RUD Chains claims to have made further improvements to its Dominator armoured face conveyor and beam stage loader chain connectors, increasing their service life and that of AFC and BSL chains.
“The Dominator’s performance has been enhanced with a stainless steel locking pin as standard, and every connector in the 30-38mm size range is now rated at a minimum 150,000 cycles — a significant improvement over previous RUD designs and alternative connectors,” the company said.
The Dominator connector series was first introduced by RUD in 1997. The heavy-duty flat connector is said to have performed impressively at a number of local longwall mines.
“Longwall mines are reporting improvements in productivity due to he long service life of the Dominator,” said RUD’s Trevor Pembroke. “In fact, the improved design of the Dominator allows it to achieve the same service life as AFC chain, which means a reduction in costs and less downtime as the connector and AFC chain can be replaced at the one time.”
Pembroke said the connector was also designed to meet increased physical demands of new, higher-capacity AFC’s, offering greater fatigue and dynamic strength. “This has been achieved through a unique work hardening technique that is many times more precise than other methods,” he said.
“RUD’s research and development has led to a special tool shape and resulting impression which optimises the work hardening to the connector’s geometric and material parameters.”
Laboratory and field testing confirmed the effectiveness of the manufacturing technique prior to commercial production of the latest Dominator connectors, he said.