Category: Abbey Advice

What’s New in the Marketplace?

INGERSOLL RAND W7152

INGERSOLL RAND W7152

For a tool that genuinely pushes the boundaries of innovation, Ingersoll Rand have launched the W7152 ImpactTool.

At 20 volts, the ½” drive ImpactTool is a convincing challenger to common pneumatic tools currently available. Its intelligent torque settings allow the operator to multi-task between applications using pre-set shut-off torques and max power. Ideal for industrial use, its high torque capability can help to streamline processes because the Ingersoll W7152 won’t over tighten and can apply consistent torques, unlike its pneumatic competitors.

It is one of the most powerful cordless tool on the market right now.

Start streamlining your process now, arrange a demo and discover the benefits yourself.

info@abbeyis.co.uk

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WHY TORQUE & ANGLE

Why invest in Torque and Angle monitoring, especially if the tools you’ve got already do the job?

It’s a question that crops up quite a bit. Any manufacturer or fitter knows only too well the cost of discovering a problem at the end of the assembly process.

Take the auto industry for example. The financial implications of recalling a vehicle, due to technical issues are huge, not to mention the logistics of carrying out thousands of safety checks across many locations. In fact the cost of recalls to the motor industry is tens of millions each year. And then there’s the damage to reputation and the hidden marketing costs to regain customer confidence. In this scenario, wouldn’t it be better to identify the problems on the assembly line? It would certainly be more cost effective.

When the safety and accuracy of joints is critical, you need a tool that can achieve the correct Clamping Load on several materials and in various environmental conditions.

A tool that can offer both torque and angle settings is undoubtedly the best choice. True, there may be a slight trade off with assembly speed but most businesses accept that precision and consistency wins hands down when safety and reputation are paramount. And the new generation of powered tools certainly cancel out any loss of efficiency.

The benefits of torque and angle tooling include being able to control the bolt stretch or tension and ensure the fastener is snug and fitted in its optimum position for wear.

There are often erratic influences on the torque measurement which can be caused by changes in materials, the nature of the fastener or forces applied through use. Using a tool that records both torque and angle is the best way to mitigate against such variations and guarantee the most accurate assembly.

But what about ‘human error’? How can businesses avoid the inevitable mistakes made by their workforce?

Tools that alert the user of any oversights during the assembly process are valuable assets to businesses who rely quality and consistency.

Market leaders, Sturtevant Richmont are pioneers in developing tools that take the risk out of production, including those that slip through even the most robust procedures. Sturtevant Richmond make leading manual wrenches and some of its product range offer an accuracy of +/- 1&. There are also powered versions available, such as Cleco’s range of corded electric tools.

And there are even more benefits: torque and angle wrenches can be programmed to ‘intelligently’ monitor assembly and flag up any errors or omissions. For example, pre-set parameters are consistently achieved because the tool will shut off or display an ‘error’ alert if over tightened. Likewise, a correctly fitted joint will get the green light.

It’s also possible to apply further steps to avoid mistakes, including a fixings count in the program, eradicating the risk of missing screws. The tool will even prompt the use of the correct fixing and the correct order of application.

And the advantages don’t end on the production line. All actions can be recorded, hugely important for traceability in the event of a problem. The historic usage can show the precise tension applied and any errors or missing steps in production. A powerful tool indeed.

Abbey IS are the main distributor for Sturtevant Richmont and Cleco tools and are pleased to offer its customers the duel benefits of world class tooling ranges along with Abbey’s maintenance service contract. With a reputation for innovation and problem solving, Abbey’s experienced engineers will identify any potential weak links in assembly and work with businesses to eliminate costly production issues.

info@abbeyis.co.uk

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WHY I SHOULD CONSIDER A SERVICE PLAN?

When tools represent a significant investment for businesses, it’s imperative that the investment is protected and maximum value leveraged out of those assets.

Unplanned downtime has a devastating impact on output and revenue, as well as affecting reputation: an issue which may take many years to resolve through expensive crisis management and brand building campaigns. Successful businesses will take measures to avoid or mitigate such risks by making sure their tools are maintained regularly.

