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Huge Operations and Maintenance Savings in a Cement Plant that Uses Rotary Vane Compressors

Company: Alpha Portland Cement

Industry: Cement & Aggregates

Services: Design & Installation, Maintenance

Products: Watchman Lubrication Systems

The Problem

In the 1970s, Alpha Portland Cement in Cementon, NY, was operating dozens of Fuller Rotary Vane compressors. These compressors are used to handle and transport the cement dust through pipes in the manufacturing, packaging and shipping processes.

In a rotary vane compressor, especially in the harsh environment of a cement plant, the lubrication of the barrel-vane contact surface is absolutely critical. Should the required lubrication rate not be maintained, or fail altogether, the compressor quickly self-destructs.

In those days, lubrication was handled by a belt-driven Manzel Model 25 multiple pump mechanical lubricator. The problem? It had to be manually filled every few hours, and an operator had to regularly check the “drops per minute” of each and every pump. Belts would break, pumps would quit, and sometimes people forgot to fill the lubricator boxes.

The Solution

Alpha Portland Cement considered it a normal cost of business to have at least one rotary vane compressor torn down in the shop for repair every day – until Sloan Brothers’ custom Watchman Lubrication Systems were installed. Because the Watchman Lubrication Systems provide accurate, automatic and protected lubricant delivery to each compressor, it has become rare for the company to have a compressor in the shop for repair – as infrequently as once every six months. And the problems are never due to lubrication failure.

The Results

Sloan Brothers completed the initial design and installation of Watchman Lubrication Systems for Alpha Portland Cement in the 1970s. With just basic maintenance, they are still in use today.

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