Coal Age

SEP 2018

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26 September 2018 screening machines Designed to Stay Off Your Mind The latest in screening solution offerings are promoted as producing results while reducing labor costs by jesse morton, technical writer Thinking about a screening solution generally only happens when either something goes wrong with one or when designing a plant. The rest of the time, screening is that endless background sound and should stay that way. That is exactly why suppliers seek to fully prove their screening solutions prior to release. Upon release, the typical elevator pitch focuses on the reliability of the solution. A glance at the recent news from suppliers reveals the emphasis they place on suc- cessful field testing, the deep knowledge in the brains behind the solution, and how it is something miners can easily order, in- stall, maintain and forget. Rubber Gains Ground Rubber is in, and Metso's 1-ft by 1-ft Trellex 305PS proves it, according to Claes Lars- son, director, screening media, consum- ables, Metso Mining. The line of screening media, released in 2016, beats the com- petition in wear-resistance, and has, in turn, seen an uptick in demand. "We have gained traction due to increased wear- life," Larsson said. "The trend in my opin- ion in the mining industry, not only in the U.S., is rubber gains ground over urethane from a performance perspective." Company literature labels the rub- ber compounds available for the 305PS as "unique" and "the result of decades of dedi- cated research" that led to the development of "highly flexible materials that are un- beatable in fi ghting blinding and pegging." Larsson said that translates to in- creased availability and uptime. "We have actually done our homework," he said. "We have come up with solutions to differ- entiate ourselves and we have done some good trials, some good installations where we feel our product is performing better than what we are replacing, and that has led to a growing con fi dence." The trials consisted of replacing "poly- urethane decks with rubber decks that we have developed in the same format," Larsson said. "We have proven that we can reach the cycle time or the goal the cus- tomer has for how long they can operate the equipment before the need to take it out for maintenance." The rubber compounds are the de- liverables from internal research and de- velopment spanning more than "40 or 50 years in the mining consumables indus- try," Larsson said. "We have a range of dif- ferent rubber compounds to meet differ- ent applications." The range includes compounds for coarser duties, compounds that withstand high pressure, and softer compounds for applications otherwise prone to blinding and paving, he said. "We specify our own recipe," Larsson said. "While most others buy from rubber batchers in certain compounds, we have developed our own unique recipe." Beyond the rubber compounding, the series features a "hammerless design" and injection molding, the company re- ported. "The unique item about this sys- tem is the hammerless design in which you screw the holding device with the holding wrench to hold the panel down, which means you don't have to use a ham- mer," Tom Dougherty, mining sales, Min- nesota, North and South Dakota, Metso, said. "There are no pry bars to pry it out or hammers to pound it in." Company literature reports the system is centered on "specially developed pins" that "can be screwed into place as well as removed using an impact driver." The system saves time normally spent on removing traditional pins and sleeves, Larsson said. "Basically, you have a polyurethane pin with a thread and can knock it in, and then you can screw it out with a normal impact torque wrench with a specially de- veloped socket that we have," he said. "You can also screw it in and screw it out." The bene fi ts include "ease of installa- tion, less downtime, and better ability to adapt to the changing mineral or rock out- put," Dougherty said. One of the main selling points, howev- er, is safety, and the design was prompted in part by customer demand, Larsson said. "Many of the bigger mining groups want to limit the use of sledge hammers and tools used in knocking wedges to do service and maintenance because that is a health and safety hazard," he said. "Removing pins and things like that from a deck, you often The 305PS screens are made of Metso's patented rubber compounds, which range in hardness, allowing the customer to select based on the abrasiveness of the feed material. (Photo: Metso)

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