Energy, economy are hot topics at AHR
The annual AHR conference in Orlando, set for Jan. 25 -27 at the Orange County Convention Center, is the year's first major industrial trade show. It's also going to be the first chance in 2010 to see how ready manufacturers are to rebound from the challenges of 2009 and how suppliers in this energy-intensive industry are going to respond with new products and ideas.
Industrial fan – 2010-01-01
The Powerfoil X industrial fan uses its NitroSeal Drive to reduce gearbox maintenance and run the fan at a cooler temperature. The hermetically-sealed drive is nitrogen-filled to ensure zero moisture and contamination. The hollow output shaft allows for the integration of electronic devices such as a light, camera or VESDA smoke detection.
Why welding remains vital for today’s manufacturers
Process continues to meet the intense challenges of gas, oil, water and many other industries
Vortex steam flow meters
These vortex steam flow meters are suitable for measuring non-condensing steam and saturated process steam at pressures up to 150 psi for boiler monitoring as well as building and facilities management.
Liquid density meter for corrosive environments
New Zirconium fork meter extends high accuracy liquid density and concentration measurements to corrosive acids and alkalis.
Floor treatment choices address safety, maintenance issues
When selecting a finish, to protect employees and visitors under all conditions, it is wise to make sure whatever finish you select results in a high-traction surface, even when wet
A new dimension for the plant floor
3D modeling offers a deeper vision of plant operations
Energy-efficient space heaters deliver green plants and profits
Heating industrial buildings is a bigger challenge than ever before. Companies need to save energy, improve indoor air quality and get “greener” by reducing their building's carbon emissions footprint.
Discrete automation spending to slump
A new study by the ARC Advisory Group finds that spending on automation in discrete manufacturing leveled off in 2008 and may actually drop a bit in 2009 before rebounding. ARC sees a growth in the overall discrete automation market of 3.5% over the next five years, and predicts it will reach $22 billion by 2012.
A long days’ journey into Azerbaijan
On his return trip from a recent trade show in Bangalore, India, editor Bob Vavra's flight took a couple of unexpected turns, increasing what was already an 18-hour flight to a two-day affair. While not a harrowing experience by any means, the trip afforded some object lessons that, when applied to manufacturing, are definitely food for thought.
Non-chemical solutions for cooling towers address financial, environmental issues
Facilities around the world that use cooling towers and evaporative condensers are trying to reduce water consumption and sewer charges while maintaining effective cooling water treatment. Many areas of the U.S. are focusing on water conservation, and many others are turning their attention to the health and safety of employees and environmental concerns.
Building a global manufacturing business is just the latest success for Quality Float Works
Engineered to loosen frozen metal parts and provide silicone-enhanced lubrication to keep parts moving, SiliKroil penetrates into 1 one-millionth inch spaces to break apart rust and provide lubrication at the molecular level. Designed for use on frozen bearings, slides, gate valves, hinges, chains and more, it’s formulated with silicone to enhance water displacement and improve performanc...
Italy delivers a pep talk for American manufacturing
Italian Trade Commission speech points to strengths in U.S. markets here and globally
Optimized boiler packages
Optimized boiler packages are designed to help facilities reduce fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions.
The F-series fiber laser is available in 10- and 20-W versions that combine YAG technology with fiber optics to accommodate precision marking.
Lubricant’s impact on plant sustainability objectives
When one thinks of plant sustainability, the concept of proper lubricant management is not typically the first thing that jumps to mind. However, how lubricants are selected, monitored and maintained can have a fundamental impact on a plant’s sustainability objectives. Lubricants are often considered the lifeblood of machines.
Honeywell, Chinese petroleum group strike an alliance
Maintenance, training, research centers to be established as part of pact
Today’s critical question: How are you managing?
It is the perfect storm of manufacturing challenges: a rush to reduce operating costs in an attempt to counter skyrocketing energy prices at a time of increasing global demand for both raw materials and finished goods. It costs more to make everything we want, and we want more of it, and there are more of us who want it.
Create a roadmap for proper pump maintenance
Taking care of your pump is like caring for your vehicle. Once you choose the perfect vehicle for your particular needs, you’re ready to put it to work for you. You may start with a protective wax when you first pull it into your driveway from the sales lot, then as time goes on you will service the vehicle with proper oil changes, tune ups and tire rotation or replacement.
Green means integration, not just energy efficiency
As energy prices head for the stars and American businesses contract green fever, it’s tempting to overly focus on energy savings as a driver for greening your plants.
Lubricant loosens rust, stops squeaks
Molykote L-0501 high-performance lubricant is a multi-purpose penetrating oil formulated to loosen rusted parts, stop squeaks and provide corrosion resistance and long-term lubrication.
Accu-Lube LB4600 is a natural, environmentally safe metalworking lubricant recommended for MQL operations in non-ferrous machining processes such as sawing and machining of aluminum.
Refrigeration, air conditioning equipment
The Qwik system flush is a biodegradable, non-toxic and non-flammable removal system for residual oil, moisture and acid in refrigeration and air conditioning equipment.
Tips from Dow Corning: How to keep your plants well oiled and running smoothly
A frequently cited study from M.I.T. estimates that approximately $240 billion—6 to 7 percent of the U.S. gross national product—is lost due to downtime, repairs, and damaged equipment caused by poor lubrication. Phil Grellier, Dow Corning global solutions development manager, offers three tips for keeping plants well oiled and running smoothly.
Tips: Knowledge of best practices, oil analysis maximize productivity
A frequently cited study from M.I.T. estimates that approximately $240 billion – 6 to 7% of the United States’ gross national product – is lost due to downtime, repairs and damaged equipment caused by poor lubrication.
Lime scale remover
ScaleBlaster is designed to eliminate the formation of lime scale deposits in water pipes, cooling towers, boilers and more without the need of water softening equipment, salts, chemicals or maintenance.
