In this case study, Air Power builds a custom integrated system that makes Ergonomics, Safety, and Quality simple with a team effort.
This customer is a supplier in the Truck and Bus industry.
The customer needed to outfit a new work cell assembling large metal components. First, the weight of the fully assembled sub-build components exceeded 1000 lbs. requiring a high weight capacity work table. Secondly, the height variation of the operators presented ergonomic issues from shift to shift to ensure each operator performed his necessary tasks at optimum work heights for ergonomics and safety. Thirdly, target torque for each component exceeded the safety threshold for handheld tooling, 69 ft/lbs, and 135 ft/lbs. requiring a torque management solution to be included in the overall work cell build. Lastly, the components needing to be torqued are deemed quality critical, requiring all data for the fasteners to be documented to ensure a proper build.
Air Power Solution
Air Power included the following in our solution; a 2000 lbs. capacity adjustable height pneumatic Presto lift table, a GCI torque reaction arm, and a Cleco MPro 300 controller with right angle NeoTek tool. We were able to meet the high weight by working closely with Presto directly to customize the adjustable height scissor lift table. GCI was able to build a custom torque arm to provide the needed reach and vertical travel while managing up to 240 NM of torque reaction. We were able to mount the torque arm directly to our adjustable height table, allowing the entire work station to adjust to ideal work height for any given operator. All of this wrapped around the brand new Cleco 300 controller with NeoTek right angle tool allowing for a precise fastening solution meeting and exceeding the quality critical parameters required. The Cleco 300 also allows our end-user to monitor, collect, and organize critical data to ensure they every unit out the door is a quality part.
Air Power’s solution addressed all of the problems the customer faced with this assembly process. The Presto Lift table allows the operator to adjust the height of the entire system to eliminate and bending and back strain. The GCI torque arm holds and handles the Cleco right angle NeoTek tool. This eliminates any lifting and hand or wrist injury from handling a torque tool. Lastly, the Cleco mPro 300 controller gave the customer the ability to ensure perfect quality with every assembly.
When specifying the proper pump for any fluid application understanding the properties of the fluid to be handled is of the upmost importance.
Viscosity…. is one of, if not the most important variable when determining the proper specification of a diaphragm pump (or any pump) and associated flow rates. The viscosity of many materials fluctuate as ambient temperature’s change through the seasons and as plant conditions change month to month, so understanding the effect viscosity has on sizing pumps is important.
All AODD pump ratings are with water at the pump outlet. For example, a Graco 1050 pump is a 1″ ported pump rated at 50 gallons per minute (water at the pump outlet). When looking to specify the above example pump, three things must be further evaluated to insure proper performance/specification – Viscosity (will alter flow rate), available air pressure at the pump, pipe or hose size (at pump outlet all the way to the point of discharge). Once you have determined these variables you can properly select the perfect pump for your unique application.
Getting the right pump will make a world of difference in the efficiency of your set-up. Not only will your flow rates remain stable throughout the year, but downtime will be reduced and the life of your pump will be extended.
The customer came to Air Power wanting to upgrade their pump package that supplies material from their paint kitchen to two applicators on each end of their booth. The booth runs 60’ long, with a width of 20’ and would be used to touch up dump truck beds. After running a pressure drop calculation we determined that the material could fall out of solution if there were a day or 2 that no spraying was needed.
Air Power Solution
After reviewing the application with the customer, Air Power proposed using a 3:1 Graco Endura-Flo pump. This option allows for the 3x the pressure, which was more than enough to overcome any pressure loss during the materials travel, as well as, has a much larger fluid section requiring less wear and tear on the pump while in operation. Since this is strictly a touch up process and not guaranteed to be an everyday event, we also recirculated the fluid lines to prevent any material from falling out of solution.
This solution provided more than enough pressure to power the required spraying. Additionally, if there’s an occurrence where the system isn’t used for several days, the customer only has to run the pump a few minutes before spraying to move the stagnant material back within the agitated drum requiring no waste or quality concerns.
The Air Power solution solved the pressure problem, the potential solution issues, and provided a much larger fluid section to prevent wear and tear.
A local axle manufacturer has had ongoing issues with accurate torqueing of axle shaft bolts. The bolts are inaccurately torqued with pneumatic pulse tools or missed altogether by the operators as they are in 8 lug and 12 lug patterns and require many accurate rundowns to produce a quality part.
Air Power Solution
Apex Tool Group intelligent 4 spindle multi-spindles with torque management arms eliminate both inaccurate torques along with potential mishits of fasteners. The 4 spindles will be adjustable to hit both patterns, highly accurate within a few percent of the targeted torque, and have rotational transducers that will tell us which fasteners have been hit and eliminate missed fasteners and re-hits by the operators.
This solution will decrease the amount of manual operator input of fastener tightening thus speeding up the manufacturing process, as well as, eliminate re-hits and missed fasteners by the operators. This system will collect data and communicate with their existing MES system to confirm the accurate torque of each set of axle bolts, providing data points and a birth certificate of a successful assembly. This will have a profound effect on both the quality of the parts produced as well as the speed at which they are produced. One ergonomic bonus – the system will remove the operator from handling the existing large pneumatic pulse tools manually creating for a safer and more sustainable work environment.
This case study was presented by Baltimore Key Account Manager Lorne Rickert.
A counterweight was attached to a turntable before the Hydraulic Motor which “keys” the turntable to the frame, located underneath. The counterweight caused the turntable to rotate until it was so far off balance that the Turntable with Counterweight fell off the Frame, coming to a rest about 2’ from a Team Member! This posed a significant safety hazard, as well as, assembly frustration to the onsite engineering team.
Air Power Solution
Air Power utilized an Ingersoll Rand QX Power Tool and Sturtevant Richmont Digital Wrench to positively confirm that all of the tightening’s have been completed before the Counterweight can be installed.
Air Power’s Engineering Team, Michael John and Jesse Bryant, designed a “Lifting Sling Lock” device that will not release the lifting sling for the counterweight until the Tightening’s are complete – a Poke Yoke control to insure safety. This “Lifting Sling Lock” is utilized in conjunction with the I/O output of the Ingersoll Rand QX and the STR Digital Wrench, thus eliminating the safety hazard of a dropped counterweight. The Lifting Sling Lock will only unlock once all tightening have been positively confirmed, removing a safety hazard and improving overall production quality.