Like the mining industry throughout the world the copper mining industry in North America has a huge population of grid style couplings on a whole host of applications. There have always been irritating problems with the grid couplings to include lubrication that in most cases created huge housekeeping issues. The other concern was the replacement of the coupling itself and in particular the removal of the hubs. Generally a hefty hammer and a torch were the tools of choice. Often removing the hubs could run into hours.
Once the lubrication falls on either the cement or dirt it is designated hazardous material and clean up procedures include scrubbing the cement and removing the contaminated earth. MSHA fines inevitably follow. The dollar amount seems to be predicated on the severity of the spill but are often substantial.
|SU Disc Coupling|
The challenge was to come up with a coupling that did not require lubrication, that could handle the required torque and misalignment needs and that could be easily replaced if the need came up and finally it has to be cost effective. The SU disc coupling with shaft locking devices easily meet all the challenges.
|Shaft Locking Devices|
|SXC Disc Coupling|
A simple single disc pack SU disc coupling offers 1 ½ degrees of misalignment and ample torque. Also for close coupled applications Lovejoy offers a two plane disc coupling (SXC) with more torque and misalignment capabilities than the SU. Finally spacer type units could be handled by SX or DI style couplings.
|DI Disc Coupling|
If you are faced with the three main problems I see from some of my grid coupling customers (MSHA violations, high maintenance, and hub replacement), consider a disc coupling with shaft locking devices as a solution.