CARDINAL ARMOR® TRUCK SCALE COST JUSTIFICATION FACTORS

Over the past month, we have layed out in great detail some of the benefits of the Cardinal Armor truck scale.

If you consider one of the aforementioned issues problematic, Cardinal Scale’s
ARMOR® digital truck scales can provide the solutions you need.

The ARMOR® provides a great leap forward in truck scale technology. Costly load cell
diagnosis, replacement costs, and load cell damage have been greatly reduced due
to the ARMOR’s paradigm-changing technology. Carefully consider the following cost factors affecting your bottom line:

  1. If your current scale system lacks remote monitoring, factor in the time and costs spent in trying to diagnose the true failure in the weighing system. Diagnosing a
    load cell or cable failure can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days… sometimes more. The costs associated with not having your scale in use for that stretch of time can be as expensive as losing a day’s business.
  2. What are the costs associated with constantly having to repair an analog truck scale’s inefficient and delicate wiring system?
  3. What are the labor costs associated with changing a load cell should it fail?
    Most load cells cost anywhere from $900 to well over $2,000 each… and don’t forget to consider the labor associated with replacing a faulty load cell. Additionally, don’t neglect to factor in the return trip charges associated with having to constantly replace faulty load cells. Return trip charges are a cost that adds up over time and can become a considerable sum.
  4. Routine cleaning and maintenance for load cells that are exposed to debris and moisture can add more costs to the ownership of a truck scale.
  5. If your truck scale is in a location that is susceptible to lightning and power surges,
    digital load cells are a fantastic safeguard to protect your weighing operations.

Contact the heavy capacity sales department at Central Carolina Scale and request a quote for one of these scales. You can call (919) 776-7737 or complete the Request a Quote form.

ARE LIGHTNING STRIKES AND POWER SURGES AN ISSUE FOR YOUR TRUCK SCALE?

Lightning strikes are one of the most common difficulties that can affect a truck scale.
SmartCell® digital load cells provide superior protection that protects against electrical
uncertainties.

• Truck scales, due to their composition and size, are a magnet for attracting lightning. Many times, these scales are placed in an outdoor area that is exposed to the elements. The main front of protection against lightning strikes and power surges lies in the junction box. Unfortunately, if the junction box is compromised it can cause damage to the whole load cell weighing system. One or more of the load cells can be damaged in a traditional load cell arrangement, which can come at a great cost.

• The gas discharging tubes that divert excess voltage from lightning and power surges are normally placed inside the summing box of analog load cell systems. Cardinal’s SmartCell® digital load cells have the apparatus of discharging excess voltage placed in each load cell. This ability for each load cell to individually protect itself provides another line of protection for the whole load cell system. If a lightning strike or power surge happens, one load cell has the capability of preventing damaging surges from
passing onto other load cells.

• Unfortunately, lightning strikes and power surges are commonplace. These occurrences have the potential to wreak havoc on truck scale electronics. Luckily,
Cardinal’s SmartCell® digital load cells can protect individual load cells and the
entire load cell system from excessive damage caused by freak electrical incidents.

• If you’ve experienced reoccurring problems with damaged load cells and repairs caused by lightning and power surges, SmartCell® digital load cells can help protect your truck scale electronics against severe damage.

DOES IT TAKE YOU A LONG TIME TO CHANGE OUT LOAD CELLS?

Replacing the SmartCell® load cell is incredibly simple. Most importantly, it is
a very fast procedure that gets your scale back to work in rapid time.

• Ease of use is also continued with installation or replacement of digital load cell (DLC) cards or 225D mainboards in the truck scale’s weight indicator. The 225D indicator can detect whether either option has been replaced using checksums and board identification numbers. The new DLC card or 225D mainboard will be reconfigured to the existing scale by the indicator acknowledging the new card and asking the user to verify if it is new. This simple reconfiguration process saves time and effort.

• One of the most important upgrades the SmartCell® digital load cell offers is the ability for truck scale dealers to change out the load cell in a matter of minutes. Normally, with analog load cells, dealers will have to check, replace, or pull a whole host of wires from the summing box when changing one out. Now, Cardinal’s digital load cells can be removed and replaced in as little as five minutes without any specialized equipment. It really is that short and simple!

• Electronic truck scales with analog load cells require many more moving parts. With an eight-cell system there are up to 100 wires that have to be prepared and terminated, up to 14 configuration jumpers to be set for proper operation, and sense lines must be utilized to regulate excitation voltage. This complicated wiring system lengthens time spent when trying to simply replace a load cell and calibrate it. This cumbersome process is no longer needed with the ARMOR® digital system.

• The ARMOR’s simple load cell connector design and the axis® frictionless centering system’s unique construction permit just a few steps for load cell replacement. After turning off power and jacking up the weighbridge a minimal amount, a single technician
simply has to remove the dual load cell cables, remove two bolts that hold the cell to the weighbridge, and place a new load cell in its place. Next, after applying cleaner and Dielectric grease to the load cell cable connectors, the connectors are reconnected, and the load cell bolts are tightened. It’s just that simple—not another moment needs to be spared on time-consuming load cell replacements.

