Posts

A Great Force for Crane and Hoist Solutions

In June 2023, Interface announced our acquisition of UK-based LCM Systems, broadening our international reach, significantly improving our capacity, and adding critical expertise to Interface for specialized measurement solutions designed for cranes and hoist equipment.

Interface and LCM offer our customers robust and diverse measurement devices for hoisting, winching, lifting, subsea, infrastructure, and industrial manufacturing applications.

The LCM-made products in Interface’s 35,000-plus catalog include Load Pins, Tension Links, and Shackles. This includes options for standard products, engineered-to-order, completely custom, ATEX, submersibles, and wireless solutions.

Sample of Interface Load Pins, Tension Links, and Shackles

 

ILMP Stainless Steel Load Monitoring Load Pin

LP Stainless Steel Load Pin

WTSLP Wireless Stainless Steel Load Pin

ITL Tension Link Load Cell

WTSTL Wireless Tension Link Load Cell

WTSATL Lightweight Aluminum Wireless Tension Link

WTSATL-JR Aluminum Compact Wireless Tension Link

ISHK-B Bow Type Crosby™ Cabled Load Shackle

ISHK-D ‘D’ Type Crosby™ Cabled Load Shackle

WTSSHK-B Wireless Crosby™ Bow Load Shackle

WTSSHK-B-HL Wireless Bow Load Shackle

WTSSHK-B-JR Wireless Crosby™ Bow Load Shackle

WTSSHK-D Wireless Crosby™ Load Shackle

TIP:  Use the Interface Load Pin Configuration Submission to get started in defining your exact pin requirements.

Recently, Ken Bishop, Interace’s senior director of custom solutions, had the opportunity to discuss our acquisition of LCM Systems with Overhead Crane and Hoist (OCH) magazine, specifically focusing on our industry-leading lineup of solutions for this industry courtesy of our expert team at LCM. Included below is a brief preview of the article. To read it thoroughly, please visit OCH’s digital magazine Interface Reveals Motivation Behind Acquisition of Long-Time Partner LCM SystemsHoist Magazine’s Overhead Crane and Hoist Winter 2023.

Highlights from the article in Overhead and Hoist Feature Article

In a move that should provide synergistic growth opportunities for both companies, Interface Inc., a US-based leader in force measurement product technology, design, and manufacturing, has recently acquired UK-based LCM Systems – a company it had already partnered with for the past ten years. In fact, Interface has been LCM’s exclusive distributor in the US market since 2018.

“Interface is a very diverse,” Ken Bishop, Interface’s senior director of custom solutions, declared, noting that it has a very strong reputation for producing high-quality load cells, load pins, load shackles, torque transducers, multi-axis sensors, and related measurement solutions for a variety of market sectors including aerospace, automotive, energy, factory automation, and subsea marine. “Given our ability to make high-precision products that our customers can count on, we have been able to grow our business over the years.”

Bishop said it was when certain new customer requirements emerged, for which Interface didn’t have other options to meet, that it decided to reach out to LCM: “At first, such opportunities came up now and then, but over time, we started to do more business with them as it became more and more apparent that there was a nice fit between the products and services that LCM offers and those offered by Interface.”

LCM was founded in 1984 to provide the yachting industry with precision load cell and readout systems but has expanded to also provide those products, as well as engineering and design services, to such other market sectors as energy, civil engineering, maritime, aerospace, heavy lifting and process engineering, including load cell products suitable for Zone 1 and 2 hazardous area applications…read more.

Load pin, Tension link, and Load Shackle App Note Catalog

Exploring New Measurement Products Webinar

The Interface Exploring Capabilities of New Measurement Products Webinar details new products, including sensors, instrumentation, and accessories. Our experts will cover dozens of new additions to the extensive 40,000-plus product catalog of force measurement solutions. Interface engineers highlight product features, capacities, use cases, and technical tips in the fast-paced new technical online seminar.

Interface Engineered Solutions for Lifting Webinar Recap

Everything from mechanical engineering designs, equipment materials, and the sensors used in lifting machinery is changing the concept of lifting today. Interface experts Keith Skidmore and Ken Bishop explore types of measurement products, applications, technical considerations, and tips for lifting use cases in the Interface recorded webinar Engineered Solutions for Lifting.

Sensors are central in lifting equipment to maintain safety, quality, compliance, and efficiency. Interface provides a useful product selection online resource for lifting applications. Go to the Lifting Solutions Guide.

