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

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.

Primary Air Fans

Primary Air (P.A.) fans force air into the furnaces of coal-fired power plants. Rotating at 1,600 RPM, they have to be solid, balanced and reliable.

 

Here is a new P.A. fan. It has been welded and the center hub riveted. The welds are then inspected to AWS D14.6 Standards using Magnetic Particle Inspection.

 

The fans are then balanced; much like you’d balance the wheels on your car. The shafts are also balanced and a mated set is created to ensure smooth rotation and a long service life.

 

Custom Replacement Parts

Your facility has a 50 year old unit and replacement parts are not available. You have no drawings and the few parts you do have look like this!

 

 

 

 

 

This is a problem we see with the aging facilities common in our area. Luckily quick in-house replacement parts are one of our specialties.

3D Render of Buckstay Clips
3D Render of Buckstay Clips

No on-line hunting for parts – No stealing from other units! Give Riggs a call and get running again.

Buckstay Clip Inventor DWG
Buckstay Clip Inventor DWG

The Gator – First Test

The Gator is a remote controlled tank cleaning unit we built for Veolia Environmental Services. It is driven into large tanks to clean the walls of hazardous materials. Its infrared lights cut through the dark and mist while recording all operations from the safety of a control booth.

This is a test of the unit running up a ramp and squeezing through a manway as it would enter a tank in the field.