EMEX - Engineering, Machinery & Electronics Exhibition
Congratulations to Paul Bao of Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Limited, the winner of the EMEX 2016 UP BOX 3D printer prize, sponsored by 3D printing systems.
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WHAT ENGINEERS NEED TO KNOW: ASSET MANAGEMENT
In the 1980’s Dr Steve Boshoff was designing attack helicopter weapon systems, followed by tools and systems for maintaining nuclear power reactors.
In the 1980’s Dr Steve Boshoff was designing attack helicopter weapon systems, followed by tools and systems for maintaining nuclear power reactors. He has used this experience to develop a thorough knowledge of maintenance systems, reliability and managing assets to achieve the greatest return.
Dr Boshoff is one of the guest speakers at the 2016 National Maintenance Engineering Conference in Hamiltion.
He will give a high-impact no-frills introduction to asset management and how it affects us all. What is it? How does it change business thinking? What do Engineers need to know about it?
The ‘Engineers Introduction to Asset Management’ exposes engineers to the international asset management standard, PAS 55. The present understanding of asset management is challenged and the brief presentation is intended to show the differences in thinking about asset management.
An engineer’s day-to-day focus has traditionally been to keep the plant going. That is, we keep the pumps, valves, electrical system, etc, all working. If it breaks down, we fix it. The pressures of maintaining production hover over our heads and rightly so. So every day is about ‘fixing’ the asset.
Some will argue that we don’t only do reactive maintenance but that we also do preventive maintenance and some companies even do predictive maintenance. We use all the fancy tools for vibration analyses, thermography, acoustics, reliability centred maintenance (REM) and many more; the things engineers like to play with and we wonder why we are still faced with the challenges of increasing operating and maintenance costs, customer pressures, and maintenance budget cuts.
It’s because we are taking a micro look at the maintenance of the assets. For engineers, generally, assets are about the bits and pieces; the equipment that makes up the plant. Typically, the pumps, valves and all other types of assets. But by looking at each one individually or even as a subsystem of the plant still doesn’t give us the control of the plant.
Without getting into too much detail, lets agree that we need to take a more holistic view of our work – a macro view
PAS 55 is an international asset management standard that provides the guidelines to do exactly that. Essentially, the macro view of asset management is the consolidated business process to ensure that the physical assets will deliver the intended demand capability and return on investment required by the business’ operations – both now and into the future.
SLASHERTECK FOR THE CUTTING EDGE
An Australian innovation is about to enter world markets to automate the hazardous, costly and never-ending task of slashing roadside grass.
An Australian innovation is about to enter world markets to automate the hazardous, costly and never-ending task of slashing roadside grass around millions of poles, fences, safety barriers and signposts lining highways and byways.
Instead of whole teams of roadside workers laboriously manually trimming vegetation around the multitude of safety fence poles and advisory signs involved, the new SlasherTeck innovation uses one man on a tractor to do the job in a fraction of the time. It is also environmentally harmonious, because it drastically reduces the need for chemical spraying of grass and instead delivers a recyclable mulch.
“Not only does this make roadside work safer, but also cuts out a huge part of the hazard for passing traffic that currently has to suddenly slow down for men at work. The job is done much sooner and the hazard is removed much quicker,” says Nathan Boyle of SlasherTeck, which is marketing the machine throughout Australia during the first stage of its world launch.
The patented secret of the SlasherTeck innovation is a rotating triple-bladed mulching unit that can slash around posts. The strong and durable unit, incorporating a single slot to accommodate posts of different sizes, works by being located with a post at its centre and then rotated completely around the post using a hydraulically driven motor and 12 mulching blades.
“The slasher cuts the rest of the verge as per normal, then once it approaches a post, the operator engages the post-slashing process, which rotates the blades a full 180 degrees in approximately 10 seconds,” says Mr Boyle.
The clever cutter, linked with the recently patented slasher operation and asset management system (SOAMS) has the ability to remember the work it has done, using GPS and Cloud-based technology, so that when the grass grows back it knows where the posts are on a particular stretch of road and can repeat the job it did previously. This asset management programme saves further time and cost and further enhances road safety.
SlasherTeck’s innovation is the result of some radically different thinking from its developers Down Under, a consortium of practical-minded businessmen, manufacturing from the Hunter Valley region of NSW.
In their search for a better way to do the job, as requested by local authorities and governments, they turned conventional thinking inside out: instead of their machine nibbling at the verges from the outside edges towards the centre of the post, they placed the post at the centre of the cutting action and revolved the cutters around the axis of the post.
