Industrial Platform Handrail – Ergonomics and Safety

Industrial platforms and walkways typically use one of two types of handrail – round bar or angle.

round rail platform
updated angle based handrail

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

But recently we’ve seen the addition of a lower handrail, which is more ergonomic and comfortable.

smoother, more ergonomic grip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This additional handrail makes transversing stairs much safer. There are no breaks or pinch points as you move your hand along the rail. The placement is more convenient and it just has a better feel to it.

stairs w/ lower handrail
new handrail in place

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Even better, this handrail can be added to existing walkways and platforms. If you have a heavily trafficked area or a thoroughfare on which you’d like to beef up the safety – rather than replace the entire structure, consider this simple (and cost effective) addition. Give Riggs a call, we’re here to help.

easily added to existing walkways

Screw Conveyor – Auger

The Auger Conveyor uses a rotating helical screw blade to move materials along its length. This unit moves abrasive materials from hopper to hopper then to bagging.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Notice how the abrasive material has worn down the blades. Also, material is sticking to the untreated blades. Material slides over the smaller, worn out blades making the conveyor ineffective. Jobs take longer and costs rise quickly.

 

 

This new unit has Hardfacing Wire (Lincore 55) welded to the blades to reinforce them and add durability. This surface resists sliding wear and mild abrasion. These new blades will have a longer service life.

 

Saying Goodbye to a Good Friend

It is with heavy hearts we say goodbye to a great friend and colleague, Randall Peterman. Randall passed away on August 29 after a short illness. It has taken everyone at Riggs by surprise. His humor and joyfulness will be missed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Randall started with us in 2000 cleaning and sweeping around the shop, then later moved on as a driver. He recently became a sales rep for Riggs Machine and used his outgoing personality to gain the trust of customers where other sales reps might falter. His open nature and ease of conversation made our clients comfortable with him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Randall was a unique individual and had his own ways of doing things. He was not afraid of criticism and would let you know where you stood. His quick wit and smile was his calling card.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Many knew Randall as the Mayor of Catlettsburg, KY, a city he loved. He also ran a catering business, but it was more of a reason to socialize and be with people. You could say his hobby was helping people. Randall made sure everyone else was taken care of first.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Randall, trust you will not be forgotten. Remembered in the stories told of your hijinks and humor, the people you’ve helped and the lives you’ve touched. Rest well dear friend.

Grapple – A Hook or Claw to Catch or Hold

And boy do they!

Photo by James Dave Fitzwall / CC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You may be familiar with the design, it has been used for years from junk yards to the toy dispenser in the mall arcade. The reason is simple, they work. The four finger design can lift almost anything. This is very handy in a scrap yard when you never know what is coming in next or the condition an item may be in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This set is from a metal yard and they are abused on a daily basis. They pull scrap from rail cars and trucks all day and drop it into awaiting shredders and barges.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

To extend the life of the hooks, the ends are cut off and new tips are welded on. All four “fingers” are replaced at the same time to keep balance and even wear of the unit. The key is making sure all four tips line up and meet in the center of the unit, ensuring maximum performance. Not an easy task on such a large and unwieldy assembly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here they are, ready for assembly on the unit. Soon they will be helping in the cycle of converting scrap into metal that will go back to the steel mills to make new products.

 

Industrial Classroom Training Aids

If you ever wondered where the custom training equipment in industrial classrooms come from, then look no further than Riggs Machine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At Riggs we can create custom pieces from scratch, like this “oil flinger” demonstration unit. Shown from conception, with 3D renders, to the final unit in the classroom.

3D Oil Render Test
Oil Flinger 3D Render

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And we also often disassemble, create “cut-away” sections, sandblast, paint and reassemble actual pieces of equipment to be used in working classrooms. These units are used for hands-on training before students hit the field. Much better than a video or book based lecture.

FinTube Assembly – Ready for Class
Custom Cut-Aways

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some of these jobs can be more time and labor intensive than actual repairs! But we don’t mind. We’re proud to be part of the team who help educate the next generation who will be keeping our refineries, steel mills and factories running.

Pump Cut Away in Process
Pump Lid – Painting Detail

The Target Blind – Revisited

Blinds, sometimes known as blanks, isolate a section of pipe for repair, maintenance or testing. There are many types of blinds as we have shown before from the slip blind, the spectacle blind to the bleeder blind.

