By Daniel Watkeys
As the survey division of the largest hire company in the UK, our service technicians have to look after the largest hire fleet of Total Stations.
We ensure that our fleet of nearly 1000 instruments are carefully cleaned, examined and tested before being put back on to the fleet for the next site. But what happens to them when they’re in your hands? Downtime and delay can cost you money, so how can you keep your instrument running at its best? Here are our tips:
Transportation. You are using a precision instrument to make fine measurements and shock and vibration can affect the measurement accuracy. When moving the instrument in the field always carry it in its original container. When you put it in your van at the end of the day make sure its in its container and carefully secured so that it doesn’t move around.
Storage. Respect the temperature limits when storing the equipment, particularly in a vehicle and the weather is hot. Remove the batteries from the instrument and protect them from damp.
Cleaning and drying. Blow dust off lenses and prisms. Never touch the glass with your fingers, only use a soft, lint-free cloth for cleaning (there should be one in the box). If necessary, moisten the cloth with water or pure alcohol. Other liquids could damage the lenses. Prisms that are cooler than the ambient temperature tend to fog, but it is not enough just to wipe them. Keep them inside your jacket or in your van until they adjust to the ambient temperature.
Damp instruments. Dry the instrument, the transport container and the accessories at a temperature not greater than 40°c and then clean them. Remove the battery cover and dry the battery compartment. Do not repack until everything is completely dry. Always close the container when in the field.
We see a fair few returns which could be prevented with some TLC, and by following these simple steps, you can ensure that your instruments work perfectly through your hire.