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Articles > Maintenance of roll forming machines (part 1)

Maintenance of roll forming machines (part 1)

Investing in a roll forming machine can make your business more efficient and successful.

Posted by Ben Browne on Wednesday, 9th September 2020

However, it is undoubtedly an investment. To protect it and ensure that you get the most out of your machine for the longest time possible, it is vital to make time for maintenance.

Preventative maintenance of your roll forming machine will mean that it continues to operate smoothly and effectively and could save time, money, and stress in the long term if you don’t, and end up having to fork out for expensive repairs.

Running a roll forming machine 24/7, without taking the time to maintain it could not only significantly increase the risk of it breaking down, but also could increase the likelihood of a person becoming injured trying to fix the machine or attempting to get it to operate correctly.

If you just operate on a ‘replace parts when they break’ mentality, you could end up losing money waiting for parts to arrive. This downtime could mean you cannot fulfill orders or make new products, which could be devastating to your business.

Of course, every maintenance program depends on the specific type of roll former you have. However, some general maintenance tips can be applied to any metal roll forming machine to ensure it remains operating as it should.

Protecting your machine
The coolant system

Make sure that the coolant mixture is precisely measured. The water-soluble oil must be maintained at the ratio of oil to water prescribed by the supplier.

Using a refractometer to measure the correct concentration accurately will help. This should be done daily to ensure the coolant remains clean. Getting the ratio wrong can mean the rollers stick together and could damage product quality.

Lubricants

Shear dies, bearings, and roll former shaft bearings, pillow, and slide blocks need to be lubricated frequently to ensure your roll former continues to run smoothly. Generally speaking, for a machine used on a two-shift operation Monday-Friday for 250 days each year, shear dies should be lubricated daily, roll former shaft bearings monthly, and pillow and slide blocks every year.

Hydraulics

When adding hydraulic oils to new equipment or changing the oil, this must be filtered through a 10 micron (or better) filter. This will ensure that impurities are removed.

It is important to remember that hydraulic oil must be replaced and how often this is necessary will depend on machine usage. An oil service firm will be able to inform you how often oil will need replacing. Hydraulic oil usually requires changing twice a year. Machine operators should review oil levels frequently.

You can determine when in-line hydraulic filters must be changed by checking the indicator. When it moves into the yellow range, this is the ideal time to change the oil. Waiting until it moves into the red range is not advised, as this means no filtering of the oil is taking place.

Cleaning Hydraulic Reservoirs

Making an effort to clean out the reservoir will eliminate as many impurities as possible.

Taking the time to complete the above maintenance will help to ensure that your roll forming machine not only runs effectively but also is free from impurities that could damage the finished product or stop your device from working as it should.

Read part 2 of our maintenance guide for more general machine care tips!

If you are looking for a top-quality roll forming machine or have any questions about our machines, browse our range and get in touch with our helpful customer service team today.

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