Lubrication Fluid Levels in Vibrating Grizzly Feeders: Why Monitoring is a Must?

January 29, 2019

Just to drive the point home, grizzly feeders are forced to handle incredibly heavy shock loads. Of key importance, they continually operate under such abrasive conditions while they pass high volumes of feed material straight to an awaiting primary crusher. Keeping the uninterrupted throughput flowing, their vibrating mechanisms slip past one another, again continuously, all thanks to a rich supply of lubricating fluid.

Deconstructing a Lubricated Vibrating Grizzly Feeder

The fluid levels are high, as marked on an oil gauge. Splitting the equipment open, the oscillating parts and eccentrically shaped shaft mechanisms are brought into open view. Those shafts and their off-centre fittings are built to deliver an aggressively profiled linear stroke. Further back, massive anti-friction bearings use smooth rolling element action to engage the gear side. A mist of oil develops as a thick film on those high-performance gears. Meanwhile, making sure the drive side parts slip past one another, a greasy lube smears its way through and around those fast-moving mechanical assemblies.

Checking the Lube Levels

Kept high, the lubrication fluid levels reduce friction. Like a finely purring automobile engine, the drive gears and anti-friction bearings roll back and forward. Unlike a car engine, the frictionless linear stroke strikes heavily, but that’s to be expected on a piece of equipment that sits right at the front of the mineral scalping process. What if the levels drop low? A maintenance logbook has been lost, or someone has made a dangerous mistake. Whatever the reason, the lube levels are dropping. The vibrating grizzly feeder runs hot, but now the heat s radiating off of its housing in waves. The bearings crack and squeal. Energy losses are next. They run wild. Downstream, the heavier minerals are escaping the feeder unprocessed. The primary crusher experiences damage, as it’s next in the equipment lineup.

A System Crash in Motion

The breakdown may happen all at once. More likely, it’ll occur over time. The linear stroke suffers. The timing, the synchronized action that takes place between the stroke assembly and the crusher feed section, falls out of sync. Oversize and undersize scalp materials somehow find their way through the scalping bars and into the output stream, and that output disgorges as a crusher inhibiting outflow, which can’t be dealt with until the lubrication level is restored.

Worse still, if the issue goes unnoticed, a serious breakdown threat becomes an unavoidable downtime incident. The bearings fracture and self-destruct, formerly slippery drive parts seize and fracture, and the only option is an expensive overhaul. To improve primary crusher efficiency and keep a vibrating grizzly feeder functioning, keep checking the lubrication fluid levels. Doing otherwise invites disaster.

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