The practice of pre-assembly is becoming increasingly common across various sectors and its benefits are widely recognised – from eco-friendliness, to safety and quality, as well as savings in cost and time. With this in mind, Pandrol intends to maximise pre-assembly in both new and existing products. Here, John Porrill, technical director and head of the fastening systems product line, explores how pre-assembled fastenings align with the Pandrol promise for quality rail components.
Pre-assembly in practice
An example of Pandrol putting pre-assembly into practice is the Fastclip Baseplate (FCB), a fastening system for non-ballasted track applications. The product enables a range of both vertical and lateral adjustments to be made easily with minimal additional components. Pandrol states FCB can be used with all typical track construction methods and configured for various track stiffness and rail clamping force requirements.
Offering the option for pre-assembly for the FCB, which already ensures safety and durability, allows for more benefits in the final product. When pre-assembled, the FCB is supplied as a captive unit with the clips in the parked position. On pre-cast concrete elements, the unit can be positioned and tightened into precise alignment. When used with top-down wet pour track construction methods, the unit is hung from the rails prior to concrete being poured to the required level.
Contractors and the railway, the company says, can benefit by opting for pre-assembled baseplates. Firstly, the product arrives complete and correctly assembled, therefore removing the risk in putting parts together from loose components. Due to this, installation is therefore quicker and safer. By using pre-assembled fastenings, accuracy is enhanced, particularly when combined with automation. This is particularly important in applications like high speed rial systems, where the degree of accuracy needed in placement is considerably more sensitive than in heavy haul or a standard freight track. Additionally, from an environmental standpoint, it is still possible to replace individual components within the pre-assembled unit.
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