“It is literally a revolutionary approach,” says consortium member Tom Woods, who with his brother Glenn directs TW Woods Construction, a national metal engineering company which has transformed the SlasherTeck from concept to manufactured reality.
The SlasherTeck Consortium – including New Holland tractors and McConnel equipment – has conducted extensive trials to ensure the concept works before stepping out into national and world markets. The new machine is built to the same virtually bulletproof standards that go into TW Woods’ giant multi-storey train loaders and coal materials handling equipment that the company produces for world leaders in the demanding resources sector.
“We make all our products tough because our markets demand the reliability and credibility of world-class producers. Local and State authorities also deal in big projects and large asset bases where time is money, so they need to know the product is as tough as they come,” says Mr Woods.
SlasherTeck products seamlessly integrate with their own asset management system, slasher operation and asset management system (SOAMS), a GPS based operation and asset management system that has been designed to accumulate valuable data from each maintenance run.
SOAMS uses a combination of the slasher location, point of engagement, some additional hardware and a custom-built cloud-based app to provide a work-as-executed profile and asset location, type and condition data set.
Reach arm mower head: For long strips of roadside barriers, SlasherTeck has a reach arm mower head that attaches onto a reach arm for the clearing of vegetation around and underneath the barriers, which can stretch on for kilometres at a time. The cutting width is 900mm and the slasher head has three sets of cutting and mulching blades that are driven by high quality hydraulic motors.
Front mounted slasher: The front-mounted slasher is the workhorse of the line-up, comprising of two models with cutting widths of 1200 and 1800mm. This slasher is primarily used for the majority of accessible applications with the ability to clear the vegetation around posts in the same pass. This slasher has three sets of cutting and mulching blades that are driven by high quality hydraulic motors.
Side shift tilt hitch: This unit maximises the effectiveness of the Front Mounted Slasher. It is positioned between the tractor and the Front Mounted Slasher and allows the slasher to be shifted up to 900mm to the off-side and rotates up to a 15 degree angle to meet the ground profile.
CORROSION MANAGEMENT IN A TRULY CHALLENGING ECONOMY
Corrosion is an economic threat to industry and the wider community, as well as a physical threat to infrastructure and personal safety
Corrosion is an economic threat to industry and the wider community, as well as a physical threat to infrastructure and personal safety. In a report released this year by NACE International, it has been estimated that, globally, more than 7% of GDP – billions of dollars – each year is spent on corrosion mitigation and repair.
The changing dynamics of the economy mean that companies offering corrosion management services have to convince their customers of their value.
“Asset owners expect a better ROI on the money they spend on maintenance,” says Dean Ferguson, materials engineer with Infracorr Consulting and senior vice president of the Victorian branch of the Australasian Corrosion Association (ACA). Infracorr is a leading engineering consultancy specialising in rehabilitation and durability solutions for concrete and masonry infrastructure.
“Budgets for asset maintenance are never large enough to cover requirements. Coatings are seen as passive, so structures are often left to fend for themselves until corrosion damage is severe,” adds Aaron Davey, director of Bastion in New Zealand, and a member of the ACA. “When coupled with the wrong coating, subsequent costs can appear far sooner than otherwise expected.”
The Australasian Corrosion Association (ACA) works with industry and academia to research all aspects of corrosion in order to provide an extensive knowledge base that supports best practice in corrosion management, thereby ensuring all impacts of corrosion are responsibly managed, the environment is protected, public safety enhanced and economies improved.
Mr Bastion has been providing innovative leadership to engineering, construction and maintenance projects throughout NZ for nearly 10 years, primarily with public infrastructure organisations and manufacturing industries.
“In the past, short-term, low cost solutions were what owners and operators were looking for,” says Sean Ryder, senior engineering consultant with Phoenix Solutions in New Zealand. “Today we are able to discuss the benefits of looking at the ‘whole of life’ asset costs.”
Monitoring the impact of corrosion on any type of structure is a critical aspect of ensuring asset integrity. A key way of minimising corrosion is to employ appropriate protection technologies. “Asset owners often prefer to put off maintenance until it is too late,” says Mr Ferguson. “Everyone knows that it is cost effective but rarely have the budget to implement an integrated design and servicing program.”
However, practitioners have noticed a gradual trend toward asset owners recognising the benefits of maintenance planning. “Since starting in the industry in the 1990s, I have seen a shift in attitude by asset owners,” Mr Davey explains. “More are appreciating the wisdom of doing it right the first time.”
