Intuitive Gearbox Configurator Update Reduces Costly Specifying Oversights
When working with and specifying a product on a regular basis, selection can seem simple: “Anyone can get it right”. However, that may not be the case at all when making a product selection only once a year. Product specification and ordering can be a challenge.
Like many companies, Boston Gear provides application support teams to help customers with the selection process. Several years ago, Boston Gear launched a configurator that helps the customer service associates select the exact gearbox model that meets their customer’s specific application requirements.
For example, to select a Boston Gear 700 series right angle gearbox, 15 variables need to defined within the configurator. There are theoretically more than six billion possible end assemblies when all of the variables are taken into account. Without the configurator’s sophisticated selection guidance, customers might not receive key features that will impact their product performance.
IMPROVING SPECIFICATION ACCURACY
Boston Gear recently re-programmed the 700 Series configurator to improve specification accuracy even further. The programming changes created new feature default selections that automatically occur when other related optional features are selected. These new defaults help ensure that the customer receives the correct gearbox features that will provide long life reliability when installed.
STAINLESS STEEL SHAFTS ON GEARBOXES SELECTED WITH WASHDOWN DUTY PAINT
Boston Gear offers options for washdown-duty paint that, when selected, creates a gearbox that will not corrode when subjected to repeated washdowns as might occur in a food processing plant. Now, when any of these coating options are selected, the configurator automatically defaults to include a stainless steel shaft and hardware rather than the standard alloy materials used in nonwashdown gearboxes.
In this way, even if customers have not considered shaft material, they will automatically receive a gearbox with a shaft that will not corrode in their washdown application.
DUAL INTPUT SEALS AUTOMATICALLY SELECTED BASED ON LUBRICANT LEVELS
700 Series gearboxes can be mounted in a variety of orientations. In the most common (called mounting position #1) the input shaft and seal are above the lubricant level. However, in several other mounting positions the input seal will be wholly or partially submerged in the lubricant.
In mounting position #1, with the seal above lubricant level, any loss of lubricant is minor. But in other mounting positions it can be significant to the point where oil leakage may be both a cosmetic and performance problem.
Now, when any mounting position is chosen where the input is at or below lubricant level, the configurator automatically selects dual input seals. Dual seals will prevent leaks even if the motor assembly is not optimal.
A review of the past few years of data has confirmed the significant impact of these configurator changes. Gearbox complaints and returns logged for input seal leaks have dropped by 75% since this change was implemented.
REDUCER EXPRESS OPTION ALERT
Another useful configurator feature involves Boston Gear’s Reducer Express service that guarantees sameday shipment of qualifying models if an order is placed by 2 PM EST. For brand new gearbox variations the configurator generates all of the necessary details to enter a new purchase order immediately. Repeat customers have learned to trust same-day shipments for breakdown situations.
In 2017, thousands of customers ordered gearboxes that were shipped the same day through the popular Boston Gear Reducer Express service with an impressive 99% on-time delivery rate.