Interface load cells can help prevent accidents by providing real-time feedback on the weight of the lifted load. The measurement data helps ensure the lifting machinery is not overloaded or unbalanced, leading to structural failure, tipping over, or injury. Sensor technologies improve quality control by ensuring products are lifted to the correct specifications.

Interface LowProfile Load Cells, Load Pins, Load Shackles, and Tension Links improve efficiency by automating the lifting process. For example, load cells can control the speed and movement of a lifting mechanism, ensuring that the load is lifted safely and efficiently. These measurement sensors can reduce costs by minimizing damage to equipment and products. By preventing overloads and ensuring that loads are lifted safely, load cell devices can extend the lifespan of equipment and prevent costly accidents.

In many industries, regulations require load cells for lifting applications to ensure compliance and overload protection. For example, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires the use of load cells in many lifting applications for monitoring and reporting.

Automation of lifting is on the rise. Using robotics and component activation is commonly designed into new equipment and retrofitting existing hardware. These features also provide valuable operating safety and alarm systems based on key measurements. Modernizing equipment to meet today’s and future use cases is important to operators and manufacturers of lifting equipment. This includes utilizing wireless components and using cloud-based data (IoT).

Lifting sensors are more commonly found in settings with high-temperature variances and exposure to extreme environmental conditions. The measurement solutions must withstand these variances while providing continuous monitoring capabilities. Today’s use cases require smaller load cells, like our beam load cells, while not sacrificing precision measurement.

Interface products are used for all types of lifting equipment, apparatus, and machines, including:

  • All Purpose Cranes
  • Patient Lifts and Medical Equipment
  • Drones with Lift and Carry Capabilities
  • Aircraft Lifts and Rigging
  • Lifting Gantry Systems and Mobile Gantry Cranes
  • Jib Cranes
  • Engine and Floor Cranes
  • Scaffold Runway Systems
  • Venue and Entertainment AV Equipment
  • Rigging Equipment
  • Pallet Movers
  • Elevators
  • Loaders and Bulldozers

During the webinar, Interface experts shared tips and best practices. Here is a quick summary of tips for lifting use cases.

Top Measurement Tips for Lifting Use Cases

TIP #1 Select the right force sensor. Factors to consider when selecting a force sensor include the maximum force it can measure, accuracy, weight, dimensions, and environmental conditions for use.

TIP #2 Proper installation will define your application’s success. It is important to install the force sensor correctly to ensure accurate measurements.

TIP #3 Calibrate the force sensor regularly, preferably once a year. Regularly run calibration-grade tests if the load cell is embedded into the lifting device.

TIP #4 Based on each use case, instrumentation can make all the difference in your program. For example, a data acquisition system collects force data to monitor the lifting process, identify potential problems, and generate reports.

TIP #5 Design the lifting system with safety in mind. Force measurement can improve the safety of lifting systems by preventing overloading, detecting imbalances in the load, and monitoring the condition of the lifting equipment.

Tune into the webinar to hear Keith Skidmore and Ken Bishop detail best practices, key considerations to identify stable and unstable lifting, and a thorough review of industry applications using Interface products.

Lifting Applications

Crane Capacity Verification

A customer wants to verify that their crane is strong enough to safely lift a heavy load at its rated maximum load capacity. A wireless solution is needed to avoid long cables and to have a faster installation time. Interface’s Model WTSATL Lightweight Wireless Tension Link Load Cell can measure the load’s maximum capacity. The WTS-RM1 Wireless Relay Output Receiver Modules can also trigger an alarm that can be set when the maximum capacity of weight/force has been reached. The data is transmitted and can be reviewed with the WTS-BS-1-HS Wireless Handheld Display or on the customer’s PC.

gantry crane lifting a heavy container

Gantry Crane Wireless Lifting for Heavy Containers

Gantry cranes are used for mobile and lifting applications in industrial and construction. A weighing system is needed to see if the gantry crane can lift heavy containers or loads, preventing crane failure or accidents. Interface’s WTSLP Wireless Stainless Steel Load Pins can be installed into the corners of the lifting mechanism of the gantry crane, where heavy-loaded containers are lifted and moved. The force results are then transmitted to the WTS-BS-1-HS Wireless Handheld Display for Single Transmitters and a connected computer using the WTS-BS-6 Wireless Telemetry Dongle Base Station.

