Why Blog About Shaft Alignment?

VibrAlign’s blog has been up for a few months now, and we hope the information we have all shared has been informative. But, with all of the information available on the internet, why a blog dedicated to shaft alignment? At VibrAlign, we’re out to Realign America. We’ve stood by and watched as:

  • Manufacturing jobs have gone overseas.
  • Apprenticeship and training programs have become victims of budget cuts.
  • Maintenance people have not been instructed on how to properly align machinery, and left to learn it on the job.
  • Maintenance has been asked to do twice the work with half the people.
  • We’re an aging workforce, with aging equipment, but we’re still better than anyone else in the world!

We want to share our expertise with whoever wants to read our blog. Our training staff has decades of experience in alignment – not just teaching it, but doing it! We’ve been in the hot, dirty, tight places too. We have made all of the errors in alignment that you have. We have spent our careers learning a lot of tricks, tips, and shortcuts to make alignment, easy, accurate, and fast. And we sincerely want to share those things with you. We work for a company that sells the best shaft alignment tools available.

The sledgehammers, pry bars, and come alongs haven’t changed much. But the tools and techniques used to accurately measure and align machinery have.

VibrAlign is – without a doubt – the leader in shaft alignment. Our tools are better. Our people are better. Our training is better. No brag–just fact!

So, join on the blog. Read. Comment. Discuss. Even disagree if you want. Let’s start a dialog on how we align machinery. If we don’t respond immediately, please understand that we work for a living too! We’re more likely to be found teaching a training class, or pulling wrenches, than typing a blog post!

We hope you learn from us. We want to learn from you too!

Sincerely,

The VibrAlign Training Staff – David Zdrojewski, Brad Case, Patrick Lawrence, and Stan Riddle

 

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About the Author

Stan Riddle

Stan Riddle joined VibrAlign in 2008. He has 30 years experience in aligning industrial machinery. Stan began his maintenance career working as a machinist and millwright for companies such as Weyerhaeuser, R.J. Reynolds, and Tyco Electronics. He also has over 25 years experience in Predictive Technologies, such as vibration analysis, thermography, oil analysis, and ultrasonic inspection.


He is a certified Level III Vibration Analyst with the Vibration Institute, and is a Past Chairman and Board Member of the Piedmont Chapter.


Stan and his wife live in Yadkinville, NC where he enjoys wood carving, fishing, and anything else outdoors.


18 Comments
  1. Thomas, are you trying to get the base flat or level? They are different. I’d recommend searching this blog for level vs. flat, and posts about soft foot. Good luck on your training!

  2. Thomas Germain

    im a first year millwright student and we jus stared our module on shaft alignment and im havin trouble with the footing and the base we measure this offset of each corner of each footing yet there all different should i put a different shim between each corner of each foo to get it to be level? or could i jus shim a few n if one set flat is that good may seem a weird question but im reall having trouble grasping this n i only have 2 weeks for this class
    thanks

  3. Thanks Jeremiah-I agree 100%! I try to encourage people to just take a couple of minutes and look at the machine, just to see if anything looks out of place. I think the difference between an average mechanic and a great one is the ability to troubleshoot.

  4. JEREMIAH JOHNSON

    What I mean by, step back and look, is sometimes when were working on a project we find ourselfs focused in on the things right in front of us instead of looking at the big picture. Or in this case the whole piece of equipment . By stepping back and taking the focus off of the motor and more on the whole job we can some times find a better solution to the problem.

    Thank you David and Stan. I also enjoyed working with you at the plant i enjoyed learing your techniques and look forward to reading more on the blog. Thanks again.

  5. Hamidreza

    Dear Jeremiah,
    I seem unable to understand your nice phrase “step back and look”
    Would you please explain it more.
    Br
    Hamidreza

  6. Jeremiah, thanks for your contribution. You said the one phrase that makes all the difference – step back and look! I appreciate it!

  7. Jeremiah Johnson

    Hamidreza ,
    Have you considered moving the stationary equipment? It does not take much movement on a stationary piece of equipment to free up a bolt-bound motor. I have found by just stepping back and looking you can get at the least a little bit of movement out of a stationary piece of equipment. If you cannot move it and the only way to get the alignment is to widen the holes then I don’t see a problem. As long as you do like David said, double up on big washers and maybe use hardened washers, if available . This will keep the washers from cupping and the motor moving when torqing it down.

    • Jeremiah,

      How very nice to see your comment. I hope you will read and post often. I truly enjoyed working with and your team a few weeks ago. Warm regards, David.

  8. Hamidreza

    Hi,
    I seem unable to fully understand bellow questions,
    Dear Stan do you mean opening the hole is okay provided that we use cup washer?
    If so this means we can largen the motor hole size as long as the bolt bound is removed.Please confirm if i am correct.
    Another thing that bothers me is why flat washer is not considered okay?
    Would you please confirm the cup washer is just needed during alignment in order to no movement occur during tightening and play no role while machin is running?
    Br
    Hamidreza

  9. Hamidreza

    Hi,
    I am very happy with your great blog as i am more and more learning new valuable information.
    Dear Stan do you mean opening the hole is okay provided that we use cup washer?
    If so this means we can largen the motor hole size as long as the bolt bound is removed.Please confirm if i am correct.
    Another thing that bothers me is why flat washer is not considered okay?
    Would you please confirm the cup washer is just needed during alignment in order to no movement occur during tightening and play no role while machin is running?
    Br
    Hamidreza

    • Stan Riddle

      A cupped washer is not OK. It can cause unwanted movements in the motor when tightening the bolt, causing misalignment.

  10. Here’s a post on cupped washers with a picture.
    http://www.thealignmentblog.com/?p=743

  11. Hamidreza

    Hi,
    Even if no movement occur while tightening,I am of the opinion that as there is space between bolt and motor holes ,the vibration will occur while machine is running.So opening the hole is not going to solve problem.
    Opening the hole cause no contact between bolt and motor feet resulting in creating higher vibration.
    Would you please explain more about the issue and also what do you mean “cupping”,please?
    Br
    Hamidreza

    • Stan Riddle

      I must respectfully disagree. A bolt is a fastener, and works like a clamp. Making the hole larger only serves to facilitate lateral movement of the driving machine.
      A cupped washer is a flat washer that experiences unwanted bending while the fastener is tightened. It normally bends in a cup shape.

  12. Thank you so very much for your kind words, Hamidreza. Read Stan’s earlier entry. I might add, for me personally, I do what I have to do to make good alignments. Sometimes, that indeed, does mean opening the holes. Be careful, though as the washers will “cup” and cause problems maintaining the horizontal alignment when the bolts are being tightened. I recommend using the heaviest washer (or two) to minimize the “cupping”. Anyone else want to respond? We want your responses!!!!!

  13. hamidreza

    This is indeed the best blog i have ever met right across the world.I have really got many usefull advise that you can not find it in any library.There is very much hope in joining in more people.
    My technical questions,
    To alighn machines that are highly bolt bound I have faced with the conditions at which we largen the motor hole size or some condition that the cylindrical hole shape turned into oval. Dear Expert if this is right thing to do?
    What would happen if we change the motor hole size to bigger one?
    Br
    Hamidreza

  14. This is truly what we are about! Thank you for posting, Stan. Come on folks, post some comments, questions, or topics you are interested in.

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