Suppliers advise to invest in top-quality lantern rings, lubricant, and screen media maintenance parts and tools

By Jesse Morton, Technical Writer

Having the right replacement parts is critical to reducing downtime and increasing uptime. Having the right tool for the job can deliver efficiencies and time savings. How much uptime and savings depends on the quality of those parts and tools. Top suppliers recently told Coal Age that money spent on high quality is an investment that pays dividends.

The SLR System is up to five times stronger than competitor PTFE lantern rings while also offering better flow and pressure equalization, SealRyt Corp. said. (Image: SealRyt)

Superior Lantern Rings

Experts at SealRyt said the company’s newest solution, the Structural Lantern Ring (SLR), for slurry pumps, is light, relatively inexpensive, and more durable than competitor Teflon lantern rings. Company literature said the lantern ring is “up to five times stronger than ordinary PTFE lantern rings and allows for improved flow and pressure equalization.”

The SLR “does not crush in the pump,” said Peter Chilton, marketing manager. That quality makes it far superior to competitor products, he said.

“A lot of times when you put a standard lantern ring in, it is in the stuffing box with packing,” Chilton said. “In order to make packing seal you sort of have to clamp down really tight.” Plant maintenance personnel will “crank that thing down so that it stops leaking but at the same time it is crushing the standard, classic lantern ring, because it is made out of a lighter-duty plastic,” he said. “Our SLR, which has a patented design, even though it is light and fairly inexpensive, is really strong. It does not crush.”

The SLR is designed with wide openings for “drastically larger flush access without compromising strength,” company literature said.

Competitor lantern rings have “maybe four or five flush holes. Because they are worried about strength, they limit the flush hole pattern, which doesn’t allow good flush flow,” Chilton said. “The SLR is also removable and cleanable so it can be used over and over again.”

Early tests showed the SLR “to be far superior to standard lantern ring designs, both Teflon, steel, and bronze,” said Seth Wilkinson, technical services. The SLR has been deployed to customer pumps in “several industries, very successfully.” It has enabled customers to “conserve water at places that really need water conservation, and for those places that didn’t need it we increased their reliability on their rotating equipment just by installing this and using our direction and our products to achieve superior results.”

The SLR is preceded by the popular PackRyt BLR bearing system, a bearing with an integrated lantern ring and braided packing for applications where the stuffing box is sealed by flush water pressure. The bearing offers shaft stabilization and allows “the lantern ring to remain in a fixed place inside the stuffing box regardless of what mechanical, thermo-chemical elements come into that pump that typically affect standard mechanical seals or standard packing,” Chilton said.

The release of the original PackRyt bearing in 2003 put the company on its current path. Prior to then, the company focused on braided mechanical packing.

“Back in the 1990s, the president of the company analyzed pumps and pumping in many different industries and wanted to develop something that would stabilize rotating shafts, whether it be in pumps, agitators, and large equipment, because he saw that first point of failure for most rotating equipment was the sealing device,” Wilkinson said. “He researched different polymers, conceived of different designs, and finally settled on the PackRyt bearing.”

With the goal of ensuring the “stuffing box is not the first point of failure” of pumps and rotating equipment, “we have been highly successful in our endeavors,” Wilkinson said. “We are well known for being able to design-engineer a solution for a specific pump that has been a problem over and over again.”

For example, SealRyt designed a solution for a mine tailings pump with a recurring problem. “They were repacking this thing twice a day,” Wilkinson said. “They used our PackRyt Bearing technology and it went six months,” he said. “The only reason they shut it down after six months is it was the end of their mining season.”

Separately, an operation running a Goulds pump “was getting clogged over and over again,” Chilton said. “The flush probably wasn’t adequate and the process material was going into the stuffing box and it was clogging the lantern ring.” A DuraPak, which is an SLR and a bearing, was installed.

“That one has been running for two years without plugging or maintenance,” Chilton said. “Here is one where every 60 to 90 days they would be repacking and redoing the stuffing box and they converted it to packing with the SLR and ran 24 months without issue.”

Developing and supplying solutions that attain that level of reliability is one of the primary goals of SealRyt, Wilkinson said. “That is what we focus on, increasing the reliability of anybody that wishes to do business with us,” he said. “We’ve spent a lot of time and energy in increasing reliability and we have proven ourselves to be successful.”

Bio-Food Grade HT Anti-Seize Compound lubricant is a high viscosity index product with long-life heat stability, Renewable Lubricants said. (Photo: Renewable Lubricants)

‘Environmentally Responsible’ Lubricant

Renewable Lubricants announced Bio-Food Grade HT Anti-Seize Compound, a bio-based compound formulated for lubricating sliding surfaces.

The solution “is a revolutionary lubricant designed for high-pressure sliding surfaces, such as bolt and pipe threads,” said Ben Garmier, vice president. “By using Bio-Food Grade HT Anti-Seize Compound, miners can enhance productivity and generate more revenue by reducing downtime caused by equipment failures,” he said. “Its superior performance under extreme conditions ensures reliable operation of machinery and equipment, minimizing costly maintenance and repairs.”

