Friday, 28 August 2015

Weighing waste? See you at RWM in September.

 The biggest waste and recycling exhibition in the country is just around the corner. The RWM Show is on at the NEC from 15-17 September for those that didn’t know.

It’s a terrific opportunity to meet with clients old and new and discuss the latest thinking and technology in recycling.

Monitoring waste throughput is vital these days. Almost every week we receive a tender from a local authority or private contractor for equipment to weigh waste.
And many of those applications can be served using an axle weighbridge.

The traditional plate weighbridge has an important role to play. There will always be applications where a large platform is essential. Those that need to weigh the vehicle as it’s being loaded for instance, but our Dynamic Axle Weighbridge can do everything  a plate weighbridge does and more.

And a smaller dynamic weighing platform could offer a number of advantages.

Space is always at premium these days. Just look at the old yellow platform weighbridge in the background of the picture and how much space it takes up compared with the axle weighbridge in the foreground.
An axle weighbridge - much less room needed.

The small footprint of an axle weighbridge means that it takes up very little space in the yard. Unlike a traditional 15m surface mounted weighbridge which will need about 47m of clear space to allow for vehicle approaches, ramps and the weighbridge itself.

Trading Standards advise us that the most common reason for a weighbridge to have its Approval revoked is debris building up under the platform. A large plate weighbridge might need the hire of an expensive crane to move the platform for cleaning.

The axle weighbridge has a very shallow pit and ours has corner pockets allowing most maintenance to be done without removing the platform.

But being a small platform, if really necessary, the whole thing can be lifted clear of the pit using a forklift or similar. The type of lifting facility most operators have readily available on site.

Be warned though – not axle weighbridges achieve the required standard allowing them to be Stamped for buying and selling.

The Axtec system is though. And in fact it achieves the necessary accuracy to be offered as a Public Weighbridge too.

So it could earn some money for your operation..


We’ll be on stand 5P151 at the exhibition if you’d like to come and have a chat about your waste weighing needs.

Monday, 17 August 2015

Van Overloading - a Solution.

According to recent figures, the number of vans on the road now tops 3 million. And registrations in March were up 24% on the same month last year.

That’s an awful lot of people moving away from bigger vehicles and trying to do the same job with something smaller.

There a lot of advantages of course. No tachograph, no special training needed to drive one and they can frequently go where a bigger vehicle might not be able to.

But the rise in the use of light vehicles is causing some concern especially when nearly two-thirds of vans stopped by DVSA have a serious defect. In addition almost half of vans fail their MOT first time.

It’s one of the dangers of trying to use a smaller vehicle for a job that was traditionally done by a larger one. Of trying to cram a quart into a pint pot.

With the growth of vans on the road comes a rise in the calls to regulate them in the same way that HGV’s are. Unsurprisingly the operators don’t think the idea of an ‘O’ licence for vans is a good idea but, as so often happens, legislation maybe forced on the industry if they don’t regulate themselves.
The startling statistic that a whopping 93% of vans that were stopped were overloaded might bring that day forward.
Axle Weights Checked on this van and NOT overloaded!

So what can be done?

We’ve written before about van overloading as that at least is something we can help with.

An Axtec OnBoard Load Indicator is inexpensive to buy, but more importantly the customer calibration facility means routine maintenance costs are eliminated.

It can be connected to a tracking device so that those with larger fleets can be alerted to an overload, in real time in some cases.

Fitted on site by one of our directly employed technicians in less than half a day, disruption to the working day is kept to a minimum.

With many vans being used as little more than mobile tool boxes with staff that have no professional driving qualification, it’s little wonder that so many of them fall foul of the enforcement authorities.

But there are solutions out there and many professional van operators are already our customers. 

Hopefully more will want to show how professional they are and how serious they take the problem of overloading and stave off the threatened legislation.

Thursday, 6 August 2015

Is 99.9% was good enough...

Achieving 99.9% accuracy in anything would seem to be pretty impressive. 

But according to some research done a while ago, it may not be good enough.

Apparently, 99.9% accuracy would mean that the US Postal Service would mis-handle 18,322 items per hour. Doctors would write 20,000 incorrect drug prescriptions per year. Manufacturers would produce 5.5 million cases of fizzy drinks that were flat. And two planes per day landing at Chicago O’Hare airport would be unsafe.

These statistics and more are freely available on line. Just Google “If 99.9% was good enough” to check yourself.

Accuracy then is key but just how accurate is your axle weighing system?

Weighing a heavy goods vehicle on a system that is accurate to 2% might sound impressive. But 2% of what?  Two systems which claim to weigh to within 2% can actually have wildly different accuracy.

For a percentage to be meaningful, you have to know what 100% is. But the weighing machine doesn’t know what 100% of the axle weight is. If it did, why not display it?
An axle Weighbridge - but how accurate it it?

So what does the 2% refer to?

When scale manufacturers refer to accuracy as a percentage, they mean a percentage of the capacity of the weighing machine.

If a machine has a capacity of 30,000kg with an accuracy of 2%, it means it will weigh to within 600kg.

If a machine has an accuracy of 2% but a capacity of 15,000kg then it will weigh to within 300kg.

Both machines have the same accuracy statement but the lower capacity machine will offer twice the accuracy

And weighing your vehicle on a system that was only accurate to within 600kg would leave it very vulnerable to a prosecution for overloading.

We strive for the greatest accuracy we can when designing a system. Our dynamic axle weighbridge for instance can achieve an accuracy of 0.25%. With a capacity of 20,000kg, more than enough to weigh the heaviest vehicle on the road, that means an axle will be weighed to within 50kg.

Some manufacturers like to muddy the waters by quoting OIML Class numbers or even not quoting an accuracy figure at all.

So how accurate is your axle weighing system? If you think we can help check for you then we’d be happy to do so.

It might prove to be an eye opening exercise.