Patient Lifting Device

In the medical field, sometimes it is necessary to weigh or transfer patients who are disabled and cannot walk. A Hoyer lift is used to move patients around. A manufacturer would like a force system to weigh disabled patients and see the maximum weight it can hold. Interface’s WTS 1200 Standard Precision LowProfile® Wireless Load Cell is attached to the top of the Hoyer lift. The force results are wirelessly transmitted to the medical laptop through the WTS-BS-6 Wireless Telemetry Dongle Base Station.

Find additional productions and solutions in our Lifting Solutions Overview.

Lifting Solutions Brochure

Interface Acquires LCM Systems

Interface, Inc. is the world’s trusted leader in technology, design, and manufacturing of force measurement products. We are pleased to announce that we have recently acquired LCM Systems Ltd, a market leader in specialized load measurement solutions utilized across industries by customers worldwide. 

The acquisition of LCM Systems accelerates Interface’s growth in global test and measurement by adding critical engineering and manufacturing expertise with an international presence. Interface has been a long-time partner of LCM Systems. Working together to supply high-accuracy and quality measurement solutions to Interface customers, we both understand that the market is growing and dependent on LCM’s expertise and manufactured products, including load pins, load shackles, tension links and specialized measurement sensor solutions.

We are stronger together. Interface and LCM knows that we can open new markets, while expanding our offerings to meet current and future customer demand. READ THE FULL NEWS RELEASE HERE

“LCM Systems is an established and recognized leader in the design and manufacture of specialized load cells and instrumentation, and we are proud to officially welcome them to the Interface family. Adding their quality, proficiency and long history, the LCM team further bolsters our global capabilities in meeting the rapidly growing demands for exceptional products including their load pins, load shackles, load cells and other sensor technologies.”  – Greg Adams, CEO at Interface

LCM Systems was founded in 1984 to provide the yachting industry with precision load cells and readout systems. The load management solutions company grew rapidly over the years to provide engineering and design expertise to market sectors including energy, civil engineering, maritime, aerospace, heavy lifting, and process engineering. The company manufactures a comprehensive range of standard and ruggedized load cells and instrumentation, with a considerable proportion of its market share coming from the supply of customized products tailored to meet customer’s specific requirements. LCM Systems also manufactures load cells suitable for Zone 1 and 2 hazardous area applications including standard ATEX/IECEx certified load cells, load pins, load shackles, load links, instrumentation and accessories. LCM Systems is based in the United Kingdom.

“Joining Interface, a company with a world-renowned reputation and 55 years of experience in the load measurement industry, is an incredible opportunity for the continued success and future growth of LCM Systems. Interface and LCM are long standing partners and have been our exclusive distributor for the US market since 2018. Our combined experience, the unmatched expertise of our teams, and a shared continuous improvement culture will make our integration into Interface seamless and highly beneficial not only for both of our companies, but also our customers and employees.”  – Steve Sargeant, Managing Director at LCM Systems

Interface and LCM Systems have partnered together for several years. As the needs of the market and our customers evolve, we will continue to evaluate every opportunity there is to utilize our engineers and manufacturing resources to develop custom and new products. LCM has long offered engineered-to-order sensor products, including load pins and load shackles. These products are often designed to meet specific use cases and precise requirements. We will both continue to meet those demands and provide solutions that match the needs of our customers.

“The acquisition of LCM Systems gives Interface a major manufacturing and engineering center of excellence in Europe and expands our product portfolio with specialized load and weighing solutions. LCM is very reputable in the force measurement solutions industry for providing innovative solutions for complex measurement challenges and we are very excited to be working in collaboration to meet the demands of today and tomorrow.”  – Ken Bishop, Custom Solutions Senior Director at Interface

The strategic acquisition bolsters both capabilities and market solutions. Through our collective market analysis and understanding, we believe that together we have more to offer and can support the growth and demands of the products we design, manufacture and sell. We have more resources working together to exceed customer expectations and deliver exceptional experiences.

Interface and LCM Systems are growing companies. We will continue to expand and operate to meet these demands. We do believe that working together, we will continue to offer great service and products.

As a customer, there are no changes to how you engage with Interface or LCM Systems. The impact of this relationship is beneficial to customers, partners, and team members as we can meet the growing market opportunity and continue to build and supply exceptional products. Our respective sales distribution networks and channels for each company remain the same, while we continue to find synergies across channels and opportunities to expand our offerings and services for Interface and LCM products around the world.

