Preventative Maintenance Made Easy

An often overlooked feature of Eclipse Production Management Software is the Preventative Maintenance scheduler.

If you don’t practice preventative maintenance, it is something you should seriously consider:

You can improve production uptime and part quality by reducing machine breakdowns and improving machine condition. You can extend the lifetime of the equipment through regular upkeep and reduce the costs associated with managing and maintaining spare-parts inventories.  (The Fabricator)

If you do practice PM then Eclipse provides a very powerful and convenient tool to establish a routine and make sure it is implemented. Because of the tight integration between Eclipse and the XL200 machine controllers, maintenance activities can be scheduled as accurately as possible and with no additional production data entry required (unlike stand-alone PM systems). The Eclipse system can also enforce your PM schedules and policies.

With the PM system in Eclipse, you can define the machine elements (or groups of elements) that need to be tracked and scheduled for PM: gearboxes, punch dies, blades, roll tools, shafts, bearings, etc. Maintenance can set thresholds for PM for every element. Thresholds are based on any combination of:

  • Number of Parts Produced
  • Run Hours
  • Run Footage
  • Clock Time
  • or any combination

If you set a threshold for roll tooling based on number of parts, hours AND footage, whichever threshold is reached first will cause the system to inform maintenance. Maintenance can even set a pre-warn percentage for each threshold.

Example: Maintenance want to PM the bearings on a machine after 3000 run hours. However, they want to be pre-warned when 80% of that time has been reached so they can check up on them to make sure that 3000 hours isn’t too long to wait or they can order parts with enough notice.

When items are removed from service for normal tooling changes, the system will maintain its tracking for that item.  That is, if you are changing a shear out simply because you are running a new profile, Eclipse will keep track of the fact that the shear was only used on 10,000 parts and that it still has another 10,000 parts before you need to maintain it. There’s even a check to see if items should be disposed of instead of maintained.

As to the question of “why,” to implement a formal Preventative Schedule – the justification starts with realizing how valuable it is to keep your production running when you most need it.

Reduce costs by 20%
Many studies suggest that consistent PM can result in a 5 to 10% productivity improvement, which can reduce costs by up to 20%. You can use the following metrics to analyze production:

  • Production cycle time
  • Number of work shifts
  • Length of work shift
  • Annual number of production days
  • Daily production at 100%
  • Average daily production volume

Using these values, you can assess a plant’s performance and not only benchmark current production but also understand the impact of higher production levels.  (The Fabricator)

AMS Controls has three decades of experience at making its customers more profitable and offering capabilities to get more out of existing production lines. It’s worth a consultative discussion to find out more.