Wednesday, 02 November 2011 14:09

Oil analysis prevents equipment failure for Atlantis Mining

Oil analysis by WearCheck Africa proved instrumental in avoiding machine failure on two of Middelburg mining contractor Atlantis Mining’s earthmoving units recently by detecting component wear in time.

All of the Middelburg-based mining contractors’ fleet Caterpillar, Komatsu, Hitachi, Volvo and Terex equipment have been on WearCheck’s oil analysis programme for the past 12 years. 

On this occasion, one of the machines was a Caterpillar D9T bulldozer where samples on both final drives were diagnosed by WearCheck as borderline. The oil was resampled and drained but the samples came back as borderline again. Atlantis resampled the new oil after 100 hours in use and submitted this to WearCheck. Again the sample was borderline.

Critical sample
‘The misleading factor was that the magnetic plugs showed no signs of contamination,’ said Mark Johnstone, managing director of Atlantis Mining. ‘We continued to run the machine whilst monitoring the final drive oil samples until we were advised of a critical sample at 9028 hours. Again the magnetic plug showed no signs of contamination, but it was decided that the final drives should be opened.’

Machine failure avoided
Three weeks later the workshop removed the final drives at 9192 hours. On disassembly it was found that the inner bearing had started to ‘pit’ and that the wear was starting to go through the hard facing. All the bearings were replaced and a major failure was avoided.

‘This was thanks to our successful oil sampling programme, accurate diagnosis by Wearcheck  technicians and timeous action,’ Johnstone said. 

‘Knowing that we can rely on our oil analysis programme gives us peace of mind, particularly as we are working with machines that are costly to replace and where equipment downtime quickly eats into profits. It is a cost-effective conditioning monitoring tool that has proved its worth time and time again.’

Social Media links

More stories

Lube Tip 14: Thermal failure in lubricants
Lubricants can thermally degrade for a variety of reasons and causes. Unlike oxidation, thermal failu...
1292 Hits
Talking Condition Monitoring
Dennis Swanepoel – WearCheck’s reliability solutions consultant, Mobius trainer and CAT IV gradua...
1321 Hits
We’ll be at African Utility Week 2019
WearCheck will once again be exhibiting at African Utility Week (AUW), which takes place in Cape Town...
1294 Hits
Oil analysis training in May - book today - don’t delay!
Calling all Capetonians - WearCheck is running these training courses this month: Oil Analysis 1 (14t...
1519 Hits
CM training keeps Malawian wheels rolling
WearCheck technical support consultant Quentin Gustav von Kleist recently travelled to Nchalo in Sout...
1163 Hits