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Milwaukee Cylinder Offers RFID Tags for Documenting Maintenance

Customers in industrial environments can use a handheld RFID reader to capture data about a cylinder's inspection and repair history, then write comments about the latest service being provided on it.
By Claire Swedberg

Balluff makes an industrial IP 67-rated HF RFID tag, known as the BIS M-150-02/A, that Milwaukee Cylinder opted to use. The cylinder company developed its own patented mounting bracket to attach the tag to the tie rod or to the cylinder's side.

The tag contains 2,000 bytes of read and write memory, and can be interrogated from a distance of up to 75 millimeters (3 inches). The memory, Lacina notes, is sufficient to enable the writing of seven sets of comments for as many inspections or maintenance events. After that, a user would need to rewrite one section of data.

To read a cylinder's tag, a company can use a Balluff handheld reader loaded with a special template that enables the device to automatically recognize the Milwaukee Cylinder format.
When a customer orders a new cylinder, that order can include the option of an RFID tag, for an additional cost of $99. Milwaukee Cylinder encodes the tag's memory with such details as the serial number, the date of manufacture and replacement part numbers.

Milwaukee Cylinder ships the cylinder with the RFID tag attached to one of its tie rods, but expects customers to move the tag to the proper orientation and location once the cylinder is installed, so that the tag can most easily be accessed via a reader in the future. Companies can use their existing RFID software (if they have other RFID programs in use), and Milwaukee Cylinder provides a Memory Map document to identify how to interpret codes in the tag data.

Alternatively, a firm can utilize a Balluff handheld reader (model M-871-1-008-X-001-3002), for which Milwaukee Cylinder offers templates that can be downloaded onto it, so that the reader can automatically recognize the cylinder maker's format.

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