A carefully managed service plan will provide continuity of production whilst ensuring that tools are kept working efficiently and safely. Indeed, efficiency is often overlooked, especially if production ‘appears’ to be normal. In many cases, tools are operating below capacity and deteriorating at such a slow decline, it goes un-noticed. Poor performance will, undoubtedly eat into profits, while the cost of servicing represents a fraction of the investment when compared to replacing tools, loss of production or overtime payments due to down time.

  • Employers and the self employed must also consider the PUWER (Provision and Use of Work Equipment) regulations. There is a duty of care to make sure that equipment is:
  • Maintained in a safe condition so people’s health and safety are not at risk
  • Inspected to ensure that it is (and continues to be) safe for use
  • Any specific risks created by the use of the equipment is controlled
  • Take any appropriate measures to fit guards, warning devices or stop buttons
  • Provide safe systems of work, for example only carrying out maintenance when the equipment is isolated and providing adequate training and information
  • The PUWER regulations are in place to comply with health and safety rules but any business who values its investment and reputation will see the financial advantage to applying regular checks and repairs to their tools.

A strategic service plan will maintain the reliability of tools, lessen the impact of malfunctioning tools and almost certainly lessen the overall cost of tooling to a business.

The key to a robust plan is a procedure which tracks individual tools, flags up when they need to be serviced and turns around collection and delivery, getting efficient and calibrated tools back in production quickly. Abbey IS has invested in a system which tags every tool and alerts the user when it needs servicing. Certified to ISO 9001:2000, their dedicated service centre takes care of all makes and type of compressed air and electric power tools. Their OEM trained workshop engineers and large stock of parts means that tools are retuned with a fully traceable history and warranty.

There’s also a plan which includes a ‘swap out’ offer, where replacement tools are loaned until the servicing or repair has been carried out, allowing businesses to continue with unbroken production.Quite simply, the benefits of working with an experienced, independent partner to maintain the productivity of tooling adds significant value for manufacturers and assembly lines.

info@abbeyis.co.uk

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Top tips for choosing the right abrasive

Abrasive, grinding wheel

There are so many different abrasive solutions available on the market today and there can vary widely in terms of quality and business benefit.  So how do you decide which is the best one for your job?…

We’ve put together some top tips to consider when purchasing abrasives for your business.

  1. Quality – The quality of abrasives available today can be extremely variable. By varying the properties of the abrasive and bond and the makeup of the wheel it is possible to produce grinding wheels with a varied range of grinding characteristics. Stock removal performance is a great metric to ensure you are purchasing the most suitable abrasive for the job.
  2. Time – The right abrasives needs to save you time on a particular job or element of the process and this can then be turned into a quantifiable cost saving, which means resource can be placed elsewhere.
  3. Specialist Applications– There is not a ‘one size fits all’ approach when it comes to abrasives. There are different abrasives for specific materials, so don’t just go with generic, it will result in a poor finish, short lifespan and extra costs elsewhere such as slow turnaround on jobs. Why not have the best product for that particular application rather than a ‘jack of all trades’, it may cost more than the generic option, but will be more profitable in the long term.
  4. Revolutions Per Minute (RPM) – Setting the correct RPM when using your tools for the job in question will help ensure good tool life and the longevity of your abrasives.
  5. Cost – Cheapest is not always the most cost effective, you need to consider the lifetime value. If you purchase a cheap alternative, but have to replace frequently then it’s probably costing you more than it should.
  6. Procurement – Consider what material, what application and what tool drive, all of these elements go hand in hand when selecting the best abrasive product.
  7. Not just a bolt on – Abrasives are not simply the end point of the process with something bolted on the tools, they are an extremely important factor. Why go to the trouble of buying the best possible tool and then putting the cheapest, low quality abrasive on it.  It’s like the analogy of buying a high-end supercar and putting remould tyres on it, don’t be tempted, it was cause problems in the long run.
  8. Ease of use – Consider ergonomics, lower vibration, reduced noise and dust, these all make the job easier, plus it helps in regards to compliance and health and safety issues.
  9. Specialist applications – Special metals require special abrasive products, you may need to look at something bespoke rather than off the shelf in some instances.
  10. Feedback – Team work is key, the decision of tool drive and the abrasive on the end of it need to be looked at as a team to ensure buy-in.