Top Plant: SEW Eurodrive: Growing a workforce
People make the difference at SEW Eurodrive’s Lyman, SC plant. Family environment, no layoffs, automation to do the heavy lifting and a management team that empowers its employees – it’s no wonder employees say it’s a great place to work. There must be something special about management; there must be something special about the employees.
Develop clear lubrication procedures
One of the best ways to avoid maintenance downtime is by having clear and precise lubrication procedures. When developing lubrication procedures for manufacturing facilities, engineers should consider several requirements to maximize machinery life, including routine maintenance and lubrication procedures.
Valuing your human ‘cogs’ and keeping them safe
We don't think of our plant employees as just another piece of manufacturing equipment. Perhaps it's time we should. After all, when things are running well, don't you go into the corner office and tell your CFO that the floor “is running like a well-oiled machine?” Don't you suggest in the staff meeting that productivity gains are due to your staff “working like cogs in a gia...
Necessity for solving problems is the mother of Tips & Tricks
When Tips & Tricks first debuted in the 1980s, maintenance (and manufacturing for that matter) was straddling that line between high-tech and low-tech. There were increasing uses of monitoring equipment and sensors that helped the maintenance manager stay on top of equipment performance. There were also those nagging little problems for which experience – and a little grease – w...
Electric circulation heaters require proper use, maintenance
Electric circulation heaters are used in a variety of applications. They heat gases such as nitrogen, hydrogen and hydrocarbons and liquids such as water, oils and acids. They are also used in a variety of industries, including oil and gas refining, petrochemical and chemical processing. Refining often requires electric heating systems in ancillary processes such as hydrocarbon and hydrogen gas...
Energy efficiency a powerful topic in the Bicentennial year of 1976
As a company that has made metal fasteners for more than 80 years, Elco Industries always had a knack for hitting the nail on the head. Its approach to energy efficiency is no exception. “Today’s rapidly rising energy prices, the possibility of fuel cutbacks and company’s public spiritedness have spurred Elco’s top management to finance the development of new conservatio...
Discover your provider’s capabilities
As industrialized nations must compete more often against low manufacturing costs in developing countries, manufacturing businesses are implementing Manufacturing Execution Systems to increase productivity, improve quality and reduce downtime. Typically MES solutions are associated with improvement initiatives such as LEAN, Six Sigma, TQM, TPM, among others.
Schober USA introduces a full-color brochure highlighting the Dragon, a technology for converting multi-layered, self-adhesive products in a single pass. Detailed in the eight-page catalog is a central converting drum with five processing stations to laminate, de-laminate or die-cut materials such as film and foil, pressure-sensitive paper stock and textiles.
Wireless lighting control without batteries
The wireless lighting control system includes a wireless/battery-free switch and a receiver. Wireless switches cut installation time, cost and inconvenience. The switches look like standard wired switches, but can be installed into junction boxes, plaster rings or‘flush mounted’ to any surface with screws, tape or adhesive.
Energy efficiency the hot (and cold) topic at AHR
The huge crowds that poured into the AHR Expo in Dallas on Jan. 29 through Jan. 31 came with a number of issues to explore, but energy efficiency topped the list. While suppliers were coming forward with solutions – it was hard to find a booth where energy wasn’t mentioned – it was equally important that suppliers were coming forward with a better understanding of the problem.
Elastomeric expansion joints
The 104GS general service elastomeric expansion joints are suitable for use in new construction projects, water and wastewater treatment plants, power generation facilities and various other industrial applications. The joints feature a neoprene tube and cover that offer oil and abrasion resistance while protecting the carcass from many environmental elements. Their neoprene construction makes the 104GS compatible with a range of media.
CorrSurface Protect (CSP) coatings and lubricants are designed for maintenance of critical equipment used by corrugated box manufacturers. CSP 3560 coating pretreats trays, allowing ink and starch to be hosed off easily and eliminating the need for pan scraping. CSP 2224 treats double-backer hot plates, shortening board scoring and production downtime due to scraping.
Automated maintenance systems are no substitute for experience
Regarding a recent article on automated condition monitoring systems and general interest in that type of technology, I thought that you might be interested in a recent experience of mine. My father is in assisted living. As everyone knows, this is very expensive. The facility recently entertained a cost cutting offer.
Multi-point grease lubricator
A centralized lubrication system, the C-Power multi-point lubricator delivers grease to up to six lubrication points. It's compatible with a variety of lubricants, except oil, and includes a selection of accessories such as brackets, clamps, brushes, fittings and hose extensions. Full pressure is maintained regardless of the number of lubrication points.
Oil skimming is a cost-effective means of cleaning industrial waste water prior to disposal or discharge, the company reported. Abanaki’s Model 8 oil grabber has a low-maintenance design and removes up to 40 gallons of oil per hour. Abanaki Corporation www.abanaki.com/031
Synthetic Lube Guide now online
Download the 2006 PLANT ENGINEERING Guide to Synthetic Lubrication at www.plantengineering.com. The 2006 Guide is easily downloadable in PDF format, giving readers a comprehensive list of synthetic lubrication suppliers by type of oil, its ISO viscosity grade and its availability in food grade. The guide, published every three years, is a unique look at suppliers, and includes the food grade de...
Web Exclusive: Electrostatic filtering
Electrostatics: another wayto get the gunk out of oil Another aspect of a lubrication program to evaluate is filtration. While mechanical filtration, which employs strainers to remove particulates from lubricant and is based on particle size, has been the dominant method for years, it’s not the only way to keep your lubrication system free of contaminants. Electrostatic filtration goes a step further by removing substances that are either too small or are otherwise difficult—if not impossible—for mechanical filters to handle. “The key difference from other contamination control strategies is that electrostatics are able to pull particulate out of the oil regardless of size,” explained Jon Prescott, Kleentek Technical Sales.
Hot-oil cleaning system
Paratherm Corporation has given its hot-oil system cleaning liquids line a new name: The Sludgebusters. Both the Paratherm SC system cleaner and the Paratherm LC system cleaner remove sludge and carbon build-up in thermal-fluid systems over time. With smaller systems that are shut down regularly, or that need to be cleaned quickly and put back on line, Paratherm SC is a liquid that will do a th...
