June 9, 2009 

'Inside Hydraulics' Newsletter

1. Think like Leonardo da Vinci
2. Hydraulic load-sensing - open and closed
3. Four diagnostic tests you should know
4. Content for your web site or e-zine
5. Help us spread the word
6. Tell us what you think


Think like Leonardo da Vinci

The government here recently announced big increases in funding to expand the number of vocational training places for young people. Like most of these types of decisions it's politically motivated, but sensible none the less. Because it makes constructive use of the time many of these folks have on their hands right now.

And making good use of this 'downtime' means the beneficiaries of this training will make a greater contribution to economic activity in the future. It's an opportunity too good to miss.

Of course, this strategy of making good use of 'downtime' applies regardless of whether you're undertaking further formal training or not. Equally, if you find you have more time on your hands now than you did last year or the year before - it's an opportunity.

As Warren Buffet says: "When things are on sale, you should be happy to buy." So if your time is 'on sale' at the moment, take advantage of this opportunity for investing in learning, developing your network, setting your goals, and doing all those other things that you never seem to get done when you're busy.

In my own case for example, I am spending some time becoming proficient with a complicated software program, so that when I need to use it in anger it will help me work faster - not slow me down. And along with Dr Tumarkin, co-author of Advanced Hydraulic Control, I'm also dedicating more time to our next home-study course: Hydraulics Made Easy, which will be available next year.

I'm also writing and publishing my first children's book - which will be in bookshops here in Australia for Christmas. Actually, the book is written - I wrote the story in a weekend. It's the illustration and production of the book, which will take a chunk of my time over the next few months.

As an aside, you might think it strange that I would write a children's book; that it's not congruent with my 'day job'. And I suppose it's not. But we all too often stereotype other people and ourselves.

Earlier this year I read a book titled "How to think like Leonardo da Vinci". As you're probably aware, in addition to being an accomplished engineer, scientist and inventor, da Vinci was also a master painter and sculptor. Reading this book inspired me to engage in more creative or 'right brain' activity. Why not?

And that's an important question to ask - so you don't restrict yourself. For example, I get mail from a lot of electricians, who are finding they need more knowledge in hydraulics. So I say: be an electrician and a hydraulics technician. Why not?

If you're a hydraulic equipment owner, why not also be the hydraulics maintenance expert in your part of the world? After all, your hands-on access to real, operating equipment, gives you a distinct learning advantage over others.

When thinking about these things, don't pigeon-hole yourself. Because it's very limiting if you do.

Anyway, you can use any spare time you may have to make deposits into your own 'future bank'. Or you can let it slip through your fingers - an opportunity lost. But one thing is for sure: at the end of this year you'll be another year older. Whether you're more knowledgeable, skilful and productive depends on what you do between now and then.

The Nice Things People Say

"The knowledge I've gained from this information has been so valuable it has earned me a raise!" Find out more ...

Jack Bergstrom
Heavy Equipment Mechanic
Sharpe Equipment

2.   Hydraulic load-sensing - open and closed

Instead of my usual article here this month, I thought I'd try something completely different. This month only, you have access to an entire issue of my Hydraulics Pro Club - print newsletter and video.

Yes, I do have a crass, commercial motive - that by allowing you to read the newsletter and watch the simulation video, more of you will recognize the benefits of membership, namely - ongoing hydraulics training and professional development.

But you should not think of this as me trying to sell you something. Think of it as what it is - a sample of what you're missing. This puts you in control, not me. Its purpose is for you to decide whether or not you are right for Hydraulics Pro Club and it right for you. There's no strings attached and real value to be had whatever you decide.

With that out of the way, here's the set-up for the simulation video:

"I read one of your articles where you explain that load-induced pressure downstream of the control valve (orifice) is sensed and pump flow adjusted to maintain a constant pressure drop and therefore flow across the control valve, ensuring the actuator speed does not change with change in load."

"Is a constant pressure drop maintained across the control valve in an open-center, load sensing system fitted with variable displacement axial piston pump - for example, Komatsu excavator?"

The short answer to this question is no. But before I explain why, some definitions:

The type of load-sensing control referred to in the first part of this question and which is covered in detail in both Industrial Hydraulic Control and Advanced Hydraulic Control is closed-center load sensing (CLS) - see diagram inside back page.

The load-sensing system referred to in the second part of this question and which is used on older Komatsu and some other makes of hydraulic excavators (see diagram on back page) is open-center load sensing (OLS).

Plug the enclosed CD into you disc drive and sit back, relax and watch while I explain the key differences between the two systems on this month's video.

Hydraulics Pro Club members get the printed newsletter and a CD of the simulation video mailed to them, but this month only, you can access both online, here.

"This book has the potential to save many organizations lots of money. It should be on the bookshelf of every engineer, supervisor, planner and technician who deals with hydraulic equipment... it's worth its weight in gold." Find out more

Alexander (Sandy) Dunn
Plant Maintenance Resource Center

3.   Four diagnostic tests you should know

Fundamentals of Hydraulics and Troubleshooting explains when and how to use diagnostic tests, including the direct pump test, system T test, spool valve leakage test and cylinder piston seal leakage test - all from the convenience of your lap top or desk top computer. Find out more

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 20 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

If you've found our 'Inside Hydraulics' newsletter interesting and informative, then chances are you have a colleague who would too. Help spread the word about 'Inside Hydraulics' by forwarding this issue to a colleague. If they share your interest in hydraulics, then they will surely appreciate being told about this newsletter.

New subscribers can get the newsletter by completing the form at http://www.insidersecretstohydraulics.com

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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