alkitronic® CLD/L Series Lightweight Pneumatic Torque Wrench: Torquing in a Coal Mine
A large coal mine required a solution regarding the bolts for “Mining Heads” (used to channel through rock and extract the coal from underground mines). They were seeking a more cost-effective way to remove and then re-tighten the Mining Head bolts during maintenance.
The problem, in this case, arose due to the sheer depth of the mine. The current method was to bring these Mining Heads out of the mine each time for servicing. This method, however, was not economical and created too much down-time.
It would take a total of 4 days to bring the Mining Heads to the surface and then back into position once the servicing was complete. This counter-productive method cried out for a more efficient process to be put into place. The mine was also facing challenges surrounding the servicing of the conveyor systems underground. These conveyors are used to carry coal out of the mines. The conveyors can take up to 7 years to build and can expand over 16km. The rollers and expansion pieces of the conveyor system are required to be serviced on a regular basis.
As the mine-workers had previously been using impact wrenches which were not ergonomically safe, were heavy to handle and required regular, costly servicing; they were seeking a tool that would be faster, safer, could solve both of the challenges they faced and required minimal maintenance.
The foreman tested the alkitronic® CLD/L pneumatic torque multiplier and found it to provide safety and reliability, as well as eliminating the frequent costly repairs of the impact wrenches. Past procedures of bringing the Mining Heads out of the mine were now a thing of the past as workers now had the ability to complete their work on location thanks to the CLD/L. The speed and productivity of the maintenance applications were also increased – eliminating the set-up time and slow ratcheting process of the previous methods. The CLD/L is qualified for environments with an increased hazard of an explosion – making it ideal for these particular uses.
With the CLD/L Series, a simple one-finger action is all that is required to alternate between right and left operation and an optional facility to lock the gear in a fixed position is also available. The robust motor housing is manufactured from cast aluminium with a reliable pneumatic drive. An optional silencer is available to minimise noise emissions. The CLD/L’s simple design has fewer internal parts than ordinary torque multipliers – minimising the frequency of servicing required, which in turn reduces costs.
The lightweight construction promotes more flexibility on-site for the user in conjunction with the 360° rotating handle which ensures comfortable operator operation - as no reaction forces are transferred through the tool. They are non-impacting tools that provide better joint quality compared to impact or hydraulic wrenches as they allow continuous rotation of the square drive.
The CLD/L torque multiplier provided a lighter, ergonomically safer alternative to past methods used by the coal mine and solved both issues with one tool.