It is usually government bodies and larger companies that take a lead role when new business concepts are implemented, but it can still take some time for there to be a ‘ground swell’ of acceptance. “Once larger government agencies start doing it, the uptake flows down through other bodies and commercial companies,” Mr Ryder adds.
Best practices for construction and servicing operations have been changed and adapted to reflect the latest health and safety legislation and regulations. The safety aspect of designs are being viewed as part of the overall maintenance strategy.
“If it is difficult to get up to an area of a structure to re-apply a protective coating, it would have been better to design it with easier access,” said Mr Ryder. If, when it is built, there are few constraints on the access to a structure or the equipment to be maintained, it is possible to reduce the frequency of servicing.
Advances in technology and the spread of the Internet means that the amount of information that is readily available to designers, builders and contractors is vast. “There is a new generation coming through with a focus and interest in doing a job well using the best technology and materials,” says Mr Davey.
An added benefit of planning for sustainability and designing projects to require minimal maintenance is a reduced impact on the environment. “If you can maintain it effectively, you do not need to replace an asset as often which therefore has an environmental benefit,” adds Mr Ryder.
The post CORROSION MANAGEMENT IN A TRULY CHALLENGING ECONOMY appeared first on NZ Engineering News.
Welding Industries of Australia (WIA), one of Australia’s leading welding supply companies, has announced the release of the Weldarc 200i AC/DC TIG welding machine, suitable for a wide range of industrial applications.
The 200 Amp TIG welding machine, which is compact and lightweight, offers the professional welder a number of welding options, all from a 240V powered unit.
A key feature of the Weldarc 200i AC/DC is the machine’s AC capability, which allows the welder to successfully TIG weld aluminium, as well as a wide range of steel and stainless steel thicknesses when in DC mode. The user simply presses a button to change the polarity of the machine’s output current from AC to DC, as required.
Being an inverter type welding machine, the Weldarc 200i AC/DC also features sophisticated electronic control and high frequency switching to achieve consistent and controlled weld output.
When TIG welding, the inverter’s microprocessor control makes possible the machine’s Lift-Arc start feature, which provides the welder with easy TIG starts without the need for scratch starting; reducing electrode tip damage, and giving a greater number of starts between tip grinding.
Another key feature is the machine’s HF pulse start feature that allows very easy non-contact arc starting in both AC and DC TIG mode, putting it into the professional welder category.
This feature is ideal for applications demanding no tungsten contamination of the workpiece. Welders are able to start and finish the welding operation without touching the workpiece, which is a major benefit to the professional welder, especially those doing high pressure vessel, stainless steel and aluminium welding.
And with the inverter high frequency weld power transformers much smaller than conventional 50Hz weld transformers, the machine is significantly reduced in weight and size with the Weldarc 200i AC/DC weighing in at just 21kg, making it suitable for onsite maintenance in a range of industries.
The Weldarc 200i AC/DC also features pulse TIG which allows the user to adjust the current peak and pulse frequency. This feature reduces the heat input to the material being welded, but still allows the filler material to melt and maintain good penetration, making it ideal for use on thin materials and near edges.
And for manual metal arc (MMA) stick welding, the inverter machine delivers a truly constant DC current, allowing small incremental control of the welding current.
The electronic controls also allow the introduction of smart features such as hot start for even better arc starting when in stick mode, and Arc Force which constantly monitors the arc voltage and boosts the output if low arc voltage occurs. This feature particularly suits difficult to run electrodes.
With safety a very important issue for WIA, the machine features a built in voltage reduction device (VRD), which delivers added safety when operating in stick or lift-TIG mode and meets the requirements of site work to AS60974.1 and AS1674.2 CAT C.
WIA’s Weldarc 200i AC/DC welding machine also offers built-in operator safety, with the power source featuring a built-in thermal protection device that activates if the machine is operated beyond its safe thermal operating zone.
The Weldarc 200i AC/DC is also tolerant of unconditioned power from generators, and has been optimised and tested for compatibility with appropriate portable generators.
With a two-year unlimited warranty on the power source, covering parts and labour, and supported by a service network as standard, customers can be guaranteed they’re buying reliability and performance.
As well as an industry leading eight metre high quality TIG torch, the package includes a 15A supply plug, a three metre work lead, a three metre industrial twist lock electrode holder and an integrated gas valve, and argon gas regulator.
All-of-sector meeting tackles housing issues
New Zealand’s building and construction sector is facing the largest challenge of a generation. Auckland housing, the Canterbury rebuild, booming house prices, a lack of resource supply and the aftermath of the global financial crisis are just a few of the issues calling for an all-of-sector forum next month.
