That’s it, folks!

When something comes to an end, people ask you how it started and what you do afterwards.

  • “How did you get involved in the tour?”

A friend of mine, Antal, told me about this trip because I was looking for a job after my studies but received refusals only. He told me that igus® is looking for an engineer to join a road trip. The first thing I thought was: “I don’t like driving for hours.” However, I can’t miss this unique opportunity and thus, I decided to apply. They said: “Yes.” and with Nils and Sandor, the team was complete. It was risky because I didn’t know them and they didn’t know me. Everybody of us had different strengths and weaknesses. However, we complemented one another, grew up and had a lot of fun together. If someone was not in a good mood, there was always one of us making the others laugh. Otherwise, we wouldn’t have been possible to work and live together for the last 6 months.

  • “What do you do afterwards?”

Life goes on and we are all looking for a job right now but maybe we take some time off to travel. 😉

At the end, I want to sum it up by using numbers:
The iglidur®-car has traveled over 100,000 km with its 56 iglidur®-bearings on board to celebrate 30 years of iglidur® in over 30 countries within the last 14 months. All of the 9 applications (roof kinematics, throttle valve, alternator, window lifter, windscreen wiper, handbreak, break pedal, gear shift and seat adjustment) were tested under various conditions of the 4 continents where the car has been. There were 3 tour representatives: Sascha, Kayla and me which documented every single event and kept everybody up-to-date on the blog and Facebook. Nevertheless, it is always the result of a team working together. Hand in hand. 24/7!

For me, it was an once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity. Everytime I see the photos and videos, I can’t believe that it’s me on the screen. After the world trip and before we started the tour through Europe, I’ve asked Sascha how it feels to see himself on a large screen in front of several monuments and sightseeing spots around the world. He said: “It feels like a second life.” and I agree. Time was flying but I will always remember the trip. I have met two fantastic guys – Nils and Sandor.

I want to thank everybody who was involved in the tour! We experienced so many different cultures and met so many people across Europe. We are all one big family. Let’s never forget that! 

Thanks for following us throughout our journey!

A mosaic of the iglidur®-car based on members of the igus®-family. (Open the photo separately to have a closer look)


PS: 100,000 km and no ticket, as far as I know 😉

Review – Application – LNG Hybrid

For our next visit, we dropped anchor in Hamburg Port. Our destination: the LNG hybrid barge “Hummel” on the Blohm & Voss shipyard. The “Hummel” is a floating liquid gas power station, designed to supply energy to cruise ships while they are docked in the port. The idea for this came from the company Becker Marine Systems, global leader for rudders and maritime energy-saving systems. The energy guidance expert igus® was commissioned to develop and implement a cable transfer unit.

Rückblick – Anwendung – LNG HybridThe “Hummel” LNG barge is a floating liquid gas power station and the solution to a major environmental problem 

Five modern gas engines on the “Hummel” with an electrical output of 7.5 MW (megawatts) reliably supply all the energy required by an entire cruise ship. Previously, the on-board diesel generators had to keep running even when the large ships were at anchor. This meant high levels of exhaust gas pollution in the port air. In early 2015, a new EU regulation on the reduction of sulphur emissions for shipping areas in the North and Baltic Seas entered into force. Becker Marine Systems took this as an opportunity to take a completely new look at the question of energy supplies. Its answer is likely to be of major future importance. “The advantage of liquefied natural gas or LNG is that it does not contain any sulphur”, explains Frank Simon, Chief Engineer on the “Hummel” LNG hybrid barge. The emissions are far lower than those from conventional diesel generators, reducing the CO2 emissions by 20 percent and the NOx emissions by up to 88 percent.

Rückblick – Anwendung – LNG Hybrid.2The energy is supplied from the barge to the quay via an igus® complete solution. The black e-chain®, almost an igus® trademark, is easy to spot

On first seeing the barge, we are not looking out for individual igus® components but enjoying the overall impression. The coupling process from the barge to the quay, from where the energy is then supplied on to the cruise ship, takes place using a complete solution from igus®. The floating “Hummel” can be used in any areas of the port where it is required. The igus® complete solution ensures safe access to the barge, compensates the tide levels and waves and guides the oversized connectors onto the land.

