Office Rule #1

Today I was smacked in the face with the reminder of many applications I have helped customers with over the years.  As I walked through the door into our lunch room I was hit in the face with a very strong odor. This is why Office Rule #1 is, “DO NOT microwave fish in a common area microwave.” The odor was microwaved fish.  Now it doesn’t matter who cooked the fish, all that mattered was it had not only worked its’ way through the kitchen but also the entire office and then it was being vented into our manufacturing area.   Needless to say, the force was strong with this one.   That is when I was reminded of the fume evacuation applications I have done through the years.

fume

Air Amplifier Removing Welding Fumes

If only we had a windows that opened, we could have used an EXAIR Super Air Amplifier to quickly and efficiently evacuated the air out of the kitchen area. I have helped many of my customers evacuate fumes from anything from a mining shafts to welding fumes. Using a small amount of compressed air the Super Air Amplifiers move large volumes of air. Super Air Amplifiers are also effective for moving large volumes of air for cooling and blow off applications.

Have a cooling, blowoff, or evacuation application? Call our application engineers and they will help you select the appropriate model air amplifier.

Joe Panfalone
Application Engineer
Phone (513) 671-3322
Fax (513) 671-3363
exair_jp

 

When The Obvious Choice Isn’t

Do you have a copy of EXAIR’s Product Catalog? My opinion may be biased, but I think it’s one of the best ones out there. It’s arranged by product category, and gives you easy access to not only the model numbers of all of our stock products, but succinct and pointed details on principles of operation, examples of applications, dimensions, technical specifications, features & benefits, etc. They’re free for the asking – and if you don’t have the latest (as of this writing, #26), go ahead and ask too – you might be pleasantly surprised by what we’ve added recently!

Now, your application may be straightforward and simple, in which case, you can quickly and easily order any catalog product…almost all of them ship the same day. Our Design Engineers aim to make them simple to install and operate, so you could very well be “off to the races” in very short order. That’s our intent, anyway. But if your situation isn’t so clear cut, here’s a part of the catalog you should pay particular attention to:

tech800at120You’ll find this on the front cover, and the phone number is on darn near every page, too.

See, sometimes, “the usual suspect” isn’t the product that’s going to solve your application. Here’s a prime example:

willy wonka meme

A very popular candy maker (not this guy, but I do so love those Facebook memes) wanted to automate a part of their operation where they cut a large slab of chocolate into small squares, and then move them to a machine that individually wraps them. They were transferring them by hand, but figured they could improve efficiency by using a “pick and place” process, and were particularly interested in an air-operated vacuum system. On the surface, it looked like a “textbook” application for an E-Vac Vacuum Generator. Due to the delicate nature of the product, though, the higher vacuum levels produced would cause the lifting mechanism to mar the surface. And, as delicious as these candies are, it would be a shame if they didn’t look perfect too.

That’s where Application Engineering comes in. Like Joe Panfalone wrote about on Monday, we’ve got the education, and experience, that allow us to “marry the practical with the hypothetical to find the best answer.” We knew we couldn’t use high vacuum, but the pieces are so small and lightweight that a low vacuum level could be quite effective, if we had a decent vacuum flow. After discussion of the application and their expectations, we recommended a Model 120024 4” Super Air Amplifier which they fitted a stainless steel mesh screen to the inlet of, and were able to pick up the freshly cut chocolate squares delicately enough to prevent any marring of the surface at all. The automated process made it quicker and easier for the operators to get the candies to the wrapping machine, defect-free, every time.

So, no matter what the obvious choice (of product) may (or may not) be, the obvious choice for guidance with your compressed air application is EXAIR.  Call us and find out.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
(513)671-3322 local
(800)923-9247 toll free
(513)671-3363 fax
Web: www.exair.com
Blog: http://blog.exair.com/
Twitter: twitter.com/exair_rb
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/exair

Compressed Air Calculations, Optimization, and Tips

EXAIR uses our blog platform to communicate everything from new product announcements to personal interests to safe and efficient use of compressed air. We have recently passed our 5 year anniversary of posting blogs (hard for us to believe) and I thought it appropriate to share a few of the entries which explain some more of the technical aspects of compressed air.

Here is a good blog explaining EXAIR’s 6 steps to optimization, a useful process for improving your compressed air efficiency:


One of the Above 6 steps is to provide secondary storage, a receiver tank, to eliminate pressure drops from high use intermittent applications. This blog entry addresses how to size a receiver tank properly:

Here are 5 things everyone should know about compressed air, including how to calculate the cost of compressed air:

These next few entries address a common issue we regularly assist customers with, compressed air plumbing:

In a recent blog post we discuss how to improve the efficiency of your point of use applications:

Thanks for supporting our blog over the past 5 years, we appreciate it. If you need any support with your sustainability or safety initiatives, or with your compressed air applications please contact us.  

Have a great day,
Kirk Edwards
@EXAIR_KE

Improve Your Compressed Air System: Improve Point of Use Applications

While compressor controls and efficiency are an important part of any comprehensive compressed air audit, so too, are your point of use applications. Many times these point of use locations are quickly and inexpensively improved. The first step is to identify which area of your system you would like to improve first. Certainly you will have that “problem area”, the part of the plant you know is using compressed air more than it should. This area of your plant is usually outfitted with open tubes that have the ends crimped down as a homemade nozzle or the operators are using blow-guns with commercial grade nozzles or worse yet, no nozzle at all. It’s the area of the plant that may require hearing protection due to the loud hissing of air or where that pipe with drilled holes was the quickest and cheapest fix for the application (or so you thought).

Document these areas of the plant and address these points of use by measuring the current consumption. Many times, we find, the volume of air provided by open tubes, inefficient nozzles and drilled pipes is much more than is required for the application.  Accurate compressed air measurement will be important to properly calculate the compressed air cost and savings. These points of use can be retrofitted or optimized in a couple of ways. First, you can retrofit open tubes by placing a compression fitting and engineered air nozzle on it. This will both reduce the air consumption and noise levels within the plant. Drilled pipes have holes, or slots, along the length to provide a wide area blow off. These applications can show dramatic improvement by using compressed air knives or air amplifiers which are engineered to reduce air consumption, reduce noise and maintain OSHA Compliance for dead end pressure. The second way to improve these end use applications is to install pressure regulators and lower the end use pressure which will result in lower air use.

Don’t let these end use applications go unchallenged, just because they were this way when you joined the firm does not mean they should not, or cannot be improved upon. If you get the right folks involved and keep them updated about the actions or changes you are making, you will find advocates for the projects. Remember that quantifying the savings is key so don’t start without measuring how much air you are currently using at these problem areas. Flow meters on each leg of your system or at specific high use areas of the plant will prove invaluable to providing data expressed in dollars of savings to those making decisions within your firm. The compressed air supply side personnel will also be helpful in locating or prioritizing where to start saving compressed air. Keep employees and management informed of savings and improvements and the savings ball will have more potential to keep on rolling.

Remember:

  • Measure – baseline the current conditions of compressed air use with flow meters
  • Upgrade – retrofit inefficient open blow offs, commercial grade nozzles, drilled pipes etc. with engineered  and intelligent compressed air products
  • Control air pressure – lower pressure results in lower air consumption

If you would like any assistance or support to improve your compressed air system, we’re here to help.

Kirk Edwards
Application Engineer
@exair_ke

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