Analysis of rope load sharing on multi-rope friction winders

M. E. Greenway, S. R. Grobler, S. Bilessuris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Ensuring that all the head ropes on a multi-rope friction winder share the load equally has been a design and maintenance issue since they were first developed. Accurate machining of the rope grooves is necessary to meet this objective. Early analysis of the change of rope loads for ropes in grooves that are mismatched in depth treated the grooves as rigid. Groove depth tolerances deduced from this analysis are stringent and difficult to achieve in practice. Test work indicated that the inherent flexibility of groove lining materials alleviates the load-sharing problem. However, no analysis of rope load changes due to mismatched flexible grooves has been published. In this paper we develop new equations for the rope load variation for flexible grooves. By allowing flexibility to reduce to zero, the corresponding rigid rope groove equations are obtained. New criteria for tolerable groove depth variations are developed from this analysis, which depend on the flexibility of the groove lining material.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)513-522
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2021


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