Can old machines be monitored automatically?


There are many off the shelf sensors you can add to older equipment to gather all sorts of data. Many data collecting businesses actually exist from doing just this.

However this isn’t always necessary, you firstly need to ask yourself:

• What do I need to know about this machine?
• Why do I need to know this?
• Will this add value when I know this?

If the answer to the third question is yes then you should be monitoring this equipment closely.

To understand how effective a piece of equipment is, you’d want to know its Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) and measure it using the standard OEE method.

Having real-time OEE isn’t too difficult to establish once you can obtain a run signal, a product count and a reject count gathered automatically or manually.

Gathering OEE data is a reliable method for establishing a consistent measure between assets of dissimilar types, to help understand whether investment or divestment is the strategy for older equipment.

We’ve all probably got fond attachments to legacy equipment, but actually this could be a drain to profits. In other cases, older equipment has advantages over new by their simplicity and reliability.

So, should they stay or should they go?

Without a reliable measure, justification for investment can be difficult and sometimes wrong. Consider your answers to our questions above and make a decision that’s right for your business, and your data.

If you have legacy equipment you need insight into it, let’s discuss your needs.