Choosing the right material when manufacturing your components is crucial. It not only has a substantial influence on your profitability, but it also impacts your working environment with regards to safety, noise and more.

With countless options available, selecting the optimal material for your component can be overwhelming. It’s important to consider factors such as mechanical strength, load-bearing capability, noise, chemical resistance, flexibility, lubricity and more.

When it comes to deciding which material to use, it is ideal to discuss this with your manufacturer who can help you determine the optimal solution for your project and business requirements.

One of the material options available is AustLon®. The first nylon to replace and outlast traditional wear materials such as Brass and Bronze alloys, it has gained widespread acceptance as the superior alternative.

Made to outlast other nylons, it provides exceptional performance –with or without lubrication across many applications – including those where traditional plastics have failed to withstand conditions of high mechanical loading and wear.

AustLon® (PA6G) is ideal for demanding wear applications, as well as weight and impact bearing applications such as gears, sleeve bearings, wear plates, rope sheaves, bushings, slides, profile formers, chain guides, coupling components, pile cushions, buffer pads, wear pads and more.

How did AustLon® save our client nearly $4million?

Outlined below is a recent project of McNeall Plastics. Here our client approached us to help them improve their dipper trip system as they were experiencing excessive downtime, resulting in massive costs which were impacting the profitability of their operations.


The client

A world-leading resources company with a global market presence. They are among the world’s top producers of major commodities, including iron ore, metallurgical coal and copper with substantial interests in oil, gas and energy coal.

The issue:

Dipper door not opening and closing efficiently with the trip rope wedge and socket breaking frequently. Failure rate was found to be an average 12 per month, creating excessive downtime of 18.25 hours.


The impact
  • Failure rate an average of 12 per month
  • 83 breakdowns over the financial year
  • 257 hours of downtime over the financial year (approx. 21 hours per month)

At a downtime cost of $15,000 per hour for the electric shovel, the total cost of dipper breakdown for the financial year was approx. $3.8million.

The investigation

Our investigation into the dipper bucket issue established the following:

  • The dipper door was not opening because to the latch bar and dutch man were disengaging
  • Too much play of the latch bar within the box made closing and opening the door harder
  • The wear out of dutch man allowed the engagement area to be out of spec, also contributing to open and closing problems
  • Latch lever path was out of alignment causing steel drag, friction and wear
  • High motor torque led to the breakage of the anchor bracket as the lever smashed the anchor bracket upon the disengagement 
The solution
  • Wear liner kit for the latch bar tunnel to reduce the movement of the latch bar
  • Two strengthening brace on the door to maintain latch lever alignment
  • Wear liners installed on the lever guide plates
What are the advantages of a wear liner kit?

The benefits are numerous and include:

  • Easy to install resulting in reduced downtime
  • Material is not high-wearing and this would not need frequent change outs
  • The wear liners are not heavy to handle and as a result reduce the risk associated with material handling
  • AustLon® (PA6 G) material used has a low co-efficient function and thus allows the latch bar and the lever to move freely within the box and guide plates respectively

The outcome:

  • Reduced downtime per month from 21 hours to 2 hours per month due to adjustment (not failure)
  • Our solution saved our client $3.4 million over the financial year (based on the reduced downtime and an hourly downtime cost of $15,000 per hour)

This case study exemplifies how critical it is to select the right material for your component. The correct choice will not only have a positive impact on the rate of productivity and the working environment, but also on the overall profitability of your business.

When material has such an impact, it’s important to work with a manufacturer who can provide you with the expertise and support you deserve so you can make the best decision for your business.

To find out more about how McNeall Plastics can help you, simply contact us today on 02 9858 0177 or 07 3883 4722 or via