Incorrect bearing fitment and misalignment in rotating equipment are common causes of machine failure in mines and quarries. This is why CBC Australia has honed the training programmes they provide to customers – all of which they deliver onsite.
“Incorrect bearing fitment causes a large amount of pre-mature bearing failures, which can stop production and is a huge cost for the client. In fact, evidence suggests that 95% of premature equipment failure is caused by improper installation of replacement parts and maintenance practices. So, making sure that their team is skilled and enabled to use and install the products correctly will certainly increase the life of equipment around the site,” explains Reliability Engineering Manager, Anthony Richards. “The same goes for alignment, if a piece of equipment is not aligned correctly, there’s a greater chance of failure and consequential damage.”
Two key programmes that CBC has developed include the bearing fitment training, using a Mobile Bearing Training Unit (MBTU), and the laser alignment training course. A major point of difference is in being able to provide these at the customer’s site.
“It saves a lot of money for the client when we can provide training on their premises,” says Anthony. “It saves them having to remove their workforce and getting them to travel – we do the travelling for them.”
The MBTU and a laser alignment training rig are shipped out to site for hands-on training.
“With nearly all of the training that we do, we make it hands-on for the participants as we are dealing with fitters and maintenance staff who work with their hands every day,” explains Anthony. “If we put a PowerPoint presentation in front of these people, it doesn’t go down well with them and they often fall asleep! So, we find that the best way to learn is to do the job themselves.”
In fact, the bearing fitment training programme is not a theoretical class at all.
“We go from the removal of the bearing to installation and measuring internal clearance, we check that the bearing is fitted correctly and measuring things like base flatness, which is very important for conveyor bearings,” Anthony elaborates. “And that’s all hands-on, so everyone gets a chance to do it during the training. The MBTU has a 150mm shaft, which is very similar to what the mine sites are using as their product, so it’s very closely related to what they do.”
The laser alignment training course does include a theory element, but the agenda also has a major component utilising the CBC hands-on training rig or site equipment to confirm competency.
“There is bit more theory in the laser alignment training because it’s vital that participants understand why achieving a good alignment result is so important as well as the factors that can prevent us from achieving a good alignment,” Anthony expands. “But the main thing is to understand what equipment the participants will be using on a daily basis and making sure they can utilise its capabilities and use it well.”
Anthony also points out that the CBC staff who provide the training are highly qualified and experienced.
“They are all people who have been working in the bearing industry for 15 years plus and are very experienced with the hands-on side of things – most of them are mechanical engineers,” Anthony says. “They’re also generally factory-trained, so they’ve received training at the manufacturing facilities of our suppliers such as Timken, NTN, NSK and so on.”
Importantly, CBC can provide specific training on products purchased and will tailor a training programme to suit.
“I’d like to point out that we don’t just offer these two programmes, we offer training on power transmission products, lubrication best practices and many more options. We have the expertise to provide our customers with knowledgeable training on every single one of the products in our range,” Anthony concludes.