Case Studies


Special Rigging Screw Tube Prevents the Ingress of Water


The Problem


Solid Swivel were approached by an International Wire Rope Company to solve a problem for the tensioning of the wire roof supports of the Commonwealth games stadium.


They wanted to use proven tubular rigging screws due to the high loads, but they could not have the conventional central tommy bar hole, traditionally used for turning the screw, as there would be problems due to the ingress of water.


It was also most important that the rigging screw was streamlined and aesthetically pleasing to the eye.


The Solution


The conclusion from the 'Solid' brainstorming team was to put flats on the tube so that it could be turned by a standard spanner. However, these could not be machined on, as any removal of metal would weaken the tube.


Tubular rigging screw bodies are made from seamless tube, and the ends have to be hot swaged to comply with the British Standard.
The answer was to 'hot form' the flats as well. This required localised heat to avoid crimping the tube, whereby the fittings would not screw in all the way. It also required precise gauging, as spanner flats have to be to tight tolerances.


Our blacksmiths overcame all the obstacles, so finally the finished tubes were subjected to the proof and break loads to ensure that the new process did not affect the performance.


The Outcome


The customer was involved throughout the process. Viewing the options, approving the drawings, examining the prototypes, and witnessing the tensile tests.They were extremely pleased that our solution not only met their criteria of no holes, and smooth looks, but they could also be tensioned using a standard spanner. Finally, they were delighted with the low cost of the special rigging screw.
By making the flats, straight after the swaging operation, our blacksmiths were able to use some of the residual heat, so the local heat time was minimal.


The bulk order was then placed with us for 8 different rigging screw sizes between M27 and M64 threads. They were delivered in full, on time, and the tensioning went smoothly. The galvanised finish will provide decades of life.


Another Happy Customer! Is there a problem that we could help you with?






Compact Eyebolt Design Shortens Container Loading Time


The Problem


Solid Swivel were approached by a world brand leader in 'yellow goods' to solve a problem they had.


Many years ago we won their trust with our quality and performance, to the extent that they went from using 4 conventional lifting eyebolts, one per corner, to one of our High Load eyebolts in the centre. They now had a different problem.


To ship their large product, they would slide it into a standard container, but they had to detach the central eyebolt to do this. This took time, and time costs money!


Could Solid Swivel design and make a more 'compact' headed eyebolt with the same performance and thread size, so that the unit would slide in and out of the container without needing to be removed?


The Solution


The Director’s of Solid Swivel have been sitting on the eyebolt committees at the BSI since the 1960's.

Our International involvement has kept us up to speed with other countries Standards in Lifting Gear.

Our Design team turned to our Standards library in the search for proven high load product. Our customer had given us a strict height limit, so we knew the criteria we were looking for, and the performance criteria expected.

After a careful review of various International Standards, our Design team developed a bespoke specification for the customer.

Drawings were created and submitted to the client to ensure that their worldwide lifting fittings would mate with the smaller compact head.


The Outcome


Following their approval, we altered our 2D drawing into 3D using our Solid Works software. Then, using our machining centre, we created the forging dies and tooling.


A small batch of prototypes were created using different materials and heat treatments. These were then subjected to proof, break, and fatigue tests.


The end result nicely exceeded all the requirements, which is what you want, to cover for misuse and abuse, prevalent in the lifting trade.


Several thousand have been made by us now, and we have another Happy Customer who has made positive savings and speeded up their shipping process.


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Bespoke Dock Crane Swivel Significantly Reduces Downtime


The Problem


Britain's Leading Port Operator approached Solid Swivel with a long term problem that they were having difficulty overcoming.


They unload bulk cargo from vessels¬† 24/7 using huge grabs on their dock cranes. Within the wire rope to the grab, they use a swivel and these were only lasting a short while. The swivels are subjected to hitting the sides of the hold, extreme dust, snatch loads, and sudden release of the load inflicting fast rotation due to the twist in the wire when unloading. Prior to calling us in they had tried many 'off the shelf' swivels, but they just wouldn’t last. The down time in changing these seized swivels was costing them time and money.


Could Solid Swivel help?


The Solution


Up until the 1970's Solid Swivel manufactured a lot of cargo handling equipment, sold through distributors world wide.


With the advent of containerisation this fell into decline, and demand for the dock swivels dried up.


However, The Company is always reluctant to throw any tooling away, as many times customers have come back after several decades of use to buy some more!


The swivel drawings we unrolled (no digital back then), and the task to find a suitable size swivel for the grab undertaken.


Next was to find a bearing robust enough to take the pounding, then to the stores to find the old dies and tools to forge the two parts of the swivel.


New drawings were produced and the drafts approved by the client prior to manufacture. Prototypes were then made and put into service.


The Outcome


Solid Swivel was confident the new swivel would do the job, and knowing the usual quantity the Port bought, produced an economical forging batch.


The prototypes lasted very well, but the grease nipple needed to be removable as it was getting damaged, and the type of grease was improved. The Port also decided they wanted them individually marked to meet their test certification and inspection regime.


The first production batch incorporating the minor improvements were put into service in 2006 and the client was delighted with the reliability, and the through life costs. This has since been further enhanced by Solid Swivel offering a 'Survey and Repair Service'
The idea came about from the MoD seeking to save money by extending product life, and this service is now added to our contracts for Naval fittings. The Port has now got more unloading time, and less stoppages.


Another Happy Customer! Is there a problem that we could help you with?



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