The Registered Master Builders Association (RMBA) is leading Constructive, a forum held in Christchurch from 21-23 September. Attendees will address New Zealand’s key issues with a view to improving outcomes and performance for all.
David Kelly, Chief Executive of RMBA says Constructive is a fantastic opportunity for the wider building and construction sector to engage with the issues as a whole. Those attending include economists, financiers, insurers, councils, regulators, engineers, builders, architects, quantity surveyors, planners and industry training organisations.
“Housing is New Zealand’s number one issue right now, the Government and the sector need to come together to tackle these challenges and discuss strategies to overcome them,” he says. “Constructive is the first time this broad group will come together. It will play a critical role in New Zealand’s development.”
Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Bill English, along with Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith, intend to discuss the importance of the construction sector to New Zealand’s economy and the challenges that we face ahead.
A number of speakers from a range of disciplines in the building and construction sector will also share their views and participate in discussions to develop strategies for New Zealand’s future success. The speakers and facilitators include:
- David Kelly, Chief Executive, Registered Master Builders Association
- Connal Townsend, Chief Executive, Property Council New Zealand
- Teena Hale Pennington, Chief Executive, New Zealand Institute of Architects
- John Coop, Chairman and Regional Principal of Warren and Mahoney
- Chris Parker, Chief Economist Auckland Council
- Mark McGuiness, Managing Director, Willis Bond & Co
- Gary Walker, Executive General Manager, Hawkins Construction
- Craig Price, Director and South Island Regional Manager, Beca Ltd
- Mike Greer, Managing Director, MHG NZ Ltd
- John Bridgman, Industry Director, Civil Infrastructure, AECOM
- Andrew McKenzie, General Manager Finance, The Fletcher Construction Company Ltd
- Murray Sherwin, Chair, New Zealand Productivity Commission
- Sir Maarten Wevers, Chair, EQC
David Kelly is pleased with the quality and breadth of speakers lined up for the forum.
“It’s fantastic that we have such a strong group of leaders who will be working with us to address the issues we’re facing. If we work together we can ensure our sector is strong, and moves in a positive direction,” he adds.
The speakers will discuss a broad range of topics including lessons to be learned from the challenges that arose from the Canterbury earthquakes, the impact of the global financial crisis, industry changes and emerging trends and issues.
Constructive will consist of informative and interactive panel discussions on topical issues within the industry, followed by a series of site visits/tours. Various industry leaders will be attending the forum which takes place on 21-23 September 2016.
The forum will be formally opened at a cocktail function on Wednesday 21 September. The panel discussions will take place on Thursday 22 September with a gala dinner to follow and then the site visits/tours on Friday 23 September.
To set up an interview with one of the speakers, or for further information please contact:
Acumen Republic for Registered Master Builders Association
D: 04 494 5126
M: 022 071 9115
Food safety drives high performance plastics demand
Higher safety demands faced by food, beverage and agribusiness processors and packagers are driving demand for advanced engineering plastics to withstand the demands of the latest cleaning and hygiene systems.
Clean in Place (CIP) systems, enzyme systems and aseptic packaging are important areas where such plastics can offer high performance in terms of resistance to temperatures, radiation, chemicals and water.
Efficient food packaging equipment no longer has to be disassembled for cleaning, being fitted instead with a built-in “flush” (or CIP Clean in Place) system, says Pat Flood, NSW manager of the national and international engineered plastics specialist Cut To Size Plastics.
Acid-based cleaning solutions are automatically routed through CIP machines’ plumbing so the tear-down and set-up cycles that previously took many hours can be reduced to a matter of minutes.
Better hygiene and equipment utilisation outcomes are also produced by advanced agribusiness systems where enzymes are used for cleaning tanks and equipment such as ultrafiltration membranes or heat exchangers in the dairy industry.
“Both CIP and enzyme systems make demands on the materials with which they come in contact. CIP systems are generally acid-based or, more commonly, chlorine-based. Depending upon the concentration, these cleaners can be moderately to extremely caustic. Plastics such as our Wearlyte PET (polyethylene terephthalate) are highly resistant to acid and chlorine. At the same time, its non-porous surface resists staining, clearly outperforming widely used alternatives,” says Mr Flood.
Wearlyte PET’s dimensional stability, excellent wear resistance, high strength and its ability to be used continuously at higher temperatures also make it an ideal candidate for replacing stainless steel components. For example, coupled with its stiffness and ease of fabrication, Wearlyte is commonly used in food presses. Here too, the material resists the highly-chlorinated sanitising solutions.
