News & Case Studies
- Written by Administrator
Grieg Seafood Shetland Ltd. has added to its Straightpoint (SP) load cell fleet with a 12t capacity Radiolink plus, which is being used to measure the weight of salmon nets at a warehouse on the Shetland Islands, Scotland prior to dispatch.
Grieg already utilises SP load cells and wireless handheld readers in varied lifting applications across its sea farm sites, hatcheries and process plants, at the aforementioned site at the Greenhead base, in addition to Skye (also Scotland), Norway, and Canada. The most recently acquired load cell will principally work beneath the hook of a mounted hydraulic operated crane (MHOC) on a fixed pedestal—a 10t capacity PK 23500.
However, another crane, a PK 42502, is fitted to a Scania R500 Class 1 lorry that also picks up from the facility, while any of the company’s fleet of workboats can dock alongside the net store and crew attach the load cell to deck cranes if they don’t already have one onboard. The vessel Commander, for example, is fitted with a PK 50002 and always carries an SP load cell in its inventory.
Mark Davies, health and safety trainer at Grieg, said: “The net store is a large warehouse on an industrial base, where our nets are checked, repaired, stored and weighed before dispatch. This weight is marked on a label, so our truck driver and boat crew are aware of the weight they will be lifting and handling. We weigh full nets [at Greenhead] but also measure them in bites or sections when changing or removing them at sea.”
He added: “We only use SP load cells, currently employed on 12 sea-sites and approx. 10 onshore bases and storage facilities. We have to ensure our operations conform with LOLER [Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998]. The aquaculture industry is required to conduct lift plans and measure loads in relation to nets, anchors, fish feed, boats, pipes, and gas quads to name just a handful of loads we commonly encounter.”
Beyond a 20-plus fleet of cranes Grieg (UK) operates capstan winches, forklifts, telehandlers, and pallet stackers. A veteran of the industry, and commercial diver, Davies delivers a variety of courses including those on banksmen, life jackets, and fall arrest equipment. He would like to see load cells become ubiquitous in the aquaculture and all marine marketplaces, including with telehandler and forklift operations.
The Radiolink plus is SP’s best-selling product, designed to be rigged with Crosby standard shackles. The wireless tension load cell is capable of weighing and dynamic load monitoring in capacities from 1t to 500t, from stock. It is available in a long range, 2.4GHz version, providing 700m or 2,300 ft. range to the manufacturer’s SW-HHP handheld or wireless software; or in Bluetooth that can be connected to any smart phone running SP’s free HHP app on iOS or Android, at ranges up to 100m or 328ft. Zone 0, 1 and 2 ATEX and IECEx versions are available.
Davies said: “The Radiolink has added safety and efficiency to our operations. The handheld device means we can take accurate, real-time readings at a safe distance and document them for whatever our requirements are at that time. It might be that we need to cross-check with a lift plan the weight of a salmon cage grid buoy anchored to the seabed—vital information given our cranes’ varied capacities depending on the radius at which they have to work.”
- Written by Administrator
A 300t capacity Straightpoint (SP) compression load cell is recording data on Worlifts’ newest Samson COMP-300T-DTR machine that tests hydraulic cylinders and jacks.
Worlifts provides a range of services related to the supply, hire, maintenance, test and repair of high-pressure hydraulic tools and other lifting and rigging equipment. It has a current fleet of testing machines but recently overhauled its Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, UK facility to better utilise its centrepiece, 500t capacity unit, which tests both the company’s own equipment from the hire fleet plus customers’ jacks and cylinders.
Paul Smith, sales director at Worlifts, said: “We decided that we needed to modernise and upgrade our testing facilities to allow us to carry out testing more efficiently and to a larger capacity—all in one test machine. The focal point of this initiative was to increase our capacity to 500t statically and incorporate the load cell for dynamic testing. Previously, we used two machines and reaction beams so we have significantly enhanced the operation with the upgrade.”
Smith explained that the load cell, which is screwed into position, is easily removed for high-capacity, static tests or others where such technology isn’t required. Additionally, Worlifts plans to implement a quick-release mechanism in the near future that will enhance its use even further. The load cell can also play an integral role in completion of independent compression tests to fabricated components and steel fixtures.
Smith said: “We have already noted the positive impact the upgrade has had on the operation and we anticipate continued utilisation. There are many reasons why hydraulic cylinders and jacks might need to be tested including annual examination, repair, specifications, certification, etc. That status quo will remain but we have greatly enhanced—technologically and mechanically—the way we are able to respond to that varied demand.”
SP’s compression load cells boast a number of standout features, including manufacture from high-grade stainless steel, internal antennae wireless range of 700m (or 2,300 ft.), and operation with standard AA batteries. The range is easily connected via a USB dongle to SP’s iOS and Android app or to its SW-HHP wireless handheld display. In Worlifts’ case, readings are taken on a tablet that is panel-mounted on the machine. It uses SP’s state-of-the-art software to capture those readings and produce reports as required based on preference or customer demand.