ExxonMobil offers oil analysis program
ExxonMobil has announced the expansion of its proprietary Signum Oil Analysis program for industrial facilities, heavy off-highway equipment operators and trucking fleets. The online-enabled oil analysis program is designed to help plant engineers and maintenance professionals improve equipment durability and reliability, anticipate potential failures, and reduce overall maintenance costs. Available via the Internet at www.exxonmobil.com/signum , the service enables users to manage their oil and lubrication analysis needs quickly at anytime, anywhere. The online interface provides customers with immediate access to ExxonMobil's dedicated lubrication specialists and customized recommendations based on the company's proprietary oil analysis and test control limits. "With Signum Oil Analysis, plant managers and maintenance professionals always have, at their fingertips, a wealth of valuable information and a comprehensive view of their entire oil analysis program," said Susan Bello, industrial lubricants services advisor, ExxonMobil Lubricants & Specialties.
Understanding long-term insulation efficiency
The task of thermal insulation is to provide reliable and long-term thermal resistance despite potential harsh environmental and service conditions. Reliable and long-term insulation efficiency is a prerequisite to safe and economical plant operation. But, long-term insulation efficiency doesn't just happen.
Toilet facilities must be made available and accessible
OSHA's sanitation standard for general industry, 29 CFR 1910.141, requires employers to provide their employees with toilet facilities. An April 6, 1998 memorandum to the Agency's regional administrators and State Plan State designees explains the standard's requirements that employers make toilet facilities available so that employees can use them when needed.
Non-contact sensor market touched by innovations
Sensors such as inductive proximity, capacitive proximity, photoelectric and ultrasonic are being used in many applications for which they were never considered previously. These noncontact sensors are available with a variety of output configurations, such as normally-open (NO) and normally-closed (NC) contact configurations, as well as analog output configurations.
High performance solvents
Novec Aerosol Cleaners are a new line of non-flammable aerosols and a viable alternative to HCFC-141b-based cleaners for the removal of dust, grease, oil and other maintenance of sensitive electronics in the industrial, telecommunications, aerospace and military markets. The new line comprises three low-toxicity, fast-drying cleaners that are ideal for challenging manufacturing applications and...
The Bilsom Leightning Hi-Visibility Earmuffs deliver dual protection, maximum attenuation and total visibility, especially in outdoors or in low-lighting situations. The eye-catching fluorescent green earcups contrast against dark backgrounds, in low lighting or in inclement weather. A reflective headband that illuminates when exposed to light, providing additional safety, day or night.
News from Plant Engineering: Week of Nov. 27
NAM: Time for action on China currency The National Association of Manufacturers expressed disappointment over the Bush Administration’s failure to cite China’s currency manipulation policies in its latest report to Congress, and said the time to simply talk about currency issues was past. "We have been very supportive of the Administration's constructive engagement with the Chinese government on the currency issue but, at some point, talk must end and action must be taken. We believe that time is now,” said NAM president John Engler. Engler noted that in May, Treasury Secretary John Snow had said the Chinese would need to change its currency policies to avoid further pressure from Washington. The Chinese made only a minor revaluation of the yuan in July, and NAM has called on the Bush administration to keep the pressure on. “Since the small revaluation announced by China in July, the yuan has appreciated a mere 0.3 percent,” continued Engler.“Both President Bush and Secretary Snow have in recent weeks said that China needed to do more, and we agree.” Where is this year’s Top Plant winner? The 2005 PLANT ENGINEERING magazine Top Plant recipient will be announced December 15 when the December issue of PLANT ENGINEERING reaches your mailbox.
Modest growth for global DCS market
The DCS market experienced healthy growth between 2003 and 2004 because of deployments in China, India and other developing countries, as well as stabilization in declining hardware prices. This growth is expected to continue through at least the 2006-2007 timeframe, resulting in overall market growth of 6% between 2004 and 2009, according to a new ARC Advisory Group study, "DCS Worldwide Outlook Market Analysis and Forecast Through 2009." Growth in China and India is compounded by the fact that significant restructuring efforts will need to be made in the North American oil and gas along with their refining infrastructures in the wake of an unprecedented hurricane season, as well as a return to stronger, albeit moderate growth, in the previously depressed Japanese DCS market, according to the ARC report. "After years of decline in the hardware business, increased demand and overall market growth have resulted in a resurgence in hardware growth,” said Larry O'Brien, ARC Research Director and the study's principal author. “Hardware revenues for suppliers are expected to grow at the average annual rate of just over 4% through 2009, which is a big departure from the declines witnessed in the hardware business in recent years.
Cordless grease gun controls flow
SuperLuber offers a fast way to lubricate equipment. It dispenses up to 2.3 ounces of grease per minute. A microchip trigger switch features a variable speed control coupled with an electric brake to stop the motor instantly, reducing waste. The unit can maintain an output pressure of 6,000 psi while enabling users to control grease volume and expedite lubrication.
The MicroPoly wheel flange lubrication system lubricates the flanges by using a specially designed applicator, which keeps the MicroPoly arcs in contact with the flange. The oil transfers to the flange, providing constant and consistent lubrication. Flange lubrication can be eliminated from the maintenance schedule.
LED illuminator for boiler level gauges
DuraStar LED illuminator is designed for flat glass boiler level gauges. It has high contrast with superior visibility day or night and is maintenance free with a life of 100,000 hrs. There is no heat generation. The amber LED provides a high intensity star-like image of the water line. The explosion-proof power supply has an intrinsically safe lighting circuit that pays for itself in electrici...
OSIsoft, SmartSignal form real-time alignment
OSIsoft and SmartSignal Corp have aligned to deliver value to mutual customers with technologies that improve equipment performance through greater access to real-time data. SmartSignal’s equipment performance improvement technology provides actionable early warning of abnormal performance across critical systems and operating modes. This technology can be applied to any equipment that employs sensors to provide a real-time view of a plant’s operating condition. OSIsoft’s real-time performance management platform (RtPM), complements SmartSignal technology by gathering information, adding context and ultimately providing a way to analyze and visualize data to deliver predictive capability. The Analysis Framework (AF) from OSIsoft is a critical component of the RtPM platform that enables an organization to build a consistent representation of its assets.
