Testing your equipment is important, but using the right methods is essential to the safety of your industrial processes and your machinery. I recently went on vacation to Cartagena, Colombia, and I encountered many street vendors that use animals to pull their carts full of merchandise. These working animals are machines down there, and to test their strength, their owners load weight onto the flimsy carts until the animals are close to collapsing. On the other hand, machines builders here treat their machines a lot better than street vendors treat these working animals. Machines typically are subjected to better working conditions, and receive maintenance and repairs when needed. Our industry professional use preventive measures to ensure that the equipment will not be damaged during testing.
In my February column, "'Machines' Under Pressure," I feature a few articles that talk about the different testing methods machine builders use to test their machines. You'll be able to read it soon. For now, I want to know how you test your equipment. Which tools are you using for simulation, and do you test in the shop or at the customer site?