PMWS3: Shaft Alignment Fundamentals including Machine Installation, Soft Foot and Thermal Growth

Adam Stredel, LUDECA Inc.


In this short course, we will explore the correct sequence of events for alignment of rotating equipment and its benefits, because when a proper procedure is followed, the alignment task is expedited and simplified. LUDECA’s 5-step Shaft Alignment Procedure has been proven to help many perform precision alignment. We will review the procedure in detail.
Course will also cover the Importance of Proper Installation of Rotating Equipment. This will include talking about setting a good foundation for rotating equipment as well making sure baseplates are flat, level and rigid. Otherwise, this may induce a soft foot problem with your machines. From here, we will discuss the importance of Detecting and Correcting Soft Foot. This course will discuss types of soft foot, effects, detection methods (e.g., dials, feeler gauges, laser, etc.), analysis and correction.
Target values recommended by manufacturers do not always reflect the real machine centerline movements due to thermal growth, pipe strain and dynamic factors. So thirdly, we will evaluate the Importance of Measuring Positional Change of Rotating Equipment to determine alignment targets. This is one of the biggest contributions one can make to lower the operating costs of rotating machinery. It is to align them correctly using the true coupling target values.
We will conclude the workshop by speaking about how precision machinery alignment can help eliminate defects in the plant’s process. We will cover most of the stages where defects can be introduced through the life of an asset. Aligning rotating machinery to the correct tolerances and to true targets can eliminate the root cause of many bearing, seal, shaft and coupling failures. Correcting Soft Foot can remove machine stress and frame distortion which can lead to misalignment. Precision alignment will also result in lower vibration and temperature levels, increased mean time between failures, decreased maintenance expenditures and increased production.
This course will explain how precision alignment can resolve many premature machine failures and provide an important ingredient in reliability efforts.


Adam Stredel is an applications engineer at LUDECA, Inc. in Doral, Florida. He has many years of experience in rotating machinery with 5+ years in laser shaft alignment and training. He has visited over 60 industrial sites, conducted many alignment seminars and trainings in the United States and the Caribbean. Adam has performed numerous field jobs related to alignment of rotating equipment, bore and turbine alignment, geometric measurement, monitoring positional changes, etc. Adam obtained his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 2007 and an M.B.A. in 2015 at the Florida International University, Miami, FL. He is a Certified Reliability Leader (CRL) and holds a Level I Ultrasound Certification.