Portable line boring machines are saving construction companies lots of money. Heavy equipment track rollers, attachment pivot point holes, and all of those turning and pivot points on construction equipment wear notoriously. Adequate lubrication goes a long way in extending the serviceable life of these attachment points but eventually repairs are needed as the holes become enlarged and out-of-round. The repair process that is widely used is to build up the inside of the hole with weld and then precisely bore the hole to the correct dimension for the pin. In some cases the hole is rebored to accommodate a bushing.
Portable Line Boring Machines for Field Repairs
Removing attachments or track parts and taking them to a machine shop for repair is not only time consuming but expensive. Many construction companies prefer to do the repairs in the field using portable line boring machines. These tools actually come in handy for a wide variety of field repairs and machining, including:
- line pins
- loader buckets
- gear boxes, transmission housing
- stern tubes
- resizing attachments to fit newer equipment
- steering and king-pin assemblies
- drive shaft housing boring
- A-frame supports
Portable line boring machines have a variety of drive options. Some will operate on electric, pneumatic and hydraulic, while others may only operate on either air or hydraulics. The boring diameters are widely variable with some units capable of boring 1.5 inches in diameter to 24 inches in diameter, while others can bore up to 80 inches in diameter, and more.
A Major Cost Saving Example
These machines offer workshop quality tolerances right at the job site and in recent years the advances in portable machine tools in general has moved more and more maintenance to the field. This can result in significant savings over sending equipment to a machine shop for repairs. One equipment owner working in South America was able to have a nearly 11-foot diameter slewing ring on a shovel machined in the field to within 0.098 mm tolerance, avoiding the estimated $10,000 to $15,000 transportation costs of moving the equipment to a machine shop. The owner also avoided the transportation down time.
Portable line boring machines used for heavy equipment repairs also enable those repairs in a more timely fashion. They make it easier to effect the repairs and therefore contribute to preventive maintenance efforts. Portable line boring machines, as well as other portable machine tools, can be purchased or rented, giving equipment owners control over the balance between utilization and cost.