VIEWS: 11 PAGES: 5 CATEGORY: Engineering & Energy POSTED ON: 6/3/2010
"We recently had an inspection where the tractor was one of the owner's personal trucks - his little baby for years," [Jeff Priborsky] says. "It had just over 1.25 million miles, and he said, 'Well, we're going to get her overhauled - let's see what it's like.' So that's what we did the inspection on, and when he was able to see the condition of his engine, he said, 'Wow, you just saved me $15,000, because I don't need to do a thing to this truck.'"...
HEAVY DUTY VideoCheck lights the way Shell’s roving inspection kit focuses on fleets’ engine maintenance G etting a “digital inspection” is not necessar- we can usually respond quite quickly.” ily something that fleet professionals look The technology was first developed for the medical industry but forward to. was adapted for industrial use—at first to inspect aircraft engines That is, unless Shell Lubricants’ VideoCheck™ digital inspection and turbines before Shell used it to see inside of on and off-highway system is coming to your shop to make sure your trucks’ engines diesel engines and gearboxes. Priborsky says while the system is are in good shape. VideoCheck™ is a state-of-the-art digital fiber optic mainly used to validate fleets’ maintenance schedules and prac- method to inspect hard-to-access internal engine components like cyl- tices, sometimes it is at the right place at the right time to save inder heads, valves and pistons, saving many hours of labor. some serious money. The system uses a small video camera attached to the end of an “We had a large mining customer out west that just put a large adjustable cable, which is fed into the engine to transmit images to piece of equipment back in service after having a complete rebuild a high-resolution laptop monitor. This less invasive method allows for on the engine, and cost-per-hour to run one of those and the revenue a complete engine assessment without completely tearing apart (and those generate is staggering,” he says. “Within 20 hours, they were putting back together) the engine, identifies potential damage or prob- developing issues, and the engine OEM said, ‘You did something lems and provides visual indication of lubrication performance. wrong—you have a lubricants issue.’ We were able to get our Video- VideoCheck™ records and saves video images of key engine com- Check operator out there within 48 hours and inspected it and deter- ponents and the operator issues a report, including diagnoses and mined it was an assembly issue. And we were able to document that recommendations, if any. The program is free of charge and available to show the OEM.” for any Shell customers or prospects. Sometimes, VideoCheck can help save fleets money by proving that components do not need to be replaced right away. COAST TO COAST “We recently had an inspection where the tractor was one of the Jeff Priborsky, Shell Lubricants U.S. marketing manager (business- owner’s personal trucks—his little baby for years,” Priborsky says. to-business), says VideoCheck first started in Mexico before moving “It had just over 1.25 million miles, and he said, ‘Well, we’re going north of the border around three years ago, and now has two full-time to get her overhauled—let’s see what it’s like.’ So that’s what we did operators criss-crossing the country. the inspection on, and when he was able to see the condition of his “We keep two guys pretty busy—this year alone we’ve done over engine, he said, ‘Wow, you just saved me $15,000, because I don’t 200 inspections and/or demonstrations, and next year we plan to need to do a thing to this truck.’” break the 300 mark,” he says. “We set out a schedule for the entire Sometimes the VideoCheck™ system arrives just in the nick of year, and we work with our fleet reps and provide them each with two time. An over-the-road transport tractor was having problems, but the weeks during the course of the year. There’s enough flexibility in the fleet owner had no idea why and didn’t think it was bad enough to program with two operators where if there is an emergency situation, pull the truck off the road. A VideoCheck™ inspection found that while where you’ve had a catastrophic failure or something of that nature, the piston showed no signs of notable deposits, major damage was 12 Fleet Maintenance December 2008 seen along its crown and outside edge. The truck was pulled off the While he has avoided any major problems with his current fleet, road, possibly avoiding a costly on-road failure.
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