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Brammer, a distributor of industrial maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) products and services, has provided around GBP120,000 in cost savings for paper manufacturer Union Papertech.

Lancashire-based Union Papertech operates a number of manufacturing processes powered by electric motors ranging from 110kW to 250kW and, to improve energy efficiency and process control, all are controlled by variable-speed drives (VSDs).

Holding spare stock to cover the complete motor and VSD range was seen as expensive, tying up valuable working capital.

However, in the event of a breakdown, not having the right products in stock could lead to substantial and costly downtime.

Technical specialists from Brammer were called in to assess whether or not a different process of repair and replacement could be introduced.

With so many variations of VSD in operation, it seemed sensible to invest in a mobile solution that could be configured to control any application in a relatively short space of time.

This worked well in theory, but was put to the test almost immediately.

When a VSD failed just a few days into this new maintenance spares management programme, the mobile drive was configured and helped to keep the plant running until a replacement could be delivered.

Steve Sherlock of Union Papertech said: ‘This investment has been an instant success – it has effectively paid for itself five times over in the space of a few weeks.

‘We could have potentially suffered significantly from breakdowns if any of the existing inverters were to fail.

‘This wastage is expensive but the cost of not running the machinery is huge and downtime was a major drain on our resources, until we called Brammer in.

‘This unique solution has allowed us to maintain optimum output while any spares can be ordered in as and when we need them,’ he added.

Jeremy Salisbury of Brammer said: ‘It makes enormous sense to incorporate a versatile solution where so many different replacements may be needed.

‘By using the mobile VSD in this way, we have effectively eliminated the need for the customer to keep some GBP150,000 of spares in stock, significantly reducing their working capital.

‘It also helps to minimise plant downtime as changing over to the mobile solution only takes a couple of hours,’ he added.

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