Our distributor and representatives (Global Sales Network) will remain front-line for direct regional sales and support. Interface and LCM Systems will continue to directly support all incoming requests and work together, along with our global sales network to ensure quick response and support to all incoming inquiries.There is no change to the current contacts that our customers work with today and in the future.

Additional Questions and References

Will there be any changes to Interface or LCM Systems brand?

Interface and LCM Systems will maintain their existing brand names, marks and creative identification as two entities. Both companies have strong brand recognition and loyalty with respective partners and customers.

Will Interface or LCM change the current offerings?

No, we don’t anticipate any changes to pricing or products at this time. We will continue to engineer the products we have been offering, while looking to the future to meet demands for new products and challenges we can solve with our customers using our complete lines of measurement solutions. We do not foresee any short-term pricing changes. All pricing is subject to our material and supply chain resource availability and at this time we are not anticipating any immediate change that would be reflected in pricing adjustments for products sold by LCM Systems or Interface.

Will Interface and LCM change any support for the product?

Interface and LCM Systems will respectively continue with current support of all products, including customer service, sales, services and calibration, technical support and online support materials. We will work in coordination to provide the best support for all our customers and global sales networks around the world. 

Will my warranties still be in effect?

All products and services will continue to carry the full warranty and guarantees. Each company stands behind the quality and accuracy of our products. Our services teams will continue to support all RMA, calibration and warranty requests. 

Interface Warranty Info https://www.interfaceforce.com/support/#warranties

Will service quality and policies change?

No. Interface and LCM Systems will continue to manufacture products that meet precision-level specifications, supported by industry standard certifications and calibrations. These policies and quality standards are expected and will not waiver.

Will the quote you gave me still be honored?

Absolutely, the quotes provided by Interface and LCM Systems will not change. Every quote is provided with terms and those terms will be honored as defined in every quote.

Who do I call if I have a problem or concern?

Please direct all your questions as you’ve done in the past directly to Interface or LCM Systems. All information related to inquiries and contact can also be found on our respective websites, www.interfaceforce.com and www.lcmsystems.com.

Interface, Inc.
7418 East Helm Drive, Scottsdale, Arizona, US 85260
Email: contact@interfaceforce.com
https://www.interfaceforce.com/contact-us/ 
Interface Mailing & Shipping: 7401 E Butherus Drive, Scottsdale, AZ 85260
Toll Free: 800-947-5598 Phone:480-948-5555

LCM Systems Ltd
Unit 15, Newport Business Park, Barry Way, Newport, Isle of Wight, United Kingdom PO30 5GY
https://www.lcmsystems.com/contact-us
International: Tel +44 1983 249264  Fax +44 1983 249266
United Kingdom:Tel 01983 249264 Fax 01983 249266

What is the legal name of the new organization?

There is no change to the legal name of either organization at this time.

Where and to whom should invoices be sent now?

Please submit all invoices, payments and requests through the same established contacts at LCM Systems and/or Interface, Inc. There are no changes.

Interface is the world’s trusted leader in technology, design, and manufacturing of force measurement solutions. Our clients include a “who’s who” of the aerospace, automotive and vehicle, medical device, energy, manufacturing, test and measurement and industrial automation industries. Interface engineers around the world are empowered to create high-level tools and solutions that deliver consistent, high-quality performance. These products include load cells, torque transducers, multi-axis sensors, wireless telemetry, instrumentation, and calibration equipment. Interface, Inc., was founded in 1968 and is a U.S.-based woman-owned technology manufacturing company headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona. 

Advancements in Instrumentation Webinar Recap

Interface experts recently hosted a conversation about what is changing in the world of instrumentation, as it related to sensor technologies and force measurement.  The new event, Advancements in Instrumentation is a continuation of our ForceLeaders Interface Instructional on Instrumentation Event.

The conversation began with a focus on what has changed in the last five years and why instrumentation is such an important topic in T&M. 

TRENDS IN ADVANCED INSTRUMENTATION

The number one change in test and measurement that we have identified is the omnipresent use of sensors in things that didn’t use to have sensors. This includes consumer products, home healthcare medical devices, EVs, factory equipment, tools, robotics, just to name a few. With the demands for more feedback, more data, and more required performance monitoring, instrumentation requirements are growing in functionality. 

