Weir Minerals lifts heavy weights with specialised tools

Warman pump lifting tools used during a site shutdown. Image: Weir Minerals

Weir Minerals produces lifting tools for the safe handling of slurry pump parts, putting safety at the heart of its innovation.

These specialised lifting tools are often an overlooked component, despite their ability to maximise equipment life, reduce pump rebuild times and help keep workers safe.

The lifting tools are designed to safely disassemble and reassemble machinery and reduce the risks associated with lifting components, when processing equipment has rapidly grown in size over the last couple of decades, according to Weir Minerals.

The Warman AH 20/18 pump, for example, was one of the largest available in the 1990s. However, it is now regarded as a medium sized model and eclipsed by the likes of the mammoth Warman MCR 760 pump.

“When lifting pump parts weighing more than two tonnes in restricted areas, there is little room for error,” Weir Minerals Australia trials manager David Russell said.

“Often, the components will be worn and it is crucial they can still be secured and lifted safely in accordance with the strict global standards that Weir Minerals adheres to.”

In the case of slurry pumps, Weir Minerals’ range of lifting tools are designed for use when performing wet-end overhauls.

Lifting tools have also been designed to lift multiple components together to make rebuilds easier and quicker. For example, Weir Minerals has developed a lifting beam that lifts a suction cover squarely with the throatbush still attached to it.

Using purpose-designed assembly equipment in accordance with original equipment manufacturer (OEM) lifting procedures can reduce rebuild time, in some cases by up to 50 per cent, leading to increased plant uptime and availability.

Weir Minerals also carefully considers the mechanical strength and the stresses placed on the components being lifted, since worn parts are likely to be weaker and more brittle than new parts.

“We have a duty of care to our customers to ensure they remain safe when operating and maintaining our equipment. Adopting our uniquely engineered lifting tools for our slurry pumps mean that when the correct procedures are followed, it’s very safe,” Russell said.

Another example of Weir Minerals’ commitment to innovative development relates to impeller lifting tools.

While some competitors may employ a simple hook design, increasing the risk of the impeller falling off, Weir Minerals has developed a tool with a fixed locking jaw so that the impeller eye is locked in position and the component is properly secured prior to being lifted.

This positive engagement across two points of contact ensures that components are lifted evenly and securely with minimal risk of injury.

“Safety is central in everything we do at Weir Minerals. We are an OEM supplier who complies with global safety standards and we adopt a stage-gated development process incorporating risk assessments and product stewardship best practice for equipment design and lifting,” Weir Minerals aftermarket manager for Warman pumps Joel Goodwin said.

“Throughout all facets of maintenance, customers can trust us to provide the best and safest solution for their needs.”

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