Today, one of the biggest issues befalling coupled machines is component misalignment. If they are not properly aligned and balanced, your components can be irrevocably damaged—this leads to forced downtime and excessive maintenance costs.
Component misalignment is one of the primary issues facing coupled machinery. Without proper balance and alignment, machine components may be irreversibly damaged. Ultimately, this leads to costly downtime and unexpected increases in maintenance costs.
By correctly aligning these components on a regular basis, operators can achieve significant reductions in maintenance expenses and overall operating costs. Regular alignment must be conducted on gearboxes, pulleys, sheaves, shafts, and other to avoid equipment malfunction or undue wear.
Shaft alignment often relies on conventional methods such as dial gauge, thickness gauge, or straightedge—all of which require significant time to complete. With these methods, the resulting quality of the alignment also depends entirely on the experience and skill of the operator performing the procedure. This leaves significant room for human error and may result in additional expenses to have equipment realigned.
Regular preventative maintenance is crucial to ensure maximum service life for your equipment. At Renown Electric, we offer comprehensive laser alignment services to help you avoid the unexpected maintenance, repair, and replacement costs associated with misalignment.
The Laser Alignment Process
Laser alignment relies on information from laser receivers and transmitters to identify misaligned components with a high level of accuracy. Identifying these misalignments ensures that technicians can properly re-align components in accordance with ISO 9001:2015.
Misalignment may not be immediately noticeable. The following symptoms may indicate that your machinery contains misaligned components:
- Premature component failures
- Broken or loose foundation or coupling bolts
- Above normal casing temperatures
- Higher than normal oil leakage around seals or bearings
If your equipment is exhibiting these problems, you should contact an alignment specialist immediately.
The pre-alignment process fundamental to accurate testing. This process is three-pronged:
- Safety. Our safety checks are performed in strict accordance with Lock Out Tag Out (LOTO) procedures. This ensures that the systems involved in testing have no energy existing within or available to them. Once it can be assured that the machine cannot be activated, safety guards may be removed to provide access to adjustment areas.
- Mounting. Prior to mounting, our team assesses all mounting surfaces and conditions. We also ensure that mounting bases are free of rust, paint, dirt, and other debris.
- Soft foot. The term “soft foot” refers to damage, bends, or other distortions in the frame of the equipment that may lead to misalignment or cause undue tension on bearings or other components. Our team thoroughly inspects the frame for signs of soft foot before beginning any alignment procedures.
Once the alignment process begins, our staff works hard to complete four key steps:
- Brackets. Brackets are fastened to both the driving shafts and the driven shaft.
- Laser. The laser is mounted on the immobile end while a receiver is placed on the moving end.
- Alignment. Once the laser and receiver locations are input into the system and the equipment type for analysis has been identified, an alignment check may begin. The technician will manually rotate each shaft a full 360°. The alignment equipment tracks the rotation and analyzes each degree to identify areas that require correction.
- Adjustments. Once adjustments are complete, new alignment checks must be performed to ensure the equipment is ready.
Benefits of Laser Alignment
Laser alignment offers a broad range of benefits, such as:
- Lower levels of vibration
- Extended time periods between failures
- Lower maintenance costs
- Less energy consumption
- Higher production volume capabilities
- Improved production quality
- Documented Precision Alignment Report Provided
- Highly accurate measurement
- Error-free measurement
- No human errors
- Easy to follow procedure for alignment
- Fast on-screen adjustment for laser beams
- Universal precision brackets constructed for fast set-up with any equipment
- Equipment automatically computes values for couplings and foot and creates a graphic clearly representing necessary location and direction for adjustments
- Generated reports comply with ISO 9001 requirements
Laser Alignment from Renown Electric
Renown Electric uses an advanced laser alignment system called the Pruftechnik Rotalign Ultra iS to correct any vertical or horizontal misalignment. We have been an industry mainstay for 30 years, and much of our success can be attributed to our world-class maintenance services and our dedication to customer satisfaction. With our comprehensive laser alignment process, the team at Renown can noticeably improve performance and dramatically extend the service life of your equipment.
For more information on laser alignment, our wide range of other services, or our preventative and predictive maintenance program, please contact Renown Electric today—our representatives are available 24 hours a day.
Click the eBook to download your free copy of our guide to implementing laser alignment services for your motors!