Gulf Coast Air & Hydraulics News

16 June 2017


When Old Boats Still Matter


Fiberglass hulls that are well built can last a long time but their components usually need replacements or repairs along the way. But if a boat consistently needs these services, it may lose its value in the end if the cost of repair will eventually be more than the cost of an operable comparable boat. Wooden boats, on the other hand, require to be kept dry at all times when not in use, consistently cleaned, and regularly repainted. Steel boats are much more costly in terms of sandblasting and painting

27 May 2017


Technology and the Future of the Offshore Industry


Since oil prices have collapsed in 2014, the North American shale industry has reportedly suffered lower activity levels. However, with more projects offshore that are being restored in 2017, experts are optimistic about the future of the industry. According to a research carried out by Rystad Energy, shale-focused operators are expected to increase spending by 30% in 2017 while offshore spending

10 May 2017


The Power of Hydraulic Cylinders


The various uses of hydraulic cylinders are found in almost all major industries where there is force required, including oil and gas, material handling, military and government, aircraft and airline, mining, and even waste and recycling. Having evolved from using water as material for hydraulic pumps and motors to producing fluid power that can provide up to 10 times the power of an electric motor,

23 April 2017


3 Easy Hydraulic Fluid Overheating Fix


Ensuring that you maintain your hydraulic system’s fluid temperature is without a doubt one of the biggest challenge faced by many facilities worldwide. In fact, when it comes to matters minimizing hydraulic system operational costs, ensuring that the hydraulic fluid does not overheat ranks high above issues related to a hydraulic system like fluid contamination.

8 April 2017


Mechanisms of Heat Transfer


Heat transfer plays a huge role in the application of the First Law of Thermodynamics, which refers to the application of the conservation of energy principle to heat and thermodynamic processes. The first law is used extensively in the discussion of heat engines. A heat engine converts heat or thermal energy, as well as chemical energy, to mechanical energy.

25 March 2017


The Growing Role of Control Valves in Various Industries


Control valves are used to manipulate the flow of fluid and are described as possibly the most important, and in some cases the most neglected, part of a control loop. Control valves, aside from heater or other device, are actuated to produce a change in the process variable of a control loop and ensure safe and efficient operation of the process.

17 March 2017


Three Common Hydraulic Mistakes


Hydraulic systems are of great importance to a number of industries worldwide given the fact that they assist in carrying out tasks that need extensive labor. That said, companies work to ensure that their hydraulic systems are functioning or operating at their very best at all times. Unfortunately, hydraulic systems, just like any other machine can fail to operate efficiently and in most cases, this is because of mistakes made knowingly or unknowingly either by the company’s employees or by those in charge of the hydraulic system. To help you in your quest of having a hydraulic system performing at it’s very best, this post will get to highlight three common hydraulic mistakes made throughout various industries.

25 February 2017


The Top Three Causes of Hydraulic Pump Failures


Hydraulic pumps, in addition to being one of the most expensive components of a hydraulic system, play a very important role and as such, many facilities, especially ones that use hydraulic systems for their day-to-day critical processes, work tirelessly to see to it that they protect them at all cost. Despite their efforts, many of them fail to take into account well-known causes of hydraulic pump failure and as such, still find themselves dealing with matters hydraulic pump failures that ultimately end up damaging expensive components of their hydraulic system. This post will highlight the top three causes of hydraulic pump failures.

14 February 2017


The World Fluid Power Summit at IFPE 2017


The NFPA is an American trade association that aims to strengthen the fluid power industry by offering an effective forum, resources and opportunities to the stakeholders from across the supply chain: manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, educators and fluid power customers.

27 January 2017


High-performance Fire Boats for the New York City Fire Department


The New York City Fire Department (FDNY) is commemorating the lives of the 343 fire fighters, including a chaplain and two paramedics. Firefighters who sacrificed their lives while responding to the terrorist attacks that caused the collapse of the North and South Towers of the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan

14 January 2017


Tugboat 101


A tugboat (tug) is a boat or ship that maneuvers vessels by pushing or towing them. Tugboats can push or tow large vessels such as ships, barges, and oil rigs with high precision and speed. Below is a typical design of a tugboat, with some of the main parts defined along with their functions.

