Alan Hitchcox

Penton Media Inc.

Alan became a technical editor in 1981 and joined Hydraulics & Pneumatics in 1987. After serving in the US Army as a wheeled vehicle mechanic, he graduated with a BS in engineering technology from Franklin University, Columbus, Ohio, while working as an industrial service coordinator and project manager at an industrial distributor. He has taken technical courses in fluid power and electronic and digital control at the Milwaukee School of Engineering and the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee and has served on several industry committees.

Hydraulic troubleshooting video

Last year Webtec sponsored the first “Introduction to hydraulic fault prevention and diagnostics” day at the National Fluid Power Centre, in Worksop, England. The day provided opportunities to participate in hands-on workshops, and hear a number of speakers. Webtec recorded John Savage’s, Director of the NFPC, seminar on hydraulic fault-prevention.

NFPA announces 2013 Fluid Power Systems Conference

Registration is opening soon for the 2013 Fluid Power Systems Conference, formerly known as the Energy Efficient Hydraulics and Pneumatics Conference, November 19- 21, 2013 at the Doubletree Hotel, Rosemont, Illinois.

Hosted by the International Fluid Power Society (IFPS), the FPDA Motion and Control Network (FPDA), and the National Fluid Power Association (NFPA), this two-day educational conference will focus on:

Beauty isn’t just skin deep

Unless you build hydraulic test stands, you probably rarely see bright, shiny new ones. But you’ll find just that in Fountain Inn, S. C. As part of the grand opening for its new hydraulics campus in Fountain Inn, Bosch Rexroth US unveiled a new test stand for evaluating its Rineer brand of vane type variable-displacement hydraulic motors.

Customized motors increase speed by 40%

Work output in a potash mine requires machines with high mobility and reliability. Potash is a salt containing a high concentration of water-soluble potassium, so it is widely used in fertilizer. In response to the world’s increased demand for potash, Canada’s PotashCorp., Saskatoon, SK (PCS) stepped up production at its Rocanville, SK mining facility with an X CEL 44 continuous bore mining machine.

Class 2 Heavy Duty Cylinders

Heavy-duty  cylinders have cast-iron end caps for hydraulic or air pressure to 450 psi. These cylinders incorporate recessed gasketed tube seals and piston o-ring as standard features. Each assembly is prelubricated and 100% pressure tested. More than five mounting styles in 11 standard bores from 2½ to 6 in.

Safety with explosion-proof air springs

ContiTech Air Spring Systems released a new line of ATEX-certified air actuators, making them suitable for explosion-prone areas of industrial applications. As Category 2 and 3 equipment (Equipment Group II), they can be used in atmospheres containing volatile gas or dust.

Simulation table shrinks design-to-market window

Kemflo International Co. Ltd., Taiwan, entered the automotive accessories market in 2009 by acquiring U.S.-based Yakima Products, a maker of car racks and cargo boxes for carrying skis, bikes, and snow boards.

High-strength steel is made for hydraulic cylinders

Ovako North America Inc., Ft. Mill, S.C., offers its Ovahyd 600, 650, and 700 hydraulic steels, which were developed mainly for the manufacture of highly stressed hydraulic components, such as cylinder tubes and piston rods. The steels have impact strengths of 600, 650, and 700 MPa, respectively, and come in bars and seamless tubes. Ovahyd 600 comes in bar ODs from 24 to 160 mm and tubes from 56- to 205-mm OD with 40-mm wall thickness. The 650 and 700 grades come in bar ODs from 24 to 75 mm and tube ODs from 55 to 205 mm with 25-mm wall thickness.

Combo machine crimps hose and bends tubing

Lomar Machine & Tool Co., Horton, Mich, offers the compact S1095 hydraulic die-set crimp press with a tube-bending module. This machine combines two normally separate manufacturing processes into one operation. The self-contained machine crimps fittings onto a tube assembly, then bends the tube into its required configuration. Of course, the S1095 also will crimp fittings onto hose.

Bio-based Fluids Help Keep the Emerald Coast Green

Today’s “bio-friendly” hydraulic fluids have succeeded in debunking the myth that “green” products fail to work effectively for waste management fleet vehicles. Bio-friendly hydraulic fluids can not only meet or exceed the performance of conventional petroleum-based fluids, but also help reduce financial and environmental risk.
Fluids in the field

Tandem pumps power street sweeper
Today's street sweepers offer improved hydraulic efficiency and reliability over those of even a few years ago.
Refreshing news for U.S. manufacturing
I was privileged to be among only a few editors to attend the opening ceremonies of a new manufacturing plant for Bosch Rexroth in Fountain Inn, S. C. As expected, several big wigs were there, including the governor of South Carolina, the president of Bosch Rexroth Americas, the plant manager, and even a couple board members from Robert Bosch GmbH. A news story on page 8 of this issue provides some details, and even more information is available on our website.
Huge hydraulic campus opens in South Carolina

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and Bosch Rexroth Americas President Berend Bracht led an official ribbon-cutting ceremony at Bosch Rexroth's newest manufacturing  campus, in Fountain Inn S. C. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Bosch Rexroth is investing $80 million over five years to expand production in the new campus and convert an existing 260,000-square-foot industrial warehouse into a facility that will initially manufacture the Rexroth A10VO hydraulic pump.

Additional photos from "MRI patients walk on water"
Here's a selection of images showing the different components (HPU, reservoir, cable, motor, cylinder) of the hydraulic system that powered a unique treadmill that uses water hydraulics.
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