Maintenance as a profit center takes a change in thinking
Whenever we initially meet with a new client, the first (and ultimately most important) point that we introduce at the meeting is the fact that there is only one reason for our discussion — money. When your initial focus is on money, your perception of O&M improvement changes from reduced PM cost to an increased ROI from your maintenance expenditures.
Human Side – 2005-09-01
A rule is a rule — and then there are exceptions The 17th century English clergyman Robert Burton wrote: "No rule is so general which admits of no exception." We say, kudos for Burton. And double kudos for any corporate executive or supervisor who endorses and supports Burton's well-expressed sentiment. True, no nation, state, institution, corporation, corporate division or department could run efficiently without a custom tailored set of well-formulated rules established in an effort to regulate proper procedure and behavior.
Match floor care equipment to the cleaning task at hand
A clean work environment promotes worker safety, productivity and product quality. In addition, the cleanliness of your plant, warehouse or machine shop conveys a quality image that carries over into higher employee morale and positive reactions from visiting customers and vendors. In short, keeping a clean workplace adds real value to virtually any enterprise.
Basics of power transmission chain
A chain is a reliable machine component that transmits power by tensile force. Chains may be classified in many ways. From one viewpoint, chain is a continuous, flexible rack engaging a pair of gears. Another viewpoint terms chain a mechanical belt, running over wheels, which can be used to transmit power.
Watch extruded copper and fabricated plate work sectors
Plant engineers who buy operating materials and supplies already know how quick budgets can be hit by inflationary trends. In the 12-month period ending April 2005, 17 of 19 industries in our operating supplies index pushed prices higher. Only two — lubricating greases and abrasive coating products — actually cut tags or saw price escalation slow down.
Ergonomics posters Humantech, Inc. has introduced nine new ergonomics posters. These full-color posters provide straightforward and accurate visual reminders of issues and solutions for improving workplace ergonomics.
Hot gas reheat Hot gas reheat with direct digital dehumidification controls can be added to an entire IntelliPak HVAC rooftop line. The hot gas reheat feature uses native energy from An IntelliPak rooftop unit to provide comfortable space temperatures while reducing relative humidity levels. It also complies with the ASHRAE 90.1 guidelines that limit the amount of new energy allowable for dehumidification using reheat.
Maintain concrete properly to preserve its strength
In today's lexicon, the word "concrete" has come to symbolize strength, stability, and the image of being set in stone. Yet, concrete in plants and industrial facilities comes under attack from both natural and manmade forces almost from the time it is first poured and formed. The relative rate of degradation resulting from these assaults depends on a wide variety of factors of which only some ...
Selecting high-volume low-speed fans
When choosing a fan system for a facility, a number of key factors must be considered, including the system's effectiveness, cost efficiency, the size of the facility, and any obstructions to air flow. Box fans, ceiling fans, axial and propeller fans, centrifugal fans, or mixed and cross flow fans may come into consideration.
Human Side – 2004-12-10
Monitoring your people How far should you go? Maintenance Foreman Jim Davis glanced at his wrist. The Valentine jig construction job should have been done by now. Ralph Perkins was running late.
Solutions – 2004-12-10
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.
Customers take on manufacturer inflation burden
Manufacturing costs for a wide range of mechanical components and operating supplies that plant engineers buy regularly have been rising sharply over the last 12 months. Unfortunately, the typical components and supplies manufacturers are passing along a sizeable portion of inflation burden to customers.
Heat recovery measures for air distribution and HVAC systems
Many manufacturing and industrial buildings have high rates of exhaust. Frequently, processes require the removal of excessive heat or pollutants from the indoor air using a local or general exhaust system.
Solutions – 2004-09-10
Lens lift Problem : A gauge has to be recalibrated by removing the lens. How can a sticking lens be removed without damaging it or the gauge? Solution : Use a shop vac with a rubber nozzle to lift the lens out without damaging it. Or, glue a soft gasket to a sanitary flange and connect the shop vac to it. Contributor : John Kotlas, Maintenance Foreman, Ajinomoto AminoScience, LLC, Raleigh, NC. It's in the bag Problem : Trying to move and mate heavy machinery can be very difficult if a crane is unavailable.
Interchangeable Lubricant Guide
When, where, how much, and with what — these are the fundamental questions that have to be answered in equipment lubrication. The answers are normally provided by the builders of process and manufacturing equipment. However, maintenance personnel must sometimes address the "with what" question when finding substitutes for previously used lubricants.
Safety – 2004-07-08
Access control CyberLock is an intelligent lock cylinder designed to convert existing mechanical locks into full-functioning access control systems without hardwiring. Authorized users are permitted access at specific times on pre-selected days. A comprehensive audit report is generated. Videx videx.com Write 311 on PE card Fire control IntelliKnight 5700 fire control communicator provides digital fire reporting over ordinary telephone lines and supports up to 50 addressable devices that allow the user to pin-point which device has been activated or needs attention.
Margins stand at all-time low
Producers of operating materials and supplies are under increasing pressure to hike prices. The reason: covering the cost of manufacturing these supplies is becoming more and more difficult. Indeed, the cost of manufacturing in the PLANT ENGINEERING market basket of operating supplies grew at a fast 5.
Traditionally, greases and oils have been used to lubricate ball and roller bearings. These lubricants can be messy, causing significant housekeeping problems and requiring periodic maintenance to replenish the lubricant. Solid lubricants, such as microporous polymeric lubricants (MPLs), can significantly reduce or eliminate these problems.