27 December 2016


Assessing the Pros and Cons of Pneumatic and Hydraulic Systems


Compressed air and hydraulic fluid are mostly used as working mediums for power transmission in fluid power circuits. Although similar in their principle of operation, the two systems have their respective advantages and disadvantages

13 December 2016


Energy-Efficiency Tips for Compressed Air Systems


Compressed air systems are of extreme value to many industrial facilities countrywide. In fact, many facilities (big or small) consider compressed air systems as a “fourth utility” given the part they play in their day-to-day business processes. Despite the benefits, compressed air systems do have one big con and that is energy consumption.

30 November 2016


10-bar dust collector valves can take the pressure


IMI Precision Engineering, a world leader in fluid and motion control technologies, has expanded its IMI Buschjost dust collector valve portfolio to enable more efficient cleaning of filter systems through higher pressure surges.

26 October 2016


2016 Hydraulics & Pneumatics Annual Career & Salary Report


Provided by more than 1,500 fluid power engineers in the nation, the nine-page report was released in October 2016. The report can be accessed through this link, after completing a registration form.

11 October 2016


NFPA Foundation Impact on Fluid Power


The video below offers an overview of the National Fluid Power Association’s Foundation's programs and their impact on fluid power education and workforce development..

29 September 2016


Maritime CAD


Understanding how maritime concepts and design begin in AutoCAD is just as fascinating as watching a newly built ship sail for the first time. The video below offers an interesting glimpse..

14 September 2016


Energy Conservation with Variable Frequency Drives (VFD)


Energy conservation is not only good for the environment but it can also lead to valuable company savings.

31 August 2016


ZF Marine Technology


ZF Marine Electronics has been a leader in single level control technology for more than 50 years. Their controls offer an optimal safety control and ease of operation in marine craft ranging from

13 August 2016


Hydraulic Renovation for Eiffel Tower


The Eiffel Tower was originally constructed with five hydraulic systems for each of the elevators installed. This construction took place more than 100 years ago and it is said that the principal mechanics are still set in place.

30 July 2016


GPS Jamming in Maritime News


The digital global position signals (DGPS) that maritime vessels are equipped with today are accurate within a meter of actual location, but these devices are sensitive and research has revealed that the signal is easily disrupted.

12 July 2016


Panama Canal Now Open


the Panama Canal opened the new third lane of the shipping channel. The expansion will allow for bigger ships and could mean more fuel extracts from the United States.

25 June 2016


Ocean Tides and the Full Moon


Over the past week, we saw the first day of summer begin with a beautiful “strawberry moon.” The Summer Solstice occurred on June 20th, and if you did not already know, this is the longest day of the year, or the longest duration of sunlight.

12 June 2016


On-Land Robotics


The various types of robots used in today’s manufacturing industry implement different actuator systems; they may have pivoted jointed segments that spin wheels, use electric motors and solenoids or hydraulic and pneumatic systems.

30 May 2016


Maersk Line Connection


Danish container shipping company Maersk Line has decided to optimize its AC network with the launch of the AC1 service, connecting the West Coast of Latin America with Asia.

10 May 2016


Rexroth Pneumatics / Aventics


Gulf Coast Air & Hydraulics shares this demonstration of the Rexroth Pneumatics positioning system, which controls the position of the actuator with directional flow. This principle of operation can be applied equally well in both piston rod and rodless pneumatic cylinders in a considerable range of bore sizes and strokes.

27 April 2016


HIWIN Technology Corporation


-Gulf Coast Air & Hydraulics is moving the hydraulic and pneumatic industry forward. We are excited to invent and create new methods in our industry involving robotic technology.

