iglidur arrives in Portugal

iglidur crossed the “25th of April Bridge” which is often compared to the Golden Gate Bridge due to its design, whilst on the way to Lisbon.


Crossing the Tagus River


Looks quite similar to the Golden Gate Bridge

On the other side, we stopped at the statue of “Christ the King”. It is based on the Christ statue in Rio de Janeiro which the iglidur®-car has seen during its stay in Brazil 2014.


Cristo Rei

After the short stay, we continued our tour and stopped at the Vasco da Gama Tower for another photo. The tower is named after the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama who arrived in India in 1498 as the first European by sail.


The Vasco da Gama Tower

Before lunch, we visited one UNESCO World Heritage Site which was the Jerónimos Monastery.


The Jerónimos Monastery with an impressive detailed facade

After lunch, we went to a famous pastry shop in Lisbon where we ate more than one Pastel de nata. Together with an espresso, it is perfect.


One of the best desserts!

On the bank of the Tagus River, one can find the Padrão dos Descobrimentos which is a monument to celebrate the Portuguese Age of Discovery during the 15th and 16th centuries. At that time, many ships departed from Lisbon to explore and trade with Inda and the Orient.


The iglidur®-car is an adventurer as well

The final stop of the day was the western side of Europe – Cabo da Roca.


The cross symbolizes the westernmost extent of Europe


Three iglidur on tour team

With sunburn and a lot of impressions, we went back to the hotel to get some sleep to be prepared for the upcoming week in Portugal.

iglidur on tour goes to Venice

Our first stop whilst in Italy was Venice. Unfortunately, we had to park our iglidur®-car in the main car park as Venice is not accessible by vehicles. We had some sites on our to-do-list and started with the canal as well as the Rialto Bridge: the oldest bridge spanning the Grand Canal.


Discovering Venice

 


At the Rialto Bridge overlooking the Grand Canal

The next stop was the Piazza San Marco. It is the main square and social center of Venice. Whilst we were there it was possible to feed the pigeons with seeds.


Feeding the pigeons

However, the main point is the Basilica Cattedrale Patriarcale di San Marco (Saint Mark’s Basilica). The design is impressive and in particular the golden mosaics inside the Basilica, although was not able to take photos inside.


The Saint Mark’s Basilica

Close to the Basilica and all over Venice, one will find typical Gondolas.


No Gondola service during the rain

Due to the rain, they were covered and not used. Therefore, we decided to discover Venice’s’  narrow alleys by foot. Everywhere is something to discover…


… like this hidden backyard or …


… monuments like this of Carlo Goldoni.

We spent the whole day in Venice and arrived at the Campo Santa Margherita after sunset. It is said to be the place where young people meet at the local bars.


The dry-tech®-box on its own on the Campo Santa Margherita 

The last stop in Venice was on the opposite side of the Grand Canal in respect to the Piazza San Marco – Punta della Dogana di Mare, where there is a great view over the Grand Canal.


The Grand Canal by night

Finally, we called it a day because we were tired and went back to the hotel.


Bye bye, Venice!

Customer visit in Schaffhausen

“Pull and push solutions with system” is written on the signboard of the Schwab Verkehrstechnik AG, which we visited in Schaffhausen. The Swiss rail vehicle supplier stands for innovation in everything to do with couplings, buffers, and draw gears, and at which we wanted to take a closer look. The company’s success story began in 1912 with a semi-automatic coupling from the development department of the company Georg Fischer. It started production in 1914, that is exactly 100 years ago. There followed further types of couplings, before the product portfolio expanded to include buffers and draw gears in the 60s.

One of the latest developments from Schwab Verkehrstechnik is a novel, automatic traction coupling (ACC), which can be retrofitted in older types of vehicles regardless of their railcar body design. It connects the vehicles with each other mechanically, electrically and pneumatically, and replaces the screw coupling, which among other things leads to much shorter coupling and decoupling times. Another recently introduced innovation is an automatic buffer lubrication. It transfuses grease to the buffer plate without necessitating a manual relubrication over a period of up to one year. The regular lubrication reduces friction and prevents the formation of grooves on the contact surfaces. This increases the service life and saves costs.