For packaging food in plastic containers under sterile, or aseptic, conditions, a variety of engineering plastics can be selected to operate in the higher operating temperatures required to kill bacteria. Under these conditions, traditional materials like polyethylene may not provide adequate physical strength, says Mr Flood. Cut to Size products such as Peek (Polyether ether ketone) High Temperature, on the other hand, retains its high mechanical and impact strength, stiffness and dimensional stability at elevated temperatures. It is one of the few plastics compatible with ultra-high vacuum applications.
In addition, Peek thermoplastics offer an excellent wear resistance over a wide range of working conditions. As a result, for example, distribution valves made of such materials are increasingly replacing stainless steel parts, which cause valve housings to wear easily and result in high maintenance costs.
Materials such as Wearlyte PET are also preferred over stainless steel in order to minimise wear of the expensive mating part in vacuum shoes on high-speed, high-volume food packaging lines.
Cut to Size’s general-purpose Wearace grade, meanwhile, is especially suited to create durable wear components because of its excellent versatility, dimensional stability and good wear properties. Easier to machine than stainless steel, Wearace is a superior material because of its limited expansion and low moisture absorption during process and cleaning applications.
Cut To Size Plastics manufactures components for applications across Australasia and the Asia-Pacific from its Head Office in Sydney, where facilities include CNC machining facilities coupled with GibbsCAM and Solid Works software.
The post Food safety drives high performance plastics demand appeared first on NZ Engineering News.
Sewage treatment upgrade withstands nature’s fury
An upgrade of a council sewage treatment plant in Australia certainly proved timely for the local body.
An upgrade of a council sewage treatment plant in Australia certainly proved timely for the local body.
The Richmond Valley Council upgrade of its Casino Sewage Treatment plant has paid immediate dividends by withstanding the fury of June’s storms and flooding without suffering any polluting spills or odours.
The turnkey upgrade – which included retrofitting of fine screening technology by CST Wastewater solutions – was completed just days before the bad weather along Australia’s East Coast dumped more than 160mm of water on the council region within 48 hours.
“The Council couldn’t have timed the upgrade any better. Their foresight and technology upgrade was perfect,” says CST Wastewater Solutions managing director Michael Bambridge. “The Northern Rivers District of NSW is one of the most flood-prone areas outside of the tropics, where events like this are likely to occur and reoccur, so the investment in new technologies has already paid off.”
The retrofit project – of a type that is applicable to councils and industrial uses throughout Australia and New Zealand – replaces the previous coarse raked screen design with current fine screening technology. This captures more solids to reduce potential blockages in tanks and downstream equipment, while reducing odours by sealing the inlet works and by the installation of new odour control units.
The project’s high-efficiency fine screening SFC technology (screen press for channel installation) is engineered to deliver low-maintenance performance with reduced WHS hazards for municipal and industrial waste water operators.
The SFC allows for a much finer level of screening – 5mm compared with typical old systems at 60mm or more – which has led to a significant reduction in solids in the tanks, while producing more efficient treatment with less maintenance
The retrofit also involved the installation of an SDS 20 compactor with two inlets – one for each screen – to dewater screenings to 25-30% dry solids. Each screen has an enhanced design capacity of 250L/s flow, providing a total capacity of 500L/s.
The original inlet works at Casino STP were designed with a coarse manual raked bar screen system. The functional components of the treatment process downstream of the bar screen receive a high amount of debris, which formerly impacted the efficiency of the treatment process. The original inlet area also received a high amount of odorous gases, which previously contributed significantly to odours emanating from the treatment plant.
In addition to minimising these issues, the upgrade project involved fitting new technology into an existing layout, including tailoring the screens to fit into the existing formed channel.
The SFC technology involved in the retrofit – designed to lower investment, operational and maintenance costs in screening of municipal and industrial waste water with compacting of extracted solids – has also cut the amount of maintenance and waste that has to be handled by plant operators, reducing operational health hazards and improving OHS performance.
The same benefits are widely applicable to other industry and municipal applications, says Mr Bambridge.
The technology is also suitable for applications such as food and beverage, manufacturing and processing, mining, energy and resources camps where its low maintenance/high hygiene qualities are appreciated, agribusiness, and remote installations where low maintenance and high efficiency is a priority for users who don’t need to have specialist staff constantly available.
“Not only are the tanks clearer and more efficient now, but the screen extractor also operates on level control and is fully automated, eliminating the previous labour-intensive operator handling of screenings,” he says.
