AV Access’s bogie manipulator is playing a central role in a lean programme at Irish Rail’s bogie workshop by simplifying and speeding up the safe handling of bogies, and eliminating accidental damage.
Graham O’Meara, production executive for Irish Rail’s bogie workshop, said: “We had been using workshop cranes and lifting chains to move and rotate bogies, but this was slow, required several operatives and added to the downtime of our skilled fitters.“On top of that, it increased the risk of accidental damage to the bogies and injury to our staff. AV Access’s bogie manipulator has been transformational, and has contributed significantly to the quality assurance of our operations. “It is safe, quick and simple to use and can be operated by one technician. It has significantly reduced downtime of craft fitters, improved team working and, in the two years we’ve been using the equipment, we have not experienced one incident of accidental damage.”
Irish Rail operates trains from different manufacturers, so they needed a manipulator that could hold and rotate up to 10 different types of bogies, with range of equipment attachments.It was quite a challenge. The main task was to manage EMU and DMU power and trailer
bogies. We were determined to come up with a solution that was flexible and simple to use. Our manipulator now allows Irish Rail to lift and rotate through 360 degrees bogie assemblies of up to 10 tonnes.
Irish Rail operates two AV Access bogie manipulators as part of a maintenance programme for 200 bogies are year. Each bogie is placed in a manipulator frame. Special attachments take account of different shapes and hold points. The bogie can then be lifted into a cradle to be worked on. All AV Access lifting equipment is independently tested against LOLER standards. O’Meara said: “AV Access’s manipulator has
been welcomed by our workshop team because it’s made their jobs a lot easier. The bogie held in the frame can be worked on, on one side, then quickly and safely rotated by one operative to allow work to continue on the other. It’s an impressive piece of kit.”
AV Access will continue to develop our highly successful train access systems – and build on the success and obvious potential of our bogie manipulator.We can develop simple but powerful lifting and manual handling solutions for the rail industry clients, bringing to bear our machinery engineering know-how as well as our leading access expertise.
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