Civil Engineering and Construction Projects

Superior Hydraulic Performance and Safety for Your Construction Project With Bear-Loc

Hydraulic system failure in a civil construction structure such as a gate or movable bridge has the potential to cause injury and catastrophic damage to human lives, entire communities, infrastructure and equipment. Engineers have a vested interest in developing safe, reliable hydraulic systems with fail-safe locking devices to minimize adverse effects in daily operations or during natural disasters and emergencies.

The Bear-Loc® positive hydraulic lock is a solution civil and architectural design engineers can rely on to provide locking safety and enhanced locking performance that is superior to other hydraulic locking devices. Bear-Loc® is a safe, efficient, and dependable rod locking device consisting of liners encased in a sleeve that is mounted on a cylinder rod. The sleeve creates an interference fit with the hydraulic cylinder rod.  The interference generates a positive mechanical connection. These locks can be installed on cylinder rods or be installed as stand-alone lock.

rod lock

      A Cylinder Integrated Bear-Loc

Hydraulic Rod Lock

A Stand-Alone Bear-Loc

This positive mechanical connection is what enables Bear-Loc® to lock the rod in place. When the hydraulic pressure is removed, whether intentionally or not, the sleeve contracts and the Bear-Loc® instantly engages to hold the rod firmly in place, stopping its motion at once.  All hydraulic fluid can be lost yet the Bear-Loc® will retain its position. When hydraulic pressure is present, the sleeve expands due to elastic expansion of the sleeve metal and removes the interference. The lack of interference allows the rod to move freely.  This design has proven itself through decades of continuous use through harsh sub-sea and above-sea environments such as oil-rig and US NAVY applications.

How Can We Help Your Civil Engineering Project?

Below are a few civil engineering applications in which Bear-Loc® can ensure safety, equipment protection and performance.

1. Movable Bridges, Canal Locks and Lift Hydraulic Locks

Proper hydraulic system locking is essential in movable bridges, canal locks and water related lifts.

When these systems include hydraulic systems, safety and liability avoidance is found in integrating a fail safe locking device on Hydraulic Cylinder Rods or in stand-alone parallel locks.  A Hydraulic system failure could cause unexpected motion, leading to loss of life and property damage. Bear-Loc® can prevent a bridge's, Lift or Canal Lock from having unplanned movement and help protect property and save lives.

2. Spillway, Scour, Sluice and Penstock Gates

Proper hydraulic locking is critical for gates used in water control applications 

hydro electric dam
water gates

When hydraulic cylinders require locking mechanisms Bear-Loc is the best.  These locks secure gate position to protect power generation turbines from sudden water surges that can cause equipment damage and lost revenues due to generation downtime. Bear-Loc® can lock at fully open and closed positions and any place in between with the same locking power to assure protection of generation equipment from sudden flow surges.  Protect your investment with the best lock available.

dam flow schematics

3. Flood Control and Prevention Gate Hydraulic Locks

Bear-Loc® can be used on hydro control mechanisms that regulate naturally occurring water flow and prevent catastrophic flooding of communities.

Flood control is essential for ensuring community safety as well as preventing structural damage in hydroelectric systems. There are over 90,580 dams in the United States and over 15,500 of them are rated as high-hazard potential dams by the American Society of Civil Engineers.  There are tens of millions of citizens that can be effected by their ability to prevent flooding.

Power loss in a control system's hydraulic cylinder, whether intentional or unintentional, removes fluid power pressure and can cause equipment to malfunction.  Bear-Loc® responds immediately to the loss of hydraulic pressure — its fail-safe mechanism locks instantly and ensures safety as the hydraulic control actuators are able to maintain position and guarantee safety to communities, infrastructure and other property.

Hurricane Katrina resulted in large, regional flood control measures that had to be implemented to save lives and prevent damage.  Likewise, the Netherlands has large flood control systems that regulate water levels in low lying places that are easily susceptible to flooding.   Sufficient safety locking mechanisms in the hydraulics used for water flow control for gates in locks, levees and floodwall systems means that downstream cities can remain safe from the sudden surge of storm water causing catastrophic flooding.  Bear-Loc® can meet these needs.

Below are large coastal flood control systems in the Netherlands and their hydraulic gates used to control water flow.


