Inappropriate Measures?

by Oli Hakansson

I was asked a question recently about the level of spare parts inventory that should be carried as a percent of the Asset Replacement Value (ARV).  This is not an unusual question.  In fact, these types of questions come up frequently.  Maintenance of inventory turnover levels and storeroom value as a percentage of ARV are dependent on a host of factors specific to each plant.  Because of the complexity of these calculations I have written a series of articles that should give you key benchmarks and trending factors that should be considered when managing your plants reliability efforts.

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Cost of Unreliability

by H. Paul Barringer

The cost of unreliability is a big picture view of system failure costs, described in annual terms, for a manufacturing plant as if the key elements were reduced to a series block diagram for simplicity.  It looks at the production system and reduces the complexity to a simple series system where failure of a single item/equipment/system/processing-complex causes the loss of productive output along with the total cost incurred for the failure.  If the system IS sold out, then the cost of unreliability must include all appropriate business costs such as lost gross margin plus repair costs, scrap incurred, etc.  If the system is NOT sold out, and make-up time is available in the financial year, then lost gross margin for the failure cannot be counted.  The cost of unreliability is a management concern connected to management’s two favorite metrics: time and money.

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Should You Contract Out Maintenance?

by Torbjörn Idhammar

As an option to reduce plant costs, plant managers may consider contracting out maintenance work. This may have some merit, depending on many factors, including the nature of the business.

One question that may be asked is, “Is maintenance a part of our ‘core business’?” Let’s look at a couple of examples. If the business is a hospital, where revenue is generated by the sale of medical services, and maintenance consists of a few specialized activities, such as janitorial, H&V system servicing, and repair of advanced medical diagnostic and monitoring systems, then contracting out these activities is almost certainly the best approach.

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Audit, Develop and Implement

by Paul Dufresne

Completing an Audit and Implementing Changes to Boost Lubrication Program Performance

In 2009, Trico Services was contracted to complete an equipment lubrication audit of a large mill in the southeast that produces liner and corrugated material for containers. This audit was for roughly 2500 pieces of rotating equipment. Upon completion of the audit, Trico was to take the lubrication recommendations and input this data into the MAINTelligence software platform that the facility uses using to manage their plant lubrication programs.

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Field Balancing Standards – How Good Is Good Enough?

by Victor Wowk, P.E.

Historically, 1.0-mil peak-to-peak displacement has been quoted by many field balancers as the desired goal. This is a good number to strive for, but may be overbalancing in some cases. The 1.0 mil came from balancing rebuilt motors on a soft-bearing balancing machine with velocity transducers integrated to displacement. The 1.0 was an easy number to remember and the vibration was barely perceptible. The shop balancer then applied this same 1.0 mil when taking his instruments out to a field balance job.

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A Sustainable & Effective Approach to Vibration Analysis

by Richard Bierman

The approach to vibration analysis is likely the most varied practice in the industry. This is partially due to the lack of standardization, combined with an explosion of new knowledge and technologies over the last two decades. Guidelines for creating a world-class vibration program will differ immensely depending on the source of information. When designing a new policy or optimizing an existing program, it is vital to have a good understanding of the shortcomings that can be found in almost every network in operation. A lack of buy-in, priority, provability, the uncertainty of diagnostics, false alarms, missed opportunities, time and dedication, improper settings and lack of resources are common reasons for a less than fully successful vibration program. In short, the issue is not one thing that’s 100 percent wrong, but rather 100 things that are one percent wrong. At the Chevron Phillips Chemical Company’s (CPChem’s) Sweeny complex, a small amount of unique improvements made a significant difference in the program’s success.

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Pump Technology Balancing Tradition & Innovation

by Heinz P. Bloch

Process pump reliability logically involves a combination of fluid-related performance and design decisions that focus on engineering materials and the configuration of mechanical components. Recent case studies have pointed out improvement opportunities in the relative design conservatism found in certain process pump models. Combined with deficiencies in the training of personnel, it can be argued that pump reliability has not made as much progress as it perhaps could.

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