HVAC – 2004-02-10
Energy savings calculator ENERGY-CALC is an online program that estimates dollars saved by using gas humidification rather than electric. It allows users to select items from pull-down menus and calculates annual energy savings. In many locations, savings are so significant electric units can be replaced and the energy savings pay for the cost and installation. DRI-STEEM dristeem.com Write 316 on PE card Refrigerant purger HPP-3 Series high-pressure refrigerant purger is designed to provide high-efficiency, automatic, noncondensable purging from high-pressure refrigerant (R-12, 22, 134a, 500, etc.) systems in large-tonnage process cooling chillers.
Sellers of operating materials and supplies hit rough patch
If the folks who sell you operating materials and supplies say that manufacturers are having a tough time making a buck, you better believe it. In October 2003, five industries registered record-low levels of margins. A year ago, only one, bolts, nuts, rivets and washers, sported an F-minus margin grade.
Solutions – 2003-11-01
Oil glows Problem: Lubricating oil is leaking from a machine. It is difficult to see where the leak is originating. What can be done to find the leak? Solution: Clean the machine of all residual oil.
Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning
Efficient boiler uses aluminum MACH Series condensing hot water boilers combine the latest cast aluminum metallurgy with advanced burner and control technologies. The boiler is certified at 92% efficiency. It operates across a 5:1 turndown ratio, which is infinitely adjustable from 20% to 100% of rating, resulting in the ultimate in condensing efficiency. Patterson-Kelley : pkboilers.com , TO VOTE, WRITE 9 ON BALLOT For more information, write 9 on card Small fan moves large volumes Vertical fan is a moveable, 8-ft, high-volume, low-speed fan that can circulate air at up to 38,000 cfm.
Lighting – 2003-11-01
Fixture installs easily T-Bay T5 and T8 linear fluorescent high-bay fixtures feature hinged reflector and lamp assembly that swings down for easy ballast maintenance, hinged end plates that flip down to provide ample access to wiring chamber, mounting plates for through-wire boxes, knockouts for motion detectors, and top access plate. Fixtures offer compact electronic ballasts, high-efficiency optics, and highly reflective finish. Genlyte-Thomas Group, LLC.; Stonco Lighting Div. : stoncolighting.com , TO VOTE, WRITE 5 ON BALLOT For more information, write 5 on card Dimmable lamp saves energy MP 440W/BU/e-Lamp/PS 440-W pulse-start metal halide lamp with electronic ballast is dimmable to 35% of full power and provides 60% more lumens than standard lamp using same watts per luminaire.
Flowmeters – 2003-10-10
Flowmeters are used for determining the amount of product passing through a pipe for purposes of product blending, determining billing or cost, machine lubrication, process heating or cooling, and many other applications. Reliability and accuracy are two of the selection factors used in choosing a flowmeter.
Be aware of rebuilt burner-boiler controls
An older, restored home can be charming. Old, restored cars are classics. But sometimes new is not only better, it is safer and more cost-effective. That is what burner-boiler experts say about burner-boiler controls. Safe, reliable burner and boiler operation is critical for industrial plants. Experts agree that new burner-boiler controls, with the latest technology standards, are the best way...
Maintenance Tips & Tricks
Time-conserving, money-saving, aggravation-avoiding ideas for solving typical maintenance problems should be shared with others in the plant engineering profession. This idea-exchange concept serves as the basic philosophy for Plant Engineering magazine's 15th annual "Tips & Tricks" article. Details of this article were explained in the February issue.
Human Side – 2003-08-06 – 2003-08-06
Company lay off Senior worker's name on list When a big order was cancelled, Plant Engineer Arthur Edelstein instructed Maintenance Supervisor Pete Braddock to lay off three men. Braddock ran his eye down the roster and settled on a setup man, a mechanic, and a welder. Their names were posted on the bulletin board. It didn't take long for Setup Man Jeff Redmond to appear at his desk. "You can't lay me off." "Sorry, Jeff. I have no choice.
Green roofs offer environmentally friendly alternative
A green roof — also called an eco-roof, nature roof, or living roof — is simply a roof that's covered with some sort of plant material (green being just one of the possible colors). The name is a reference to the environmentally friendly "green" approach, which is definitely the direction the architectural, development, and construction industries are moving.
Grounding method eliminates rim fires
Oil industry engineers must be aware of bound charge and secondary arc risk to oil facilities, since secondary lightning effects such as bound charge and secondary arc can be 1,000 times more common than direct lightning strikes.
Open and disguised holes can lead to injury and death
It is widely recognized that workers can fall through floor openings greater than 12" x 12".
Insulation improves economic returns
If purchased fuel is the 'currency' of an industrial plant's energy budget, then mechanical insulation is one of its 'savings' components. Just as savings have a specific place in a financial plan for creating wealth, so does insulation play a role in optimizing a plant's valuable energy resources.
Human Side – 2003-06-12 – 2003-06-12
Shift cancellation: What is management's obligation? The weather looked threatening on the one hand. On the other, business was slower than usual. Plant Engineer Murray Kreissman paid Maintenance Supervisor Tim Hanley a visit. "What do you think, Tim? Can we get by without a second shift?" "I was asking myself the same question," Hanley replied. After a short discussion Kreissman instructed Hanley to call off the second shift. Six employees were slated to clock in at 5 p.m. Hanley told Joe Fry, his assistant, to contact the men and tell them not to report. Fry telephoned five of the six without difficulty and gave them the message.
Solutions – 2003-06-12 – 2003-06-12
Sandy tubing • Problem: Running a copper fuel line in close quarters is awkward, especially when you have to make bends and the line kinks. Is there a way to make kinkless bends easily? • Solution: Fill the copper tube with sand, tape both ends closed, then make your bends. When the line is properly shaped, blow out the line and flush it with oil.
Cost estimating handbook Facilities Manager's 2003 Costbook with CD-ROM provides access to 20,000 up-to-date costs covering new construction, repair, remodeling, and maintenance for all types of buildings. Geographic cost modifiers are provided for 233 regions and cities. The CD contains a cost-estimating software program and a construction dictionary.
