Mechanical in mind

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Mechanical in mind

Industry 4.0 and IoT are taking the headlines in the engineering communities making it very easy to forget the basics of any machine with moving parts: belts, chains, pulleys, sprockets, bearings - MECHANICAL.

As technology moves forward and becomes more available, we will see mechanical parts become “smarter” and be able to communicate – in real time – with the machine they are part of and provide vital information to the maintenance engineers.

While we are all looking to the future, machines and equipment have to be maintained today. We have over 8000 mechanical parts in stock to help you keep your machines going.

Featured Brands

Instrumental in success :
PCS Instruments

PCS Instruments, based in West London, designs and manufactures equipment for testing fuels and lubricants. Their clientele represents a wide range of sectors, from food and beverages to aerospace. Dr Matt Smeeth of PCS discusses some of the challenges facing them in today’s market, and explains why RS’s services are invaluable to them.

At PCS Instruments, we make equipment for oil companies, national standards laboratories and test houses. We’re specialists in tribology, which is the study of the principles of friction, wear and lubrication – basically, how moving surfaces interact with each other.

PCS was founded in 1987, so we celebrated our 30th anniversary this year. We started as a consultancy company formed by a group of academic and postgrad students from the Tribology department of Imperial college. Now we service clients in over 90 countries around the world.

Ninety percent of our instruments are exported. Many of our clients are in the US, but we also work with businesses based in Europe, so if Brexit results in the UK leaving the single market, it could cause us serious problems. It will mean a lot more work for everyone, with all the extra admin and paperwork.

Right now, we’re creating straightforward mechanical and engineering products for our clients, but many of the industries we serve are in a constant state of change, so we’re always thinking about the future. For example, diesel cars are on the way out, so we won’t be selling much more diesel-testing equipment. Everyone in the automotive industry is looking for more efficient fuels and better ways of doing things, and we have to keep up with new discoveries and update our range of instruments and accessories accordingly.

At the moment, our products are not yet part of the Internet of Things, but that’s just a matter of time. Luckily RS still appreciates the importance of providing a wide range of fi rstclass mechanical and electronic parts and components for clients like us. They haven’t reduced their selection like many other suppliers, so we can always be sure they’ll provide what we need.

Even if we’re looking for a non-standard product that’s not in their catalogue, they’re great about finding it for us. The staff are always knowledgeable and happy to help.

When I’m looking for a new supplier, they’ve got to be really something special – or offer a unique product that meets a specific need – for me to add them to my roster. We’re ISO certified, so I look for suppliers who hold the same certification.

However, the most important aspect for us is availability. We’re always working to tight deadlines for clients who ‘want it now’, so we really appreciate RS’s huge range of products, as it means they’re bound to have what we want.

Dr Matt Smeeth , PCS Instruments

Their delivery service is also very reliable, so if they say I’ll get something at 10.30 tomorrow morning, I can be sure that’s when it will arrive. My team’s time is precious, and RS appreciates that.