Machine Tools and Manufacturing Equipment
An aluminum bronze bushing that serves as a guide in a crimping machine began to fail after 50,000 cycles or approximately two weeks of operation. Until then, typical run times had been on the order of months. Although the bushings are replaceable and relatively inexpensive, the cost of downtime adds up quickly while operators troubleshoot and swap out worn components. Initially, the quality of the bushings came into question, but after a detailed analysis of the entire crimping mechanism, several other issues emerged that were not previously considered. As a result, the investigation provides information on not only better materials, but also design changes intended to reduce wear and increase service life.