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Safety & Technical Alert

Personal Safety at Risk Shaft from Actuator Can Eject While Under Pressure
Retrofit Kits required for safe use Reorientation may be required until kits are installed
The Weco Double-Acting and Spring-Return air pneumatic actuators were primarily designed to operate Weco butterfly valves installed in piping systems for industrial and oilfield applications. In other cases, some of these actuators can be mounted on top of Weco plug valves used in high pressure flow lines for remote flow control applications. Operating an older version Weco 500 series model actuator mounted on a Weco plug valve can be a personal safety risk as the high torque required to turn the plug can loosen the fit between the shaft and the internal lever inside the actuator. If the shaft-lever connection becomes loose, the air pressure inside the housing can eject the shaft from the housing without warning. Older versions of the Weco 500 series model actuator all feature a snap ring on one side of the actuator housing that aids in retaining the shaft. However, the force acting on the shaft can exceed the retention capacity of the snap ring allowing the shaft to escape the housing. Due to this issue, the snap ring in each 500 series actuator design is being replaced with a new retainer plate that is bolted to the side of the housing. This design change will be implemented on new and existing orders. Existing Weco 500 series model actuators mounted on plug valves can be adapted with a new retrofit kit to replace the snap ring with the new retainer plate. The kit also includes instructions for dismounting and retrofitting the actuator along with details to correctly mount the actuator back on the plug valve for continued service. These retrofit kits will be available at no-charge until June 24, 2011. Please consult Engineering Bulletin 139 Revision E for more details. Please contact your local FMC Technologies Fluid Control representative or contact Shiela Hoelscher in Stephenville, TX at 1-800-772-8582, (254) 968-2181 or e-mail to order a retrofit kit for a Weco 500 series actuator mounted on a plug valve. Below is a list of FMC part numbers for plug valve assemblies that use a 500 series actuator: 3269545 P516404 P523722 P543741

Actuator retrofitted with new retainer and remounted onto plug valve:


For additional copies of this document, download PDF at:

Until these retrofit kits are received, the issue of release can be solved by ensuring the actuator is mounted with the snap ring facing in towards the valve. Please see below for instructional graphics.

Current mounting orientation with snap ring facing away from plug valve:

Snap Rig Shaft

Disconnect actuator, flip actuator over and remount with snap ring facing toward plug valve:

Snap Rig

Please consult Engineering Bulletin Revision D for further details or contact your local area FMC sales representative or call FMC Stephenville and ask for Flowline Engineering support.

FMC Technologies 1803 Gears Road Houston TX 77067 281 260 2121

FMC Technologies 2825 West Washington Stephenville TX 76401 254 968 2181
Copyright 2011, FMC Technologies, Inc.