If you didn’t know already, we wrote a blog on STAMPED, an acronym and tool used to determine the proper hose-type and assembly information needed to get the most out of any application. If you haven’t read that article, we suggest doing so as we’ll only touch on those topics briefly here.
That said, the “secret-sauce” to any outstanding hose assembly is simple: design. The design phase of your hose assembly is perhaps the most crucial step in ensuring your finished product performs as intended and reaches its maximum life-expectancy without issues or failures. Failure to select the proper sizes, temperature rating, material, pressure rating, ends, or delivery requirements could result in a hose that doesn’t meet your standards, doesn’t perform as intended, or outright fails.
Another often overlooked process is hose cleaning, which typically occurs after cutting. Our basic standard for cleanliness is ISO 19/7/14, which can be obtained through filtered air, Ultra-Clean projectiles, air-blown brushes, and other various methods. Depending on the type of hose cut and the equipment used, the cleaning process may include one of more of these processes. Mid-State can also reach higher cleanliness standards upon request.
But why does it matter? We’ll answer this by shamelessly stealing bullet-points from one of our trusted partners - Ultra-Clean Technologies.
If your hose is cut using an abrasive saw or requires any type of skiving to remove part of the outer cover, extra cleaning processes are a must. Who wants a hydraulic system full of contaminated oil?
A clean hose is a a happy hose. Each hose should be cleaned prior to assembling to remove internal contaminates.
Consult manufacturer specifications for proper crimp diameters and tolerances, and check often!
Add a depth insertion process that ensures each hose end is fully inserted.
Not all hoses are built alike. At this point in the assembly process some may insert the hose-end, crimp it, and move on with life. However, performing an extra quality process at this stage of assembly can lead to safer assembly production. We call this process the depth insertion mark. Mid-State applies this mark to each end of the hose prior to assembly. After crimping, the crimped ferrule should partially cover this mark, indicating the hose-end is fully inserted.
Hose-ends may be assembled in various ways. For some hoses, the end-connection can be inserted easily, with little force or effort. For others, a clean lubricant or mechanical assistance may be necessary. Regardless of method it’s always important to fully insert the hose-end without introducing contaminates into the assembly.
Hose crimping is the process of compressing a ferrule around the hose’s outside diameter to a specified diameter. Crimp specifications are unique to each hose and fitting combination, and have tolerances measured by thousandths of an inch. Most manufacturers publish a tolerance of +/-.008, while Mid-State strives for +/- .006 or less. Quality inspections are crucial during this phase of production to prevent catastrophic failures. Mid-State constantly measures crimped ferrules throughout the crimping process to ensure our products adhere to these tolerances.
After crimping, an assembly may now receive any required accessories such as abrasion resistant sleeve, plastic wrap, or wire guard. Afterwards, the assembly receives a “final inspection” to ensure it meets all the requirements mentioned above. This inspection includes checklist of each procedure, the individual who performed the procedure, as well as the completion of any required tests or certifications. We apply another depth insertion mark at this point as well, which is often a different color. This mark confirms the first depth insertion mark is adequate, and that the assembly has been crimped correctly.
Building the assembly is only half the battle, however. Another lengthy process awaits each hose after our inspection processes, in which our assemblies are labeled, protected, and packaged in accordance with specific customer requirements. These processes could fill another article, but vary widely in scope and complexity.
We hope you've enjoyed our overview of the hose assembly building process. Whether you only build hoses occasionally, or rely on a supplier who provides thousands of assemblies, understanding the basic concepts of hose assembly production can help achieve safer practices.