Following on from our recent maintenance article on Clutch and Brake Shimming, we are now going to highlight the importance of achieving the correct alignment. Although there are a couple of other factors, a properly aligned and shimmed WPT clutch or brake will ensure ongoing optimum performance and service life and having these two installation aspects correct and within specification gives your equipment an ideal starting point.
When talking about plate clutch, brake or PTO alignment for that matter, we are referring to how parallel the outer ring, backplate or drive ring is to the mounting structure and also the concentricity of hub (and shaft) in relation to the outer components (the same must be done for shaft-to-shaft applications). Both angular and parallel measurements must be taken with the use of a dial indicator and the Total Indicator Reading (TIR) values compared to our specifications relevant to the model and size of the clutch or brake. In each of WPT’s installation and maintenance manuals, there is a comprehensive step by step guide and a table with the acceptable tolerance values outlined. If the alignment is not quite right upon the initial set of measurements, corrective actions need to be undertaken.
Some symptoms that may be experienced if the alignment is not quite correct, is uneven friction wear, premature damage to the hub, friction, centre plate and or drive ring teeth, and over time spring related complications maybe evident. There may even be clear signs that the overall performance may be effected with torque loss, excessive friction dust or overheating. WPT’s units are very robust so if you recognize some of these signs and they caught early enough, then there is every chance you can correct everything relatively easily and have your unit back in action in no time.
WPT products are very experienced in the field and with the backup of our applications and engineering team we can help ID any problems you may encounter relating to setup and maintenance.
Written By: Brett Emson, Sales Manager Asia Pacific & Africa