There’s a lean manufacturing principle called “creating flow” that stipulates this:
“Every factor, from people and equipment to materials and shipping, must be taken into account to ensure products seamlessly move through the production process… A well-organized work floor will result in reduced production time, inventory size and material handling.”
At a practical level, one way to do this is to move dependent processes physically nearer to each other. At a crushing site, for example, you might relocate a secondary crusher nearer to a primary crusher to reduce the transportation needed between processes.
This principle can go a long way toward increasing the efficiency of production. But it often hasn’t been applied well to processes outside of production – like repair and machining services.
Today, this is beginning to change.
At Mellott, we’ve been building up our field services and field machining services so that crushing sites can increase efficiency by eliminating the need for transportation of crushing equipment when performing maintenance.
Let’s take a look at both offerings – service and machining – to unpack how they work and how your crushing operation can benefit from each.
How field service works.
First, by “service,” let’s be clear that we’re referring to work on major system components – bushings, bearings, liners, and more. This isn’t the equivalent of taking a car in for an oil change or changing the windshield wiper fluid; it’s more like getting work done on the transmission.
Traditionally, this kind of crusher service happens on an as-needed basis. A call is made to a service company, and the service is done by shipping machines back to a shop, where they’re worked on before being returned to the crushing site.
With field service, though, trained service technicians actually come out to work on the crusher at the crushing site.
How field service helps.
First, it’s worth noting that field service tends to be costlier than in-shop service due to higher labor costs. But this cost is potentially offset by a major benefit: It’s faster.
Shipping back and forth from a shop can take valuable time, especially if the shop isn’t located in the immediate vicinity or if permits are required for transporting oversized loads. The time that the machine is off-site can hamper production.
Getting techs on-site can make service quicker – and if it’s important to minimize downtime or maintain production quotas, the speed of service delivery can be crucial.
How field machining works.
Machining involves removing, shaping, or fabricating materials to serve an intended design. Like field service, field machining is distinguished by where it takes place: at the crushing site.
Field machining is a unique offering that most in the crushing industry don’t quickly think of when machining is needed. It’s typically performed by teams of two – one machine technician and one welder. They’ll bring machining tools to the site, then get to work on components as needed – which can include seated areas, the mainframe, or even the gyratory.
It’s a rare service in the industry because it requires specialized training. At Mellott, we’re currently gearing up to expand our field machining capabilities.
How field machining helps.
As with field service, performing machining work at a crushing site tends to be faster than shipping a machine back and forth.
At certain sites, field machining can also be more affordable. It’s particularly useful in places where removing a crusher would be difficult – such as when the crusher is within a building or underground.
If a roof would need to be taken off, or a large crane rented, or the crusher would need to be disassembled, it’s usually more efficient having field machining done.
Looking for field service or field machining?
If you’re wondering whether field service or field machining could be right for your crushing needs, get in touch with us.
Mellott is an ideal choice for field service and field machining for three key reasons:
First, we have extensive manpower for field services, and we’re working on building up our field machining capabilities, too.
Second (because of our manpower), we’re able to respond to service requests very quickly. In the vast majority of cases, our technicians can be on-site within 24 hours, ensuring that your crushing plant keeps running as efficiently as possible.
Finally, our broad array of capabilities makes us a one-stop-shop for your crushing needs. From applications to preventative maintenance, we do it all. Not only can we come on-site to service your machines, but we can adapt them to the materials you’re using, test them, and fine tune them to make sure they’re running at peak performance levels.
When you choose field services from us, you won’t need to call anyone else.