Aera Energy pursues maintenance convergence
Oil producer Aera Energy, Bakersfield, CA, is meeting tremendous maintenance challenges at its Belridge complex through a variety of initiatives that integrate maintenance with operations. The journey to maintenance excellence is a testament to what can be accomplished in five years with a total commitment from both the maintenance and operations sides of the business.
Alcoa-Mt. Holly (formerly Alumax of South Carolina) has been recognized as a proactive maintenance benchmark for the past 18 years. Organizations designating Alcoa's Mt. Holly operation as among the best in maintenance execution include PLANT ENGINEERING Magazine, A.T. Kearney, Inc., Hartford Steam Boiler Reliabilities Technology Division, and Life Cycle Engineering.
Human Side – 2003-02-15
A man's job? Don't treat women as the weaker sex When a stock handler's job opening appeared on the bulletin board, it caught Alma Kornhauser's attention. But when the utility worker applied for the job, Maintenance Foreman Joe Sternfeld didn't take her request seriously. Kornhauser lost no time assuring him she was perfectly serious. The job would carry with it an increase in pay. Kornhauser reminded her boss she was a single mother with two kids to support.
Maintenance Products – 2002-11-15
Click above for 2002 Product of the Year finalists in this category.
New formulas reduce maintenance painting costs
The true cost of plant maintenance painting involves a number of factors, including materials, labor, and time. Advances in paint technology have resulted in coatings that require less labor to apply, minimize disruption to the plant, and shorten downtime (Fig. 1). A larger investment for these materials may be money well spent.
Human Side of Engineering – 2002-06-15
Ultimate measure to determine seniority Business had declined in recent months, and management mandated a layoff in Production, Maintenance, and other departments. In compliance, Maintenance Supervisor Edgar Lehman posted a list of three employees scheduled for the ax. One of the men, Welder Grade II Charley Devons, protested. "How come Joe Tierney is being kept on, and I'm let go?" he wanted to know. "No particular reason that I can think of other than seniority," Lehman replied. "In that case an error has been made," Devons said. "I checked it out with Tierney himself.
Most of us use the same tools every day and don't give them a thought. They work, they are comfortable, and they are reliable. Fortunately, there are among us those who are not satisfied with the status quo. On the following pages you will find tools that are "out of the box" in design thinking. In the process some new ideas have given old, favorite tools a new twist.
An additive is a chemical substance added to a lubricant base stock that imparts a new or desirable property not naturally occurring in the base stock. An additive may also reinforce a desirable property that the base stock already possesses. A formulated fluid consists of a base stock and a performance package.
Simple Solutions – 2002-02-15
No room for hands Problem: It is often impossible to hold a nut in place with your hand and start the bolt threads because the space is too narrow. Is there a way to reach in and hold the nut so the bolt can be started? Solution: Place the nut in the opening of a box wrench. Tape the edge of the nut in place, but do not cover the threads in the nut.
Human Side of Engineering – 2002-01-15
Does workday start at the clock or work station? Tardiness was a costly problem at a New England manufacturing plant. Most employees clocked in on time, but by the time they reached their work stations, 10 or 15 min was lost. At a management meeting it was pointed out that the labor agreement specified a workday of 8 hr with 45-min allocated for lunch. "If that's what it states in the contract," General Manager George Casey maintained, "that's what we should enforce." He suggested posting a notice informing employees who arrived at their work stations after the morning buzzer sounded that they would be docked for the time. Most executives present agreed, but the plant engineer looked leery. "What's the problem, Tom?" "Well, for one thing, the contract doesn't specify whether the workday starts at the time clock or at the work station.
Review of Plant Engineer’s Handbook
The new revised edition is one reference book every plant engineer should have. Click above to read a review and to order.
Why absorption chillers fail
Lithium bromide-based absorption refrigeration is a viable system capable of providing large-tonnage central air conditioning. Water is flash boiled under vacuum at low temperatures. This boiling action cools evaporator or chilled water coils (Fig. 1). As the flashed water vapor accumulates inside the chiller, vacuum is lost.
Heating, Ventilating & Air Conditioning
Click on the above link to see Product of the Year finalists in this category.
When to use electric steam boilers
Packaged electric boilers, in the right applications, are an effective way to offset rising fuel prices and help maintain profitability. They can also serve as a backup should an unforseen shutdown of the main plant boiler occur. Paul Rannick, of Chromalox, describes some typical situations where an electric boiler can be economically used and explains how to determine boiler size.
Basics of unit heaters
Here's a primer on self-contained heating devices fueled by gas, oil, electricity, steam or hot water. Key topics discussed include energy source, delivery patterns, and placement.
Clamping down on joint failures with formed-in-place gaskets
Formed-in-place gaskets cna replace pre-cut versions in almost any application and perform as well or better. This article describes how formed-in-place gaskets form strong, leak-free permanent joints; how special compounds eliminate maintenance tasks such as gasket replacement and fastener retorquing; and how anaerobic and silicone gasketing materials serve a nearly unlimited range of applications.
Understanding fan vibration and imbalance
Key concepts Detecting imbalance early reduces damage and lowers repair costs. Imbalance and vibration are not the same. Dirt, temperature, and loose fits can cause imbalance. Fans play a key role in most manufacturing processes by recirculating air, ventilating hazardous gases, and cooling machinery.
A guide to shaft seals
Machines require rotating shaft seals to retain lubricants and prevent foreign particles from entering sealed cavities, which damage machinery and lead to premature failure.
Human Side of Engineering – 2001-02-01
In the October 2000 issue of Plant Engineering, Human Side of Engineering presented "Uncommon side: The fearful fringe freak-Part I.
2000 Maintenance Tips & Tricks
Winner of the 2000 "Maintenance Tip of the Year" was Ralph Dewey, Solvay Polymers, Deer Park, TX. He received $1000 for his suggestion on how to quickly find leaks in gas service piping flanges.
Lighting – 2000-11-01
Emergency ballasts can be tested remotely RCT Series fluorescent emergency ballasts feature remote control testing.