Rückblick – Anwendung – LNG Hybrid.3A closer look makes it possible to see several igus® components. The iglidur® plate (top right) and the iglidur® plain bearing assist with any necessary rotation of the crane arm. A drylin® housing bearing can be seen at the top left

On 18 May 2015, the “Hummel” LNG barge will officially go into operation. We would like to thank Becker Marine Systems for their kind reception and, in particular, Frank Simon for the interview that he gave us. We wish everyone involved the best of success.

Rückblick – Anwendung – LNG Hybrid.4The “Hummel” LNG barge and our iglidur® car have one thing in common: they both contan igus® components

Kind regards,
igus® and the “iglidur® on tour”-team

Review – Application – Thorax Trainer

In Denmark, we paid a brief visit to the Scandinavian cross-country skiing specialist Thorax Trainer, which brings the trails into customers’ homes with its ingenious sports equipment (also named the Thorax Trainer). The athlete in training moves the poles in the same manner as when cross-country skiing outdoors; the motion sequences and workout intensity are extremely realistic. And this is precisely what the Thorax Trainer developers focused on achieving.

Rückblick – Anwendung – Thorax TrainerWhen driving the iglidur®-car all the way across Europe, it is good to get in a couple of kilometres on the Thorax Trainer.

We tested a new Thorax Trainer model. The resistance is generated by a flywheel, similar to that which is used on spinning bikes. The force transfer essentially occurs via the conventional cross-country skiing poles. The ingenious part about the design is in the detail – on the new version, each of the poles is attached to a drylin®-W double rail with a carriage.
The maintenance-free, self-lubricating material from igus® makes the machines extremely quiet running and, as we have heard from experienced skiers, offers a realistic sense of being out in the snow. This is a huge advantage over the standardised ball bearing guide rails used to date.

Rückblick – Anwendung – Thorax Trainer.2The top picture shows a standardised ball bearing guide rail (left) and a drylin®-W double rail, which replicates the feeling of snow (right). The bottom picture provides a close-up of the carriage.

In 2013, the Thorax Trainer developers won a competition for the best plastic plain bearing applications. Their creative design led to them receiving the Gold manus® award. And quite rightly so, we believe.

We would like to thank the Thorax Trainer team for the welcome opportunity to get a little exercise. Keep up the good work and always stay active.

Kind regards,
igus® and the “iglidur® on tour”-team

Review – Poland

We started at the peninsula Hel and drove 3700 km through Poland to our final stop which was Warsaw. All in all, we experienced a different culture and visited a lot of customers. At the end, we met the Polish Smart Klub and did a sight-seeing tour through Warsaw. The following video sums it up!

A big thanks to everybody who was involved in the tour through Poland and their great hospitality!


Review – Donation-20

As in every country of “iglidur® on tour”, we gave something back to the last country too – Spain. We donated 4000 Euro after our Spanish press conference to IdiPAZ (Instituto de Investigación Hospital Universitario La Paz) which is an institute for health and biomedical research. It has 48 research groups that focus their activities on six major areas:

  • Neuroscience
  • Cardiovascular
  • Infectious Diseases and Immunity
  • Large System Diseases
  • Cancer and human molecular Genetics
  • Surgery, Transplants and Health Technologies.

Rückblick – Spende-20Eduardo López-Collazo (Scientific director) receives the donation from Dr. Matthias Meier (Director of igus® Spain)

We wish all the best,
igus® and the “iglidur® on tour”-crew

Review Switzerland

The last country of “iglidur® on tour” through Europe in 2014 was Switzerland. It was only one week but it was packed with a lot of interesting customers, applications, landmarks and of course, an incredible press conference at the Schilthorn in Lauterbrunnen. We want to thank everybody of igus® Switzerland for their great hospitality and the trip through the country of cheese and chocolate with its beautiful hilly landscape.

Hopefully, we see us again?!
Karl, Nils and Sandor