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Telescopic Hydraulic Cylinder Problem. Help pls


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I am investigating the root cause of a telescopic cylinder failure. The cylinder was being used to lower a mast. It is a 4 stage cylinder. The 4th stage retracted completely but in the middle of the stroke of the 3rd stage, the 2nd stage began to retract simultaneously with the 3rd stage (under normal operating conditions the plungers retract one by one). I am wondering why this could happen. Reading manuals and literature I believe the seals between the plunger of the third and second stages failed and oil from the 2nd stage entered to the 3rd stage and it caused an hydraulic lock. This made the two stages behave as just one plunger. I would like to know your oppinions!

Thanks

 

PD: The cylinder is similar like the one in the image, just that the cylinder of my problem is composed of 4 stages and the one from the image has 3 stages.

r/Hydraulics - Telescopic Hydraulic Cylinder Problem

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There are two possible root causes: 1) alignment and 2) sealing. Both result in binding. If all the surfaces are clean and smooth and all the seals are resilient, it's alignment; otherwise, it's the seals, which can arise from several problems, including: degradation of the seal material, debris from outside, or oil quality. Either way, disassembly is required. If the problem is alignment, you will probably have to replace the entire unit. If it's seals, you may be able to clean and replace the seals. Once disassembled, you should see physical evidence of alignment problems. If not, then it's probably the seals. For a system like this, it doesn't take much to malfunction; so the cause may not look significant to actually be significant.

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