Can’t bear to split? – think again

In a period of the industry lifecycle where downtime costs are difficult to bear, it takes a brave operations director to choose an engineering solution that, on the face of it, could cost up to ten times as much as the ‘quick-fix’ maintenance replacement; particularly when all you’re focussed on is getting your machinery back up and running.

For heavy machinery that’s engineered to withstand large loads, speeds and dynamic stresses, the need for regular maintenance is unquestioned, but never welcome. Hence finding a solution that reduces the interruption of expected failures should always be a priority.

Whether through misalignment, excessive load, contamination, corrosion, lubricant failure or a host of other reasons, bearings maintenance is essential to ensuring safe and reliable machinery operation.

As operating environments go, conditions are rarely as demanding as those experienced in the mining sector. The very nature of the loads being handled are much more demanding and therefore the risk of component damage, fatigue and failure is often much higher.

If accepting routine failure as inevitable, then everything else is simply a question of maths. Specifically, how is it possible to run machinery more economically?

In the case of bearings maintenance, the answer is simple. The use of spilt spherical roller bearings in place of conventional solid spherical roller bearing assemblies can be far more cost effective over the operational lifetime, not only for the unit itself, but also in the ongoing running of both machine as well as in hourly repair, maintenance costs and equipment hire.

On the face of it, a split spherical roller bearing might seem to contradict some fundamental principles of engineering, in terms of design integrity. The FAG split spherical roller bearing not only provide greater design flexibility, but in some cases, they can provide a means of easily accessible inspection of the bearing condition allowing visual access to raceways and rolling elements by simply unbolting bearing halves.

Reducing required labour hours on maintenance work is also the surest way of improving job safety.

In our whitepaper, we demonstrate how one bearings manufacturer, Schaeffler Australia Pty Ltd, managed not only to reduce maintenance down time by half, but saved a mining operation nearly $45,000 in one-off costs, simply by replacing their conventional bearings with the FAG split spherical roller bearings.

Find out more about split roller bearings by downloading this whitepaper: FAG Split Spherical Roller Bearings: Achieving Efficiency Goals without Risking Performance or Worker Safety 

To keep up to date with Australian Mining, subscribe to our free email newsletters delivered straight to your inbox. Click here.