10 April 2016


Major City Details Ferry Boat Expansion


In national maritime industry news, New York City unveiled plans to expand ferry service throughout the city with 18 new passenger ferry vessels.

1 March 2016


Fuel-saving designs improve efficiency of hydraulic systems


Researchers at Purdue University have shown how to reduce fuel consumption and dramatically improve the efficiency of hydraulic pumps and motors in heavy construction equipment.

27 February 2016


Understanding Hydraulic Oil Compatibility


We will soon need to choose a new oil for one of our hydraulic systems but are concerned about the mixing of hydraulic oils. Do we have reason for concern?

16 February 2016


How To Test A Hydraulic Cylinder


The conventional way of testing the integrity of the piston seal in a double-acting cylinder is to pressurize the cylinder at the end of stroke and measure any leakage past the seal. This is commonly referred to as the "end-of-stroke bypass test". The major limitation of the end-of-stroke bypass test, is that it generally doesn't reveal ballooning of the cylinder tube caused by hoop stress.

8 February 2016


How to Maintain a Hydraulic Steering System


Hydraulic steering is a wonderful thing, especially for those of us who remember old-fashioned, jump-the-sheave cable systems or, even worse, the chain-and-sprocket setups popular on sailboats. While some folks (sailors, mostly) criticize hydraulics for the lack of “feel,” others say that’s one of the main benefits: You’re not constantly fighting the pressure of water rushing past the rudder. Even better, hydraulic steering is reliable and demands little maintenance—like a Timex, it takes a licking and keeps on ticking. But you can make the ticking smoother, and ensure against the odd system failure, by adding periodic steering-system checks to your maintenance schedule.

30 January 2016


Troubleshooting Tips for Hydraulic Pumps


The pump is probably the component most subject to wear in a hydraulic system, and the one most likely to cause a sudden or gradual failure in the system.

28 January 2016


How well do you know your hydraulic fluid?


It's no secret demands on hydraulic oil have increased in the past 20 years. Systems are generally smaller, so less oil is used. Pumps have been tasked to produce as much or more output, resulting in higher operating pressures. Smaller oil volume and higher pressures result in higher oil temperatures. Hotter oil temperatures mean an increase in oxidation rates and more thermal stress on the additive system. At the same time, end users want to spend as little as possible for fluid that lasts as long as possible and maintains a high level of protection for the equipment.

17 January 2016


How to Improve Hydraulic Efficiency


Hydraulic efficiency in terms of hydraulic fluid depends on a few factors, all of which relate to the viscosity of the hydraulic fluid. Low viscosity, either from poor fluid selection or high temperatures, results in a loss of volumetric efficiency, overheating and wear. High viscosity, either from poor fluid selection or low temperatures, results in poor mechanical efficiency, difficulty starting up and wear.

16 January 2016


Caring For Your Hydraulic Steering


Some marine systems are so reliable we tend not to notice them. I've owned a few boats in my time, and most of them had hydraulic steering. It's one of those reliable systems so widespread, it's all but universal except for boats that use a tiller, cable, or other form of mechanical steering. Good steering systems work as they should, year after year, and typically don't get on the schedule of routine maintenance, unless there is a problem.

30 December 2015


How Hydraulics are Applied in Environmental Testing


Environmental testing occurs before a construction project gets underway. Technicians carry out a range of tests on the ground so that any issues can be identified and dealt with. Certain factors can affect the feasibility of projects and while they may not prevent work from going ahead, they can determine whether other treatments or preparations are required before construction begins.

24 December 2015


Solving Hydraulic System Overheating Problems


Unlike leaks, which rank No. 1, the causes of overheating and its remedies are often not well understood by maintenance personnel

20 December 2015


Cause of darkening hydraulic fluid


"After pulling a fluid sample from one of our hydraulic systems, we noticed that the hydraulic fluid had become darker. We were concerned, so we rushed the sample to the lab for analysis. The results of the fluid analysis appeared normal. The acid number, viscosity and oxidation by FTIR have all remained stable. A quick inspection of the hydraulic system revealed that the hydraulic valves have turned goldish in color. What should we do?"

