Early warning systems across a range of Multotec’s wear solutions – built in as standard and at no added expense – are important aspects of the group’s efforts to save customers from the high cost of unexpected failure.
According to Spike Taylor, managing director of Multotec Rubber, the company’s wear systems are simple but highly effective, assisting customers in achieving the longest possible life between replacements and reducing plant downtime.
“Apart from providing customers with cost-effective solutions, we also want our customers to have the best user experience when working with our products,” says Taylor. “To do that, we have designed early warning systems that can be visually checked with ease and with high levels of safety.”
He highlights that the successful implementation of these systems was done without raising the products’ cost to customer, a significant advantage for customers, as most of them use large quantities of Multotec wear products in their equipment.
The Group’s wear solutions are applied to a range of applications including mills, scrubbers, pipelines, transfer points and chutes
Screen panels, produced by Multotec Manufacturing in a range of materials, need to be replaced at the right time if the customer is to derive the most value from them. “This time can either be just before the metallurgical end-of-life or before the apertures on the panel are worn too large,” Taylor says. “With, typically, hundreds of panels on a screen deck and uneven wear across the screen, it is crucial to identify the most worn panels and to replace them. If this is not done, the panel could wear through, allowing oversized particles to pass into the underflow and block or damage downstream equipment, not to mention the unplanned downtime that this would incur.”
The wear indicator on each panel comprises four or five moulded cavities in the body of the panel, spaced at predetermined intervals below the upper wear surface. “The cavities are like pin-holes, large enough to be visible to the naked eye but small enough to prevent material getting into them and blocking them from view,” says Taylor. “As the panel surface is worn away, one cavity becomes visible and, as further wear takes place, the second cavity is also visible, and so on until all cavities are visible and the operator knows that replacement must be conducted or planned shortly.”
This simple but innovative system, patented by Multotec, not only indicates when replacement needs to take place, but can be used as a data source to measure the rate of wear so that a future replacement time can be predicted and planned.
“Accurate recording of the time lapse or the tonnage treated between the exposure of one cavity and the next allows the customer to calculate a wear rate,” Taylor explains. “This rate lets the customer work out the panels’ life with considerable certainty, so that a future change-out date can be accurately set.”
The number of cavities that are exposed before replacement is carried out will depend on the different perforated thicknesses or aperture sizes and the harshness of the application in question.
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