Constantly seeking to innovate and improve
Not surprisingly, technology is continuously developing at a non-stop pace. As a result of this, it is the role of Research and Development (R&D) engineers to improve the technologies currently on offer by companies. Therefore enhancing their innovation and technical ability. This is achieved through the development of new products, redesigning existing products and performing research and testing on product concepts.
Dynamic balance is often overlooked
Dynamic balancing can improve the performance and lifespan of a machine, and having an understanding of dynamic balancing at the beginning of an R&D balancing project involving rotating machinery can ensure the whole production process is more streamlined.
However, many manufacturers often don’t consider or plan balancing into the design stage of the process. This therefore means that, further down the line, issues can occur. Even when it comes to precision manufacturing, a part can still be unbalanced.
Unbalance and premature failure
If companies manufacture parts without taking balancing into consideration, issues can, and more often than not, will occur. Most premature failures in rotating machinery is usually a result of imbalance. The prime cause of this is often from uneven mass distribution around a part’s axis of rotation. Excess vibrations as a result of this unbalance in rotating machinery may cause unacceptable levels of noise and reduce the lifespan of bearings. Dynamic balancing is among the main solutions to counteract this.
Failure to consider where you can make balance correction can also make things more difficult and result in costly iterations to the final product. Building in these provisions at the beginning therefore, will prevent the need for costly remanufacturing of parts, unexpected downtime, and in turn improve a machine’s performance and increase its lifespan.
R&D Balancing Case study
A customer from the motorsport industry came to us with a development piece. They were clear on the design and intended application of the part but hadn’t considered the method or type of balancing best suited for it. We worked with them to advise on the best method of balancing, balance correction, and a suitable balance grade. They manufactured the part, taking our advice into account. We were then able to carry out the balancing work, leaving them with parts that would operate smoothly and completely free of vibration.
Some examples of the questions we can provide advice on include:
- How and where would you hold the part for balancing?
- Can you achieve the drawing requirement for balancing?
- Can you carry out balancing pre-heat treatment or post heat treatment?
- How would you remove material?
The benefits of dynamic balancing
A machine operating in a smooth, properly balanced order has many benefits. When in operation, there will be lower levels of vibration, low noise, lower operator fatigue, higher operator safety, and lower operational cost. The other benefits include more productivity, longer bearing life, and lower structural stress.
In addition to this, dynamic balancing is what most manufacturers prefer because, especially for high-performance components, components can be balanced with extreme accuracy. Often within fraction of a gram.
How we can help
Using our expertise and specialist kit, we are able to balance test rigs and assemblies to advise on the best method of balancing, balance correction, manufacturing method and grade. This provides your designers and manufacturers with crucial feedback. Which consequently allows them to adjust their designs to improve reliability and machine performance throughout development.