A novel, automatic traction coupling from the company Schwab Verkehrstechnik. The small pictures from its interior show igubal® rod end bearings: There, the motion plastics® can fully exploit its vibration damping properties.

One who comes upon such ideas, of course, is also keen on the self-lubricating motion plastics® from igus®. Thus, rod end bearings of the igubal® series can be found in the coupling systems, where they provide a rigid and reliable connection. When a train is coupled, a latch turns down and a valve opens, through which compressed air is carried into a cylinder. Moreover, the connection is fixed. The iglidur® rod end bearing permits a manual decoupling by opening the valve and releasing the latch. In addition, in this application the vibration damping properties of high-performance plastic have a perfect effect.


Our iglidur® mobile at the gates of the company Schwab Verkehrstechnik

The time at Schwab Verkehrstechnik was an exciting excursion for us into the world of buffers and couplings. Thanks a lot for this. We will keep in touch, igus® and the “iglidur® on tour” team.

Bulgaria

Today, we visited two automotive customers and everybody was very interested in our iglidur®-car. Nevertheless, we still had some time left to see an impressive monument in Shumen. As the sun was going down, we arrived at the monument of 1300 years of Bulgaria. Due to the fact that it was built on a platform in 450 m height, it can be seen from up to 30 km away.

Unfortunately, our iglidur®-car was unable to have a look inside but …


… we had a look around with our colleagues: Ventsislav, Ivo and Marius

We then went on to have dinner in a typical Bulgarian restaurant and spent the last night of our tour through Bulgaria in Shumen. Tomorrow, we are going to drive to Turkey.

iglidur on tour reaches Swiss air

“Hey, let’s do the press conference on top of the Schilthorn which is about 3000 m high.” “Ok, but how do we get the iglidur®-car there?” “Hmm … How about a Helicopter?” “Helicopter?” “Yes, Helicopter!” … No sooner said than done!


The iglidur®-car arrives at the platform in 3000 m above sea level.

Due to the wind, our car lost its front lid during the flight. Ok, that happens sometimes … Nevertheless, all the bearings are still where they are supposed to be.


No front lid but still all bearings!

Both Swiss journalists and members of igus® Switzerland participated and were fascinated by location and the event.


igus® Switzerland as well as Swiss journalists were part of this historic event.

Of course, the dry-tech®-box joined us and saw the beautiful landscape above the fog as well.


Dizzy height but no problem for the dry-tech®-box.


We took a step off the path …

“Tour de France” comes to a close

“Tour de France” came to a close with the last two customer visits. Before we had lunch, we ate an appetizer – the second and smaller cake. Afterwards, we said goodbye to our French colleagues and left towards our last stop in France, Strasbourg. With a hot vine or “vin chaud”, we called it a day…


Strasbourg, “Place Kleber” – The Christmas tree is 30 m high and weights over 7 t.


“Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Strasbourg” is the sixth-tallest church and it took over 400 years to complete the construction.

Monaco

Iglidur on tour visited a customer who develops electric motorcycles using iglidur®-bearings. Afterwards, we drove to Monaco …


Driving through Monaco

We drove to the harbor of Monaco and took a photo of our iglidur®-car.


The iglidur®-car with Monaco in the back

It was rainy and windy. Nevertheless, in the afternoon the rain stopped and we discovered the city together with the dry-tech®-box


The dry-tech®-box has a look at the harbor.

After a long day, we left the South of France, heading north towards our hotel in Gap and arrived after 2 1/2 h.


Our iglidur®-car made it to the final spot for today.

Let’s call it a day..

iglidur arrives in the South Of France

The iglidur team made it to the south of France!

We started by visiting a customer who develops special wheelchairs. Fortunately, we got to conduct an interview and find out where and why our igus®-bearings are used. The video is under construction and will be available soon. Afterwards, we discovered the “Cité de l’espace” which is a large aerospace exhibition.

We brought a ticket to the Moon…


… and this is our shuttle!

On the way to our hotel in Castres, we drove through Toulouse and of course, we had to stop to take a photo in front of the Airbus HQ of France. igus®-products are used in the field of aerospace as well due to their light weight and maintenance-free properties. An example is the adjustment of the seats.


iglidur® can be found in every single airplane.

Finally, we arrived in Castres.

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