Comprised of a stabilized High Oleic Base Stock (HOBS) technology combined with “synthetic base stocks and exceptional extreme-pressure anti-wear technology,” the compound is “a super-high viscosity index product with long-life heat stability,” the company said. HOBS are agricultural vegetable oils. “This stabilized technology allows the HOBS to act as a high-performance formula in high- and low-temperature applications, reducing oil thickening and deposits.”

The oils and additives in it are listed in 21 CFR 178.3570, which covers lubricants for incidental food contact, the company said. “Bio-Food Grade HT Anti-Seize Compound is available in 8-oz can with brush, 7-lb pail, 35-gal. pail, 120-lb keg, and 400-lb drums from the Hartville, Ohio, factory,” Renewable Lubricants said.

Common applications include tool joints, chains, cables, slideways, fifth wheels, king pins, chassis, hinge pins, studs, packing glands, gaskets valves, pump shafts, screw shafts, and slow-moving rollers and bearings.

The laundry list of benefits offered is topped by “exceptional performance under extreme conditions, withstanding pressures and temperatures exceeding 1,000°C (1,800°F),” Garmier said. “It’s formulation, fortified with synthetic white graphite,” protects “the threads of bolts against damage from galling or seizure,” he said. “Excellent anti-rust, anti-oxidation, and anti-wear properties, help extend equipment longevity and reliability.”

It will not stain aluminum and yellow metals. “Rapid demulsification allows users to drain water from the system quickly to prevent corrosion, protect components, and extend oil life,” the company said. “With performance comparable to or exceeding synthetics, the lubricant can help companies achieve “operational goals as well as their sustainability goals.”

Bio-Food Grade HT Anti-Seize Compound “is environmentally responsible, containing no heavy metals or hazardous VOCs, making it a safe and sustainable choice for industrial applications,” Garmier said.

It contains no lead, antimony, zinc, or chlorine, and “is an environmentally responsible product that is formulated from biodegradable and renewable agricultural plant resources,” the company said.

The solution can also help a company attain some safety goals. The compound meets “U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and Workers Acceptance standards for bio-based products, ensuring safety and regulatory compliance,” Garmier said.

The solution was developed to meet “the need for a high-temperature lubricant capable of withstanding extreme pressures,” Renewable Lubricants said. “Through research and development, the formulation was optimized,” it said. “After rigorous testing, the product was released to market, where it has since gained recognition for its exceptional reliability and environmental responsibility.”

The PIPETOP Stringer system allows for more apertures in a given footprint, Polydeck said. (Photo: Polydeck)

Advanced Screen Media Parts, Tools

Polydeck Screen Corp. reported the threaded plastic Ferrule Inserts for the PIPETOP II Stringer system deliver efficiency gains in maintaining screening media. The insert replaces a steel predecessor that was more labor-intensive to maintain or replace, said Trey Rollins, director of marketing and inside sales.

“The original PIPETOP Stringer system was initially developed to increase screen open area by reducing the width of the stringer system that retains the panels,” he said. With a 1/2-in. surface, “the PIPETOP I support rail allowed for more apertures within a given footprint,” company literature said. It was notably successful and became a catalyst for the development of the popular Maxi panel system.

The combination of the narrow PIPETOP I rail and the Maxi panel system gave “the maximum number of apertures” for “the highest open area in the industry,” Polydeck said. “The Maxi system was also designed to be modular for ease of use, safety, and flexibility.” Downstream benefits included reduced maintenance tasks and increased uptime.

Field results validated the design and also drove the evolution of it. “After listening to our customers, there was a desire to have the fastening area replaceable,” Rollins said. “Having the fastening area in steel form required welding and replacement of the steel ferrule,” he said. “Development of PIPETOP II resulted in a threaded ferrule system that allowed for quick reliable replacement of the fastening area with a plastic affordable item.”

A synthetic, threaded ferrule for pin-and-leg panels “allowed Polydeck to develop other types of fastening such as PolySnap and bolt-down panels on the same stringer system.”

The inserts “can be individually replaced in high-wear areas, offering a practical solution for maintaining the screening system’s efficiency over time,” Rollins said. “Having a replaceable piece that is critical for securing panels to a screen deck ensures decreased downtime while offering exceptional open area,” he said. “And minimizing the need to weld and cut steel stringers and rails while in-situ inherently reduces the possibility of an injury during installation.”

Most importantly, the improved uptime “results in more tons per hour of material processed,” Rollins said.

Other components available for the PIPETOP II include Crown Bar Adapters for side tension screens that facilitate “the conversion from flat to crowned deck configurations, thereby accommodating different screening media types and improving screen performance,” Rollins said. Also available are ProTops that protect “against wear and impact in high-wear areas, extending the life of the stringer system and reducing maintenance needs.”

The new parts add to the ability of the PIPETOP II system to “provide a versatile, flexible, and efficient solution for a wide range of screening applications, ensuring both high performance, high availability, and longevity of the screening system,” he said.

The original PIPETOP I design and components remain available. “Material options for the stringer assemblies include industrial-grade steel, but there’s also an option for stainless steel ferrules with standard stringers, or the entire stringer and ferrule assembly in stainless steel,” Rollins said. “This versatility allows for a durable setup that can withstand adverse conditions, preventing corrosion and potentially extending the life of the frame significantly.”