Packaging Machinery

Automation of Lowerator: HYPONIC® Gearmotor

Josh Carney, Olivia Martin

The automation plant redesigned its application. From a single gearbox running two shafts using a series of chain, sprockets, and idlers, the new configuration called for a direct drive system with one gearmotor for each shaft, vertical shaft down. There are a total of five of these systems in the plant.
First, it was redesigned utilizing a competitor's worm drive reducer, which lasted one week before leakage and failure. In an attempt to resolve the situation, our competitor recommended an increase in the size of the reducer. This improved the situation; however, reducers were still failing within 4 to 5 weeks. The customer noted that the reducers were running extremely hot and constantly leaking. The customer had to issue 25 work orders over the course of the year, which led to durations of 1.5 to 3 hours of downtime per repair.

The solution was the grease-lubricated, HYPONIC® Gearmotor Model RNYM 1-1520YC-F1-60. Due to the smooth, almost frictionless operation of the HYPONIC®, torque is transmitted more efficiently, producing less heat than a conventional worm gear. Also, the grease lubrication feature allows the reducer to be mounted universally and is virtually maintenance-free.

Sumitomo negotiated a 60-day trial of the proposed gearmotor. Once it was installed, the customer monitored daily amperage draw and temperature of the HYPONIC®. Within the first 30 days, the customer was so impressed with the unit's performance that the plant invited Sumitomo Machinery Corporation of America for a meeting to discuss replacing all 10 drives. Sumitomo met with the customer nearly once a month to quote replacements on existing drives in other applications, as well.

"At first, some were asking why we were spending more than we usually do on gearboxes. Now that they have seen the benefits of using Sumitomo, I am getting requests for your product in other locations. Upgrading to the HYPONIC® has virtually eliminated all preventative maintenance and downtime. No work orders have been issued since the switch." -HYPONIC® Customer, Champaign, IL.

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