While the NAHAD Annual Meeting & Convention is an excellent place to network, learn from the array of economic and business speakers, and find out about what both hose manufacturers and distributors are up to, it isn’t necessarily a place where big product unveils happen—like the sort of thing you see at Hannover Fair or IMTS.
Throw that idea out the door this year, because the chatter all in and around the popular Sunday evening corporate hospitality parties was that Continental / ContiTech was doing some sort of big unveil at 8 p.m. I must have heard a dozen different people reference it. So we made sure to check out what all the fuss was about. And right on schedule, the music faded and the lights went down at the company’s huge beachside tent—and the packed crowd waited in anticipation.
If you needed a hint of what was to come, you’d have been wise to recall that last November, the company acquired Valparaiso, Ind.-based Custom Machining Services Inc. to expand its range of services for the industrial hose industry. CMS, in business since 1979, had been producing hose assembly equipment, crimpers and dies since 1984. It was well-known for its CustomCrimp and ValPower products.
The new product that was unveiled is essentially a cloud-connected hose crimper technology, which the company is calling CrimpIQ. CrimpIQ, Continental says, is a cutting edge intelligent crimper controller that is suitable for distributors as well as customers in hydraulic and industrial hose markets.
“This new, exclusive crimping technology will enable Continental to provide the customer with instantaneous updates to the crimper thereby reducing costly downtime and offering a new level of enhanced efficiency, safety, quality and speed to our customers operations,” said Andreas Gerstenberger, head of the Industrial Fluid Solutions global business unit.
Continental crimpers equipped with CrimpIQ controllers are designed to provide instantaneous maintenance information and updates for users who crimp hydraulic and industrial hose. The monitoring process of this new, innovative Continental crimper is entirely cloud-based.
More and more fluid power companies have been willing to marry products with Industry 4.0, including Danfoss and Parker Hannifin, as our Associate Editor Mike Santora covered in a great technology overview story last year.
“You will be able to oversee the entire process via a private security-protected Internet site,” said Gerstenberger. “CrimpIQ controller is the next step for Continental, our distributors and customers to become true system and solution partners for hose assembly related services. We believe that the CrimpIQ controller will do the same thing for the hose industry as the smart phone did to enhance our connectivity in our daily lives.”
The controller is new user-friendly and will be available on the following production crimpers: PC200, PC400, PC440, PC600, PC1000 and PC1200. The controller was developed in the U.S. and can be acquired through normal Continental sales channels.