Out with the Old: Removing and Replacing a Massive Autoclave in Arlington, WA
- jack and skate system
- and SPMT.
A manufacturing company in Arlington, WA, decided to upgrade their telephone pole pressure treating equipment—a 150’ long, 8’ in diameter autoclave—with a larger system to increase its production volume. However, the 160,000-pound autoclave sat in a below-ground pit under a covered pole barn with a machinery pit directly below.
Reaching out to Omega Morgan’s Seattle machinery moving team, the company needed a full-service solution to remove the original vessel, transport the new autoclave, and install it within the current location—all while minimizing production downtime. As always, our crews stepped up to the plate with a world-class solution.
PLANNING A MULTI-SERVICE HEAVY EQUIPMENT SOLUTION
Months ahead of the move, our machinery moving crew sought support from Omega Morgan’s specialized transportation and crane services teams. They would be integral to the pickup and transport of the new 230,000-pound autoclave from Sandy, OR to Arlington. The specialized transport team began applying for superload permits from both Oregon and Washington State authorities—which take between 45 and 60 days—while the machinery moving crew worked with the customer to plan the multi-stage move.
Though it would maintain a 150’ length, the new autoclave added two additional feet in diameter to be placed in the same space as the original vessel. Over the course of several meetings and site visits to both the Arlington site and Sandy manufacturing facility, the team discussed changes to the design of the new 230,000-pound autoclave and determined the equipment necessary for the removal and installation moves.
After going through the permitting process, our specialized transportation team turned to the transport segment of the project. Needing to move a component of this size takes careful preparation and specialty equipment. They decided on a custom, OM-built modular dual trailer set up for the haul between Sandy and Arlington.
The project was timed between departments to ensure the least amount of production downtime for our client; once the permits, equipment, and crews were ready, our machinery moving team prepared to execute the first stage of the project.
FULL SERVICE: HEAVY MACHINERY MOVING, LIFTING, AND TRANSPORT
Over the course of three days at the Arlington facility, our four-person crew used jacks to lift the autoclave before skating it out and over the pads that supported its base. More jacking and cribbing brought it high enough to clear the pit, yet remain below the roof. The crew then used the tri-lifter to pull it out the rest of the way. Sliding the SPMT under the vessel, our team moved it away from the pit for decommissioning.
The next segment of the job began in Sandy, OR. Our specialized transportation team of four met the crane crew and 200-ton and 350-ton cranes at the autoclave manufacturing facility. Lifting the new, 10’ in diameter autoclave off its blocks, our crane services team placed the component between the two custom-built modular trailers, connecting them. After lashing the autoclave in, we got on the road. With road closures, traffic control, and pilot escorts, the 18’ wide load made the journey in three days.
Back in Arlington, the installation crew lifted the autoclave off using tri-lifters before setting it on a slide track and pushing the component back toward the pit. Installation took six days as the team jack and slid the vessel into place.
When all was said and done, our customer appreciated Omega Morgan’s safe and efficient work, as well as the full-service solution we provided.