These services, provided free of charge by Hyspec on every mine where it operates a workshop, have demonstrated their efficiency in improving operational procedures, and drastically reducing downtime and waste.
Lube areas with small leaks are often overlooked by equipment operators, but when making detailed costs analysis, Hyspec has found that customers could make substantial savings by identifying these leaks and preventing them.
For example, the Hyspec team at Geita Mine in Tanzania, analyzed the daily grease spillages on the flooring and drip tray areas. By weighing the spilled grease after releasing pressure on the grease guns, Hyspec calculated that the weight of spilled grease was about 6 Kilograms per day, leading to over 15 000 USD worth of losses per lube bay every year! Hyspec then suggested and designed a solution to send this pressured grease back to the storage tank: the implementation of a three way valve sending the pressure released grease back to the storage tanks, enabled the customer to save almost four drums of grease per month, representing an annual saving of over 57 000 USD!
Further to this, inspection of all lube bays at Geita Mine are now Hyspec’s responsibility. Weekly inspections are carried out on each of the mine’s lubrication areas, by a qualified Hyspec technician. All hose reels, dispensing guns, meters, pumps, connections and hoses are inspected for leaks and damages. The overall condition of the equipment is also closely scrutinized, and Hyspec ensures that all inspected equipments are in working order, with no leaks. Further to the inspection, a written report with Hyspec’s recommendations is handed over to the maintenance manager who then makes the decision to authorize Hyspec to make the recommended changes.
In addition, inspections help control and reduce contamination. This is also a critical area which can provide tremendous costs savings to Hyspec’s customers. Contaminated grease will affect grease pumps operation, grease outlet areas; injectors, SSV block seals, pins and brushes, and consequently generate frequent downtime and high maintenance costs. Inspections by Hyspec lead to recommendations aimed at reducing contamination, such as the sealing of existing drums or the installation of sealed storage containers with appropriate pumps and accessories, helping to reduce further equipment downtime due to contamination.
Hyspec also conducts inspections on dump trucks, excavators, wheel loaders, graders, dozers, and more generally on any mobile mining equipment, either at the refueling or at the maintenance bays. Depending on the size of the mine, Hyspec technicians are either permanently assigned to the fueling or maintenance area to cover the inspections, or carry out an inspection of all the equipments present at the maintenance bay once or several times a day. All hoses, greasing points and grease tank levels are inspected, and checks for dry pins and bushes are carried out. All critical hose damages or leaks are immediately reported to the maintenance supervisors, and if agreed to by the client, new hoses are made by Hyspec for replacement by the client’s maintenance team. Defective hoses are spray marked with one color, to indicate that they need to be changed. Other colors are used to indicate that spiral wrapping or re-orientation is needed. Spray marking the hoses helps the Hyspec workshop team identify the work to be done on the hoses, and the clients to monitor the changes.
The objective of these inspections is to pre-change the hoses before they breakdown, and therefore reduce equipment downtime and the incurred costs. Breakdowns are the most costly area for any senior supervisor or fleet maintenance manager. The implementation of an inspection program at Geita resulted in 70% of the hoses on mobile equipment now being pre-changed, before a breakdown or leakage occurs, therefore greatly reducing equipment downtime. “We would rather change 30 hoses a day, then deal with 5 hoses in a breakdown situation” says Johan Jacobs, Maintenance Superintendant at Geita. “Hose breakdowns not only incur production loss, but affect other areas such as spillage on high grade gold, equipment damage, life threatening situations or environmental damage”.
For additional information on Hyspec inspections, please email your Hyspec country or branch manager, or firstname.lastname@example.org