Boosting productivity by replacing old scalper and jaw crusher
A wonderful panoramic view on the Beaujolais hilltops from the quarry face, located at 530 meters altitude. It’s a sight we will keep in mind after our visit to the Creuzeval quarry in Saint-Didier-sur-Beaujeu (France), in the heart of the Beaujolais Geopark. However, this modest-size quarry (17 ha), with an annual production of 250,000 to 300,000 tons of aggregates by CBR company to provide for nearby asphalt plants, drew our attention for another reason. The site manager has called upon Metso’s SiteBooster™ team, headquartered at Metso France in Mâcon, to modernize its aging crushing plant.
Time to modernize the old stationary plant
Operating for four decades, the stationary plant -- and, more precisely, the primary stage -- was starting to lose productivity due to repeated stops to adjust settings and perform other maintenance operations. Nicolas Vignon, Site Manager at CBR, learned of the SiteBooster™ team’s specialization in tailor-made services and decided to trust the SiteBooster™ solution to modernize the plant at the Creuzeval site. The solution would upgrade his operation with minimal time and budget.
We have reached a situation with low equipment efficiency and high maintenance costs.
For instance, over the past years the maintenance cost of the scalper was about 20,000 to 25,000 euros per year. After an initial audit performed by Sébastien Thévenet, Project Manager of the SiteBooster™ team who supervised the Creuzeval project from the beginning to the end, it appeared that the jaw crusher was also starting to show signs of age. Indeed, the time spent on maintenance of that machine was so significant that Nicolas Vignon realized: “The choice was obvious to change the crusher rather than stop the site for three months.”
Based on a budget of about 500,000 euros, the SiteBooster™ proposal was accepted by the customer. The scalper, a Metso EDB 15-39, has been replaced with a new scalper of the same model “to avoid changing the frame,” and the jaw crusher, an old VB 1311, was retired and replaced with a new Nordberg® C Series™ C130™ jaw crusher, bringing improved maintenance access all around the crusher.
Redesigning the plant required only very short shutdown period
The project started with the necessary preliminary phase: auditing the plant to identify bottlenecks and taking accurate measurements, because, as Jean-Yves Cognard, Operations and Services Director at Metso, says: “Dimensions are standard for the machine, not for plant.” While a structural study phase is necessary, he notes, “This implies a visit on site, conducting accurate rating measurements and reviewing the plant drawing, which hasn’t necessarily been updated in 40 years, before adapting or modifying parts.”
The big advantage is that the new system is easier to use and more reliable.
After that preparatory phase, three months were allocated to the plant redesign and the manufacturing of the two requested machines and ancillary parts. Then, all on-site operations, the dismantling of old equipment, the assembly and start-up of new equipment, took about a month. It was imperative to respect the short deadlines imposed by the customer, whose operations were not reduced during summer, as he had to continuously supply his products to multiple asphalt plants. In anticipation of the one-month plant shutdown, Quarry Manager Alexis Humbert had to store 50,000 tons of primary crushing products before revamping operations.
The final outcome is exactly what Nicolas Vignon’ had expected. “The big advantage is that the new system is easier to use and more reliable. The primary crushing plant sees less downtime. When you have to tighten the jaws, now it takes five minutes using the hydraulic system, compared to the two hours previously.”
*Article first published in Construction Cayola magazine in France.