Another example of this are crest gates that control water flow rates. Failure of a crest gates has significant environmental and safety impacts. An unplanned or unexpected gate release or overflow can risk lives, cause property damage, and environmental damage. It also creates the potential for dam and other hydro control systems that are interdependent on the gate to weaken or fail. A hydraulic lock like Bear-Loc® prevents sudden and excess flow that can be caused by hydraulic pressure loss.  This provides safe control of crest gates and other hydro control gates. Dam safety modifications with Bear-Loc® can help prevent flooding in communities and ensure the safety of internal dam equipment.

Crest Gates can have externally mounted actuators that control the water flow that passes through them.  Severe or heavy flooding carries debris with it.  Debris in flood waters typically becomes entrapped on piers, pylons, supports or other structure.

hydrdaulic lines
Dam Crest gate hydraulic rod lock

The debris can build up and cause damage to crest gate actuators that are mounted externally and can have their exposed hydraulic fluid pressure system damaged.  A Bear-Loc® ensures that the actuator can remain locked and in position even if debris were to damage the hydraulic fluid lines, load holding valves, fittings or other fluid power parts that could compromise the safety dependency on the load holding valve. The spontaneous locking maintains the gate position and ensures that no negative flooding is introduced due to equipment failure or pressure loss that could cause gates to lower unexpectedly.  This safety measure adds a fail-safe measure that Load Holding Valves cannot provide.

4. Any Construction Project Requiring Hydraulic Locks

Bear-Loc® can be used for any Civil Engineering and Construction project you many have.


Bear-Loc® Offers Reliable Safety Solutions

Bear Loc offers reliable safety solutions

Bear-Loc® incorporates the following features and capabilities for enhanced hydraulic system safety:

  • Positive locking action: Bear-Loc® positive locking action differentiates it from other hydraulic locks. Its positive locking action means it locks whenever the hydraulic pressure is lost and moves freely to any position when the hydraulic power is on. This instant locking is superior to other units that take longer to lock or must creep to a mechanical locking stop, sacrificing both precision and safety.
  • Few moving parts: Bear-Loc® is innovative in its design because the lock depends on fewer moving parts than other locks do. The benefit of fewer moving parts is longevity and fewer components to degrade over time.
  • Infinite adjusting capabilities: Bear-Loc® has infinite lock positioning capabilities to promote precision, control, efficiency and safety.
  • Fail-safe action: Bear-Loc® is a fail-safe solution — it locks automatically whenever power is removed.  It unlocks when power is reapplied.
  • Flexible solutions: Bear-Loc® provides flexible solutions to meet your unique hydraulic lock system needs because its design and size are customizable. We can design a Bear-Loc® with rod diameters from 1 inch to 25 inches, sleeve lengths as small as 1 inch or as long as 7 feet, and a lock capacity of up to 4 million pounds. The Bear-Loc® product is also available in an extensive range of configurations, including linear Bear-Loc® actuators and rotary Bear-Loc® units.
  • Compatible to smaller space envelopes: Bear-Loc® can be added to a hydraulic cylinder rod or mounted independently to serve as a stand-alone lock when space prevents direct rod mounting on a cylinder.  They can be mounted in parallel to an actuator cylinder or in series.  There are many options for your mounting requirements.

Contact York Precision Machining & Hydraulics for More Information About How Our Hydraulic Locks Can Help Your Design

Refurbishing Hydraulic Cylinders for Hydro control? Buy and integrate a new Bear-Loc®.

To see the benefits of a dependable hydraulic cylinder lock in your civil engineering and construction applications, partner with York Precision Machining & Hydraulics. Our Bear-Loc® is the most convenient, powerful, safe and reliable hydraulic locking unit on the market. It streamlines processes and prevents injuries, accidents, slowdowns and revenue losses.

Our team of capable and experienced engineers can design a custom Bear-Loc® to your specifications.  You can be sure you are getting a lock that meets your hydraulic system's unique needs. We partner with Civil Engineering and Construction Design Firms to integrate Bear-Loc® into their designs. Ask your Civil or Architectural Designer for Bear-Loc® or contact us directly to see if we can help you integrate with the help of our engineering team.

Contact us today to purchase a hydraulic solution or to learn more.

Awards & Certifications

itar logo
ITAR Registered #M39417
Outstanding performance presented by commander
Outstanding Performance
surface communication and supporty systems for excellence presented by the commander
Excellence Presented By Commander
SIBC member
SIBC Member
ACIBC Member
NFPA logo
NFPA Member
made in usa
Made In USA