The remanufacturing of key components on mining equipment is in increasing demand and Atlas Copco has responded by further developing these services at multiple locations around the world.
At a time when mines are looking to increase availability at the same time as they need to keep costs down, remanufacturing has emerged as a valuable, short term option.
Remanufacturing, not only of key components but even of entire products, offers important advantages for mining companies. For example:
- – having a single-source supplier to remanufacture the parts and support the product ensures quality workmanship and components
- – in many cases, remanufactured components come with the same warranties as new products or extended warranties
- – mines remain operational and productive and get more time to consider an investment in new equipment
- – the cost of remanufacturing is substantially lower than the cost of a comparable new product.
To meet the upward demand for these services, Atlas Copco Service is strengthening its remanufacturing capability at dedicated “reman” facilities.
Setting the standard in Garland
The city of Garland in Dallas, Texas is the U.S. location for remanufacturing equipment components, and is also the base for the manufacture of Atlas Copco’s Pit Viper and DM drill rigs. The processes and procedures developed here serve as the the standard for all other Atlas Copco reman centers around the world. The Garland Reman Center has come a long way since its startup in 2009. After a major expansion in 2012, the 3 700 m2 facility is now equipped with state-of-the-art tools and testing equipment. These include Atlas Copco’s industrial tools and hydraulic testing tools for all products after remanufacturing.
In its five work bays the Center mostly remanufactures pumps and motors, but also rotary heads, airends, cylinders and drives. More than 180 spare parts are in stock to support component remanufacturing for hydraulic components alone.
The next phase of the Center’s evolution will add repairing rock drills and remanufacturing axles and transfer cases, all with OEM parts to precise OEM specifications.
When a major component needs remanufacturing, it first goes through a visual inspection by local certified technicians. A part that has a major failure such as a housing crack is not considered a candidate for remanufacturing. Once a component qualifies for remanufacturing, it is sent to Garland in purpose-built boxes.
Each component that arrives in Garland goes through a specific 15-step process that includes inspection, disassembly, cleaning, upgrading, parts replacement, assembly and testing. Each component leaving the Center will have an OEM quality certificate and traceable information, including serial number, parts numbers and inspector signatures. That component stays in the Atlas Copco engineering and logistics information management system throughout its life.
Bill Xuan, Reman Solutions Product Manager at the Garland Center, points out that the greatest cost related to customers’ productivity is downtime.
“Being down greatly outweighs the cost of the component itself, and a remanufactured component is even more cost effective with the same quality level as new,” he says. “Having remanufacturing solutions for our customers allows them the peace of mind that major components are always available off the shelf. In addition, having a single-source supplier and OEM guaranteed remanufactured components along with continued service creates harmony in using Atlas Copco equipment.”
These remanufacturing solutions from Atlas Copco offer customers smart and sustainable options for service. With Customer Centers around the globe, Atlas Copco is within easy reach. Service is flexible and can be suited to each customer’s needs, whether it is 24 hour technical support, routine maintenance, repairs, remanufacturing or service programs that use Atlas Copco’s expertise to manage equipment fleets.
“Our goal is to be flexible in how we help customers and share knowledge,” says Xuan. “Atlas Copco has a good understanding of the customers’ operations and their industry and how to maximize the performance of their equipment.
“Atlas Copco’s technicians at the mine can monitor the part’s life from installation to removal. Scheduled replacement means there is no downtime outside routine maintenance. We can look ahead for optimum planning for the customer, or just provide service as needed.”
Sylvia Havre-Carter, Operations Manager at the Garland Center says: “We have had a great many components come in here. If we have a quality core, we can return it to original condition with our highly qualified technicians following our strict processes.”
The Center applies the latest engineering specifications to each component to ensure that it is brought back to OEM specifications. Sometimes, remanufactured components are even better than the originals as they receive the latest factory upgrades.
The Center uses high-end Tensor electronic assembly tools along with bar code embedded work orders. The intelligent tools and interactive software tracks and controls specifications of work performed, which ensures that everything meets OEM specifications down to how each bolt is tightened. Once assembled, products are rigorously tested on state-of-the-art test benches.
Havre-Carter continues: “With OEM certified and knowledgeable technicians using advanced equipment, along with our assurance processes we certainly deliver quality. We guarantee genuine OEM parts will be used on remanufactured components while offering a full Atlas Copco warranty.”
According to Havre-Carter, the customer can realize direct savings of 30 to 50 percent on remanufactured components, and considering the availability and reliability of Atlas Copco reman components, even greater savings can be realized in terms of labor, logistics and inventory.
“We are continually focusing on improvements to our processes. Each technician has years of experience working on these components and the step-by-step processes we’ve put in place only make us better as a team,” Havre-Carter adds.
“We take ownership of each component and we are totally committed to quality.”
24 hour service in Satpayev
The Reman Center in Satpayev, Kazakhstan, is the most recent Center to join the global Atlas Copco network. It is a typical example of how Atlas Copco is investing in helping customers to find local solutions that reduce their operational costs while maintaining the same OEM quality.
Opened at the end of 2012, it took only one year for the Center to reach a world class standard of safety and engineering.
The Center was developed to serve several major mines including Zhomart, Vostochniy (East) and Zapadniy (West) which are owned by Kazakhmys, one of the world’s leading copper producers.
Together, these three mines are at work round the clock, seven days a week, and use more than 100 units of Atlas Copco equipment. The Satpayev Center is conveniently located only 15 minutes’ drive from the most remote mine in the Zhezkazgan area and two hours away from Zhomart, which is also in operation seven days a week.
Under the terms of the service contracts at the mines, all equipment must be kept fully operational with a guaranteed availability rate. The Center’s team of 10 engineers remanufactures axles, transmissions, cylinders, up boxes, drop boxes as well as COP rock drills.
Danila Praporschikov, Service Operation Performance Specialist and member of the Atlas Copco team developing reman practices worldwide, says: “What’s so special about the Satpayev Center is that the best practices of Atlas Copco’s other large remanufacturing centers, including set-up, lay-out, operating procedures, and workflows have all been implemented here.
“In my view that was a revolutionary approach and as such I feel justified in describing the Satpayev Center as truly innovative. Remanufacturing of components is by far the most beneficial service we offer to our customers. Only the components where the cost of reman is not more than 60 percent of the cost of new component qualify.”
OEM quality guaranteed
The Center offers its customers the same warranty for remanufactured components as it does for new components. Mechanic Sergey Sukhomyro, is justly proud of the work done here. “I evaluate the level of our work as being very high quality,” he says. “We use advanced tools and professional testing panels. The workflow is specified in a 15-step procedure which describes all of the necessary actions in detail.
“This system guarantees that all components will undergo comprehensive inspection, diagnostics and upgrades and that they will be remanufactured to the Atlas Copco OEM quality level.”
Anuar Basbayev, Business Line Manager, for Atlas Copco Service, Central Asia, says: “We always pursue a better way to support our customers and with this great project which we have achieved within one year, we are able to offer OEM specification remanufactured components locally and continuously help customers to lower their operation costs. With our ongoing efforts, I am sure that more customers will benefit from this project very soon.”
Epiroc operated under the trademark “Atlas Copco” prior to January 1, 2018.