As Published by BIC Magazine May 2013 issue
A relatively small investment in training is a win-win scenario for the plant with a huge return
LUDECA Inc. has trained its customers’ maintenance personnel for more than 25 years. The incidence of mistreated laser alignment systems coming back for repair drops dramatically when a plant’s millwrights are properly trained in the use and care of the system. A relatively small investment in training is a win-win scenario for the plant with a huge return.
Many plants cognizant of the benefits of good training invest in a separate fully funded training department with highly qualified instructors. If you do not have this, do not hesitate to hire outside experts to come in and train your personnel, but ensure these experts really are qualified to train. Research credentials and follow up on references.
Buy the best systems you can afford and really train your people to use them, or your equipment will be underutilized or mishandled. A well-equipped, dedicated training center provides a controlled environment where employees can learn undisturbed to their maximum potential. Equip it with good lighting, sanitary facilities, quality tables and comfortable chairs, a generous coffee pot, the latest SMARTboard™ technology, projectors, computers and Internet access.
If you cannot provide a good training environment in house, send employees away for training. Vendors who offer such services should have better facilities for this than you do. Ensure they do! We went out of our way to build and equip our own state-of-the-art training center and staff it with highly qualified people.
If you cannot afford to send away several employees at a time, send your most qualified employee or resident instructor for more in-depth training to have the knowledge brought back. We offer intensive “train the trainer” courses and in-depth courses for day-to-day users of our alignment and vibration systems. For us, it is a win-win proposition — well-trained users of our systems learn to love them, use them correctly and care for them properly. We offer an educational discount for systems purchased by training programs or educational institutions.
Six students per class is ideal (eight max) to allow the instructor to devote individual attention to each student, answer all questions and ensure each student gets hands-on practice. Each pair of students is assigned their own training simulator and complete laser shaft alignment system or vibration data collector and computer and necessary peripherals. Each student gets a complete set of training materials and an operator’s handbook for the system being learned to keep.
Vibration training is regarded as complex, and it can be at the more advanced levels. Yet a solid understanding of the basics of machine vibration and its underlying causes will benefit you greatly. Maintenance employees will be more attuned to spotting potential problems than they otherwise might and become more valuable, proactive members of your overall reliability program. Understanding what causes imbalance and its consequences, and what causes a bearing to fail prematurely is valuable knowledge for your employees, saving you money in the long run.