Justifying steam efficiency projects to management
Industrial plant engineers often must convince top management that investing in steam efficiency is an effort worth making. Communicating this message is often more difficult than the actual engineering behind the concept.
Simple Solutions – 2000-09-01
Dabbing valves Problem: Seldom used water valves often stick shut because of inactivity.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 2000 – #4
Reusing rollersProblem: Cleaning and squeezing that last drop of paint from a roller so it can be reused is hard to do. Is there a way to remove it all? Solution: After an initial, thorough cleaning, submerge the roller in a container of water. After sitting overnight, all the paint pigments settle out of the roller's nap. Remove the roller from the container gently without disturbing the water.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 2000 – #5
Prefiltering airProblem: Keeping fans and coils in machine tools and other equipment clean improves their operating efficiency and reduces maintenance expenses. Filters are typically installed by the original equipment manufacturer to remove dirt and other contaminants before they hit the fan or coil. Can more be done? Solution: Add a second layer of protection to prefilter incoming air.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 2000 – #20
Stopping gasProblem: Most floor drains not actively used tend to dry out. Sewer gases can escape when this occurs. Can the gases be stopped from escaping? Solution: Pour 1/4 cup of cooking oil in the floor drain.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 2000
Wiping grease Cutting conduit Getting to the bottom Reusing rollers Prefiltering air Finding faults Removing covers Terminating wires Leveling answer Identifying asbestos Finding leaks Wrenching nuts Cleaning mixers Replacing lamps Pumping pins Protecting eyes Draining battery Calculating bits Loosening bolts Stopping gas Plant Engineering.
Human Side of Engineering – 2000-07-01 – 2000-07-01
Names used in Human Side of Engineering are fictitious. Any similarity to real persons is coincidental.
10 myths about industrial fire protection
Key concepts Misconceptions about fires often come from what we have seen on television or in movies. Many widely held beliefs about fire protection are untrue.
Oil/water separator reduces removal cost
Isolator separator removes oil from water to less than 20 ppm and is available in five flow ranges of 10-1000 cfm. Benefits include low operating costs, minimum maintenance, and no electricity required.
Identifying, reducing, and controlling environmental costs
Key concepts The biggest task facing environmental managers is how to engage senior management in a dialog about their problems and the positive results attained by solving them.
Sorting out the options in fiber glass duct insulation
Key concepts Fiber glass insulation is used in HVAC systems for temperature, noise, and condensation control, and energy conservation. Four primary types of products are duct liner, duct wrap, duct board, and flexible fiber glass ducts.
Fluids keep rolling along
A range of custom solutions for special fluid handling requirements is offered in mobile carts with integral pumps and load-bearing wheels.
Quicklub lubrication system supplies up to 18 lubrication points with NLGI #2 grease. The system includes a pump, control/monitor, and lubricant-metering device. Lincoln Industrialwww.lincolnindustrial.com
Change the perception
The November 1999 "Forum" letter, "Encourage your children," by James A. Haigh, begs another opinion. While Mr. Haigh makes several good points, I believe he misses a few significant realities. Mr.
Get hot water tips
General catalog simplifies the selection process for a complete line of boiler and liquid level controls and flow switches.
Full color 36-p catalog features industrial-grade transfer and storage products. New products in the publication include a 3:1 ratio air-operated oil pump, electric oil transfer pump, and an oil equipment package that includes pump, hose reel, and meter.
Selecting liquid flowmeters
Measuring liquid flow rate in a pipe is done for many reasons: product blending, process heating or cooling, monitoring energy costs, machine lubrication or manufacturing, and determining the amount of product transferred for billing purposes, to name a few. Reliability and accuracy of measurement are two of the selection factors used in choosing a particular type of flowmeter. Inaccurate or lack of flow measurement could result in serious damage to equipment or product. In some instances accuracy is important because it can make the difference between profit and loss when dispensing liquids. Flowmeter selection is complicated by the fact that there are about two dozen designs to choose from.
Dirty lube and gears don’t mix
"Oil Debris Monitoring as a Diagnostic Tool" describes the basic causes of lubrication system failure in gearboxes, transmissions, and similar types of equipment.
Pressure washers transport easily
Delco Technology Vortex hot water pressure washers are available in gasoline or diesel power. These belt-driven machines can be used in their standard configuration or easily transported with an optional wheel kit.
Boiler retrofits extend service life
When a boiler starts getting up in years, it is natural to start thinking of such questions as: How long is it going to last? Is it still serving my purposes? What can I do to upgrade it? In general, a boiler can be expected to last 20-25 yr.
Supervisor must make every effort to avoid shutdown
Building Two second shift Maintenance Group Leader Hugh Donnetz tried futilely to fix the boiler's pressure control gauge when it went crazy at 8:30 p.m. Donnetz couldn't be sure if the problem was a faulty gauge or the pressure itself.
Impeller features bolted construction
The Maxflo W impeller features advanced hydrofoil technology for maximum pumping action with minimum energy loss. Bolt-on blades facilitate easy disassembly during routine maintenance. Chemineer, Inc.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 1999
Trapping elusive pressure Pulling more wires Seeing behind machine guards Bridle the bristles Adjusting air line oilers Spotting bad circuit boards Avoiding bent lids Tight moves Hang the sign Detect hot spots A little dab will do Hide a key Finding vacuum leaks Ceiling tile puller Tapping in tight places Inserts remove play Rough shaft alignment Checking rotation Picking up small parts Lip seals: Which way? Plant Engineering.
Adjusting air line oilers
Problem: Too often, air line oilers are incorrectly adjusted so that equipment receives too little or too much oil. Solution: Make a calibration kit for each maintenance person to carry. The kit should contain six items: 1/4-in.
