A three-part consortium from the UK, USA and Sri Lanka, triangulated expertise to develop a new product for measuring tension on lines recently launched by Straightpoint, the Running Line Dynamometer (or TIMH), part of the manufacturer’s tension in motion range.
David Ayling, director of Hampshire, UK-based Straightpoint, a manufacturer of force measurement, load monitoring and suspended weighing load cells, sought to fill a gap in the market for dockside, marine, offshore, towage and salvage applications. He was particularly keen to introduce a product that could be employed when there is no anchor or dead end on the line, for example, when there is a requirement to measure a force at a specific point of a longer line.
Roshan Divakaran, design engineer at Straightpoint, was set the challenge but the finished product was the result of a larger collaboration involving the company’s strategic partner Group Four Transducers Inc., using the combined efforts of Group Four’s team in Massachusetts and Sri Lanka.
Ayling said: “Roshan and I set out to create a product that was modular in construction with consistency of components so we could assemble units and ship them very quickly. Knowing the skill-sets of all of our global partners, it made sense to leverage our relationship with Group Four and incorporate the design expertise that we could tap into via their team in Sri Lanka.”
Robert Gray, chief operating officer, Group Four, said: “As David knows, we are a solutions company with a focus on problem solving. We create purpose-built solutions driven by the requirements of function-driven customers but we’re not a product company as such so the partnership with Straightpoint represented a perfect fit for us. David is a keen marketing guy and once he had identified a product opportunity, we provided engineering support and introduced our Sri Lanka-based colleagues to the collaboration, who led the design implementation.”
Now the product has been put to market, Straightpoint, Group Four and 3S Fabrications (the Sri Lankan group) continue to oversee various stages of production with final assembly and sales taking place at Straightpoint headquarters in Havant. Straightpoint can also provide custom-engineered mounting solutions, upon request.
The TIMH is constructed from marine grade stainless steel and is suitable for many wire rope configurations up to 80t and will, as an option, calculate line out in meters or feet along with line speed. It is available as a wireless or cabled system utilizing the HHP range of handheld displays or SW-MWLC software.