Belt Conveying Optimised Troubleshooting Belt Cleaners

Author / Editor: Sean Kinder / Wolfgang Geisler

In todays mining industry optimized productivity is of paramount importance also in the field of material conveying. This requires belts with clean and undamaged surface. Following please find five points to ponder with regard to belt cleaners.

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(Picture: © Kinder & Company Pty. Ltd.)

Discussions of improvements to correct conveyor belt cleaning is becoming more of a necessity in the mining industry. Incorrect practice in material discharge and the overall housekeeping of the belt may result in premature failing conveyor components, tracking issues, excessive belt wear and spillage - resulting in a decrease in productivity. This troubleshooting article focuses on the operation and maintenance of primary belt cleaners.

With the ever changing weather conditions affecting product moisture content and the percentages of fines, clay and silica present, belt cleaners are becoming more developed and engineered than in previous generations. However, with this new generation of belt cleaner comes a new list of maintenance issues which need to be addressed so that optimal productivity can be achieved.

Accessibility to Location and Inspection

Primary belt cleaners are commonly installed in very adverse locations around the plant. Positions often include at the head pulley of an incline belt, further complicated by hoods or guards which enclose the system.

In some mobile equipment cases there is sometimes no direct catwalk and staff are required to use a scissor lift, work platforms or actually lowering the conveyor to gain access. In other extreme cases, specialist training such as confined space access or working at heights must be undertaken in order to maintain the belt cleaners.

However, under all circumstances, for any maintenance work to be completed on a belt cleaner, the surrounding area must be completely isolated and hazard managed. By optimising the life of the belt cleaner, this will result in a reduction in the number of unplanned stoppages for maintenance tasks and definitely improve site productivity.

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