- Written by Administrator
Trail-Eze Inc., a Mitchell, South Dakota-based manufacturer of heavy equipment trailers, has put two 13-ton capacity Straightpoint (SP) Radiolink plus load cells at the heart of material handling operations at its new, state-of-the-art facility.
Trail-Eze specializes in production of sliding axle, hydraulic tail, and detach trailers to assist customers in efficiently and safely moving equipment on the road. The third generation, family-owned business recently opened the new site at headquarters, which is now one of three central South Dakota facilities—in Mitchell, Corsica, and Platte—where it fabricates trailers from start to finish.
Nate Tapio, operations manager at Trail-Eze, said: “Opening the new facility marks the culmination of years of research and development into the latest painting and finishing technology. The site allows us to consolidate the final stages of our production under one roof. The dynamometers are integral to a technologically-advanced operating environment; the software is easily customized to our needs, the products are user-friendly, and they save us time on every trailer.”
The new, 41,000 sq. ft. building has been custom-designed for the final stages of trailer manufacture; blasting, painting, wood decking, and final inspection are principle tasks. Two 7.5-ton capacity overhead cranes with a 92-ft. span cover most of the 100 ft.-wide, free span building, while a single 15-ton, double-hoist crane has a span of 60 ft. The remote-controlled cranes, fitted with Stahl CraneSystems hoists, were fabricated by Global Crane and installed by Orion Rigging. They lift loads in a variety of sizes and weights, which are now accurately monitored by SP’s equipment.
Tapio said: “We actually discovered the SP solutions through our local lifting and rigging equipment supplier, Dakota Riggers. They knew we were seeking a method to generate an accurate weight of pieces and whole trailers we produce; this is important for our manufacturing processes and our customers.”
He added: “This is the first time we have utilized any of their products but we’ve been impressed. Previously our methods were inconsistent and time-consuming. Now, we can quickly and accurately get a weight on every trailer.”
The Radiolink plus is SP’s best-selling dynamometer, designed to be rigged with Crosby standard shackles. The wireless tension load cell is capable of weighing and dynamic load monitoring in capacities from 1t to 500t, from stock. It is available in a long range, 2.4GHz version, providing 700m or 2,300 ft. range to the manufacturer’s SW-HHP handheld or wireless software, or in Bluetooth that can be connected to any smart phone running SP’s free HHP app on iOS or Android at ranges up to 100m or 328ft.
- Written by Administrator
Dutest, a third-party inspection company and lifting equipment supplier, will distribute the entire range of load cell manufacturer Straightpoint (SP) throughout the United Arab Emirates (UAE), with immediate effect.
The switch to SP’s extensive range of force measurement technologies follows its acquisition by the largest lifting, rigging, and material handling hardware company in the world, The Crosby Group, which had an existing supply agreement in place. Dutest has facilities in Dubai and Abu Dhabi but delivers solutions to customers across the emirates.
Saravanan T., regional manager—UAE at Dutest, said: “We already work closely with Crosby and receive excellent support from them. Coupled with the proactivity of SP representatives, it made business sense to add their products to our extensive stocks of lifting and rigging gear. UAE is a region that welcomes technological advancement of the industry and that trend aligns with our partnership with Crosby—and now SP. I anticipate demand for their equipment from marine, aviation, manufacturing, and heavy construction industries, in addition to oil and gas.”
David Ayling, global business development director for load monitoring solutions at SP, said: “One of the appeals of Crosby ownership was enhanced market penetration and the Dutest agreement serves as a timely example of that improved ingress. That’s not to say Dutest wouldn’t have considered a partnership with SP directly at some stage, but the existence of the Dutest-Crosby supply chain clearly accelerated us to this point.”
Ayling and David Mullard, business development manager at SP, have already deliveredproduct training to Dutest representatives, covering the whole range. The Radiolink plus is SP’s best-selling product, designed to be rigged with Crosby standard shackles. The wireless tension load cell is capable of weighing and dynamic load monitoring in capacities from 1t to 500t, from stock. It is available in a long range, 2.4GHz version, providing 700m or 2,300 ft. range to the manufacturer’s SW-HHP handheld or wireless software; or in Bluetooth that can be connected to any smart phone running SP’s free HHP app on iOS or Android, at ranges up to 100m or 328ft.
Meanwhile, SP recently launched a new single capacity Bluelink load cell that introduces Bluetooth technology to existing and prospective customers still utilising outdated mechanical force measurement products. Bluelink is a 6.5t (14,300 lb.) capacity load cell, targeted at end users that remain loyal to traditional equipment but who might be receptive to enhanced technology and the inherent advantages of reading data digitally, at a safe distance. As Ayling reiterated, however, the Radiolink and Bluelink are just two examples in a range of safety-centric solutions designed with the end user in mind.
