Working in partnership to solve engineering challenges in order to improve the operation, safety, reliability and performance of our customers’ plant and processes.
As a dynamic global business we apply our materials and applications engineering expertise to the design and manufacture of high performance sealing and joint integrity systems for critical applications across virtually every industrial sector.
Our customers tell us that what sets us apart from our competitors is that we have the people and expertise to make things happen and what they value the most is the capability for their own people to access that expertise face to face - the fact that their own engineers are able to collaborate and develop solutions to the sealing and joint integrity challenges they face - Expert to Expert.
Through our Materials Technology Centre in the UK, James Walker develops and compounds its own range of elastomer materials, holding over 300 unique formulations including many bespoke developments for specific customer applications across the biopharmaceutical, nuclear, defence, and oil & gas industries.
This capability expands our options when seeking solutions for customer challenges, allowing the modification of existing materials or creation of completely new bespoke options. In addition to our extensive portfolio of elastomers, we have also developed a proprietary range of engineered thermoplastic materials which are now utilised and specified across a wide range of applications from sub-sea pipelines to brake and bearing components for trains.
In-house formulation and compounding provides total traceability from raw materials through every stage of processing and manufacture to the finished product that we ship to you. Repeatability and reliability of process is something that is essential to many of our customers in industries such as biopharmaceutical, defence and nuclear.
Our engineers and material scientists are on the front line of a constant battle to provide advances in sealing technology that will enable our customers to extract greater performance and reliability from their own products, plant and processes.
As a manufacturer of such a broad range of products ranging from compression packings to elastomeric seals, precision machined metallic products to engineered thermoplastic components, we have a very broad selection of technologies from which to develop our solutions.
Many of our developments are carried out in partnership with our customers, who ask us to solve challenges specific to their products or operations. This is where the expertise and experience of our engineering teams shines through, when there is no simple off-the-shelf solution and a detailed understanding of the process and challenge at hand are required.
Think of us less as a solutions provider and more as an extension of your own engineering department. When you engage James Walker on a design and engineering project, we expect you to treat us like your own people. After all, we are working towards the same end and by integrating our physical and human resources we can get there so much faster.
It is our belief that, when selecting and specifying materials or products, relying solely on published claims utilising undisclosed test methodologies is unwise and potentially dangerous. The only true method to determine whether the sealing capability of a material or product will be suitable is to undertake product configured tests under conditions as close as possible to those found in application.
Today’s computer simulations and material behaviour predictions from laboratory testing are highly accurate but nothing beats a live mechanical test. Faced with new applications and new problems James Walker has designed and built test rigs that allow real-world conditions to be replicated in order to monitor component behaviour.
Our extensive in-house test facilities for both materials and finished product testing help provide rapid feedback and validation on prototypes and finished products. Testing can be third party witnessed or witnessed by our customers and once the prototype hits the required performance criteria we manufacture further samples for live application testing.
It is the results from hours of application testing that provide the real ‘peace of mind’ for James Walker customers. Better to explore the limits of critical components on one of our rigs than in a live application.
When designing and manufacturing bespoke components for critical applications only perfection is acceptable because we know that the business, environmental and potentially human cost of failure in operation is too great.
From the highly experienced eye of a press operator to the examination skills of manual inspection or the electronic scrutiny of the latest automated inspection machinery, our philosophy is the same at every point of the production process – ‘right first time with zero defects’.
Whether manufacturing a single small moulding, a large diameter seal or multi-component assembly, we have the experienced workforce and flexibility of production to be able to facilitate prototype turnaround and the rapid productionisation of final designs.
Our global capabilities include multi-material bonding, clean-room manufacture, large diameter moulding of both elastomer and engineered thermoplastic materials and precision machining of exotic metals. Following the initial moulding and machining processes we can also provide full non-destructive testing of finished components and detailed quality documentation covering every process through to building our components into sub-assemblies before final testing and the provision of full documentation to customer specification.
Our materials and products don’t work in isolation – their interaction with housings, shafts and other components is critical to overall performance. An effective solution may therefore often lie in changes that can be made to other components and it is here that the experience of our applications engineering teams comes to the fore. Major improvements in performance and reliability are often achieved through minor re-engineering suggestions from our design teams.
In tackling a customer’s challenge our aim is always to provide the best value solution in terms of reliability, longevity, performance and maintenance requirements. This ensures our customers optimise their cost of ownership not just for the component we supply, but also for the critical process or application in which our custom component is a working part.
Reducing the need for unplanned maintenance and getting equipment ‘back on-line’ safely and efficiently is important and our engineers’ ability to problem solve on the run and complete work in-situ can dramatically decrease any planned and un-planned downtime.
We are are able to assess and plan full turnkey projects that involve critical path or critical sealing applications; conducting pre-engineering services such as limit and finite element analysis, defining criticality and building critical scopes and providing recommendations on any design or component changes that could improve performance.
Want to discuss your project, engineering or materials challenge expert to expert? Simply provide us with your contact details and a little information about the application you are working on, and one of our experts will contact you as soon as possible.