A South African locomotive fleet that is powered by an electromotive diesel two piston V8, V12 and V16 diesel engine configuration will be the first to benefit from comprehensively equipped heavy diesel engine and component remanufacturing company Metric Automotive Engineering’s sophisticated diesel engine component repair and remanufacturing services.
Metric Automotive Engineering recently entered the railway industry, diversifying its already prominent presence in the power, heavy industrial, mining and construction markets. These industries have grown to depend on the high-quality diesel engine component remanufacturing services provided by the company that will now be transferred to the country’s railway industry.
Metric Automotive Engineering is the only South African company with the advanced capability to undertake essential repairs to the top side of these engine blocks. To date, the country’s railway operators have had to rely on international skills and capabilities to have these repairs done. In extenuating circumstances, some companies have even chosen to forego these repairs, owing to the high costs involved in dealing with international companies.
Metric Automotive Engineering operations director Andrew Yorke says that this has been at the expense of these constant low-speed diesel engines that function in some of the most arduous operating conditions.
“This service is now available locally and there is no reason why South African railway operators should not be using it when the specification of the original-equipment manufacturer demands it. “African railway operators should be taking hold of every opportunity to ensure their engines have the best chance of realising their operating hours in notoriously arduous working environments,” he says.
By staying abreast of the latest developments in diesel engine technology over more than 40 years, Metric Automotive Engineering has developed extensive capability in remanufacturing diesel engine components and full engines.
“This includes the ability to accurately machine the main bearing housing serrations and line bore the block without the need for any welding, mitigating any additional thermal stresses on the final product and helping to reduce repair costs,” comments Yorke.
This is complemented by the company’s cylinder head resurfacing capability that repairs the components as close as possible to the original tolerance to ensure their long-term survival, while crank shafts are repaired using state-of-the-art grinding technology with additional compensators that reduce taper and chatter.
Yorke says that the company is proud to be affiliated with an industry that has received the attention it deserves, as national government continues its drive to ensure more people and goods are moved using this important mode of transport.
Maintenance of existing assets is also part of this strategy. Localisation of the skills and capability needed to keep the railway sector operating have also been cited as a strategic imperative and Metric Automotive Engineering forms part of this.