Collaboration is key between customers and their manufacturers and distributors, as a recent custom build from Power Drives Inc., a manufacturer and distributor specializing in industrial fluid transference and filtration, shows.
A long-term customer of the Tonawanda, N.Y. PDI Express Hose Center had come in with a new project to tackle: A hydraulic snowplow cylinder testing stand. The customer manufactures rod and telescopic cylinders, engineering them to customer designs. The stand was to be designed to test the functionality of the snowplow cylinders.
Snow plows handle thousands of pounds of snow, so they had to test the cylinders for motion under such pressure. They also had to test for the “break away:” Snowplow cylinders use two single-acting cylinders so once a certain pressure threshold is reached, the cylinder will break away, activating the locking mechanism to retreat to the rest position. This is a very important safety check for snowplows because poor visibility can lead to hitting curbs or other objects under the snow. The test stand had to be designed to test multiple cylinders, multiple strokes, and extend and retreat up to 18 in. under 3,000 psi.
On a project of this magnitude, it was important that the customer worked with a supplier they had a long-standing relationship with and whom they trusted. They had worked with PDI on various projects in the past, benefiting from the company’s expertise and product recommendations.
While the customer was in the process of designing the machine, they came into the store with a plan on a piece of paper, with the specifications they were looking for. Sitting down and building hoses piece by piece, the PDI team created hydraulic and pneumatic fluid transference solutions for the entire system. Fittings, check valves, hoses and tubing were all created and chosen collaboratively in the store. The fittings are a combination of high-pressure steel fittings, and black iron for the plumbing on the low pressure suction side.
The system used JIC fittings, various tees and inline check valves to keep the pressure from going backward. Hoses on the design included two wire-braided hoses rated for 5,000 psi and 4-wire spiral hose in high impulse application.
The customer’s main goal in choosing these products was component and system longevity, which PDI was able to ensure.
Filtration solutions were also addressed and incorporated into the stand, ensuring proper operation and fewer breakdowns and increased equipment longevity.
Since completing and implementing the stand, the customer has seen their productivity in testing increase significantly. For locking cylinders, the ability to test has increased from 17 per hour to 32 per hour. For the non-locking cylinders, testing has increased from 50 to 110 per hour.
Power Drives Inc. | powerdrives.com