I was talking to a company who manufactures potting soil, fertilizer, and other lawn and garden care products just the other day. Believe it or not, during the winter months, they are plenty active in production, getting plenty of material ready to ship out in time to be available to customers for the spring planting season.
During the packaging processes, loose material can spill out onto the floor, and down into all the nooks and crannies on the packaging machinery. After a while, this can add up to quite a mess around the plant. So, they were looking for a quick, easy, inexpensive way to clean up the debris. A broom and dustpan simply is not efficient or effective enough. Shop vacs are too small, and have been wearing out too quickly. So, I suggested our Deluxe Chip Vac System. It is designed for use on an open-top 55-gallon drum, with no moving parts to wear out. The only power it requires is compressed air, and it produces a significant vacuum level.
Along with the 10ft of vacuum hose, it contains all sorts of accessories such as a brush tool, skimmer tool, and crevice tool, so they can clean the soil and fertilizer pieces from every area of the machine and floor. The Deluxe Kit also comes with a drum dolly, so they could easily wheel the Chip Vac around to the various machines throughout the shop. Although we typically advise against using quick-disconnect fittings with our products due to the restrictions they can create on airflow, in this case we can make an exception. As long as the quick-disconnect fitting is oversized enough so as not to create an airflow restriction, using a quick disconnect fitting will further add to the portability of the Chip Vac around the plant, rather than needing to use a 100ft-plus length of airhose that can be quite cumbersome and create a tripping hazard for employees.
In addition to the ease of transport around the plant, the the 55-gallon drum capacity allows plenty of time between emptying/disposing times. They can simply wheel the dolly with the drum over to the machine, suck up all the dirt, and wheel it back to its storing place to be emptied at a later time. There is also a filter bag on the top of the lid assembly, preventing any soil or fertilizer dust from entering back into ambient air, so it won’t be breathed in. The cleaner environment created through use of the Chip Vac prevents cross-contamination of products, so you don’t end up with potting soil pieces in your bag of fertilizer, and vice versa. This leads to fewer rejected bags and reduced quality control issues.