Recently I had a chance to accompany our engineering design team on a company visit. We were working with OEM engineers to come up with the best way to mount our electrical slip rings and hydraulic swivel combo unit on the mobile crane equipment. We offered our hydraulic swivel expertise and proposed the simplest and robust way to retain the combo unit on the equipment to avoid a potential application issue down the road. Onsite interactions with OEM engineers at their facilities have the advantage of having the concerns addressed in a short time, reach an agreement, and thus speed up the design and development process. Interactions between UEA and OEM engineers benefit both sides and end up with win-win scenarios. As a result, we are more confident the hydraulic swivel will meet the customer’s high performance needs.
UEA has been manufacturing hydraulic swivels for several years to meet the needs of OEM applications that require high performance components.
The process for hydraulic swivel development at UEA is as follows:
- Evaluate design specifications from OEM customers
- Design the hydraulic swivel
- Provide a quote
- Provide a prototype
- Endurance testing (if necessary)
- Final production
From the experiences gained in the past, we realized the communications between OEM engineers and hydraulic swivel design team members are important at the designing and quoting stages to ensure the design and development process can be more efficient and UEA can better serve our customers.
In general, once the hydraulic swivel specifications (working conditions, pressure rating, transmitting media, flow rate, port type and sizes, space constraints, etc.) are provided by customers, the design team first evaluates the specification, and then starts designing the hydraulic swivel to best suit the customer’s applications. To ensure UEA swivel products provide high performance, we also need to discuss the swivel mounting and rotating methods on the OEM equipment with the engineers. Size and weight can often be reduced by designing a solution optimized for the OEM applications, making the swivel more compact. To refine the design to best fit the OEM equipment, design iterations are inevitable. To optimize the design, more detail and specific information will be required from OEM engineers, and effective communications and interactions play a key role in this regard.
When there is a need for new hydraulic swivel products, cost reduction improvements, or for performance enhancements, the UEA swivel design team members will communicate with OEM engineers to better understand your requirements and exact concerns, and address those issues accordingly and promptly to provide the best in class product to meet the OEM needs for high performance hydraulic swivels.
On a situational basis, we will send our engineering design team to work directly with OEM engineers at their facility to ensure better communication and design for their needs.
Bo Li, CFPE