We are getting smarter in our applications and uses cases, which means we need smarter devices to capture all the information to make intelligent decisions in product design, engineering, and manufacturing. We see this with smart factories, smart vehicles, smart agriculture, smart tools, smart medical technologies, these innovations and advancements need more data to make smart decisions, in design, test, build and use.

Other trends we discussed include the infusion of IoT into test and measurement. As we connect more instruments and devices into our networks, it requires advanced instrumentation and changes in what has been used as basic and standard instruments in the past. We also see customization and programmability needs changing and movement towards more digital interfaces.  Specifically, during this hour-long discussion we dive into digital outputs, amplifiers, communication protocols and advancements in software options, including a quick MathScript demo. Watch the video here.

TYPES OF INSTRUMENTATION HIGHLIGHTED IN WEBINAR

  • Signal Conditioners
  • Data Acquisition Systems (DAQ) 
  • Indicators
  • USB Interface Modules
  • Wireless and Bluetooth Telemetry Systems
  • Portable
  • TEDS Ready

Interface highlighted a series of new instrumentation solutions in great detail. This includes recent releases like our BX8 DAQ Series, Wireless Telemetry System Additions, 9850 Torque and Load Cell Indicator and SI-USB4. We also shared what we are bringing to market this year, including new portable indicators, a DAQ systems designed specifically for torque transducers, advanced multi-channel solutions and new USB indicators for wireless sensors. We also talked about custom instrumentation solutions when you need something designed for a unique use case or OEM application.

Throughout the webinar, instrumentation selection criteria were highlighted to help make the right decisions in pairing your measurement devices to the available instrumentation options. We addressed common questions, do’s and don’ts, and tips that are helpful in evaluating what will work with your project, in your lab or at your factory.

ADVANCEMENTS IN INSTRUMENTATION WEBINAR TOPICS

  • Types of Advanced Instrumentation
  • Selection Criteria for Advanced Instrumentation
  • Recap Digital Versus Analog Options
  • What’s New in Wireless + Bluetooth Telemetry Systems 
  • New Instrumentation Solutions from Interface
  • Trends in Test Data Management + Systems
  • Applications + Uses Cases
  • FAQs

You can watch the entire conversation to learn more.

WHY INTERFACE FOR INSTRUMENTATION

With so many options available, we want to make it easier in choosing the right instrumentation. Here are a few reasons why Interface is a provider of choice when it comes to instrumentation for force measurement.

  • Interface is a single point of contact for measurement device and instrumentation
  • Interface offers a range of solutions from USB Interface Modules to Multi-Channel and Wireless DAQ Systems
  • Interface can partner to design and build complete systems
  • Interface has expertise for technical support
  • Interface has deep use case experience across all the sensors we offer, from load cells to wireless load pin technologies
  • Interface instructional videos, literature, software demonstrations and manuals available online in your Support area of the website
  • Interface provides software with our instrumentation

Additional Resources

Interface Instructional on Instrumentation Event

Recap of Inventive Multi-Axis and Instrumentation Webinar

Instrumentation Analog Versus Digital Outputs

Instrumentation Options in Test and Measurement

Force Measurement Instrumentation 101

Advancements in Instrumentation

Listen and watch as we explore innovative new instrumentation solutions that are designed for all types of force measurement applications. We detail options for load cells, torque transducers and multi-axis sensors. Keith Skidmore and Ken Bishop highlight system-ready instrumentation options, along with features and benefits, types of software, trends and tips. What pairs best with each type of measurement device? Our experts will answer your questions in this recorded ForceLeaders event.

Recap of Inventive Multi-Axis and Instrumentation Webinar

Interface’s resident solutions experts Keith Skidmore and Ken Bishop detailed a series of multi-axis products and advanced instrumentation options in our latest ForceLeaders webinar. They topics discussed during this recorded event included detailed features and benefits of the line of 3-Axis and 6-Axis Multi-Axis Sensors available from Interface. In summary, if you are looking for more data, to maximize your return on testing investments and need a compact solution compared to using multiple single load cells, multi-axis load cells may be the right solution for your application or testing project.

