Engineering & Mining Journal

MAR 2019

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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Page 55 of 67

54 E&MJ • MARCH 2019 OPERATING STRATEGIES Repairing and refurbishing large, high- value or hard-to-replace components is a key concern for the mining industry. According to a leading wear-protection service and technology company, localiz- ing the application of engineered surface coatings can dramatically reduce down- time when complex parts prematurely reach the end of their service life. Derek Vanek, technical manager at SIFCO Applied Surface Concepts (ASC), part of Norman Hay plc and a major sup- plier of selective plating technology and solutions, discusses the application ben- efi ts and possibilities of selective plating. In today's economic climate, extend- ing the lifecycle of existing off-highway vehicle (OHV) assets through fast, reli- able and cost-effi cient maintenance pro- cedures that facilitate minimal downtime has become ever more important. The total global heavy machinery equipment (HME) service market was anticipated to reach a value of $33 billion by the end of 2018. It is a highly fragmented market with many purchasers relying on original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and their authorized dealers, plus some global distributors for the ongoing maintenance of mining plants. Industry researchers have identifi ed an increasing trend of maintenance service providers extensively outsourcing aspects of their service offering to specialist pro- viders in order to satisfy customer require- ments. One key driver of this outsourcing trend is so that the traditionally conser- vative mining industry can better leverage the expertise and experience of external specialists that can offer new mainte- nance solutions, enhancing performance and asset lifecycle, while reducing main- tenance costs and equipment downtime. Another important trend is predictive maintenance, which has grown in popu- larity throughout the industry. Conduct- ed off the back of a fl eet-wide lifecycle assessment program and driven by the requisite for greater productivity and ef- fi ciency, the mining industry is open to embracing maintenance solutions such as the application of engineered surface coatings, part of a more preventative ap- proach to improving the lifespan of OHVs. Industry Specifi c Maintenance Complexities When it comes to heavy mining equip- ment, around-the-clock mission-critical operation and harsh conditions will in- evitably cause damage and considerable wear to some common components. Some of these components pose par- ticular maintenance issues due to their prohibitive size and location, such as the pumps, valves and housing within hydraulic systems; the pistons, bearings and retention bores found in transmission systems; and fi nal drive components such as axles and bearing seats. With traditional methods such as tank plating, IVD, PVD and thermal-spray solu- tions often considered unsuitable for both planned and emergency maintenance sit- uations, portable selective brush plating is becoming the maintenance solution of choice by many leading OHV mainte- nance providers. The benefi ts of selective brush plating include the ability to accurately focus the plating on to specifi c areas of a compo- nent, enabling parts to be plated in-situ, which can drastically reduce downtime and minimize production delays. Selective plating is best-suited for localized areas on simple shapes such as inside and outside diameters or fl at surfaces. In contrast to tank plating, selective brush plating does not require extensive masking or spe- cial fi xtures to plate the component. The length of time a plating operation will take is primarily determined by the amount of material applied. In market-leading selec- tive brush plating systems, deposits can be plated at rates that are 60 to 80 times faster than conventional tank plating. The performance and cost differences that these factors can make to maintain- ing, enhancing or repairing critical com- ponents can be signifi cant. While damage from wear, corrosion or mis-machining can be repaired using selective brush plating, this innovative solution should not just be considered for repair or sal- vage. The full range of pure metal and alloy deposits available from brush plat- ing specialists offer enhanced-wear resis- Selective Plating Offers a Quick Fix for Worn-out Metal Components The SIFCO Process can selectively plate localized areas without the use of an immersion tank. It is primarily used for enhancing surfaces on OEM components, permanent repairs and salvaging worn or mis-machined parts.

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