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How To Slash Your Manufacturing Downtime With Proactivity

Posted by Robert Rourke on Dec 29, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Learn how to minimize downtime with proactive roll maintenance.Imagine getting to work and realizing that your computer or laptop is broken. What would you do all day? You could go home and use the computer there, but you’d be losing time in the drive. You could call your IT services provider to fix the issue, but that takes time – and they might not be able to repair it today.

When the technology you rely on becomes unreliable, you lose an immense amount of time, energy and productivity in getting your operations up and running again. The same is true when it comes to your manufacturing rolls.

Whether you manufacture paper, plastic, rubber, food or any product that depends on rolls, you want to be confident that your operations won’t be stalled by failing rolls with uneven profiles/surfaces.

Of course, no manufacturing operation can claim zero downtime. It’s inevitable at some point, regardless of the time and effort you put into eliminating it. But, you’re able to minimize manufacturing downtime as much as possible when you apply a proactive approach to roll maintenance.

What Has Manufacturing Downtime Looked Like To You?

Think about the times you’ve experienced manufacturing downtime in the past. You may have noticed an issue with your rolls and determined that it was time to contact a roll maintenance provider to conduct repairs.

In this scenario, you lost time – caused by both the defective roll and the subsequent repairs.

Plus, you probably didn’t realize that your rolls needed to be ground until you recognized a problem with the products you were producing. By that time, how much usable yield was sacrificed?

Adopting A More Efficient Approach

It’s time to put these inefficiencies behind you and take a more proactive approach to roll grinding. In doing so, you’re able to minimize downtime in two strategic ways.

1. Regular Maintenance

While it’s impossible to foresee problems before they arise, you do have the ability to follow a timeline for regular roll maintenance. This ensures that you’re keeping your rolls in usable condition.

Take a cue from manufacturers that schedule roll grinding services on a 6-month or annual basis. This is a good approach for keeping your rolls up to specifications, and it would be beneficial for your own manufacturing process.   The more precise the roll is upon installation, the higher the quality of your product over a longer period of time.   And when your rolls and equipment run smoother and vibrate less, the result is less downtime.

When you work roll maintenance into a predetermined schedule, you minimize unexpected failures and, therefore, manufacturing downtime.

2. Attention To Detail

Even when you a implement a preset roll maintenance schedule, there may be some cases in which your rolls have already worn down by the time your maintenance date arrives.    

So, to help prevent downtime or unexpected failures that arise between roll grinding appointments, what else can you do? Pay attention.

Before any rolls break down or you lose yield from roll defects, there are clues that tell you something may be wrong. Look for imperfections in your roll’s surface or a lack of concentricity. Examine the end product. Are there inconsistencies in it, or have you ended up with any unusable yield? Is your profile more variable? Are vibration readings increasing faster than the benchmark for your industry?   Your rolls may be to blame.

Proactively check for these signs, and if they point to a problem, make sure you consult a roll grinding expert as soon as possible. 

The Next Step: Precision Grinding

By focusing on regular maintenance and attention to detail, you’re laying the foundation to extend the lifespan of your rolls, maximize uptime and protect your profits. But, taking a proactive approach is only the first step.

Once you move away from reactive roll maintenance, it’s critical to partner with a precision grinding expert. This is the only way to ensure that your rolls are ground as perfectly as technology allows, that they meet your specifications and that they prolong both your uptime and the life of your rolls.

Even if you’re doing everything in your power to be proactive, like scheduling maintenance calls and performing frequent inspections, you’re at risk of experiencing inefficiency and excessive downtime unless you’re relying on precision roll grinding services.

Ready to get proactive with your roll maintenance needs? Receive a free quote from Precision Roll Grinders.

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Topics: Roll Grinding, Maintenance, Process Improvements

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