Der Wimpel

AHP Merkle GmbH
Nägelseestr. 39
79288 Gottenheim

phone: +49 7665 4208-0
fax: +49 7665 4208-88


01.05.13 Infotainment served on a tablet New Application Service for hydraulic cylinders makes work easier for designers


From a physical viewpoint, hydraulic cylinders are very simple linear drive units. But, as is so often the case, a detailed,closer look reveals otherwise.That is why practice-oriented experts know precisely what they get from cylinder specialist AHP Merkle – namely a wide selection of high-performance, low-wearing, standard and custom cylinders. It is important, however, that users maintain a clear overview and receive all of the information they need for their designs at the same time – served on a tablet. The » "Hydraulic Cylinders" is now available to make your work easier.


"Hydraulic engineers are passionate tinkerers who work hard day after day, putting their heart and soul into the development of ever more innovative solutions", says » Patrick Mussler, systems specialist at AHP Merkle GmbH in Gottenheim. He has worked in the industry for many years and works meticulously at improving many aspects of hydraulic cylinders. This includes ensuring that the huge product portfolio is clearly and neatly arranged.

After all, AHP Merkle's domain also includes an immense repertoire of readily available custom cylinders in addition to standard hydraulic cylinders. That is why the was first compiled many years ago: a catalog containing all the information designers need for calculating, dimensioning, selecting, designing, ordering and documenting hydraulic cylinders. The new version, » 3.0, contains numerous new products and has been available since January 2013.

Free cylinder app for Apple and Android

"And, as a special treat for those designers who want to implement their ideas and feed them with hard facts while on the road or simply in-between,  can now serve up all they need in bite-size chunks on a tablet", adds Patrick Mussler. He is, of course, referring to the new "hydraulic cylinder" app for tablets and smartphones.

It is available for free from the »  App Store for Apple devices and from the » Google Play Store for Android operating systems. The app is only 14 MB in size and therefore quick to download and use. A click on the black AHP symbol quickly calls up a clear and self-explanatory list of options:

  • Catalogue
  • Text search
  • QR scan
  • News
  • PDF
  • Locations
  • Settings
  • Legal notice


A click on "AHP Info" in the “Catalog” menu reveals numerous interesting facts on the technology and calculation of the different cylinder types. The same menu item also offers a paper-based catalog in three languages (German, English and French) in PDF format. However, the greatest advantage and therefore the heart of this app is this: 13 cylinder types plus a button for accessories show designers the incredible range of options that exists in the world of hydraulic cylinders, all at the touch of a button.

Take block cylinders, for instance: the selection comprises ten different designs such as BZ, BRB, BZF, BVZ, etc. The special feature here is that the selective choice generates a long list of more than a dozen parameters on the tablet together with a corresponding, three-dimensional image of the hydraulic cylinder on the right. Patrick Mussler emphasis: "This gives designers an immediate and real impression of what the cylinder they are looking for looks like and whether it corresponds to their requirements.“

Rotate cylinders with a finger in three-dimensional space

The provides corresponding dimension sizes for selectable parameters such as piston diameter, rod diameter, switch, stroke, etc. Manual input of custom dimensions is also possible. A "Generate Preview" button appears when one or more parameters are changed. When it is pressed the server recalculates the cylinder based on the new parameters and generates a corresponding 3-D model. You can rotate the image freely in space with your finger to inspect it at close quarters from any angle. "This visual inspection method enables designers to decide there and then whether the end product corresponds with their expectations", comments Patrick Mussler. Additionally, visual inspection can also detect possible incorrect dimensional values in good time.

This helps increase efficiency when designing machines and equipment, according to the expert from Gottenheim. The system even displays important additional information such as the oil volume in an extended and retracted state. At the end of the process the user can use two selection fields to make further use of the cylinder data: "Communicate" and "Email CAD Model".

Clicking on the button "Email CAD Model" offers an option to have not only the CAD data sent by email but also an additional 3-page documentation on the cylinder. The documentation includes an image of the cylinder, its weight, spare parts and a completely dimensioned 2-D drawing. If the documentation is included with the order then everything is 100% clear.

"Individuality is one of our Unique Selling Propositions"

Clicking on the other button generates an email to the user containing all of the design details and data relating to the hydraulic cylinder for use with the designer's own CAD software. This service is free of charge and works within minutes. Dozens of formats are available, from Catia to ProEngineer and Unigraphics, to name but a few. Patrick Mussler adds: "Our competitive advantage – given an apparently simple component such as a hydraulic cylinder – is that we can offer a huge amount of flexibility and individuality at both product level and support level in addition to a high degree of manufacturing quality."

The details for data dispatch are entered into the tablet prior to submitting the first request or during app set-up under the "Settings" menu item. The app also offers a text search enabling the user to quickly locate known cylinder solutions. The "QR Scan" makes it even easier: simply hold the tablet or smartphone over the corresponding QR code.

Of course, the new app can also be used as an e-book "only". That is why the entire content of the is available for downloading in segments or as a complete 23 MB file by clicking on the "PDF" button.

And, as AHP Merkle is known as a dynamic and worldwide cylinder manufacturer, there is also a "News" section with the latest updates and "locations" for on the road. You can choose between 23 locations around the world with a tip of your finger to view the corresponding map together with the location and address details. As Patrick Mussler explains in concluding: "Providing our customers with easy access to our company, our partners around the world and the product information they need saves them a lot of valuable time – for us both a reason and an obligation to develop the app."