Manage Your Machines With EMSolutions

Stowers Machinery continues to enhance its EMSolutions capabilities to help you manage your machines.

“We collect data so we can eventually forecast repair options for customers, reducing downtime and managing maintenance time better. We want to predict failures before they happen, so we can fix those before they turn into more catastrophic problems,” said Duane Gabehart, Stowers’ EMSolutions manager. Gabehart breaks EMSolutions down into the five different data sources that Stowers uses to determine a machine’s service needs:EMSolutions_VisionLink

• Electronic Data: “This basically consists of all the information that we receive from the VisionLink website, including machine hours, machine location, machine run- time and idle-time, fault codes and alerts,” Gabehart said.

Cat® VisionLinkTM, powered by Trimble, is a web-based application that enables customers to better manage the maintenance, health and utilization of heavy equipment.

Cat VisionLink Heavy Equipment Monitoring is made possible by using a combination of Cat ProductLink hardware, Global Positioning System (GPS) technology, wireless communications, a central server, and a fleet database.

• Inspections Data: Equipment inspections can identify potential problems before failure and reduce unplanned downtime – these can be performed in Stowers’ shop or onsite by Stowers’ technicians.

“We’re also using Cat Inspect, a mobile app. We currently have some customers, service departments and product support representatives using that app to perform walk-around inspections on machines,” Gabehart said.

Information from inspections feeds back to Stowers and is used along with oil sample analysis and electronic data to get a full picture of a machine. There are multiple kinds of inspections, and all can be done through Cat Inspect.

• Repair History and Component Tracking: Utilization, projected usage, as well as actual history are used for tracking preventive maintenance and component life events. This influences decisions from other condition monitoring elements, providing a proactive database for cost projections, equipment repair, rebuild, and replace, decisions and parts and labor resource forecasting.

“This is something we’ve always had in-house. When you combine it with the other data sources, ultimately you come up with a best estimate of any potential problems with a machine and a service option that can be presented to the customer for repair prior to failure,” Gabehart said.

• S•O•S Services Fluid Analysis Data: This is a process designed to turn fluids analysis data into valuable information.

Rod Coffey at Stowers reviews oil lab results and contacts customers or service departments with any information that the samples provide. Stowers can establish a routine sampling interval, which builds up a trend of data over time. That trend allows us to compare sample history and more easily identify deviations from the normal trend.

• Site Analysis: Site Analysis is a well-structured and objective assessment of a customer’s site operations, maintenance practices and business working relationship.

If you’re interested in learning more about Stowers’ EMSolutions, call Duane Gabehart at 865-595-4967 or email him at

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