Hebco Industrial provides critical equipment fault diagnoses to their customers using Acoem Bearing DefenderTM

Acoem Bearing DefenderTM being used by Hebco Industrial in Melbourne to accurately test industrial gearboxes

Since Hebco Industrial started using Acoem’s Bearing DefenderTM to detect the cause of defects and faults in industrial gearboxes, Hebco has transformed the way it operates and plans to expand into new markets. Bearing DefenderTM allows the company to be fully confident that the gearboxes they are supplying and repairing are fit for purpose, saving Hebco and its customers time and money.

Hebco Industrial is a Melbourne-based business that has been operating since 1933. It provides a range of products and services to the pump and power transmission industries, with expertise in repairs, refurbishment and maintenance of pump drives and gearboxes.

Accurate data analysis for vibration monitoring

With customers like Mobil, Shell, other petrochemical companies, and power stations like Origin Energy at Darling Downs, it is essential that Hebco has access to the most accurate data and analysis for vibration monitoring of their gearboxes. This ensures they are able to quickly and easily locate any defects and faults, and rectify them prior to customer handover. Companies like these run mission-critical gearboxes worth in excess of 100k each and need to minimise downtime when equipment fails.

Hebco first began working with Acoem instruments in 2017 on a project for the Wood Group (Woodside) in Karratha, WA. When these particular gearboxes failed their inital string test due to high vibration, the data received from other monitoring instruments wasn’t conclusive. During the second string test, Hebco contacted Statewide Bearings Plus, who used the Acoem HawkTM to diagnose the vibration source. The cause of the high vibration was a highly unusual failure to the internal coating, which was only identified upon disassembly of the gearbox. Nonetheless, the Acoem HawkTM was instrumental in diagnosis and subsequent testing to ensure the problem had been solved.

Testing every gearbox thoroughly – making the end-user’s life easier

Hebco also experienced a small number of unexplained gearbox warranty issues that appeared to be bearing fault related, but it was impossible to pinpoint the root cause as the gearboxes had failed so catastrophically that all evidence was destroyed.

It was then that Hebco Industrial Managing Director, Rodger Brehaut decided that the only way to have complete confidence in the gearboxes he was providing was to do vibration testing of every gearbox at the Hebco workshop before they went out to customers.

Acoem Bearing DefenderTM was a very attractive and affordable option for Hebco. Bearing DefenderTM gave Hebco the ability to check all bearings and gears, and identify obvious defects that could be rectified immediately before they reached the end user.

The company has now been using Bearing DefenderTM since mid-2019 and approximately 100 gearbox systems have been tested. Not only did this save time and money for Hebco and their customers, but rectifying the issues before they reached the customer meant ensuring Hebco’s reputation for excellence in quality and customer service.

Constant change & adaptation carves a niche in the market 

Bearing DefenderTM has also been an impetus for Hebco’s plans into the industrial repair market after 30 years of supporting a single Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM).

“Using Bearing DefenderTM gives us a competitive advantage and puts us in a unique position in the market,” commented Rodger.

“By testing all gearboxes with Bearing DefenderTM, we are significantly more advanced than competitors similar in size to use. We can offer our cusomers proof of our workmanship and back it up with accurate data, and a warranty that lets us compete with businesses many times larger than we are,” he added.

“We are constantly changing and adapting, and with Acoem technology, we are diversifying our product offering to meet industry demand. It is a well-priced solution that helps us make informed decisions.”