Bluefield AMS Blog

Is it more cost-effective to treat steel structures than to replace them?

In tough times, companies sometimes do not spend money on surface protection of steel structures. Corrosion occurs gradually over time, but when it is let go too far, the costs to repair are extensive. [...]

3D Printed Double Helical Gear

Bluefield has printed our first double helical "BlueGear" on our 3D printer. Of course these are no good as emergency spares for the mining equipment that we love to work with, however it is an interesting process to model and print them, as well as great development for our engineers to know the equipment and discuss the essential failure modes to manage so that our clients do not require emergency spares! [...]

Adam Colwell: From mechanic to reliability engineer

Nowadays, many people would agree that you simply need a college degree to become a reliability engineer. While that assumption is understandable, it doesn't actually reflect reality. [...]

What we learned at the APNGA Business Breakfast

Bluefield AMS has been actively working in Papa New Guinea (PNG) since 2012, assisting miners and gas operators with engineering projects, allowing them to improve equipment reliability and ultimately perform more competitively. [...]

Improving Maintenance Labour Productivity

Improving Maintenance Labour Productivity With the mining industry pushing hard for improvement and cost reduction, one of the areas coming into focus is labour productivity. There have been many time on tools studies conducted and clearly there is an opportunity to improve, but how can we achieve improvements quickly and in a sustainable manner? [...]

Electric Rope Shovel Pendant Rope Pin Reliability

On several sites, Bluefield has seen pendant rope equaliser pins, walking out or with failed retainer bolts. Of course, this is a serious situation as if left un-actioned the pin will fall out and the boom pendant ropes can end up on the deck of the shovel and risk more catastrophic failures. The pf interval of this failure mode is relatively slow and they should be easily managed in a scheduled fashion without affecting the reliability of the shovel. [...]

Preventing Water Contamination in Diesel

Are you managing your fuel quality? I had an interesting discussion with a friend the other day about some recent injector failures. They’d suffered a couple of low hour failures and trying to determine the root cause. There can be many causes, but one came up that I am passionate about. That cause is water contamination in diesel. [...]

Using Language Processing Software for Auto-Review of Oil Analysis Reports

Introduction Bluefield has completed many reviews on the effectiveness of condition monitoring systems, including those involving oil analysis. Often we find that the site engineers are overrun with many tasks and rely on the Red, Yellow, Green symbols (A, B, C or X) samples from the lab performing the analysis. Unfortunately, the value of oil analysis is to enable the site to become proactive and take steps to avoid the onset of failure, not just stay slightly ahead of breakdowns and take action only when a red flag has been raised by the lab. The trends and analysts’ comments from their interpretation of the results offer proactive information however, on a large site, the engineers or planners do not have sufficient time to read through many thousands of reports and comments. Therefore we often see that action is only taken when it is too late to enable the business to work in a predictive manner. [...]

Effective Cost Control Processes by Gerard Wood

I was recently talking to a maintenance manager who had left a large mining company to go and work for a small service provider. He was recalling some of the frustrations that he had and one of them, that I could also relate to from my experience, was the invoice approval process. [...]