Motion Control & Drives


Insulation plant saves R13 million a year with NSK bearings

October 2023 Motion Control & Drives

A leading manufacturer of insulation products for the construction industry turned to NSK for help in solving repeat bearings failures on its band saws. Thanks to NSK’s intervention and subsequent proposals, the plant is witnessing impressive annual savings of R13 million.

The manufacturer of insulation solutions for the construction sector had recently completed the commissioning of a new automated production line, and was looking forward to the benefits that its investment would offer. However, production proved erratic due to repeated failures of bearings on the blade guide rollers of the production line’s three band saws. The situation escalated and soon became critical, with bearing changes taking place on a daily basis. On occasions, the blade guide bearings were lasting only three hours, leading to costly downtime and increased maintenance. Some bearing failures were even resulting in damage to the saw blades.

NSK received a request on behalf of the band saw manufacturer to help identify the root cause of the failures and offer solutions. An engineering team from NSK reviewed the application at the customer’s site, performing a comprehensive failed bearing analysis. This activity revealed that bearing failures were occurring due to the ingress of contaminants. As a result, the team recommended NSK’s deep groove ball bearings with high-performance DDU sealing, using a patented full contact sealing mechanism. The contact seal design offered maximum protection against all contaminants, including dust and water, while simultaneously ensuring good grease retention.

A trial showed a significant improvement in bearing life. Whereas before around one third of the blade guide roller bearings would fail every day, now the plant changes its NSK bearings every three to four months as part of a planned maintenance schedule. Reductions in production downtime, maintenance labour, replacement bearings and damaged saw blades is resulting in significant annual cost savings of R13 million.

For more information contact Geraldene Govender, NSK South Africa, +27 11 458 3600, nsk-sa@nsk.com, www.nsk.com




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