Caster Testing Machines
Dynamic Wheel Endurance Test Machine (DWETM)
Caster Concepts Testing Machine
Caster Concepts engineers have developed a state-of-the-art, fully automated caster testing machines to simulate real-world use of their products in a laboratory setting. The Dynamic Wheel Endurance Test Machine (DWETM) is computer controlled and can run unattended on a continuous basis.
The list of features of the DWETM includes:
- Automatic changing of testing conditions, load, speed and test duration
- Ability to simulate static and dynamic loads up to 10,000 pounds and speeds up to 20 mph
- Ability to automatically stop testing sessions when it senses a failure condition
- A force load cell to measure load on the test product
- A torque and speed sensor to measure the speed of the wheel and the torque being exerted onto the test wheel
- An infrared temperature sensor to measure wheel temperature
- An accelerometer to measure machine vibration
- All testing data from the DWETM is fed directly into a computer-based controller and can be reviewed and analyzed using software designed specifically for this purpose
The DWETM was designed, built and tested entirely by Caster Concepts RapidType Engineering team.The video below shows the DWETM in action:
Portable, Continuous Ergonomic Pull Tester (PCEPT)
Caster Concepts engineers have also developed the Portable Continuous Ergonomic Pull Tester (PCEPT), a tool to acquire and record pull-force data with a high degree of accuracy and repetition. This semi-automated portable testing machine is capable of simultaneously measuring, displaying and recording pull force data and pull speed data.
Prior to the development of the PCEPT, Caster Concepts used an electronic, handheld scale to measure the pull force needed to roll its caster products. The data was displayed on a small LCD readout but testers were unable to record the data for review and analysis after testing. Data from this method of testing proved to be inconsistent and unreliable.
The PCEPT’s computer-based data acquisition system records all incoming data and the custom-designed software allows the data to be retrieved and analyzed. An open-loop motor controller ensures that run conditions remain constant between different test sessions, resulting in very repeatable and consistent measurements.
The PCEPT and all its components were designed and manufactured entirely in-house by Caster Concepts engineers. Multi-functional Static Condition Caster Test Machine
The multifunctional Static Condition Caster Test Machine (SCCTM) is another wonder created by the Caster Concepts engineering team. This test machine was built to verify and quantify the static characteristics of Caster Concepts current and future product lines. Specifically, the static tester can continuously measure the stiffness profile of spring-loaded and other shock absorption casters along their entire travel length. It can also be used to determine tread bond strength and quality of elastomer-treaded wheels. Additionally, the static tester can continuously measure the resulting footprint of a wheel with respect to the load applied, thus capturing the change in footprint area as the load applied to the wheel is varied.
Our aim was to create a low cost multi-functional machine capable of generating useful data for a wide range of products. In order to reduce the cost and maintain flexibility, much of the SCCTM functionality is not automated. Since operation and testing time of each specimen is relatively short, an operator is required to be present at all times. The operator duties in running the test machine include loading and unloading specimens, initiating of the data acquisition software and controlling the force actuation mechanism.
The SCCTM is capable of generating and measuring 20,000 pounds of force though its hydraulic cylinder and S beam load cell. The cylinder has 10 inches of travel measured through a linear encoder. Its plunging height can be further adjusted to accommodate various caster sizes with the addition of extension rods.
All data is recorded through a computer-based data acquisition system and custom software. All electronics and software were developed by Caster Concepts engineers.
The video below shows the SCCTM in action: