Fastener technology enhances safety gains for mill operators

Friday, 28 January, 2022 | Supplied by: Technofast Industries Pty Ltd

Fastener technology enhances safety gains for mill operators

An Australian fastening technology company has demonstrated its ability to slash maintenance downtime while increasing safety and productivity. The Technofast EziTite hydraulic nuts — which are applicable for mining and quarrying applications — are being used by Northern NSW sugar mills to secure and release roller clamping, mill stand and cap bolts in less than a third of the time taken previously. The rapidly installed EziTite nuts were supplied by Norbar Australia — a specialised distributor of Technofast hydraulic bolt tensioning products — and installed by Technofast’s Technical Solutions specialist, Matt Blundell. The simultaneously actuated hydraulic nuts, used in place of the previous flogging spanners, precisely tension multiple hex nuts up to five inches (127 mm) in diameter by stretching the bolt with hydraulic tensioning during installation, then locking it in place in a clean and fast operation.

Technofast EziTite hydraulic nuts were tensioned simultaneously to ensure an even tensioning force over all units, extending reliability and operational safety. Image credit: Technofast

The nuts, which have decades of service in different applications, can be simultaneously and easily de-tensioned as required for roller and other machinery maintenance. This reduces downtime of vital machinery operating continuously during harvesting, while curtailing OH&S concerns about working at heights within confined spaces using physically demanding heavy tools with no control of bolt loads to ensure ongoing reliability and safety. As a result of the installation, roller clamping hex nuts — actuated simultaneously by a Technofast hydraulic pump configured with four-way manifold — are installed in 30–60 minutes by two personnel, compared with 4.5 hours previously, with two to three or more personnel. Time savings achieved at the busy mill totalled three to four hours per operation, with maintenance personnel reporting that the EziTite nuts are faster to use and require less effort to install, all while removing hard manual labour and OH&S risks.

Similarly, the mill stand and cap bolts application is far quicker, now taking an hour using two personnel, compared with four hours and 30 minutes for the old method, which used two to three personnel. Onsite maintenance personnel report that the EziTite nuts are faster and require less effort to install. John Bucknell, Founder and CEO of Technofast precision engineered solutions, noted that these are big savings in downtime and major increases in safety in a seasonal industry. “Primary industries such as sugar can be extremely busy during harvesting time with many people operating under arduous conditions. Technologies that can save time and cost, while increasing safety, are wonderful for staff and wonderful for the bottom line,” Bucknell said.

Technofast fastening solutions are used globally with high operational standards, ranging from nuclear, fossil and green power plants through to hard rock mining and quarries where reliability and safety are essential.

Top image credit: Technofast

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