Categories: Shaft Alignment

A Vertical Shaft Alignment Process

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By on October 1, 2012

The inclinometers in a laser alignment system work against gravity in the horizontal plane for a typical horizontal shaft alignment. When performing a vertical shaft alignment, the process will be different. Here is the process for aligning a vertically-mounted C-faced motor as shown on a vertical alignment demonstrator:

V-Tek Vertical Shaft Alignment Demonstrator

Photo of Vertical Shaft Alignment Training Demonstrator courtesy of V-Tek Associates.

    1. Mount the sensors across the coupling. Special considerations might need to be made for rigid couplings or with space considerations. (
    2. Input dimensions per the prompts. Special dimensions typically include diameter of the bolt pattern and number of bolts.
    3. Enter the number the bolts. Typically start the number one bolt at a place you can make an adjustment.
    4. Measure starting at bolt 1. Three measurements are taken 90 degrees apart starting at bolt one.VibrAlign Vertical Shaft Alignment P1
      VibrAlign Vertical Shaft Alignment P2VibrAlign Vertical Shaft Alignment P3


    1. The results are displayed. These are mils of shims required under the appropriate bolt.
      VibrAlign Vertical Shaft Alignment P4


    1. Correct the angularity by adding shims under the appropriate bolt. Pay attention to your numbering system and direction of rotation.
      V-Tek Vertical Shaft Alignment Demonstrator Adjustment


  1. Correct the offset by positioning the laser at a point and adjust live until within tolerance.
  2. Rotate the laser 90 degrees and adjust the other offset live.
  3. Remeasure to check results.
    VibrAlign Vertical Shaft Alignment P5


VibrAlign Vertical Shaft Alignment SetupHave you done any vertical alignments lately? Leave a comment! We’d love to hear about it. Also don’t forget to sign up for our Realign America campaign. There are prizes!

About the Author

Mike Keohane has been involved in machinery reliability since 1985. He started as a field service engineer for IRD Mechanalysis. Prior to that he was a wireline logger for Schlumberger Well Services. He joined VibrAlign in 1992 and supports clients in Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama and the Florida Panhandle. In addition to precision alignment, he has field experience in vibration analysis, field and shop balancing, oil analysis and ultrasonics. Mike holds a BSME from Michigan State University. Mike and his wife and two children currently live in Peachtree City, GA.

One response to “A Vertical Shaft Alignment Process”

  1. good works its very useful for us thank you very much