The robust and proven extractor is constructed from AISI 304 or 316 stainless steel without the need for hanger, intermediate or bottom bearings. Featuring a space-efficient design suited to small sewage plants, the standard unit can handle up to 1000m3 an hour with custom engineering also available for particular installations. A vertical version is also available to easily retrofit into existing pump stations with depths up to eight metres, the screen allows removal of material before pumping, says Mr Bambridge.
The versatile SFC screen extractor can be installed in a channel or supplied with self-supporting tank, complete with inlet and outlet flange and optional bypass screen.
CST Wastewater Technology packages
New engineer-and-build water and waste water treatment and recycling packages from CST Wastewater Solutions are aimed at industries and municipalities that want to lower the cost and complexity of such projects.
The design, supply and install packages – incorporating global and locally manufactured technologies proven in use by some of Australia and New Zealand’s leading companies and councils – are aimed particularly at:
• Councils seeking engineering assistance to develop clear choices and optimum solutions incorporating advanced low-maintenance technologies providing high levels of water purity while reducing maintenance, waste handling and OH&S issues associated with running them.
• Industries seeking readily constructed or portable, low maintenance solutions for operations particularly in remote, ecologically or environmentally sensitive areas – ranging from resources or agribusiness developments in the country or outback, through to food, beverage, manufacturing and processing plants sharing precious water resources with urban areas.
Rather than presenting such organisations with a jigsaw of disparate collections of technologies and engineering services options for them to piece together, the packaged solutions focus on clear, properly engineered solutions that deliver what they promise. CST offers turnkey solutions based on a known raw water quality and guaranteeing water quality outcomes thus giving user engineers significant confidence in the outcomes and limiting their exposure and potential concerns, says Michael Bambridge.
CST Wastewater Solutions has been involved in projects, technologies and services that increase environmental sustainability since its inception over 25 years ago. CST represents Global Water Engineering (GWE) technologies in Australia that are at the forefront of waste-to-energy initiatives, cleverly turning a problem, wastewater, into a profit, biogas, which can be used to power boilers, reduce fossil fuel use and converted to electricity.
Purchase of an ‘Englishman’ increases productivity 30 percent
A press brake, guillotine and other engineering machinery complement the new Swift-Cut plasma cutting table
Gary Wight of Auckland Sheet Metals makes no bones about it; the purchase of a new Swift-Cut plasma cutting table from Machinery House – the ‘Englishman’ as it’s affectionately known in the workshop – has increased business efficiencies by 30 percent.
Mr Wight wonders what they ever did without the machine: “It doesn’t get sick, never stops working and every cut is a classy finish,” he tells Engineering News.
He says the company has been at its current premises for close to 10 years, with most of that in partnership, but the real business evolution has occurred in the past two years when he “went it alone”.
“It meant I could invest in machinery,” he says, talking about the dissolving of a partnership that had two owners wanting to pull the business in different directions. “The last two years we’ve been Auckland Sheet Metals – in sole charge – and I’ve bought new presses, welders, the plasma, vehicles that have made life easier and the result has been more progress in the last little bit than the whole time of being in business prior to that.”
And since the change they’ve “been struggling to keep up. I’ve made it a focus to buy machinery that keeps the work going while we aren’t”. The ‘Englishman’ (a derivative from its country of origin) does exactly that.
He says the plasma machine can be cutting and making parts while his workshop engineers crack on with the welding. “It’s actually given us more man power. To make those parts the old fashioned way, with less accuracy, would take hours longer and this machine never stops.”
Mr Wight adds that the machine was only just installed before EMEX 2016, but despite it being early days he estimates that the Swift-Cut improves the jobs they are using it for by as much as 30%.
“I wouldn’t be without it now,” he says, explaining that before to the installation they would have to outsource work, and also rely on other businesses being efficient and delivering to timeframes.
“We can continually change things, tweak things, make things better, and if there are ever any problems we just pick up the phone to Machinery House. It’s allowed us in great part to control our own destiny.
“We actually end up making a little bit more money on the side because you become almost a merchant of materials, putting mark up on the material we are buying in as well as making money on cutting the product. The local businesses that use our services have responded so well… the new plasma has such a clean finish, we’ve got people asking us for more laser cut plates, thinking we are laser cutting it.”
Business has grown through word of mouth and the quality of the jobs they do has meant Auckland Sheet Metals don’t even need a website as they have enough on their plate.
Ten staff do a large range of work; stainless steel to structural steel at former All Black John Kirwan’s house. Structural steel is a growth area for the business, thanks to legislation with regard to steel in housing and earthquake regulations.
