An order for a Spillminator with Vesconite bushings at the pivot points was dispatched by Lani Service Centre to a South African gold-mining company in September 2017.
A Spillminator is a piece of equipment that lies within a standard bulkhead installation and attaches to the hanging wall overpass chute opening to control the flow of ore onto hoppers or conveyors in underground mines.
It comprises two doors, including primary and a secondary back-up door, which are pneumatically driven and manually operated.
The primary door allows the required ore to pass through the chute, while the secondary door ensures that the chute remains closed in the case of a mud rush. In the case of a door jam, the secondary door serves as a backup to avoid any ore or mud passing through and compromising worker safety.
Lani Service Centre workshop manager Jonathan van Biljon informs that Vesconite bushings are installed at the pivot points around which the two doors, which lie at either side of the chute, rotate.
The bushings are desired because they are self lubricating, can withstand the high pressures involved in the application, and are able to cope with a dirty wet mining environment, he says.
Van Biljon informs that the company, which repairs and manufactures many engineered products out of steel, produced eight doors (or four set ups) last year and has produced two doors (or one set up) this year, following a successful tender.
He notes that many mines use Spillminators of different sizes.
This specialised application is being introduced widely since it ensures the efficient flow of ore, without spillage. It also ensures that staff and machinery are protected from mud rushes that have historically claimed lives as well as resulted in equipment damage in South Africa’s mining sector.