Condition Monitoring

Using the Smart Machine Checker as a Lubrication Tool

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By on July 10, 2018

The Fixturlaser Smart Machine Checker (SMC) is a great mechanic’s tool, for evaluating the overall health of rotating machinery.  But did you know it’s also a lubrication tool for greasing bearings?  Let me explain. One of the vibration measurements in the SMC is called Bearing Defect Factor.  The Bearing Defect Factor is a measurement of […]

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Permanent Mounted Sensors

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By on June 20, 2018

At the wrap up of a recent Hawk/SMC class the discussion was around what rotating assets to collect vibration data on going forward. The conversation quickly turned to a few keys assets that had the ability to impact large percentages of the downstream processes. The area technicians said that even though the machine was very […]

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Calculating VFD Motor Speed

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By on March 13, 2018

When using the Fixturlaser Smart Machine Checker (SMC) or any of VibrAlign’s Condition Monitoring Tools, there are typically only two variables you need to know for an accurate diagnosis of your machine.  You need the horsepower of the motor and the correct rotating speed.  This information will usually be stamped on the motor data plate.  […]

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The Soft Foot Primer (Part 2) Vibration and Alignment Problems Related to Soft Foot

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By on February 26, 2018

Most industrial maintenance mechanics who are involved with precision shaft alignment are familiar with the phenomenon of soft foot.  From an alignment standpoint, soft foot causes: Changes in alignment values, between when the hold down bolts are loose, and when they are tight. Non-repeatability in alignment measurements, especially if the bolts are not tightened in […]

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Soft Foot! Or Are You Just Pulling My Leg?

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By on February 12, 2018

It’s no joke that many machines operate with high levels of vibration due to soft foot.  These same machines often have a decreased life span due to this condition. Soft foot is a condition that should be eliminated during the precision shaft alignment process, if you’re performing proper alignments at all.  This condition can manifest […]

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Why You Should Perform Shaft Alignment as Part of Your PM

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By on December 27, 2017

James Pekarek, one of our trainers, wrote a blog entitled “Performing Alignment Checks as Part of Your Preventive Maintenance”. https://vibralign.com/shaft-alignment/performing-alignment-checks-part-preventive-maintenance/ It is a great article, and good advice.  I recently shared this blog post, and the advice, with a customer of ours.  Here’s why. I taught a training class at a large water plant in […]

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I Just Changed My Motor Bearings and They’re Bad Again!

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By on December 20, 2017

When performing vibration analysis, it is observed that machines with VFD drives have a more frequent occurrence for changing motor bearings.  If you’ve been diligent in the installation and maintenance of these machines, ensuring the alignment and balance are within specification and the bearings are properly lubricated, but still have frequent bearing failures, it may […]

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Shock Factor and SFI

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By on November 1, 2017

For years, vibration analysts have depended upon the ISO Vibration Severity Chart for the determination of machinery health.  Typically, this chart provides a level of certainty that would allow the analyst to look at the vibration levels, and if acceptable, move onto the next machine for analysis.   Some defects are determined in the waveform […]

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Fix the Easy Things First!

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By on October 26, 2017

One of the hallmarks of a good maintenance technician is the ability to troubleshoot – not just using vibration tools, or volt meters, or laptops with Ethernet plug-ins, but the ability to troubleshoot machinery in their minds.  In other words, the ability to visualize what the problem might be. “Fix the easy things first” is […]

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Using Bearing Defect Factor for Gear Defect Detection

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By on October 12, 2017

Bearing defect factor is a culmination of two technologies used for shock detection.  DEF is designed as an indicator for bearing defect detection, but can also be valuable in the detection of gear defects. Why is DEF significant? In the following data set are displayed Overall Vibration Velocity, Overall Acceleration, and Defect Factor.  The Overall […]

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One Resolution to Motor Resonance

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By on September 28, 2017

A customer was experiencing high levels of vibration on one of the HVAC motors. The cause for these high vibration levels was determined to be resonance. Resonance of this motor was seen in the vibration spectral data and was confirmed onsite with a bump test. This motor was not VFD driven and therefore the machine […]

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Vibration Sensor Mounting Tips

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By on September 13, 2017

A vibration sensor (or accelerometer) measures vibration-simple, right?  But how and where you mount the sensor is CRITICAL to getting good information.  Here are some good tips to keep in mind. 1. Mount the sensor as close to the bearing location as you can safely do it. These sensors can measure vibration anywhere on the […]

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Fire Pump Maintenance

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By on August 30, 2017

Fire Pumps are a critical safety item in facilities across the world. Their purpose is to make sure a building has enough water pressure in case of a fire emergency. Of course, the hope is that they are never needed but if they are they need to perform reliably. Fire Pumps are typically tested on […]

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BEFORE and AFTER: The Effect on Vibration Levels

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By on August 24, 2017

One of the most enjoyable parts of precision shaft alignment training for me as a trainer, is the field portion. This provides the opportunity to build confidence that what the students learn in the classroom, really works in the field! In a recent Fixturlaser GO Basic class, the decision was made to align two recently […]

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Precision Alignment and Balance isn’t Important – Unless you care about budgets and the reliability of your rotating assets.

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By on August 16, 2017

I read an interesting article in the June/July 17 issue of Uptime Magazine. It was titled “The Reliability Impact Within the P-F Curve” by Randy Riddell. Randy is the Reliability Manager for the SCA Barton Mill in Alabama. I encourage you to read the full article (https://reliabilityweb.com/articles/entry/the-reliability-impact-within-the-p-f-curve). The article includes the following graphic that I […]

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