9 December 2015


Hydraulic Contamination Control


Proper filtration and monitoring is absolutely paramount in order to keep a hydraulic system operating efficiently and effectively. Up to 80% of all system failures are related to or directly caused by contamination in the system. These system failures always result in increased machine downtime and therefore decreased production. The downtime and lost production are directly responsible for a company’s lost revenue. The added up-front cost to insure proper system filtration and monitoring can easily be justified by having eliminated just one hour of machine downtime.

9 December 2015


Why you should clean new hydraulic hoses


When I was still very young my mother used to take me shopping with her. Whenever she bought dishes, she would bring them home and wash them before putting them away. That seemed kind of silly to me at the time because, after all, they were brand new! But when I asked her why she did that she said, “You never know where those dishes have been!”

December 2015


Best way to check an oil’s sludge Formation tendency


ASTM D2070 is a test method that's "designed primarily to evaluate the thermal stability of hydrocarbon-based hydraulic oils, although oxidation may occur during the test." This oxidation may result in sludge, which is measured and recorded in milligrams per 100 milliliters.

December 2015


Consider the life-time Operating cost of Hydraulic Machines


My son Benjamin turned 9 last month. For his birthday, we bought him a new mountain bike with all the bells and whistles: front shocks, rear mono-shock, front disc brake and 21-speed derailleur. I still can’t get over the price. It was only $149, and that was the regular ticket price. Of course, it was made in China.

November 2015


The Seven Most Common Hydraulic Equipment Mistakes


There are only two conditions that mandate a hydraulic oil change: degradation of the base oil or depletion of the additive package. Because there are so many variables that determine the rate at which oil degrades and additives get used up, changing hydraulic oil based on hours in service, without any reference to the actual condition of the oil, is like shooting in the dark.

October 2015


In Depth: Preparing for Optimal Safety at Sea


In the IJsselmeer, along the dikes of the Noordoostpolder, the near shore 144 MW Westermeerwind wind farm has all the foundations installed and with the turbine installation and commissioning awaiting it is also planned to become operational this year. Some 80 kilometres off the Dutch north coast construction work has started on what will become the largest Dutch offshore wind farm, the 600 MW Gemini offshore wind farm.

September 2015


Hydraulics Know-How: Just-In-Case versus Just-In-Time


On a recent flight, I listened to an audio recording in which a business coach talked about just in time versus just in case learning. His premise was, when an entrepreneur or manager is starting and/or growing a business, there is much to learn - but the time available to do so is scarce. So this coach's suggestion was to learn what you need to know - as and when you need to know it - something he referred to as just in time learning, as opposed to spending scarce time learning about something which may be useful to know at some point in the future - just in case learning.

October 2011


October 2008

Gulf Coast Air & Hydraulics expands Houma, LA facilities with a purchase 20 additional acres.
Gulf Coast Air & Hydraulics hires 2 new technicians for the Houma, LA.
Gulf Coast Air & Hydraulics launches new corporate website,
Gulf Coast Air & Hydraulics travels to Baltimore, MD to conduct repair work for Resolve Marine.

September 2008

C&G Boat Builders awards contract to GCAH to furnish and install steering, engine controls, general alarms, alarm and monitoring, and sound powered phones for new 175 ft. high speed crew boat.
Rodriquez Boat Builders, Inc. awards contract to GCAH to engineer, fabricate and install tilt alarm system for Jack Up Boat.
Green Marine awards contract to GCAH to refit older vessel for DP1 Class.
Gulf Coast awarded 4 more DP2 class 205' OSV's and will be furnishing three 450 HP varible frequency driven electric motor set-ups for the two forward thrusters and one single stern thruster. We are also furnishing the bulk mud compressor, steering, generator protection system, fuel shutdown system
Record Growth: GCAH has highest grossing revenue month in it's 25 year history.