At the heart of general depot maintenance are Mechan’s flagship lifting jacks, offering complete flexibility in terms of rolling stock type, configuration and location. They are vital for access to bogies, wheelsets and under floor components and their control system is a key area in which technological gains are driving forward innovation.
Mechan uses the latest networking expertise to synchronise unlimited numbers of train jacks, whilst still producing a smooth and safe lift – they will maintain a load even if power is lost. Using a single cable, the theoretical position of every unit in a chain is broadcast at regular intervals, so each one can make speed adjustments so precise they are undetectable to the eye, correcting any height deviations.
All linked jacks can be operated by one person from Mechan’s patented Megalink controller. The remote handset has a full colour touchscreen that allows the user to monitor an entire lift or focus on a particular unit, making it easier to diagnose faults. It also displays vital data about maintenance and servicing.
Megalink is the most technically advanced and flexible HMI panel in its field, giving the operator the freedom to move around and monitor the lift more effectively. It uses a combined power and data cable to minimise installation costs and invertor technology to produce power savings of up to 50%, compared to similar products.
Mechan’s jacks are available as mobile or fixed units and can be modified to lift extra wide or tall trains. They work hard in any environment and have a minimum design life of 25 years.
To date, the firm’s largest installation was a 44-jack chain supplied to Alstom’s Longsight Transport Traincare Centre near Manchester, England, which is used to service 11-car Pendolinos operating on the West Coast Mainline.