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Measurement Technologies for Boats, Yachts and Watercraft

Interface has been a long-term supplier of force and torque measurement solutions for the maritime industry. This explains how our products play a big role in a wide variety of waterborne vessels, maintenance and safety equipment, and offshore products found at docks and in the open water. We have captured some of these specific use cases of how our sensor technologies and instrumentation are used in the building and maintenance of boats, yachts, and watercraft of all sizes.

Our load cells and sensors work well in vehicles that are used in water. For example, we offer technologies that can wirelessly transmit data underwater and in harsh weather conditions, making them perfect for a variety machines used in water. These specialized load cells operate in underwater submersions at different capacities, and reliably relay information to those at the surface level for accurate sensor readings. Interface load cells of various designs can regulate harsh maritime situations in use cases such as underwater tension lines, underwater oil drilling, as well as storm and tsunami monitoring. Read more about offshore and near shore solutions here.

The applications we are highlighting below provide real-world examples of force measurement products used in boat, yacht and watercraft related products. The uses of force measurement range from testing fishing wire to yacht rigging inspection. Here’s a closer look:

Wireless Telemetry System (WTS) for Yacht Rigging Inspection

For a customer who wants to have a complete yacht rigging inspection to make sure the mast, still lines, and all movable hoisting lines are functional, Interface offers our robust WTS products line. These various wireless sensor technologies and components are designed for use to meet the proper specifications for sailing, test the tension of the forestay, shroud, and backstay cables, and to test the tension of the movable lines when sailing.

With Interface’s WTSSHK-B Wireless Crosby™ Bow Load Shackle paired with the WTS-BS-1 Wireless Handheld Display for Unlimited Transmitters, the customer can switch and view between multiple shackles being tested. The WTS-BS-4 USB Industrial Base Station can also be attached to the customer’s computer to display real-time measurements from the shackles and log data. With this solution, the user is able to conduct both a running and standing rigging inspections of their ship or vessel, and determine if all lines were functional and met safety standards. Read the entire WTS solutions used on this yacht here.

Commercial Fishing Wire Rope Testing

When a commercial fishing owner wanted to measure the force tension of the wire fishing rope connected to the fishing cage or net when their vessel goes to catch and ensure the wire rope is strong enough and safe enough to hold the maximum capacity of fish caught in the cage or net, they can turn to Interface.

Using a WTSTL Wireless Tension Link Load Cell attached between the end of the cable, and the end that hooks onto the fishing net, the tension link will be able to measure the forces of the full net of fish, or a heavy load at maximum capacities. The data information can be transmitted to both the WTS-BS-1-HS Handheld Display for Single Transmitters, or to the customers computer laptop through the WTS-BS-4 USB Industrial Base Station. Utilizing this solution, the customer was able to determine if the fishing cable on their vessel was strong enough to hold the fish cage or net at maximum capacity when out catching.

Mooring Line Tension Testing

Due to changing environmental conditions, mooring cable lines undergo wear and tear. A customer wanted to ensure all mooring lines for ships and large commercial vessels are securely docked at the same loading tension, so that they do not risk the mooring lines to break or cause damage.

We provided a WTSLTL Lightweight Wireless Tension Link, which can be attached to each mooring cable in use. Results are sent to the customers through the WTS-BS-4 USB Industrial Base Station when connected to the customer’s supplied PC computer/Laptop. Data can also be transmitted to the WTS-BS-1-HA Handheld Display for Multiple Transmitters, giving the customer the option to view multiple mooring cable line tensions. The customer was able to verify the tensions to multiple mooring cable lines. Thus, resulting in the security of their ship being safely docked.

If you’re interested in learning more about our maritime solutions, call 480-948-5555 to contact an application engineer about your project requirements.

Tension Links 101

A tension link load cell is commonly used in lifting, both for short and long distances, and weighing applications. This type of load cell sensor generally has capacities ranging from 2.2K lbf to 1.1M lbf (5 to 500 metric tons). All tension links are available in custom versions and large capacities based on the customer’s project requirements.

Interface’s Tension Link series is manufactured from high tensile aluminum and stainless steel. Matched to shackle sizes, the load links have a rugged design for uses in harsh environments on the surface and in water. The tension links are environmentally sealed to IP65, IP66 or IP67. There are higher ratings available upon request.

A major benefit of Interface tension links is the option for custom designs in dimensions, ratings and capacities. The tension links are easy to install and are highly accurate.  They are compact in size and light weight. Another benefit is the options available, which include standard, wireless and self-indicating, giving the operator a variety of application use cases for quick measurement readings.  Self-indicating tension links have a built-inaudible alarm, which can be set by the operator to warn when an applied weight or force is met.

Often, customers will integrate the tension links with an Interface Crosby styled load shackle for robust applications that require accurate and reliable force measurement used for lifting, weighing, hoisting or towing apparatus that need sensors for safety and monitoring.

Wireless options are growing in acceptance for all types of uses. Interface provides wireless tension links that are compact and reduce the overall product weight based on the casing used to house the small alkaline batteries, which can be easily accessed by removing the telemetry housing cover while the internal electronics remain completely sealed. The antenna is also internally mounted, protecting it from accidental damage during use and handling, which is ideal for harsh environments.

Watch this discussion to learn more about the wireless features of the Interface Tension Links and Load Shackles.

Interface’s most popular tension links include:

WTSTL Wireless Tension Link Load CellDesigned for lifting applications requiring short or long distances. This product can transmit wirelessly up to 600 meters in distance (clear line of sight) to a handheld display or USB base station. Model WTSTL is available in capacities ranging from 11K lbf to 220K lbf (5 to 100 metric tons). Custom versions and larger capacities are available upon request.

WTSLTL Lightweight Wireless Tension Link – This smaller version ranges from 1 to 300 MT (2.2K to 661K lbf) and uses a lightweight aluminum construction, with an internal antenna and 1200 hours batter life using standard AA batteries.  It has high accuracy and uses license free 2.4GHz radio. There is an option to use this with telemetry and/or software for readout and reporting.

ISITL Self-Indicating Tension Link Load CellManufactured from high tensile aluminum to minimize weight, the ISITL is great for lifting and weighing in rugged or harsh environments.  The self-indication tension link load cell is ideal for mobile use cases.  It is simple to install and is matched to standard shackle sizes. They have a built-in display for applied weight or force in tons, kgs, lbs or kN. Interface can also offer a custom software to meet any specific application requirements for digital display or readouts.

ITL Tension Link Load Cell – This basic tension link can be amplified with 5VDC, 10VDC or 4-20mA Outputs. It can also be made to meet ATEX requirements. Model ITL is available in capacities ranging from 11K lbf to 220K lbf (5 to 100 metric tons). Custom versions and larger capacities can be requested at no additional charge, based on the exact specifications needed by the customer.

To learn more about our wide variety of load pins, load shackles and tension links, please visit www.interfaceforce.com/product-category/load-pins-tension-links-and-load-shackles/.