The introduction of hydraulic bolting technology into the maintenance workshop of Queensland Bulk Handling (QBH) at the Port of Brisbane is said to have made bolting tasks easier, safer and faster.
Among the equipment serviced at the export coal terminal is a D10R Caterpillar Dozer used for pushing and stockpiling coal.
The grouser plates on the track chain must be replaced after around 16,000 hours.
“A big job,” according to QBH maintenance engineer Steve Blaik.
“To secure the plate bolts we had been using a 16.1 torque multiplier, about 500 mm long, employing arm power,” he said.
“As well as being labour intensive, replacing the plates can be very time consuming.”
“One man could do it, but we used two for the sake of safety.”
The bulldozer is serviced for one day at a time whenever the maintenance team can get access to it.
About 10 plates are replaced per maintenance session and with each plate secured by four bolts this means the release and re-securing of around 40 bolts.
“I wasn’t happy with the method we were using,” Blaik said.
“We already had other Enerpac equipment in the workshop, so I asked the company for a demonstration of their hydraulic torque wrenches.”
The tool chosen by QBH is one of the versatile S Series of double-acting square drive hydraulic torque wrenches.
They weigh from 2.7 kg to 31 kg, with outputs of 1898 Nm to 34,437 Nm.
The nose radius of the wrenches ranges from 25 mm to 63.5 mm with the square drive ranging from three-quarters to two-and-a-half inches.
“Learning to use the torque wrench was simple,” Blaik said.
“The instruction manual made it quite clear and easy to understand.”
“Operators pre-set the tension and the wrench automatically tightens the bolt until that figure is reached.”
The hydraulic torque wrench that QBH uses is powered by an Enerpac ZU4 electric pump.
“Using a hydraulic wrench is definitely safer than the old method,” Blaik said.
“I didn’t think the previous system we used was satisfactory; it was taking us too long,” he added.
“We’ve been using the Enerpac torque wrench trouble free for a number of months now,” he said.
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