A Picture is Worth 1000 Hours

As published in Oil and Gas Innovation, Winter 2020 edition:

In the past 10 years, we’ve experienced a transformation in technology in our personal lives. With the release of the iPhone in 2007, access to photos, videos, internet information and instant video connection with FaceTime, pictures may easily be taken for granted. As we adopt new technology to make our personal lives efficient, Hydraquip realized the need to leverage technological innovation to bring the same efficiencies to their customers.

As a value-added distributor of fluid power products, Hydraquip prides itself on its salesforce who are fluid power specialists and act as an extension of their customers engineering teams by providing design expertise for the entire fluid power circuit on OEM equipment.  In the past, these circuits were laid out in various CAD only tools or with pen and paper; sales reps and customers were forced to make assumptions about the products specified for the circuit based on spec sheets and manufacturer information. Because of long lead times in the industry, any incorrect assumptions caused long delays in design and test for new pieces of equipment or enhancements to current equipment. For OEMs who did not have a lot of fluid power knowledge, explaining a static circuit and how it would function was also a difficult task for Hydraquip reps.

Hydraquip was fortunate to find a new partner in 2016 Famic Technologies (famictech.com).  Famic Technologies has created a software package called Automation Studio™, that allows sales reps to easily lay out a circuit with simulation of fluid power performance curves (flows, pressure drops, power, efficiency, torque curves, etc.) and detailed component models.  This new tool is truly worth 1000 hours since Automation Studio™ hosts a comprehensive library of component data from manufacturers allowing the sales team to assess how a pump, motor or valve will function in a circuit before waiting until that part is shipped to the customer, installed on the equipment, etc.  It also expedited the process for sales to lay out a circuit, do a real-time interactive simulation to verify the circuit and describe how the circuit functions to customers.

Michael Chavez, an account manager in Oklahoma City, recently helped his OEM customer determine a way to reduce the size of a cylinder and operate it at higher speeds resulting in increased efficiency for the customer’s system. Chavez used Automation Studio software to lay out the current schematic and determine the size of cylinder, speed requirements of the system to make this enhancement in real-time with the customer, saving both Chavez and the customer time and ultimately leading to cost savings for operation of the customer’s equipment.

As the customer stated, “Not everyone understands hydraulics, and Automation Studio helps everyone understand it better. Time is money, and it saves time to see all the components because you can get closer to the end result before assembly and fabrication.”

Not only does Automation Studio provide real time design and simulation capabilities, it also has allowed Hydraquip to create interactive service manuals for their customers. Instead of flat manuals with references to component specs, these interactive manuals allow customers to click on the component to instantly access specification information. Customers and manufacturer can upload videos about components or system operation to use these interactive manuals as training tools, value-added information for faster troubleshooting in the field and easier management of preventative maintenance.

As Chavez stated, “Hydraquip does business as a partnership with customers, and we’ve built close relationships with customers over the years. You want to help your friends more than anything and my customers have become my friends, people I care about.”

The team at Famic Technologies has become a valuable partner for Hydraquip to deliver results more quickly to customers, strengthen their customer partnerships and win new business. The visualization that Automation Studio provides through intelligent circuit simulation has saved far more than 1000 hours in the last three years of partnership.  Hydraquip is part of a family of companies, Employee Owned Holdings, Inc. (EOHI), and other companies in the family are planning to adopt Automation Studio for their clients. Supreme Integrated Technology builds movable structures and hydraulic power systems, Elite Controls provides automation solutions for hydraulic systems and GCC is a value-added distributor of fluid power products in FL, WA and OR.  Each of these sister companies will benefit by providing enhanced solutions to their customers and saving time during equipment design.  The entire family of EOHI  looks forward to increasing their use of Automation Studio to serve their customers in years to come.

Hydraquip, Inc:

Founded in 1951 in Houston, Texas, Hydraquip has offices across Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado and Louisiana with a presence in Arizona & New Mexico. Hydraquip partners with over 60 world class manufacturers to provide value-added products and innovative power solutions. All sales reps are fluid power specialists and provide expertise in fluid power, electrohydraulic and fully electric solutions for complete system design, service & repair and fluid conveyance capabilities.

Famic Technologies Inc.

Since its foundation in 1986, Famic Technologies (famictech.com) has been offering a complete range of high-end products and services in the field of software engineering and industrial automation. It has always been one step ahead, especially with the development of Automation Studioâ„¢, its innovative system design and simulation software.

Automation Studio

Automation Studio is a unique software covering all project/machine technologies including hydraulics, pneumatics, electrical and automation. It is used by the different departments throughout an organization for system design, simulation and validation, training, maintenance, troubleshooting, technical publications, project documentation and sales support.