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MSC Commissioning Preflight Salvages Project Schedule

Mechanical Service Corporation was referred to a new client that had an unusual situation arise during construction of their large, new eastern Pennsylvania manufacturing facility. One of the larger process equipment manufacturers had begun experiencing financial difficulties during the project, which created a number of contractual issues and soured their relationship with the owners. As a result, everyone was anticipating a disastrous, problem-riddled startup and commissioning process. To head off these issues and prevent the entire schedule from falling into disarray, a project manager recommended calling in MSC to do a complete evaluation of all systems and components to unearth and fix problems before commissioning was slated to begin.

MSC’s first task was to obtain missing electrical equipment and instruments such as VFDs, starters, relays, and control panels that would be needed within the next two weeks. Due to the ongoing supply chain shortages, however, estimated lead times for many of the items ranged from six to eight weeks. Many phone calls were made to vendors and strings were pulled wherever possible to get the equipment there sooner, but in most cases, MSC resorted to purchasing individual components and instruments and custom building the equipment in our shop. We were able to complete the work within ten days, at which time the materials were shipped to the job site, installed, and wired.

Our next challenge was to perform all of the bump-and-check rotation of all motors, fans, and pumps, followed by a field loop check of instruments, to uncover problems that could potentially hamper startup and commissioning. As expected, multiple issues were found and corrected including a damaged motor in the lock rotor due to a crushed bell housing, pneumatic items that had been piped incorrectly, mis-wired equipment and a short circuit, limit switch cams that were out of adjustment, and several solenoids that were broken and needed repair. MSC also handled all of the programming for several VFDs and CPUs.

Once the work was completed, the manufacturer came to the job site to perform start-up with MSC’s assistance. With much of the work already done during our extensive preflight work and custom fabrication, all that was required of the manufacturer was sequence testing and PLC programming. In the end, the startup and commissioning process that had been scheduled for three weeks (and likely would have ballooned to six had MSC not stepped in) was completed in just two weeks.


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