October 18, 2005 

'Inside Hydraulics' Newsletter

1. Rapid measurement of capacitance means instant water detection
2. Intelligent pump protection
3. Hydraulic equipment reliability: beyond contamination control
4. Content for your web site or e-zine
5. Help us spread the word
6. Tell us what you think


Rapid measurement of capacitance means instant water detection

Oil and water have divergent dielectric properties; the typical value for oil ranges between 1.7 and 2.1, while water has a typical value of 80. In other words, water is capable of storing much more energy per volume unit than the average oil. This means direct measurement of fluid capacitance can rapidly detect a minute amount of water in oil.

EESIFLO's EASZ-1 is a compact, water in oil sensor that responds rapidly to change in fluid dielectric. It is able to detect small or large amounts of water, on-line and in real time, in lubrication and hydraulic oils, diesel and heavy fuels. This results in immediate notification of water contamination problems.

EESIFLO's EASZ-1 water in oil analyzer

The EASZ-1 Water in oil monitor
with RS 485 option

The EASZ-1 was designed to provide additional insurance to regular sampling, since it is an online instrument, reporting water content in oil on a continual basis. The unit is factory-calibrated to the oil of choice, but if site conditions are not identical to those in the laboratory, there is a facility to tune the instrument to actual conditions and improve accuracy.

EESIFLO recommend oil samples be taken for lab analysis on a regular basis, and using this information small offsets can be adjusted. To an initiated user, slow drift over time can be a valuable tool to monitor oil degradation, while at the same time more rapid changes in readings can be considered a true indication of water contamination.

The unit does not require factory re-calibration or changing of probes. Annual cleaning of the internal parts is sufficient to maintain the integrity of the device. The RS-485 option allows integration with existing control or reporting systems.

For more information, or to locate your nearest EESIFLO representative, go to www.eesiflo.com

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2.   Intelligent pump protection

In the May issue of 'Inside Hydraulics', we carried an article on the Magnom Hydraulic Pump Mate - a new filtration technology that enables sub-micron filtration at the pump inlet, without any risk of cavitation-induced pump damage. If you missed this issue, or to refresh your memory, it's available here.

We received some interesting feedback in response to this article, which I will share with you and comment on here.

Feedback #1. "A properly designed hydraulic system does not require a conventional strainer or this new product (Magnom), but rather properly sized filtration, breathers and tank design that actually controls the contamination in the system."

This statement has two parts, which need to be considered separately:

"A properly designed hydraulic system does not require a conventional strainer…"

Because conventional suction strainers only protect the pump from particles larger than 150 microns, then it does follow that if all the air and oil entering the reservoir is filtered to better than 150 microns, then a conventional suction strainer serves little purpose. Worse still, a conventional strainer increases the risk of cavitation-induced pump damage.

The same logic does not apply to the Magnom solution. Consider a hydraulic power unit located in a foundry. The reservoir has a 10-micron return filter, 2-micron air breather and a 125-micron screen on the case drain - the finest filtration I recommend on case drain lines. Particles smaller than 125 microns, 10 microns and 2 microns can enter the tank unhindered through the case drain, return and air breather respectively.

Unlike a conventional suction strainer, the Magnom Hydraulic Pump Mate will capture ferrous particles that pass through all these filters, as well as any oxide (rust) particles generated by the tank itself - before they pass through the pump.

Feedback #2. "Ferrous particles will be removed by the Magnom unit but other particles will remain, continuing the wear process."

If you are serious about addressing the root cause of wear metal generation, go into your plant and switch off all the machinery. Problem solved. At least until the person your boss hires to replace you switches it all back on again.

Since the "switch-it-off" option is not a viable one, lubrication best-practice and contamination control are deployed to minimize wear and extend machine life.

When you consider that most hydraulic components and systems are manufactured predominantly from ferrous metals, it is logically to expect that under most conditions the majority of the wear metal generated will be of the ferrous variety. It follows that if the wear metal normally found in the greatest concentration (ferrous) is reduced, the whole wear process is diminished and the concentration of non-ferrous wear metal is also reduced. Empirical data compiled on systems fitted with the Magnom technology supports this.

Eaton Vickers, a major hydraulic component manufacturer, states that "The level of contamination entering the pump is a critical factor." The Magnom Hydraulic Pump Mate is both a unique pump protection device and an effective tool in a contamination control armory.

In a future article, I will outline how I am applying Magnom technology in combination with conventional filtration to achieve high levels of contamination control. In the meantime, visit www.magnom.com for more information.

"Thanks for the great work on the two publications, Insider Secrets to Hydraulics and Preventing Hydraulic Failures. I have been in the hydraulics business for the past 20 years and it is very difficult to find any decent material on hydraulic maintenance, troubleshooting and failure analysis. These two books cover it all in easy to understand language... I conduct hydraulic training courses and plan to purchase copies to distribute to my students to share your practical approach to understanding a not so understandable subject."

Paul W. Craven, Certified Fluid Power Specialist
Motion Industries, Inc.

3.   Hydraulic equipment reliability: beyond contamination control

For some guidance on improving hydraulic equipment reliability - beyond contamination control, read Brendan Casey's article in the July-August 2005 Issue of Machinery Lubrication magazine, available here. To receive a complimentary subscription to this informative magazine (US and Canada only) go to: http://www.machinerylubrication.com/hydraulic1.asp

4. Content for your web site or e-zine

Need some fresh content for your web site or e-zine? You now have permission to reprint these 'Inside Hydraulics' articles on your web site or in your e-zine, provided:

1. Each article is printed in its full form with no changes.

2. You send an e-mail to editor@hydraulicsupermarket.com to advise us where you'll be publishing them.

3. You include the following acknowledgement at the end of each article:
About the Author: Brendan Casey has more than 16 years experience in the maintenance, repair and overhaul of mobile and industrial hydraulic equipment. For more information on reducing the operating cost and increasing the uptime of your hydraulic equipment, visit his web site: http://www.InsiderSecretsToHydraulics.com

5. Help us spread the word

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6. Tell us what you think

We would love to hear what you think of this issue of our 'Inside Hydraulics' newsletter. And of course, if you have any suggestions for future issues, please send us those too.

Just e-mail the editor at: newslettersuggestions@hydraulicsupermarket.com

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