Wheel Load Balancing & Vehicle Levelling

The Rail Vehicle Suspension Wrap predicts primary suspension packing thickness for each wheel. This reduces suspension setup time by a factor of twelve and increases passenger safety by optimising derailment stability. The pack prediction algorithm can be modified for use on any rail vehicle.

At Hitachi, a whole six-car unit now takes under four hours to complete – this is all the more impressive when you realised that before ExcelWraps was introduced the process took seven days!

The beauty of ExcelWraps is its ability to change. Simply modify a spreadsheet and the wrap is regenerated (old data can still be viewed through the regenerated wrap). No software engineers are involved and people on the shop floor are unaware that any tweaks that have been made.

Engineering systems are not simple and we learn and improve our approach all the time. There nothing better than ExcelWraps to put data at your fingertips and to put engineers at the centre of the processes they control.

The data collected by ExcelWraps is continually reviewed using live reporting tools to see how the process can be improved. Some of the findings have been that:

  • The flatness tolerance of one of the WeighWell at Ashford had drifted over time and required adjustment.
  • The load applied on the bogie bench press at Doncaster must be applied with a greater degree of accuracy (within ±25kg).
  • The vehicle weight records from original build and three-year overhaul were concatenated to give the most accurate weight estimate.

By ensuring that the bench press load is as close as possible to the tare load of the recipient vehicle, no readjustment of primary suspension shims was required at Ashford. All levels and wheel loads were within tolerance first time.