Bypass Labor and Material Costs With Custom Manifolds

Bypass Labor and Material Costs With Custom Manifolds

By on December 11th, 2017 in Engineering, Hydraulics

In Paul Badowski’s article, namely, “Multi-Function Screw-in Cartridge Valve Manifolds: How to Fit 100lbs of Hydraulics into a 10lb Box,” he speaks in favor of custom manifolds that utilize screw-in cartridge valves because they can compress a large number of machine functions into a single compartment. Machines that are propelled by controlled hydraulic wheels tend to have a complicated mess of wires and hoses.

Badowski argued that each component requires a control valve, which creates too many points of leakage. A Screw-In Cartridge Valve would solve this problem by coupling multiple functions at the same time. A smarter manifold design would help save manufacturers money on labor and materials. But you shouldn’t rely too much on the standard industrial valve that you end up avoiding the SiCV world altogether. I believe there are certain situations in which you can get the best of both worlds.

How Modular Manifolds Differ From Custom Ones

Modular manifolds are typically designed as sectional and stack type valves. People often view custom manifolds as the polar opposite of modular ones. They think that if you already have a custom manifold designed, then you cannot change it into anything else besides a circuit design. Although this is true in many cases, sometimes a bit of creative foresight is capable of producing future improvements on custom manifolds.

To illustrate, say you have a piece of mobile equipment with a grapple attached. The grapple will always move up, down, left, or right. It also opens and closes, even swivels at times. In some cases, the machine has outriggers that are controlled individually. It could also contain a moveable counterweight. Other unpredictable functions are possible as well. They might get thrown into the mix, generating a convoluted mess of valves and hoses that seems out of place in the final product.

One custom manifold would be optimized for both grappling functions and motion control valves. It just needs an interface that complements a second custom manifold which has the outrigger functions. The other block could use an interface so that a sectional valve connects to more functions depending on the situation. The custom manifolds are multi-purpose tools because they can have D03 or other standard pads for attaching stack valves.

A Solid Plan Is Essential For Success

The purpose of using this design is to accurately determine what functions should be used in addition to how many other combinations of valve functions are possible. It’s best to leave the interface covered with a blanking plate to make it easier to bolt on future designs. At RG Group, we design custom manifolds in any configuration you want using assembly line technology, to make sure they are ready to install when you receive them. It takes up less space and keeps labor costs down while maximizing flexibility in terms of manufacturing protocols.