Muskoka Rock Company Gets Immediate Tonnage Reports and Identifies Top Operators

Customer Name: 
Muskoka Rock Company
Application: 
Location: 
Central Ontario, Canada

Located in Central Ontario, Muskoka Rock Company offers unique rock products which are mined from a number of quarries, including: Van Dyk Natural Stone, Huntsville Aggregates, Milford Bay, Rosseau, Blue Lake and Georgian Bay Quarries. The company’s products include a robust product line for building, landscaping and aggregate-based projects, such as producing tile for floors, kitchen, and bathrooms.

Business Challenge

Muskoka Rock Company wanted the ability to immediately see total tonnage reports and to track how much material the Huntsville Aggregates team was producing from its portable primary crusher. Looking for a trusted conveyor belt scale, Muskoka Rock Company turned to Trimble LOADRITE for help.

The Solution

Trimble® LOADRITE® C2850 belt scale, two LOADRITE L2180 loader scales, one Loadrite L2150 scale and InsightHQ quarry reporting web portal

Benefits

  • With the C2850 belt scale and InsightHQ reporting, the team has real-time insight into what the primary jaw is really doing, including tons crushed per hour, total tonnage, and average tons per hour
  • Immediate total tonnage reports eliminate the time and costs associated with performing stockpile surveys and eliminate giving away extra material
  • Reports helped identify that top operators can run on average 250 ton per hour, with documentation for how to tweak operations for greater crusher productivity
  • Mobile reporting of productivity and payload improves workflow, allowing managers to focus on other tasks including servicing  machines

Muskoka Rock Company and its quarries produce approximately 200,000 tons of aggregate per year. With four primary pits, wire saws, a mobile primary jaw crusher and extensive production capabilities, the company uses advanced technology for precise custom cutting and processing. They offer a wide variety of granite products for professional landscaping and other aggregate-based projects. Muskoka Rock Company creates beautiful and versatile granite that has unique finishes and a variety of textures and colors, from reserves, located in the Van Dyk and Huntsville Aggregate quarries. The stones produced include natural granite building stone, oversized granite flagstone and natural granite flooring.

Gilles Senak, lead mechanic and 11-year veteran at Muskoka Rock Company, explains that when his team is not producing material for Muskoka Rock customers, they take on a handful of additional small-scale crushing projects from local contractors and paving customers[RM1] . In both areas of work, the company was looking to gain better visibility into production rates from its primary crusher and to calculate cost per cubic yard of material produced at remote sites across the region.

“Because we have a mobile crusher, we generally move it from site to site and spend about a month working at one quarry,” said Senak. “Before, we would make an educated guess about our production by determining the cubic yards of our stockpile and then converting that into tons. While that worked as a guide, it wasn’t precise enough to determine if our operators and machines were running at optimal capacity, or just average.”

Looking for more precise productivity measurements, Huntsville Aggregates turned to Trimble LOADRITE for help. The Muskoka team worked with the local equipment dealer and partner, Silver Top Supply, to setup and calibrate the LOADRITE C2850 belt scale for its primary jaw crusher. The company also already had LOADRITE belt scales on two stacking conveyors and eight L2180 loader scales, which it uses across its operation. The C2850 mobile conveyor belt scale system works by relying on an integrator to process the sensor signals from the load cells as well as the speed wheel into operating data. This data is used for continuous weighing and flow measurement. The scale assembly measures vertical forces for an accurate weight signal to the integrator. This data is then collected and sent over a router where Senak can access the web-based reporting tool InsightHQ from any internet connected device, including his mobile phone.

“The Muskoka team was already a very satisfied Loadrite Customer with the 2180 loader scales, so when belt scales were needed it was an easy decision to add the C2880,” said Peter Abel manager with Silver Top Supply. “We’re are extremely happy to have Muskoka as a long-time customer and to provide our mobile services to help with the installation of the belt scale and anything that comes up along the way when it comes to quarry production or loadout monitoring.”

From the InsightHQ application, Senak can view accurate tonnage reports and production figures. These reports show what the primary jaw is really doing, including details about the number of tons per hour, total tonnage, average tons per hour, start and stop times and time spent running empty or partially loaded belt. The system also tracks conveyor downtime, which helps Senak identify and compare the hours that the belt is out-of-action, for a single shift or across several shifts. Then, he can talk with his operators to better understand the reasons for slower payload periods.

“We were very happy with ease of use and accuracy of the LOADRITE belt scale right from the start,” said Senak. “Today, whenever we move our primary jaw crusher from one site to the next, we check the calibration with material tests before each job. We perform a span adjustment to fine tune the calibration after moving the equipment, but other than than that no adjustment is needed, even after moving the spread several hundred miles. This saves us a lot of time and the hassle of re-calibration.”

Senak likes that from anywhere across the Muskoka Rock operation, even when he’s traveling or in the field, he can track the entire crushing operation, including tracking every product produced.

“From what I’ve seen so far, our crushing production really boils down to our operators,” said Senak. “Some guys can run 250 ton an hour, where others are more like 160 to 180 tons per hour. The belt scale and reporting from InsightHQ helps us identify issues that may be slowing down production, like putting too large of rocks in the hopper and not enough fine material. Now, when we have those conversations with the guys about tons per hour of material produced, or per day, and we have the data to share with them, it’s black and white. From there the conversation is easy and we can make tweaks that speed up production.”

Since having the belt scale, Senak recorded that when running the primary jaw the team can produce approximately 2,000 tons a day of 7/8 crushed stone and 2,100 tons a day of 5/8 clear stone. For pit run gravel (6-inch minus) the team can produce 3,000 tons per day. Senak explains that one of the primary benefits from the belt scale is that immediately after production, the team has accurate recording of the total tonnage of material produced. This eliminates the time and costs associated with performing stockpile surveys. This is significant because over several days, compaction of the material can occur which produces inaccurate weights and means extra material could be given away inadvertently.

“Anyone doing this kind of crushing work needs the level of accuracy you get from LOADRITE,” said Senak. “Otherwise you run the risk of giving away material, which erases profits, or having to go back and forth with customers asking about weights. With the belt scale, the weight and product are exactly what it says and there’s just no room for any question. That level of confidence is good for business and customers’ peace of mind.”