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You Don't have to Sacrifice Efficiency for Complexity

August 18, 2017
Whitney VanKlaveren

Featured in Muncie Power Quarterly, Issue 3, 2017

In markets like refuse or snow and ice, where applications can be complex and require multiple functions at one time, it can be difficult to balance system complexity with efficiency. With the release of Muncie Power Products' new L125 sectional, load-sense valve in the second quarter however, the company now offers its own option so that efficiency nor complexity need be sacrificed.

As a member of the team working on bringing this product to market, Product and Applications Engineer Nick Schmidt sees the product as an opportunity for the company’s customers to achieve a more efficient, hydraulic system.

“It gives you the opportunity to have a more efficient system because when your valve is not stroked, as long as your system is set up right, the pump won’t be trying to send oil to the valve – which is inefficient,” he explained.

In order to create the L125 and provide this opportunity, the team had to reflect on previous load-sense products once distributed by the company and leverage its relationship with the Interpump Group to offer an Interpump load-sense product.

“To develop what we were going to offer we evaluated previous usage of load-sense products here at Muncie and built our product portfolio based off that,” said Schmidt.

Compared to Muncie Power Products other valves, the L125 is similar in that it is a valve but also very different from the V Series directional control valves. According to Schmidt, the L125 differs from the V Series as it is load sensing, has a closed center and features good flow sharing capabilities.

“Because it’s post-compensated, the flow sharing characteristics are quite good,” he said.

Post-compensated means that the valve can distribute flow to multiple work sections at the same time. Additionally, the system communicates hydraulically by sending a pressure signal back to the pump to adjust the pump’s flow so that the multiple functions operate efficiently. As Schmidt shared, with a standard, open-center valve there is typically no compensation – which means that it cannot operate multiple functions simultaneously and it does not tell the pump how much flow it needs.

Well suited for applications within the agriculture, utility, snow and ice and refuse markets where multiple functions are more likely required, the L125 ultimately meets two main needs identified within these markets.

“Two main reasons would be operating multiple functions at the same time or wanting a more efficient system,” he said.

The L125 has a 33 GPM nominal flow rate with an inlet capable of a maximum of 40 GPM and its work sections a maximum of 26.4 GPM. Beyond its good flow sharing capabilities mentioned, the L125 also has multiple spool flow options and both electro-hydraulic and manual shift versions available.

Muncie Power’s L125 covers lower flow rates, which is why the company has plans to – as Schmidt said – soon “offer its big brother, the L275.” This larger valve will have higher flow rates, so that the entire flow range from low to high is covered.

For customers, the L125 means Muncie Power Products offers an option, and the opportunity, to capitalize on efficiency while operating multiple functions.

Nick Schmidt - Product and Applications Engineer

Nick Schmidt joined the company in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering technology from Purdue University. He recently completed his MBA at Ball State University and with his MBA complete, is looking forward to more free time to enjoy some of his hobbies including golfing, fishing and playing guitar. Having always been interested in other languages, he also has plans to begin learning Italian.