Pairing your sensor with right type of instrumentation that is best suited for the device and your data requirements is an important consideration.  During event, Keith shares why the BX8 Data Acquisition System and Amplifier provides 8-channel synchronized sampling and internal calculation of axis load values for 6-axis sensors. The BX8 provides high-speed synchronous sampling that is critical for dynamic measurements. It is high resolution and low noise and comes with our BlueDAQ software for data viewing and analysis. There is an option to also use BlueDAQ PRO! with MathScript. Multiple BX8 can be synchronized for use with 12-channel 6-axis sensors and force plates, which are discussed later during the event. For large capacity 6-axis sensors, you can also use two BX8’s to create a 72-coeffecient matrix. Watch the event to learn more and read about 6-Axis and BX8 powerful measurement solution.

In contrast to the BX8, Keith details the Interface BSC4 and shares important features that make it a good instrumentation choice to use with our model 3A, 3AR 3-Axis load cells. It can be used with up to four mV/V or VDC output sensors. It is a compact and convenient instrumentation option, compared to using multiple single-channel amplifiers. Our BSC4D comes with BlueDAQ software and is LabView compatible. Learn more about 3-Axis and BSC4.

You will also get the first look at our latest instrumentation solution, the BX6-BT Wireless 6-Axis Data Logger.  This new product is miniature in size, offers 7-channels with Bluetooth functionality. It logs to micro-SD card and is BlueDAQ compatible. It also does matrix math.

Further in the webinar, get the latest tips on mounting multi-axis sensors and using mounting plates and why we are seeing more use cases for Interface custom force plates. You don’t want to miss out on these important set-up instructions, frequently asked questions, and tips for ensuring you don’t compromise accuracy and reliability in your testing.

Watch the webinar and you’ll also learn about applications that use multi-axis and advanced instrumentation, including for structural testing, friction testing, seat testing and special condition calibration. We will be posting addition blogs from the learnings of this in-depth expert discussion, including top 10 FAQs, calibrating multi-axis sensors and the future of test and measurement using multi-axis load cells.

Making the Case for Custom Solutions Webinar Recap

Interface application experts and custom solution pros, Ken Bishop and Keith Skidmore provided valuable insights in our latest virtual event as to how, when, and why, you should connect with our team for help in designing, engineering, and building custom sensor solutions.

Making the Case for Custom Solutions, an Interface ForceLeaders hosted webinar, delved into the scope of options across all types of technologies and devices used in test and measurement. The focus of the event highlighted the importance of early engagement in the design and conception process when evaluating whether you needed something beyond a standard product.

Custom Solutions go beyond engineered to order products, where you might need to change a thread adapter, connector, or mounting hole. Interface custom solution can range from single components designed for unique applications to multiple components configured as a system. Custom solutions are most frequently used for OEM products, as embedded pieces.

Interface offers fully designed load cells or load pins to meet the application requirements. Torque transducers‘ options include custom shaft sizes, outputs, temperature ranges, and other configurations to fit the application. Wireless is also a common consideration for custom solutions, giving a wider use for monitoring, reporting, and system support.

If we build it, we can customize it. This also applies to multi-axis sensors and various types of instrumentation. In the webinar, Keith and Ken dive into several systems and use cases that highlight multiple components configured to exact specifications from mobile force testing systems to monitoring bridges seismic activity with special waterproof casings.

Six Custom Solution Design and Specification Recommendations for Getting Started

  1. What do you want to measure?
  2. How will the sensor be used?
  3. Do you need multiple sensors or a single device?
  4. Is this embedded into an OEM application or solely for test and measurement?
  5. Do you have a cost target?
  6. How will you read the results?

The mechanics of getting something custom starts with the scope and determining what needs to be measured. Then our experienced engineers will design the product working with your team. Once designs are approved, the manufacturing process begins. Using our state-of-the-art machine shop world-class assembly and custom solution calibration experts, Interface confidently delivers the products that stand with our seal of quality, accuracy, and performance standards.

Here are the topics discussed in the Making the Case for Custom Solutions event.

  • What is Considered an Interface Custom Solution
  • Differences Between Engineered to Order and Custom
  • Design and Specification Recommendations
  • Customizations Options and Considerations
  • Building Systems
  • Tips for Engaging Custom Solutions Engineers
  • The World of Possibilities
  • FAQs

Watch the entire event here:

The benefits of engaging Interface Custom Solutions Engineers are that we become an extension of your engineering resources along with access to our models, drawings, and assets to help with your project success. Whether we are building solutions with our proprietary strain gages or finding Bluetooth instrumentation for read-outs on custom load cells, we work as your partner with ownership in your project’s success.  It’s what we know, it’s what we do, and we get custom solutions. We’ve been doing custom solutions for force and torque for 52 years.

