We have been performing Industrial metal detector third party certification for 15 years, always calibrating each brand and model to the manufacturer’s specifications. Recently new customers have been asking about validations rather than calibrations. Some existing customers are also asking, so I’d like to clarify this.
Validations/Audits consist of simply passing the test wands/samples through the metal detector within the product and then writing a report that states “on this day this detector detected your test samples”. Yes, it may be a less expensive option for your company, if your auditor accepts such a document for HAACP, BRC, SQF or any other food safety qualification. However, a validation is what you do yourselves on a regular basis throughout a production day. It’s no more than that, other than it’s a third party performing the validation. A validation/audit does not confirm that your equipment is calibrated and operating at its optimal performance.
Here at Fastec Services LLC, we calibrate. In order to calibrate each brand and model that we work on, our staff has to go through a vigorous training program. We teach them the calibration procedure for each brand and model. This requires extensive knowledge of NIST calibrated test equipment, primarily oscilloscopes and digital volt meters, as well as specific knowledge of the programming and specifications of each and every brand and model that we service. They are trained to check the most vital specifications of a properly working detector, including oscillator tuning, receiver tuning and head balance, plus how to correct out of spec parameters. Once calibrated we would then validate your system by passing the wands/samples through the detector within the product and record the results, make any programming adjustments etc.
Metal detectors need calibrating. Each manufacturer will tell you that at least an annual visit is necessary to keep the detector operating at its best. Companies providing validations or audits will not have parts or have the technical expertise to correct any issues regarding balance, oscillator or receiver tuning.
Fastec Services LLC