Bollards are used in a multitude of applications, for one of several purposes. One needs just to keep a sharp eye to see bollards around us every day. In parking lots, driveways, and drive-thru lanes, bollards are utilized to protect buildings, teller machines, utilities including gas meters, electrical equipment and fire hydrants, handicap parking signs, gate entry keypads, and to restrict access to undesired areas. In factories and warehouses, bollards are important for safeguarding pedestrians as well as guarding storage racks and capital equipment from fork truck collisions.
Other industries which find a heavy use of steel bollards for sale include automated car wash facilities, self-storage facilities, gasoline stations and convenience stores, propane dispensing, and parking garages, and others.
Foundation mounted bollards are generally installed in among two ways. The very first, most affordable way, is to use a plate mounted bollard. These bollards are steel pipes welded to a flat steel plate which can be anchored to some hard surface using concrete anchors. This technique of installation is quick and inexpensive, requiring the installer to drill four to eight holes inside the concrete and bolt on the bollard with expansion or screw anchors.
The down-side to this installation method, when used with a rigid bollard, is the fact that anchors are usually not sufficiently strong to withstand anything over a minor collision. The plate anchors often are pulled up and perhaps the plate bends, leaving a post which leans and is no longer capable of properly serve its purpose. Plate mounted bollards often require constant maintenance and replacement.
The 2nd way of installing bollards involves using a longer steel pipe and burying a portion of it deep in the earth. This technique gives the bollard far more strength than surface mounted, however it may be very costly to put in if the surface is concrete and already poured. Installation in this instance requires coring a hole inside the surface using an expensive diamond bladed coring saw. These machines along with their blades are expensive and require water cooling, creating a mess during installation. After the concrete is cored and the bollard is in place, the hole must be backfilled with concrete to secure the bollard. For added strength, these bollards are often loaded with concrete, also. Although the bollard pipe is comparatively cheap, this installation method is costly and time consuming.
Although quite strong, there are significant disadvantages to core installations. Above all, there is absolutely no give to this system upon impact. Though desired in high security applications, any vehicle impacting such a bollard is going to be significantly damaged as well as its passengers vulnerable to injury. Loads carried by fork trucks can also be thrown due to the jarring impact likely to occur. Further, the bollard or its foundation could be damaged by this kind of impact, again leaving a tilted and fewer effective barrier requiring costly maintenance to fix. Frequently the steel bollard is beyond repair and should get replaced with an entirely new bollard.
Another disadvantage of this type of installation is it is actually a permanent installation with little flexibility for movement. In factory applications, devices are often moved and rearranged. Bollards employed to protect equipment or storage racks that are core-installed are certainly not easily moved. The concrete all around the bollard should be broken out and the large remaining hole filled, leaving a factory floor packed with unsightly patches. If the bollard itself is reusable after removal, the complete expensive installation process is started over at the new location.
Some designs have already been designed to attempt to solve these issues with the use of plastic or spring loaded bollards, however these designs are afflicted by a lack of strength. When the plastic is of insufficient stiffness, the entire purpose of access denial is lost. On the other hand, very stiff plastic designs have gotten difficulty with long-term durability. Minor collisions often wear away at such devices, and then in outdoor applications UV degradation gets to be a concern.
Designed and patented in Europe by Belgian inventor Gerard Wolters is really a unique system which solves lots of the problems related to traditional foundation mounted bollards. Simply put, the device utilizes a compressed rubber base to act as being an energy absorbing mass. This elastomer allows the bollard to tilt slightly when impacted, in all the different 20 degrees from vertical, then return upright while still stopping the colliding vehicle.
This method is mounted on concrete using concrete anchor screws. These anchors affix the base component over the adapter, which pre-compresses the elastomer up against the ground. The base and adapter pieces are created from a special ductile cast iron, which makes the pieces less brittle than typical cast iron, and also has a really low (-40 degrees) brittleness temperature. The steel pipe which may serve as the bollard post is a typical steel pipe inserted into the adapter. Standard pipe is used to offer the end user the flexibleness to weld fencing using standard components if necessary. Concrete fill is not needed within the bollard pipe, though is permitted. Actually, sign posts may be inserted in to the post and concrete completed place.
Upon collision, the pipe and adapter can tilt within the base, forcing the adapter to further compress the elastomer toward the impact. The elastomer absorbs most of the energy from the impact and lengthens the deceleration period of the car. The elastomer is of sufficient strength to then rebound, usually pushing the automobile from the bollard and returning to an upright position. The tilt in the pipe has limitations to approximately 20 degrees after which the bollard will become rigid.
Bollards are created in a selection of sizes, each of which can be suitable for various expected collision speeds and masses. Further, modular connectors which may be used to create fencing and guards away from multiple base units have already been created to eliminate welding. By utilizing multiple base units, the ultimate strength of the rebounding bollard unit can be increased.
These new bollards use the more simple method of surface installation, greatly reducing installation costs, and keep the flexibility to move bollards as conditions warrant. This can be accomplished without the normal drawback to absence of strength, because the elastomer in the bollard system greatly reduces the maximum impact forces put on the base anchors. The reason being deceleration of an impacting vehicle is much less severe than throughout an impact using a rigid bollard. Energy is transferred to the elastomer instead of straight to a rigid post, lowering the harsh impact of the relatively immovable object.
This leads straight to the most important features of the newest bollard system and that is the lowering of injury to both offending vehicles as well as the bollard system itself. Direct harm to vehicles is reduced due to the lowering of peak impact force seen through the vehicle. Not only will this avoid injury to the car, but the possibility of injury to a passenger is likewise reduced. When it comes to a fork lift in a factory or warehouse, the risk of a thrown load is additionally reduced, avoiding the potential for bystander injury and stock loss.
Finally, injury to the bollard along with its foundation is reduced. Because the post is constructed of strong steel pipe, it maintains its strength, but due to its forgiving nature, a lot less force is transferred to the foundation. This simplifies and eliminates maintenance while preserving an aesthetically pleasing facility.
These bollards has to be set up on concrete, as an asphalt surface is not really of adequate strength to anchor the bollard system. Taking into consideration the replacement costs of damaged bollards, however, it may be affordable to pour a concrete pad and eliminate years of costly maintenance and asphalt repair. As previously mentioned, each bollard is sized for expected loads in terms of mass and speed. Should that limitation be exceeded, it really is possible to break a part of the device. More than likely that concerns the post, adapter, or base. Fortunately, the system is modular and easily repaired. Posts may be replaced by loosening several set-screws, wwbpkl and replacing, and re-tightening the set screws. Adapter and Base components could be replaced by carefully removing the concrete screw anchors and replacing the component.
The SlowStop Bollard product is a progressive new product which solves most of the problems included in bollard collisions in addition to installation and maintenance issues. Injury to vehicles, passengers, vehicle loads, and the removable bollard themselves is reduced as a result of absorption of impact energy by an elastomer hidden in the lower bollard. This elastomer allows the bollard to tilt when impacted and return upright afterward. SlowStop Bollards are fast and inexpensive to put in, flexible since they are easily moved, and simple to keep should there be the need. Safety fencing and barriers can be created using modular connectors, avoiding the necessity to weld pipe together.