Coalescing filters offer full circle viewing
Balston coalescing filters include two differential pressure indicators built into the head that allow a 360-deg viewing. A quick release bayonet bowl design and pressure relief valve offer easy maintenance without tools.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 1999 – #13
Finding vacuum leaks Problem : Typical vacuum petcocks are factory greased. After several years, the grease dries out and they leak. Finding leaks in vacuum petcocks in lab or processing areas is difficult. Solution : Place a rubber pipette bulb over each petcock inlet.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 1999 – #11
A little dab will do you Problem : You are away from the shop and need a little dab of grease. Solution: Carry a plastic syringe filled with grease in your tool pouch. Contributor : Ralph Dewey, Solvay Polymers Corp., Deer Park, TX; 713-307-3784 List of Tips & Tricks Plant Engineering.
Maintenance Tips & Tricks – 1999 – #5
Adjusting air line oilers Problem: Too often, air line oilers are incorrectly adjusted so that equipment receives too little or too much oil. Solution : Make a calibration kit for each maintenance person to carry. The kit should contain six items: 1/4-in. pipe cap with a 1/16-in.
Monitor detects water in lubricants
Hydrolert detects water in lubricating oils before damaging levels are reached, which helps extend bearing and gear life. Oil changing or filtering occurs only when needed, based on the quality of the lubricant.
A complete line of cleaners, degreasers, and other maintenance products is featured in a 36-p brochure. Products include air tool oil, contact cleaner, cold galvanize, wire rope lubricant, food-grade lubricants, cutting fluids, and paints.
Basics of portable fire extinguishers
Portable fire extinguishers are designed for small, incipient, controllable fires. The extinguishers are powered by internal pressure, and most are relatively easy to operate. Types of fires are separated into four classes, A, B, C, and D.
Chain lubricators save oil
ORSCO 150 Series chain lubricators use a metered spray system. A spray nozzle mixes lubricant with air and applies it where needed on the chain, which results in maximum lubrication and protection with minimum lubricant volume.
A 36-p catalog offers a wide variety of books and other materials specifically designed for training trades people. Topics covered include electricity, HVAC, mechanics, boilers, building trades, welding, machine shop/metals, and graphics/drafting.
Software evaluates steel storage tanks
Tank Version 2.00 software program analyzes and evaluates welded steel oil storage tanks according to the latest API Standards 650 and 653.
How to feed the boiler water
The WDX horizontal, multistage, ring-section boiler feed pump is used as a medium pressure boiler feed and condensate return pump for power generation, incineration, and general industry applications.
Pump removes hydrocarbons and saves water
Ferret high capacity oil/water separating pump removes thick or thin layers of floating hydrocarbons from tanks, pits, and wells larger than 4-in. dia. The pump recovers all the hydrocarbons, including the sheen, without pumping away the water.
Threaders and cutters
Twelve new products for construction and maintenance are introduced in a colorful 4-p brochure. Pipe products include an oilless threading machine, stand with chain vise, soil pipe cutter, and oiler.
Never brush aside a threat of violence
What's wrong, Amos, you look a bit piqued?" Assistant Maintenance Supervisor Amos Courtney hesitated before answering. "Nothing." "That isn't a 'nothing' look on your face.
Boiler offers high-pressure steam option
Model FLX boiler with ProFire series burners offers 150-psig steam, with insulated drums and downcomers, and full modulation. The burners provide 1.
Cleaners, lubricants, rust preventatives, and coatings for electrical maintenance are detailed in a 10-p brochure.
UVC emitter protects rooftop HVAC systems
X-Mount Plus UVC Emitter continuously cleans coils and drain pans and eradicates mold and microbes that grow and disseminate from rooftop HVAC equipment, which improves IAQ and energy performance.
Measure viscosity onsite
Model 52DV digital viscometer measures the viscosity of lubrication oils in the range of 20-680 cSt. The viscometer includes a low power setting for use with oils having a 10-cSt viscosity. CSI www.compsys.com
Don’t get burned
Rebuilt Controls: The Facts video is free to facilities managers. Featuring interviews with contractors and industry experts, the 15-min video outlines the critical differences between OEM burner boiler controls and independently rebuilt controls.
Solid lubricant outlasts bearing greases
MicroPoly porous, oil-filled polymer releases lubricant during bearing operation and requires little cleanup or maintenance. The solid lubricant outlasts oil-based greases 2 - 12 times and is available in formulas that are FDA and USDA compliant. PhyMet
Posters aid HVAC troubleshooting
Free air conditioning and heating posters provide information and training. The air conditioning poster features over 15 test points involving pressure, temperature, and electrical measurements.
Grease-like lubricants having high solids content for nondamaging assembly, disassembly, and breakin of components are the subject of a 16-p catalog.
Getting oil into small places
Moly pene-lube is a disassembly aid for heavy equipment, threaded fasteners, and devices that see infrequent service or long maintenance schedules.
Will your BAS be working in the year 2000?
Like many other plant systems, BASs are susceptible to year 2000 time and date malfunctions. Although products shipped today may be ready to handle the next century, systems already in place may not be.
Monitor measures five combustion gases
Model 8750 CombuCheck measures CO, O(sub 2), NO, NO(sub 2), or SO(sub 2). The unit has a built-in pump to provide fast response to changes in gas concentration.
What to do with a well-meaning joker?
No one is perfect, right? Instrument Repairman Bud Fallon seemed intent on proving this premise. Bud's a nice guy, friendly, cheerful, well liked. But on the minus side he can be, to put it kindly, a pest.
It’s getting chilly
Apache CB-2 multigas HVAC and refrigeration service kit is used for nitrogen and CO(sub 2). It purges oxygen from refrigerant lines, leak tests line sets, and cleans everything from condenser coils to condensate drain lines.
Getting oiled in the right places
Machinery Oil Analysis is a three-part video training series relating lubrication and machinery maintenance. Part one includes methods of lubrication and uses of oil analysis. Part two covers failure modes and their indicators and oil sampling procedures.
PM Program Keeps Asphalt Parking Lots Up-To-Speed
Drive through your parking lot and view it through the eyes of a customer, visitor, or employee.
Want a germ-free HVAC system?
Guide to UVC Emmitters is an 8-p catalog that describes devices engineered specifically for HVAC applications to eradicate both airborne and surface micro-organisms through the use of high output UVC lights.