Marcel Tabuteau, area sales manager at Crosby, said: “We are still in the relatively early stages of the previous supply agreement with Dutest so its recent adoption of SP technology is testament to the strength of partnership we have been able to forge even over the past two years. The [SP] range is more advanced than alternatives on the market and it’s evident that greater investment has been made in product development, which is important to Saravanan and his team.”
Saravanan added: “Generally business is good. We are looking forward to a long-term relationship with Crosby [and SP]. When new innovations are launched, we want to be among the first to put them to market. We have a good rapport with end users and are constantly trying to covert our customers to the equipment we on-board.”
Pictured (left to right): Mohammed K. Bin Dasmal, managing director at Bin Dasmal Group; David Ayling, global business development director for load monitoring solutions at SP; Marcel Tabuteau, area sales manager at Crosby; and Saravanan T., regional manager at Dutest UAE.
- Written by Administrator
Straightpoint (SP) manufactures a number of force measurement products, ranging in capacity up to 1,000t+, which are used in a variety of ways by the wind energy sector. The equipment is typically supplied to end users through SP’s extensive distributor network that delivers state-of-the-art load cells to offshore, wind power, and other job sites across the world.
SP, recently acquired by lifting and rigging equipment giant Crosby, has modified its equipment for use in the most demanding environments. Its best-selling Radiolink plus wireless load cell, like many products in the portfolio, boasts IP67 or NEMA6 environmental protection and DNV GL Type Approval Certification, while an ATEX and IECEx version is available in hazardous zones 0, 1, and 2. Further, the range is constructed from high quality aerospace grade aluminium and works with standard AA batteries.
SP, a technological pioneer in its field, recently updated its Bluetooth capability and launched an enhanced version of its popular app to enable its load cells to communicate with up to eight devices, up to 100m (328 ft.) away. Collected data can be sent onto other recipients in the form of an Excel spreadsheet or PDF report. The app takes its name from SP’s Handheld plus display unit, which uses an alternative technology allowing a range of up to 700m (2,300ft.), while the Multiple Wireless Load Cell Controller (SW-MWLC) software package displays and logs data from up to 100 SP wireless load cells simultaneously.
Wind energy lifting applications that implement load cells are varied but David Mullard, business development manager at SP, picks four examples of particular interest to professionals in the industry looking to increase their use of the technology. In each instance, it is evident how monitoring the weight of the load and / or its centre of gravity enhances safety, particularly when lifting and other equipment is being operated close to its working load limit (WLL).
“First,” begins Mullard, “Let’s look at the more familiar application of loading out a windmill tower. Here, end users [of SP equipment] lift structures in their entirety onto custom-built vessels or other transportation. They can weigh over 400t so it’s vitally important that lift supervisors monitor the forces being applied and use the load cells as an overload prevention tool. It’s common to utilise a pair of, say, 250t capacity Radiolink pluses, which can provide a total sum of the load.”
His next selection is the lesser-known use of load cells in relation to the service hoists that are frequently found in the nacelle at the top of towers. They are used during routine or other maintenance works. Such hoists, which might range in capacity up to 500kg, are used for lifting and lowering tools and parts.
Mullard says, “It’s important that service hoists are regularly tested and inspected in line with LOLER [Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998]. Users might opt for a Radiolink or a Loadlink plus to execute a test, verify that the hoist is performing as it should be, and capture the data. A 1t to 2.5t capacity load cell would commonly be utilised for such work.”
The Loadlink plus is designed to be rigged with Crosby standard shackles. It is known worldwide as the original electronic force measurement device to feature an integral display. Over the years the line has been expanded and it is now used for lifts ranging in capacity from 1t to 300t in a variety of industries including wind energy, manufacturing, transportation, agriculture, oil and gas, utilities, and aerospace.
Thirdly, Mullard introduces wind energy professionals to the compression load cell, which might be used for centre of gravity or weight calculations on any large fabricated item prior to load out, for wind energy that typically relates to a jacket or foundation that sits below the water surface. Mullard points out that multiple compression load cells can all connect wirelessly to SP’s range of PC software via a USB dongle to verify centre of gravity of large and heavy objects that may not be evenly proportioned.
The final mention goes to SP’s range of subsea load cells that can be used to monitor the tension on cables and moorings. Mullard says, “It’s surprising to some the extent of tethering and moorings at offshore wind farms, beneath the surface of the water. It’s important to know the forces being applied to those lines during all sea states and weather conditions. Environmental protection from the advanced internal design structure and high grade sealing allows for [SP] products to be used in wet conditions without danger of failure.”
SP will exhibit at Global Offshore Wind 2019, which takes place 25-26 June at London’s Excel.