• If you have to spend large amounts of time dealing with wiring analog load cells, the SmartCell® digital load cell streamlines the tedious task of getting your new load cell in operation.

IS YOUR TRUCK SCALE SUBJECT TO DAMAGE FROM DIRT, GRIT, AND GRIME? ARE YOUR LOAD CELLS EXPOSED TO WATER?

SmartCell® digital load cells provide many layers of protection against damage from water and debris. The SmartCell’s construction, placement, and ingress-blocking technology keep water and grime from damaging the load cells.

• As part of the axis® frictionless centering system that is provided, SmartCell® digital load cells are moved from an exposed area near the ground or beneath the deck to a
placement above the bottom of the deck. Generally, most failures that are associated with debris and sediment build-up happen at the base of the truck scale near ground level, which greatly contributes to corrosion. SmartCell® digital load cells are given
an extra layer of protection against the filth that typically accumulates under truck scales by being situated much higher in the scale weighbridge

• The orientation of the SmartCell® digital load cells in their load cell stand also provides the added bonus of selfcleaning. SmartCell® load cells rest on top of a cup-and-ball system that grinds up sediment and pollutants that might settle in the receiver
cup from day-to-day operations. Normally this accumulation of pollutants would be left
to build up and cause issues with load cell integrity or might cause inaccurate readings, but this self-cleaning feature can help protect the load cell modules from incorrect weighing.

• If, by chance, water levels rise high enough to expose SmartCell® digital load cells to moisture, their rating provides the highest level of protection afforded: IP69K. Their stainless steel casing and potting-filled cell body prevents water from entering the load
cell and damaging valuable digital components that transmit weighing information.

• SmartCell® load cell cables are also placed above the load cell housing to keep wiring clear of exposure to sediment and water. Load cell cables include rat-proofing protection from nibbling rodents.

IS YOUR TRUCK SCALE APPLICATION SUBJECT TO EXTREME TEMPERATURES?

Extreme weather and temperatures will cause issues for analog load cells. SmartCell® digital load cells provide the much-needed protection to prevent important internal components from failure.

ARMOR® load cells can operate in a wide range of temperatures. SmartCell® load cells are designed to function at high performance in a wide range of settings. Whether your scale is in an extreme environment or a location that has wildly fluctuating weather, SmartCell® digital load cells provide the stability needed to keep your scale weighing accurately.

SmartCell® digital load cells feature a much more simplified wiring system than an analog truck scale system. Generally, within an analog eightcell scale system there are up to 100 wires that have to be prepared and terminated correctly. Traditional analog wiring systems have several runs of wiring that can be exposed to the normal expansion and contraction caused by temperature fluctuations. SmartCell® digital load cells are connected point-to-point in a “daisy-chain” manner with shielded PVC cables; this reduced total wiring and greater wiring protection lessens the damaging effects of severe heat and cold on the ARMOR® digital truck scale system.

If your scale location is in an area that that experiences load cell and wiring failures due to extreme hot and cold temperatures, SmartCell® digital load cell’s innovative design provides the most protection and return on your investment.

HAVE YOU FACTORED IN THE COST OF DOWNTIME? ARE SCALE DISRUPTIONS A REGULAR PART OF YOUR TRUCK SCALE OWNERSHIP EXPERIENCE?

As we discussed in the last entry, the Armor truck scale is a scale worth considering. Today we look at the SmartCell. SmartCell® load cells and iSite software greatly reduce the monetary risks involved in scale ownership.

• Since the circuitry of the load cell is internal, wiring is not openly exposed to corrosion. The internal wiring and digital components are completely protected by
Cardinal’s proprietary potting compound process that fills all of the internal voids
of the load cell. This load cell technology prevents ingress from moisture and provides the SmartCell® with an IP69K rating. Load cell failures associated with exposure to
water and electrical surges are greatly reduced and load cell replacements become
much less frequent due to SmartCell® technology.

• Most truck scale manufacturers still offer electronic scales that feature analog load cells. Analog load cells require time-consuming wiring and load cell fault diagnosis. Analog load cells are also much more prone to fluctuations in temperature and wiring degradation and damage due to moisture and sediment. Cardinal’s SmartCell® digital load cells feature stainless steel double-ended shear beam bodies and patent-pending
complete internal encapsulation via proprietary potting methods to protect internal circuitry.

SmartCell® load cells are daisy-chained together by waterproof load cell
cables and there is no junction box that is susceptible to water and lightning damage. SmartCells can be remotely monitored through Cardinal’s cloud-based iSite portal so dealers can be alerted to a load cell malfunction. Time spent having to randomly diagnose wiring failures is eliminated, and costs associated with lengthy diagnosis periods are also minimized.

• In the event that there is damage to the load cell, it can be easily swapped out and replaced quickly. Simply removing a few bolts and two screw-on cell cables is all that is needed. Technicians of any level can complete such a simple task, and your scale
can be back to running in a fraction of the time—increasing profits. Electronic truck scales with analog load cells still rely on time-intensive traditional wiring methods that can keep a scale out of commission with long waiting periods to find the source of the issue.