When you are ready to engage our team, we stand ready to help. We’ve been building small and large volume custom solutions for innovative industry leaders in aerospace, industrial automation, automotive, agriculture, infrastructure, energy, and more.  In Making the Case for Custom Solutions, Keith and Ken Put our experts to the test and let’s explore the possibilities together.

Get started by letting us know what you have in mind.  Request a custom solution here.

Read more in our What’s New in Custom Solutions post.

Additional Events:

Use Cases for Load Pins

Load Cell Basics

 

What is New in Custom Solutions

Here at Interface, we make it a priority to adapt to the needs of our customers in any way possible. Each year we gather vast amounts of data and feedback to address changes in the marketplace and advancements in technology. Often, this comes in the form of new product releases developed specifically with our customer’s most significant needs in mind. However, new product releases take time for development, testing and release. When customers need to address a challenge quickly, we turn to our innovative custom solutions team.

No matter the project, chances are there is a customized force measurement product to fulfill the requirement. We work directly with our customer’s engineering and testing teams to understand the challenge and offer alternative solutions to off-the-shelf products. Our dedicated engineers and measurement experts, along with supporting company resources, and advanced engineering lab give Interface the competitive advantage to make any force measurement application work with what we have to offer.

We provided a brief overview of our custom solutions offerings and process a past blog. Today’s post provides an update on what’s new in custom solutions:

New Custom Solutions Offerings

Among the most significant changes to custom solutions is our growing engineered to order offerings for OEM customers. To best serve these customers and testing engineers with premium and affordable force measurement solutions for use in components or products, Interface now offers engineered to order capabilities for the masses. Engineered to order means Interface can deliver force and torque measurement solutions from our massive catalog that are modified to meet the features, specifications, and cost that our customers require, while still retaining the premium accuracy, quality and reliability Interface is known for across every industry we serve.

Another exciting capability that Interface has recently added is the addition of more digital instrumentation communication options for collecting data from our products. We’ve added Models INF1 and INF4 signal conditioners with field bus capability that include CANopen, DeviceNet, CC-Link, Profibus, Profinet, Modbus, and EtherCAT. By adding this capability, our products can interface with networks that customers already have installed in their facilities.

Custom Solutions Applications

Interface customers continue to turn to our experience Custom Solutions Engineers to build systems that utilize a range of sensor technologies, communication devices and even frames and cases to provide a complete structure.  This includes a growing demand for uniquely pairing force and torque components that work remotely through wireless and Bluetooth technologies as well as delivering entire testing units that re mobile or can be used in the field. The possibilities are unlimited with the amount of products Interface in our catalog, including the possibilities of using new designs.

Every year we engage in a host of unique custom solutions projects with our customers. We would like to share of a few of our favorites with you.

Airplane Maintenance – Wireless Customization

When an airplane comes into the shop, engineers often must jack it up to perform maintenance. When you lift a plane, there is always a risk because you can’t put too much stress on the wings and fuselage. To ensure that the maintenance team members weren’t stressing the plane beyond its limits, Interface developed a solution to measure the lifting force of each individual jack used to lift the plane. The solution included a number of Interface Model 1200 Series Load Cell that would transmit the forces applied back to a base station. However, the customization came in the way data was transmitted to the base station. Typically, wires are used for transmission, but in this case, there were 21 load cells used on the lifting equipment. To avoid having 21 wires get in the way, Interface added custom capabilities to the 1200 series to allow it to communicate with the base station wirelessly.

Crane Application – Custom Programming

Lifting heavy objects can be a dangerous job for onsite workers, not to mention, pushing a large industrial crane too far can result in expensive damages and downtime. Therefore, when an Interface’s industrial customer needed to intelligently monitor a crane in the process of lifting, we helped create a custom program to do so. The custom application included a model 1280 and force measurement activated program. Whenever the crane was nearing a weight that was unsafe, an alert was triggered based on the force measurement reading that could either sound an alarm or shut the system down. This created an automated safety system using force data.

Additional Custom Solution Applications and Use Cases are available here. 

Custom solutions are key to Interface’s broad offerings that we provide when off-the-shelf solutions don’t provide exactly what is required. Our design engineers and manufacturing team is ready to work directly with our customers to provide a solution that is right for your project. To learn more, visit us at /custom-solutions/.

Contributor: Ken Bishop