 

 

 

 

 

Here we have a nice assortment of Target Blinds. Used much like the bleeder blind, the target blind is placed on the end of a pipe section rather than in the center of a section. Gauges can be placed on the valves to test the pressure in the section of piping. Sampling can also be taken from the valve if desired.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The different sizes correspond with the different sizes of piping found within the refinery.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This group of target blinds is a bit “beefier” than usual. They will be used during the permanent shutdown of a unit until the demolition of the unit occurs. There may be need for occasional venting of the piping section until the demo.

Explosion Proof Hatch – Pyrite Ducts

Here are some newly machined explosion-proof hatches for pyrite ducts.

In preparing coal for energy production, pyrite, a sulfide that contributes to air pollution and acid rain, is removed before burning. The separated pyrite is forced through ducts to waiting hoppers using high pressure fans. These ducts have negative pressure in them. If a chunk of pyrite gets stuck in a hopper then unit has to be shut down and the duct removed from the unit to be cleaned.

Photo by James St. John / CC by
Sphalerite-Pyrite

With the addition of these hatches, if a chunk of pyrite gets stuck in the hopper, it is only a temporary shut down while the hatch is opened and the material is washed out. Once the hatch is sealed, the unit is quickly brought back on-line. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These hatches have also been used as inspection doors on gearboxes, giving quick access to the internals for routine maintenance or adjustments. The locking tab on the hatches also helps keep the unit secure.

 

A Phonographic Finish!

No, not what is used when a race is too close to call (that’s a photo finish). But a machined finish added to the raised face on a flange to give an extra level of security to prevent leaks and maintain effective seals.

Spacer Flange w-Phonographic Finish

The Phonographic Finish is actually a serrated finish, either concentric or spiral (much like the grooves on a record), that will grip the gasket between pipe sections firmly.

Phonographic Finish – Close Up

These finishes are typically added on a lathe to specifications set either by the company ordering the flange, the manufacturer or ASME B16.5 guidelines. Below is a render of the completed flange with bolt holes. I would have included a photo of the actual completed unit, but as soon as it was finished, it was rushed to the job site! But that’s why we’re here. Everyone knows who to call when a custom part is needed in a hurry.

Spacer Flange – Render

Is Your Scaffold System OSHA Compliant?

Ladder on Scaffold by George Hoden

Do you use long term scaffolding in place of permanent platforms? Are they stable, secure and up to the new OSHA regulations? Are you still renting your scaffolding and paying for it month after month?

FALL PROTECTION & SCAFFOLDING VIOLATIONS

remain among OSHA’s most frequently cited standard violations.*

 

 

OSHA violations are now subject to higher penalties,

this signals a 78% increase in penalty amounts.*

 

Convert your temporary, unstable scaffolding to a sturdy, permanent structure. No more rentals, no more repairs, no more guard rails that are dangerously low and above all, avoid the fear of those outrageous OSHA fines.

A Riggs Machine representative will review your current needs and outline the best options for your facility. We even offer 3D renders of the unit before construction begins so you can visualize the actual unit design.

  

Walkways – Handrail – Ladders

Riggs can not only deliver new assemblies for your facility, but update your existing equipment to bring it up to the new standards.

 

 

 

 

 

OSHA – Final Rule to Update General Industry Walking-Working Surface and Fall Protection Standards

OSHA – Top Violations

* bdlaw.com – Notes regarding OSHA penalty increases and violation citation frequency.

Witch Hat Strainers

Ever lose a bolt while working on your car, and then have a hard time finding it? Imagine that while working on industrial piping. Well it happens. When a new pipe goes up, many items can find their way trapped in the pipe, and when the unit is first started up, those items go racing to the end of the pipes. Many times leading into a unit or a pump.

A simple bolt in a new pump is a recipe for disaster. The pump is blown. It has to be removed and repaired. They are often in hard to access locations, covered with guards and shrouds. Crews come in! Permits! Downtime! Behind schedule!

But this simple item could have prevented that. The Witch Hat Strainer (also called a Start-Up Strainer), is placed in-line to catch items like bolts, nuts, tools, debris and anything that may have found it’s way in the line during installation or maintenance.

A novel idea that saves time and money.