Let’s torque about tyre couplings


Where there is movement, there is power. A coupling takes that power and transmits it from one shaft to another, which may sound simple enough in theory.

A kid pedalling a bike turns the bike shafts, which takes the power to the chain. In a bike it’s a chain. In a car it’s a drive shaft. But what about on a slurry pump at a mine site? This is where CBC’s expert on Power Transmission, Troy Markland, comes in.

“Slurry pumps have two shafts, one for driving and the other being driven. The power comes from the motor and transfers to the turning shaft through a coupling arrangement,” explains Troy. “Joining two aligning shafts is very difficult to do without any deflection and misalignment.”

For this application, Troy recommends the Fenner FenaFlexTM Tyre Coupling for high flexibility, which he explains is critical on mining applications.

“Fenner® power transmission products have a long history in the mining sector,” says Troy. “From a coupling perspective, Fenner® is widely used by major pump companies, particular on high-speed applications.”

According to Troy, this is due to their premium manufacturing facilities, installation services and highly involved after-market support.

“Fenner® couplings are a robust choice for major pump applications for above ground and below ground operations because they have very good horsepower and misalignment capability,” he explains. “The coupling has up to a 4-degree misalignment which is very good for accommodating the gap between shafts.”

To check that the flanges are parallel with the shafts, CBC technicians take various measurements to ensure the gap between the shafts allows for end-float.

“Since the Fenner® couplings can accommodate a high degree of misalignment, this makes it easier to test for torquing ability, says Troy. “Sometimes we use a laser alignment tool or an alignment shim to check that the installation is parallel to the unit on all sides.”

The couplings have a donut-style hub between two flanges that create flexibility for shaft-to-shaft misalignment.

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