It is widely accepted that machines and equipment utilised in the cement industry operate in highly corrosive environments. When a leading cement producer faced constant down time due to frequent unforeseen failures of their elevator chain last year, the company turned to SKF South Africa for their expertise.
SKF provided an efficient elevator chain solution that reduced operational and maintenance costs and delivered a vast improvement in reliability, subsequently improving uptime and productivity for the cement producer. On the back of this success, SKF received a second order from the cement company in March 2019 for an elevator chain that will go into stock to serve as a spare unit.
“This is a rather unique and challenging application for our elevator chain as the product being transported is a combination of high-wear, high-density materials such as slag, limestone, natural as well as synthetic gypsum,” explains Frans Odendaal, SKF Product Manager: Power Transmissions.
Manufactured from superior-quality components, SKF’s elevator chain is more than up for the task, delivering optimum and reliable performance even in the toughest of environments, assisting the customer to reach their goal of maximising production. Odendaal reports that the customer’s site engineers are happy with the elevator chain’s overall performance.
SKF provided an installation manual and supervised the installation process which was performed by contractors. “We also provided onsite demonstrations to company personnel as well as to the contractors on some of the modifications we made to the elevator chain including the design of our own tie down units to maintain the desired tension,” notes Odendaal.
SKF conducted an inspection on the elevator chain after it had been running with product and Odendaal confirms that they will continue to inspect the chain and other components at regular intervals to monitor wear and elongation.
According to Odendaal, although the cement producer is not a direct account, SKF has been involved with the company for many years through distribution partners. “Our current territory manager has been paying regular visits to the plant over the past ten years. There is no doubt that the exceptional performance of our elevator chain has served to strengthen our relationship with the cement producer.”