• If your scale is to be positioned in a location where chronic downtime is going to be a problem, digital load cells provide the greatest solution to preventing unwanted interruptions and costly load cell repairs and replacements. Lightning-fast load cell diagnosis and quick-and-simple load cell replacement with superior protection create a massive windfall for the end-user that no longer needs to be squandered.

QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER BEFORE PURCHASING A TRUCK SCALE


Over the next few blog entries, we are going to take a look at a few of the reasons why Cardinal’s ARMOR® Digital Truck Scale arguably provides the best return on investment.

Cardinal Scale’s all-around innovative truck scale and load cell design
provides the most protection against circumstances—seen and
unforeseen. The combination of Cardinal Scale’s SmartCell® load cells,
ARMOR® weighbridge, and axis® frictionless centering system provide
a well-rounded vehicle scale package that protects against the
harshest conditions while transmitting valuable weight data digitally.
Cardinal Scale provides customers with the versatility and efficiency
required to fit their individual scale needs while saving valuable time
and effort.

Cardinal Scale engineers, develops, and manufactures their truck
scale hardware, software, and load cell technology in one location.
Weighbridges, indicators, load cells, and related instrumentation
are produced to meet the individual customer’s needs. Due to the
highly-vertically-integrated nature of Cardinal Scale’s manufacturing
processes, the company can easily modify and customize each truck
scale they make to fit a customer’s application—a benefit that is
becoming increasingly rare in today’s truck scale market.

Keeping with its visionary heritage, Cardinal Scale has again pushed
the boundaries of truck scale technology by developing SmartCell®
digital load cells. The added benefit of transmitting weight digitally
is greatly augmented by Cardinal Scale’s iSite remote monitoring
system. Dealers can now see, in real time, load cell issues as they
happen. Most importantly, time spent checking load cell wiring
is greatly reduced thanks to the streamlined, digital load cell
diagnostics. Dealers can now quickly and remotely diagnose load cell
issues and replace defective load cell elements in a fraction of what
analog load cell diagnosis requires.

Carefully consider the following questions for the purchase of a truck
scale to see if Cardinal’s ARMOR® digital truck scales will provide the
best solution for your time and resource investment.

Large Vehicle Scale Case Study

The following is a case study provided by Cardinal Scale Manufacturing. The specs on this installation are as follows: twin digital YUKON off-road truck scales (for haul trucks weighing up to 300 tons) and a Satellite 825D indicator connected to a long-range RFID tag reader for completely-unattended data transactions.

The system consists of two checkered steel deck 30 ft x 12 ft YUKON off-road truck scales with digital SmartCells installed side by side to make up a 30 ft x 24 ft weighbridge that is used to weigh wet bottom ash for a construction company in Montana. The 825D digital indicator is set up as a single scale with a capacity of 300 tons x 0.02 tons.

The YUKON off-road truck scale features an extremely-high, 70-ton concentrated load capacity (CLC) and extra-thick checkered steel deck, meaning it can withstand a dense amount of weight in a tight circumference that is inherent in the CAT haul trucks used at this site.

The large trucks used at this job site support their heavy loads on a relatively few number of axles thus concentrating the total load in a few small footprints on the scale platform. A substantial CLC rating is necessary to ensure that a loading pattern produced by trucks like these are accurately measured.

The customer required an automatic weighment so that the off-road dump trucks simply pull onto the scale and the system IDs the trucks and stores the weight. The embedded traffic light of the stainless steel Cardinal Scale SB600 remote display signals the driver to enter the scale and then exit it once the transaction is stored.

The weight indicator used in this application is a Cardinal Scale Satellite 825D with digital scale input, full-color graphics display, weatherproof enclosure, and rain hood. There was not a printed receipt necessary, so the Satellite 825D’s ID storage application stores all transactions digitally within its memory. The customer is using the remote indicator capabilities of the 825D to access it from their office and upload the transaction file.

The scale is equipped with a long-range RFID tag proximity reader located in the middle of the truck scale. The reader is used to ID each truck and automatically store the weighment without driver/operator intervention. Traffic across the scale is bi-directional, so the construction company’s trucks are equipped with two like-numbered RFID tags located on each side of the truck.

The operational steps are set up to automate and minimize the time needed by each truck driver and for the facility to avoid staffing the truck scale. When the SB600 remote display’s 6-inch-high traffic light is green, the truck driver knows to pull onto the scale, and once the display’s traffic light turns red, the truck drivers know to stop. The RFID tag is then read by the long-range reader, which has a proximity range of up to 15 feet.

Once the weighment delay timer expires and motion ceases, the truck weight is acquired. If the truck tare weight is stored within the 825D indicator’s memory, the net weight is calculated and the transaction is stored.

Otherwise, first pass weighment data is stored. The truck then exits the scale, unloads or loads, and returns for a second weighment to complete the transaction. The system resets and is ready for the next weighment. The entire unmanned transaction is performed without a scale operator necessary.

Using the Satellite 825D’s remote indicator application, the 825D can be monitored, truck ID’s can be added/edited, and the transaction file can be uploaded from the office via the construction company’s Ethernet network.

Contact the heavy capacity sales team at (919) 776-7737 or complete our online Request a Quote form for additional information regarding the products mentioned in this article.