Posted on August 21, 2016
Victaulic announces another first in mechanical pipe-joining systems with the launch of the RG5200i Roll Grooving Tool, the world’s first “intelligent” roll groover. The RG5200i is an award-winning, fully automatic, intelligent grooving tool that transmits instant feedback on the quality of the pipe and the pipe groove. It provides a new level of confidence in the consistency and integrity of grooved pipe.
“Existing roll grooving machines require the tool to be manually adjusted. Following completion of the groove, the operator then must also manually measure the pipe,” said Aidan Niggel, Product Management Director of Tools & Materials Technologies, for Victaulic. “The RG5200i automates these processes. It modernizes and simplifies the grooving process, producing accurate and repeatable grooves in a safer working environment for the operator. This technology adds another level of confidence for owners, engineers and operators in grooved piping systems.”
Accuracy, Reliability, Traceability and Safety
The RG5200i roll grooves Schedule 40 carbon steel pipe from four to 60 inches in diameter (100 to 1500mm) and is designed to meet the specifications of the American National Standards Institute and the American Water Works Association’s C-606 standards for grooved and shouldered end joints.
“The biggest challenge with grooving pipe is ensuring it meets the required specifications,” said Jimmy Utz, Fabrication Shop Lead for Ferguson Enterprises Inc, one of less than a handful of companies in the country to first lease the roll grooving tool. “Anyone can take a piece of pipe and put a groove in it. The challenge becomes how to ensure the accuracy of the critical groove dimensions.”
Unlike existing grooving tools, the Victaulic RG5200i roll grooving tool uses lasers and computers to set the depth of the grooving tool. To groove a pipe, the operator places the pipe-end between upper and lower rolls, selects groove and pipe details (size, material, wall thickness) using the touch-screen interface on a remote pedestal, and initiates the grooving process.
After the grooving process is completed, the tool confirms that each dimension is within specifications, eliminating the need to measure the pipe manually. For any dimensions out of spec, the tool will display what adjustments are needed. The system documents and records each groove completed, easing traceability.
“Improving accuracy and productivity, while getting our employees home accident free is what drives our decision making,” said Todd Aquilo, General Superintendent for Hill York, another RG5200i early adapter. “We’ve had a 25-year partnership with Victaulic and their RG5200i Intelligent Roll Grooving Tool gives our pipefitters the performance and protection we can count on 100 percent.”
The tool maintains safety in the fabrication shop by setting up a proximity “no-go” zone around the tool. If the safety zone is breached, the tool automatically suspends operation. In addition, operator interface has been incorporated into a remote pedestal, keeping the operator at a safe working distance from the tool. Two hand touch activation is required to prevent unintended starts.
“When you look at accuracy, reliability, traceability and safety, Victaulic’s roll grooving solution is a perfect fit for Hill York’s priorities as a safety-conscious provider of value-added services,” added Aquilo.
Intelligent Automation Saves Time and Money
Consistency, reliability and accuracy are critical requirements for getting piping systems installed right the first time to avoid costly, time-consuming rework. The instant feedback delivered by the RG5200i is a huge benefit because it eliminates the risk of installing pipe that does not meet specifications, which helps ensure the long-term reliability of the piping system operation.
“Information technology is revolutionizing the manufacturing process and redefining competitive strategies,” said Mike Griffin, Engineering Director of Tools & Materials Technologies, for Victaulic. “The RG5200i, with its intelligent operation capabilities and wireless data transfer, modernizes the grooving process and offers fabricators, contractors and owners absolute confidence that grooved pipe is within spec and ready to be installed. This tool does to roll groovers what the smart phone did to mobile phones.”
Additionally, the RG5200i was recently recognized for excellence in product design in the 2016 Dealer Design Awards Program sponsored by The Air Conditioning Heating & Refrigeration News magazine. An independent panel of contractors, acting as judges in the contest, awarded the RG5200i the Bronze Award in the Electronic and Hand Tools category.