Stromag provides complete powertrain package for ZAUGG snow blowers
For people in colder climes, large snow blowers are essential for continuing daily life during snowy weather conditions. To ensure snow blower reliability, OEMs specify robust components in the powertrain assembly. As a result, ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL, a leading Swiss snow blower manufacturer, approached Stromag to provide a complete powertrain package for its snow blower models.
ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL snow blowers feature cutting reels and an impeller, which cut up compacted snow and eject it from the roadway via a chute. The cutting reels and impeller are connected to each other and the engine via gearboxes and power transmission components. ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL blowers can be mounted directly onto the front of tractors and other heavy vehicles, ensuring that even difficult to access areas can be cleared.
The introduction of a new rule governing the momentum of the front wheel attached to the cutting reels meant ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL had to undertake redesign work. The rule stipulates that the front wheel and cutting reels must stop all turning momentum within 10 seconds. A brake needed to be incorporated into the powertrain to provide this functionality. After contacting Stromag for a solution, it became clear that a full package of power transmission components was possible.
A complete assembly
Stromag, a leading brand of Altra Industrial Motion Corp., is a global manufacturer of brakes, clutches, couplings and other power transmission equipment. Michael Frank, Product Specialist, Clutches and Brakes at Stromag explains:“As we spoke with ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL engineers, what began with adding a brake to the front wheel to meet the new requirement, grew into the integration of a new power transmission assembly into an existing snow blower model. Our expertise in brakes, clutches and couplings means we can act as a Tier 1 supplier, delivering complete systems exactly to client specification.”
Working closely with ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL in the development phase, Stromag recommended multiple solutions. A custom version of the hydraulic multi-disc KMB 80 brake was fitted to provide the required front wheel braking. Next, a compact hydraulic clutch was added allowing complete disconnection of the snow blower with the engine still running. An elastic coupling, connected direct to the diesel engine, was needed to avoid torsional vibrations. A new gear coupling and cardan shaft were also included in the updated power train to drive the wheel and impeller. For the option of a reverse gear, an electromagnetic tooth clutch was implemented. All of these components were tested on the ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL Monobloc Snow Blower Mobl 230 and included in the updated design as a complete assembly.
Tier 1 supplier capabilities
“To deliver these multiple solutions required coordination across our facilities in Europe. Our team in La Guerche, France, manufactured the gear couplings, while our team in Unna, Germany, delivered the clutches and brakes. We have an inherent ability to combine our technical knowhow and deliver turnkey powertrain assemblies exactly to OEM specification. Our highly knowledgeable engineers are very familiar with the prototyping process and delivering customised solutions,” says Michael.
This technical knowledge has helped to solve challenges. For example, an alignment issue during the prototyping process between the gear and elastic coupling was quickly remedied by fitting a softer elastic element. Having a single point of contact during development of the new powertrain ensured this high level of responsiveness throughout the project. Furthermore, having a single power transmission partner enabled a greatly reduced spares and parts inventory and easier purchasing.
“The success with the Mobl 230 has meant we have collaborated with ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL on its Mobl 380 snowblower,” he adds. “While working to the same configuration, we modified the power transmission components to fit a new specification. This will include stiffer elastic couplings, a new cardan shaft, a reinforced front wheel brake and a gear coupling rated for higher torque. Ultimately, we can tailor our components to fit customer specification, ideal for supporting a range of models and applications. Now, we will be focusing on the smaller model and implementing electric clutch control for simplified operation.”
Clearing the way
By providing a complete range of power transmission components backed by a global technical service, Stromag can greatly ease the prototyping and production process. A single point of contact for brakes, clutches and couplings not only expedites the development process, but also simplifies future manufacturing, inventory management and purchasing. This is matched with a responsiveness, which means a quick reaction to technical challenges during development or manufacturing. Stromag’s proven track record as a Tier 1 supplier has ensured that for ZAUGG AG EGGIWIL, the road to an uprated power transmission assembly has been clear.