The premises houses a 4m guillotine (up to 8mm thick), 4m press brake (135 tonnes also purchased from Machinery House), band saws Mig and Tig welders, rollers and all the general equipment you’d expect of a good engineering workshop, but the plasma has quickly taken pride of place.
“For our size business it’s a perfect fit. It’s not top of the market in terms of price and/or function, but it’s pretty bloody good and also easy for the staff to handle.”
Another staff member is kept busy fulltime draughting and quoting jobs so “we have a bit of a one-stop shop when it comes to that and our customers are dealing with one person through the process.
“Most of the guys are trained and qualified sheet metal workers, which is pretty hard to say nowadays and that’s a feather in our cap,” says Mr Wight.
Mr Wight loves the engineering industry, having started work with Morris Sheet Metals in Onehunga as a 15-year-old sweeping the floor.
Today, armed with the Englishman and a highly efficient staff and workshop, Auckland’s houses crisis will do nothing but add to an increasing workload that already has him eyeing larger premises.
Whether it be residential, commercial, maintenance, structural or repairs, with Auckland Sheet Metals Mr Wight, his team and the Englishman are a cut above the rest.
The post Purchase of an ‘Englishman’ increases productivity 30 percent appeared first on NZ Engineering News.
Toshiba motors and drives to thrive as standards rise
Gustav Eiselen gets a first hand look at motor efficiency testing at Toshiba’s test facility in Sydney, Australia.
Worldwide efficiency standards dictate that New Zealand and Australia will, in the near future, need to adopt the much higher IE3 MEPS-3 Standard for premium efficiency motors.
Gustav Eiselen minces no words, there’s winds of change about to set upon the local industrial motors and drives scene as Europe battles to meet new eco design regulations. Europe’s electric motor efficiency regulations that came into force at the start of 2015 have not resulted in the expected boost to sales of high-efficiency IE3 motors. Under the Ecodesign regulations, common types of motor with ratings up to 375kW placed on the market since January 2015 must either meet the IE3 efficiency level, or meet the lower IE2 level and be fitted with a VSD (variable-speed drive).
In the next phase of the Ecodesign regulations, which comes into force at the start of 2017, the ratings of motors covered will be extended down to 750W. The option of either buying an IE3 motor or using an IE2 machine with a VSD will remain but, from 2018, the European Commission will eliminate the IE2+VSD option.
Mr Eiselen says that the new standards provide a perfect time for New Zealand Industrial Electric Co (NZIND) to shine under its appointment as the master distribution agent for Toshiba in New Zealand and the Pacific Islands.
All motors sold in Europe from January 2015 have to meet the stringent IE3 standards up to and inclusive of 375kW and these new standards will result in New Zealand and Australia being forced to tow the line in the near future, and adopt the much higher IE3 MEPS-3 Standard for premium efficiency motors.
“This represents a major shift in the market and will present a challenge to all motor suppliers in New Zealand and Australia. The new standard no longer allows ‘Test Method B’, which allowed suppliers to use assumed figures for their testing calculations,” says Mr Eiselen.
In his role as sales and marketing manager with the 100% New Zealand owned and operated NZIND, Mr Eiselen explains that for Toshiba to partner with the Kiwi company it meant a new design of a number of its motors to ensure “we not only met, but exceeded the requirements of the higher MEPS-3 standard”.
According to Mr Eiselen, the decision to represent Toshiba products, especially the motor division, was not taken lightly.
“We have a very mature market in New Zealand with a number of established brands. The differentiator for us will be the fact that Toshiba offers a genuine world leading alternative to current brands and those on offer in New Zealand.”
He says that Toshiba has long been regarded as one of the premium brands in motors and drive technology worldwide and is not a new brand in New Zealand, by any stretch. Some of the largest industrial installations in the pulp and paper industry, power generation steel manufacturing, oil and gas have Toshiba motors as part of their primary plant.
NZIND represents the industrial range of Toshiba products, with “our main focus on electric motors and drives. Our offering also includes a range of instrumentation and award winning LED industrial lighting products”.
Mr Eiselen says that local industry in New Zealand, such as those involved in electrical engineering, are continually looking to future proof plant and control equipment. With new standards on the horizon, today when buying a new motor there is a need to satisfy yourself that you are buying a product that will meet future efficiency standards.
“Motors supplied in New Zealand are dynamically balanced to ISO 1940 G2.5. All Toshiba motors are dynamically balanced in the factory to ISO 1940 G1.0. A higher balance grade is a huge benefit to clients – reducing vibration and extending the life of the motor bearings. This is a very significant differentiator for Toshiba.”
