Herman Falk first started his machining workshop more than 125 years ago, and today the Falk name has become synonymous with grid couplings across the industrial landscape.
Falk was one of the first to develop “cast welding” for reinforcing joint connections and has since gone on to champion the process of shot peening, which compresses the surface molecules of a component to increase strength and torsional ability.
The Rexnord Falk Steelflex couplings house tapered grids that are constructed from high-strength alloy steel, and are quenched, and tempered to spring hardness. The grid surface is then precision shot peened.
This precision technology was originally used in the production of sophisticated aircraft components, according to Steve Hittmann, CBC’s National Product Manager for Mechanical Drive Systems and Belt Drives. “The effect is a dramatic increase in strength and torque ratings, and a much longer life expectancy for the coupling,” he says.
Thong Phabmixay, Sales and Application Engineer for Rexnord, brings a wealth of expertise to the table. Prior to working for Rexnord, he worked as a Product Manager, specialising in Power Transmission products for over 29 years.
Today, Rexnord and CBC enjoy a longstanding partnership spanning more than 15 years and marked by excellent communication, custom in-house machining efforts, joint calls to customer sites and collaborative training initiatives.
Drawing on that knowledge and background, Thong explains the patented technology that sets Rexnord Falk Steelflex grid couplings apart from the other leading players in the market.
“Third party testing revealed that Rexnord’s Falk Steelflex Grid couplings are 4.7 times more durable than a leading competitor’s grid couplings, and up to 16 times more durable than other brands,” explains Thong.
“Competitors have marketed their grid elements as interchangeable with Rexnord’s Falk Steelflex grid coupling, and by outward appearances the couplings do look similar,” he says. “But customers really should be made aware that a significant gap in performance still remains between brands.”
“Interchanging parts between on a Falk Steelflex grid coupling may succeed initially, but ultimately the durability and performance of the coupling will be compromised by interchanging components with other brands,” adds Thong.
In manufacturing, reliability, longevity, and reduced maintenance is what measures a grid coupling application’s performance.
Replacement timeframes and costs are also significant factors in rating grid coupling performance. With that said, the Falk Steelflex “replace in place” design eliminates the need to move hubs or re-align shafts, thereby reducing element change-out time.
The Steelflex couplings are also industry compliant with the ATEX II 2GD c T6 certified standard to ensure safe use.
In addition to these features, when lubricated with Rexnord Falk Long Term Grease (LTG), the Falk Steelflex coupling warranty period extends from an industry leading 3 years to 5 years.
“Falk LTG was developed specifically for couplings. It resists the separation of the oil and thickening agent that occurs in typical greases,” says Thong. “If a customer uses the Falk LTG coupling grease on installation, it will eliminate the need for periodic maintenance for 5 years.”
This makes the Falk Steelflex package a cost-effective and low-maintenance solution.
“When you look at the overall savings in initial costs, spare parts costs, and labour costs for installation, alignment, and replacement – plus the 5-year warranty – it is easy to see what Steelflex Grid Couplings have over the competition,” enthuses Steve.
Moreover, Rexnord offers full-service engineering and inventory teams, and together with CBC, they share a joint cause in providing premium products and services directly to customer’s doorsteps.
Falk Steelflex Design Features:
• Long life with alloy steel tapered grids
• Extended maintenance periods with the use of Falk Long Term Grease
• Easy maintenance with the replace-in-place design
• Absorbs shock loads and offers vibration damping with the original Falk Steelflex T-Grid design
• Reduced peak torque loads by as much as 30%
• Reduced wear on connected equipment components
• Grade 5 cap screws ensure the correct specified tightening torque can be applied to fasten the cover