Choosing the right consumables ensures you get the best return on your investment. Our dedicated sales engineers have industrial experience and will advise on the best, most cost-effective route to keep your tools running at maximum efficiency and keeping your workforce protected.  We take the time to understand each client’s requirements and consider each tools application to recommend the right solution.

We would like to offer a FREE abrasive audit to optimise your processes and product use, to arrange please contact us on 01924 224240 or fill out our enquiry form.

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Hand Arm Vibration (HAVs) – What you need to know!

abbey-industrial

What is Hand-Arm Vibration (HAVs)?

 The term Hand Arm Vibration or HAVs as it’s widely known is a serious issue for businesses and workers across the UK.

According to the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) Hand Arm Vibration is defined as: “Vibrations that are transmitted to workers’ hands and arms. This can come from use of hand-held power tools (such as grinders or road breakers), hand- guided equipment (such as powered lawnmowers or pedestrian controlled floor saws) or by holding materials being worked by hand-fed machines (such as pedestal grinders or forge hammers).”

Why is it so important?

Regular and frequent exposure to hand arm vibration can lead to permanent damage and ill health, more specifically – hand arm vibration (HAVs) and Carpel Tunnel Syndrome (CTS).  These illnesses bring depilating symptoms such as tingling and numbness in the hands, loss of strength and painful fingers with changing weather conditions.  Using power tools on a regular basis if not properly assessed can have a significant impact, not only affecting the operator’s days to day activities, it can also seriously affect the ability their to work.

What laws apply?

All businesses that use machinery and tools which give off vibrations have to comply to a number of workplace legislations including:

  • Health & Safety at Work Act 1974
  • Management Health & Safety Works Regulations 1999
  • The Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005
  • PUWER Regulations 1998

The Control at Work Vibrations regulations stipulate that businesses need to ensure that the risks from vibrations are controlled, and that they provide adequate training and information to workers to ensure they are aware of the risks and what action is being taken and that there is suitable assessment and surveillance around the health of these workers.  Basically, it’s all about ensuring exposure is kept to an absolute minimum and ideally below an exposure action value (EAV) of 2.5 m/s² (100 points) and certainly below an exposure limit value (ELV) of 5 m/s² (400 points).

All employers have a duty of care to ensure that the risks from vibrations are at the lowest practical level possible.  Over recent years there have been many high-profile cases that have reached the headlines and this legislation does not just affect large businesses, any business large or small that uses equipment that omits vibrations has a legal responsibility to comply.

Risks for non-compliance are severe and businesses risk being faced with large fines.  Recent changes to the legislation have made the impact of non-compliance even more serious.

So, what’s changed?

New sentencing guidelines came into effect in February 2016, whereby any non-compliant businesses that have a claim against them for Hand Arm Vibration or any other health and safety offence can be fined at much higher levels.  These apply to the company and not the employee, so the burden is completely upon the company to ensure exposure to vibrations are minimised and workplace training is provided to mitigate the risks, providing a safe working environment for all employees.

Offence fines range from £50 right up to £10 million and are based on two categories: culpability and the size of the organisation.  For example, if a small business with a turnover of between £2M – £10M was found to be negligent, then the fine would range from £100 up to £1.6M, depending on the severity of the injury and culpability of what they did to negate the problem.

On top of that the operator/employee can put in their own claim against the company which is entirely separate to those from the HSE, so a non-compliant business could face some extremely high fines and compensation claims, not to mention the negative press and damage to their reputation.

Over the last six months’ ranges of fines published by the HSE come in at around £250K, but these are starting to ramp up, so be warned!

How can Abbey help?

We work with a range of clients to mitigate the effects of Hand Arm Vibration and ensure a safe and healthy working environment.

We provide a clear twelve step programme to help businesses become compliant, it’s specific to each company’s unique needs and specific exposure to Hand Arm Vibration and how this can be mitigated, offering advice, guidance and actionable points along the way.

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