Mr Eiselen explains that NZIND stocks over 1000 motors in its central North Island warehouse and services the South Island, lower North Island and central North Island. NZIND has appointed a reseller – Rotech Pacific, who stock motors for NZIND’s Auckland and Northland customers. Rotech Pacific provides motor sales service and maintenance, in-house or on-site.
“NZIND offers customers an end-to-end sales and service experience. We sell, service and support our products nationwide. We can assist our customers with detailed design support, specification on product and full commissioning of products sold.”
NZIND also offers a full maintenance, on-site inspection, installation and a complete motor service package to all existing and new customers from its facility in Kawerau, Bay of Plenty. “We are genuinely a one-stop-shop when it comes to motor sales and support” and the Toshiba agency adds to its weight.
The buck doesn’t stop there with NZIND. “We are one of the leading industrial LED suppliers in New Zealand, Mr Eiselen says, adding that the LED product was introduced to provide a balanced offering to its industrial clients.
“Lighting is such a big issue on sites. Most site maintenance staff are bombarded with suppliers all offering LED lighting. Without in-depth experience in LED lighting technology, it is very difficult for them to make an informed decision about which product to buy.
“What people do not realise is how important it is to have a good design philosophy when you are looking at LED lighting. A good LED design is based on various electrical/electronic and mechanical design principles. NZIND offers customers a full turnkey service starting at understanding the application, providing a detailed LED lighting model and the selection of a suitable product that will exceed the requirements based on solid industrial engineering principles.”
No matter the size of the project, NZIND’s focus is to build long-term relationships based on trust, support, service and sound engineering advice. Consider NZIND the first stop when buying a new motor, drive, LED Lighting or instrumentation for your next maintenance or plant project.
The post Toshiba motors and drives to thrive as standards rise appeared first on NZ Engineering News.
Customisation: key component in NDA crane installation
Hamilton-based NDA Group went in search of a crane that could tackle a specific job; it needed a crane that would not only lift, but turn.
Hamilton-based NDA Group went in search of a crane that could tackle a specific job; it needed a crane that would not only lift, but turn.
NDA’s core area of business is fabricating with specialty alloys and stainless steel for use in industry and when it came to construction of its stainless steel vessels the company needed not only a two hook system to lift then rotate the vessels, but also the added versatility of as much hook height as possible.
Enter Crane Hoist Lifting.
“We needed the right system that suited us and that meant that customisation was absolutely vital to suit our specific needs and facilities,” says John Smulders of NDA.
Crane Hoist Lifting installed two cranes with a capacity of six tonnes (two three-tonne hoists on each crane beam) and from that moment the focus was on the needs of the customer.
“Taking advice from Crane Hoist, we needed a twin hook system,” explains Mr Smulders,” but in the process of turning it means that the hook would not be above the lift point.”
NDA chose Street LX chain hoists instead of wire rope hoists as with a single girder crane they are more robust for rotating stainless steel vessels when compared to wire rope hoists that are susceptible to damage when the loads are not vertical.
The Street LX chain hoists have the added advantage of higher duty and good hoisting speeds when compared to standard chain hoists.
With the need also for as much hook height as possible, Mr Smulders says that Crane Hoist Lifting came to the party in terms of NDA’s specific needs.
“There was very limited headroom so it wasn’t fitted it with standard chain hoist but with a low headroom chain hoist.”
This meant that the hook could come a lot closer to the underside of the crane beam and added an additional 350mm hook height as opposed to a traditional three-tonne chain hoist.
“To add even more hook height, we then pedestaled the crane hook well above the end carriages and tapered the top of the beam to push it up even further,” explains Ian Young of Crane Hoist Lifting. “It was also necessary to fit longer end carriages to provide greater stability because of the high pedestal.
“The installation is the very latest in state of the art technology, twin hoist, rotating and lifting tanks, fully radio controlled with new generation low head room chain hoists. It’s exactly what NDA needed for the jobs they are undertaking.”
The operator can stand at the optimum position to make the lift thanks to the rubber-covered, shock-resistant SAGA-K2 industrial remote control, meaning they can position themselves safely away from the load and with optimum visibility.
The two hoists can “talk to each other” and operate in tandem or as a single hoist. Electrical limits ensure no overloading or accidental collisions (anti-collision and anti-approach technology) which meant that NDA could have two larger cranes installed than what would usually be suitable.
“Crane Hoist Lifting services both the crane and the controller and that gave us added peace of mind,” says Mr Smulders. “They met and exceeded our expectations and requirements.”
The post Customisation: key component in NDA crane installation appeared first on NZ Engineering News.
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