Machinery Lubrication

Machinery Lubrication May - June 2018

Machinery Lubrication magazine published by Noria Corporation

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Page 13 of 80

If your lubrication op er at ion were a hospital blood bank, would patients feel confident that transfusions would sustain life, or would they envision a shorter life expectancy? e often- used analogy of lubricants as the lifeblood of equipment makes sense. People visiting a blood bank expect to witness sound organizational practices for receiving donations, testing the blood, labeling blood bags, proper refrigeration, controlled transfer to the hospital room and the use of sterile equipment for providing a transfusion. In short, the journey of the blood matters. To provide optimum machinery health, consider these five sequential pillars in the journey of a lubricant: arrival, storage, transfer, application and life cycle. ARRIVAL When a lubricant arrives at a facility, whether in 5-gallon pails, 55-gallon drums, 275-gallon totes or tankers, the first step is to evaluate the condition of the containers. While the outside of a container does not necessarily represent its inside condi- tion, it could potentially be cause for concern. For sealable and reusable containers and tankers, ask about the distributor's cleaning and refilling procedures. Failure to flow a small portion of the lubricant through the nozzle of a cleaned and air-dried container might lead to contamina- tion from detergent residue. Upon arrival, test the lubricant before accepting it to ensure it has the appropriate cleanliness and mois- ture levels. Although testing every container might not be realistic, obtaining a sample from random containers makes sense. Also, do not use a mason jar or other makeshift container to gather samples. Instead, employ disposable sample bottles intended for this purpose as well as disposable silicon tubing. Lubricant sampling and testing is essential from a forensic standpoint. Without a reference sample, diag- nosing problems later in the life cycle becomes more difficult because there will be more variables to eliminate. Establishing a good relationship with an oil analysis laboratory can pay dividends. e lab may even offer complimentary reference sample testing services if it does not want cost to be an impediment to subse- quent problem-solving. STORAGE A fter receiving a lubricant, stamp the date on the container and use first-in, first-out (FIFO) ha nd ling pract ice s to ensu re constant rotation. While buying in large quantities can drive down the price, some of the lubricant may exceed its shelf life, especially in storage environments where it may be difficult to maintain the lubricant's integrity, such as in extreme temperatures. Although some environments can make it challenging to protect against contaminant ingression, do not invite contamination by trans- ferring pumps from one container to another or by leaving the bungs open. Some companies may want to store containers outside or close to the point of use because they view walking back and forth to a storage location as non-value-added activity. However, unwanted ingression can also include people. is is why the container storage area should have restricted access and not be open to all. ere should be a balance between convenience and practices that could sacrifice the integrity of the lubricant. All satellite lubricant locations should maintain the same principles implemented in the main storage and handling area. e latest oil storage systems can effectively identify, transfer, store and dispense lubricants. ey are an economical way to save space on the plant floor while keeping lubricants organized and contaminant-free. ey also can eliminate the poten- tial for mess and mishandling by keeping each fluid clearly identified with color-coded tags and labels. Some add-ons that can further boost a system's value include a spill-containment kit, quick-dis- connect kit, dedicated filtration, www . | May - June 2018 | 9 ML Use disposable sample bottles and tubing for collecting samples. A black plastic mailer can protect the sample bottle and help eliminate fluid leakage during shipment to the oil analysis lab.

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