Good Old Fashioned Static Eliminating Application

The following video shows a stamping machine process where expanded Polystyrene trays are stamped from a matrix, stacked and cleaned for packaging into bulk bags.

 The customer was having a lot of difficulty with a lot of fine-type materials, “fines” as we call them, which ended up in the final packaged bag of material with the trays. These small “fines” were created as a result of the stamping process itself. As the die came down and made the cut, there were little slivers of material that were created. The customer thought perhaps the die was in bad condition or perhaps alignment was out. They checked these items and found both to be in good condition.

They were still having the problem with the contamination in the bags along with the good product. The next step was to assign a second task to the operator who was collecting the trays, stacking and packaging them. It was now his job to blow the trays off with a regular compressed air gun before packaging to remove the debris (as you can see in the video). The problem was he was still not able to get 100% of the debris removed due to a problem with static electricity that was forming between the trays.

As you can see, the trays are cut and fall down onto the machine base to form a stack. Once stacked, the trays were in intimate contact with one another. As the operator handled the trays, separating them for blowing, etc, he was actually generating static charges that no regular blow-gun will be able to remove.

I recommended to the customer to make the simple step to switch out the operator’s regular blow-gun for an EXAIR Ion Air Gun (with static eliminating ions). The Ion Air Gun produces an ionized airflow which is exactly what the operator needed to get 100% of the debris and other “fines” out of the stack of trays before he put them into a bag.

This end customer ended up using our complete Ion Air Gun Kit Model 7493 to solve their localized debris problem with great success. They are currently evaluating applying this method to their other die cutting stations.

Neal Raker
International Sales
nealraker@exair.com

Pay It Forward

I grew up in a smaller city that was based around a Steel Mill.  The mill combined with several other industrial businesses made up for the majority of jobs within the city limits.   My parents still live in the same house that I grew up in.  When I grew up there the neighborhood was mostly middle class if not upper middle class.  We never had much crime in our neighborhood or anything to truly worry about but somehow we would randomly have people land on our porch at odd hours of the night that would need a ride or their car would be broken down, we even had an Alzheimer’s patient one time.  No matter the case they were always someone who we had never met and were always in need of help.  (I think it’s because we would always leave our porch light on.  I guess it was some sort of beacon.)  No matter what time it was, my dad would always answer the door and if they needed something he wouldn’t hesitate to help.  This would range anywhere from giving them a ride to the gas station, fixing their car, or even a pair of socks, cup of coffee, and entertain them till their family was able to get there.

This kind of responsibility to look out for people around you didn’t just stop at home,  we could be driving down the road and he’d stop for someone who needed help too.   Never any hitch hikers though.  This attitude towards helping others and making sure that you have shown there is nothing due in return was something he instilled in all three of his children.   Once I got old enough to drive I would see someone broken down and so I would stop; and if I could help, I would.   By this point in time the neighborhood we were in was slowly decreasing and we started noticing more crime in the area.  This somehow didn’t change my old man’s mind set.  Still if there’s a knock at the door he’ll see who it is and go out and help if he can.  The funny thing is it just happened this year when we were having a family dinner.  So what did my dad do?  He got his coat and took the stranger to get a part they needed. 

Fast forward to now, almost 13 years later, I was in my driveway plowing snow just last year and noticed a car broken down in the street with a local police officer behind him.   I watched for a second and realized the car was broken down and could clearly tell the man driving had no idea where he was or what to do.  The driver of the car said he thinks he just needs a jump but the officer could not help due to policy and so he was waiting for a tow truck.  I told him I’ll grab my jumper pack from the garage and be right back.   After looking under the hood and unhooking a few unneeded accessories from his battery I hooked up my jumper pack and got the car started.   I told him that I thought it was a combination or a bad alternator and some stereo equipment that had been hooked up wrong.  I simply told him the jump should get him to the closest shop and how to get there.  When I closed the hood he asked how much he owed me.   I simply told him nothing at all just make sure he takes it straight to a shop so they can fix the problem.   The man couldn’t believe I would stop what I was doing in the middle of nasty winter day, help someone who was a complete stranger, and ask for nothing in return.  I simply shook his hand and said good luck.  I hope that further down the road he remembers that and does something kind for someone he doesn’t know when they are in need.

My wife can’t believe it when I want to stop and help someone or get out and drag something out of the road so someone else doesn’t get hurt.  She always says something like they could mug you or they will be fine someone probably already called.  While more and more I find myself too busy to stop because I am in a rush to get to work I still try to find a way to help someone in need.  Even if it’s just holding a door open for someone who is in a hurry.

All I can say is I hope this inspires you to “Pay It Forward”.  I know there are still good people in this world and plenty of them.   So the next time you see someone you don’t know in need of help.  Even if it may inconvenience you a bit, think of their day and how much better a small act of kindness can turn it around.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_BF

I Don’t Care What You Ordered

Last year I wrote a blog about vendors who overpromise and under-deliver. [Don’t Make Promises That You Can’t Keep].

Last week, a vendor took customer service to a whole new level.  It went something like this.

Here’s a summary of the exchange:

EXAIR: I’m calling because there is a problem with our order.  It was just delivered and it isn’t what we ordered.

Vendor Sales Weasel: OK, I’ll check into that and get back to you.

OK so far, right?

[Fast forward to the next day]

EXAIR: Do you have an answer yet on our order?

Vendor Sales Weasel: I’ve worked up a list of alternate products that we could provide to you.

EXAIR: We don’t want an alternate product – we want the one that we ordered.

Vendor Sales Weasel: Well it wasn’t my decision to change your order.  I’ll get someone else to call you.

This is about to go off the rails, isn’t it?

[Several hours pass]

Vendor Manager: Your order…we decided that we didn’t want to make it that way so we changed it.

EXAIR: What?

Vendor Manager: We didn’t want to do it that way anymore, so we changed the spec.

EXAIR: But you’ve been providing what we ordered for years.

Vendor Manager: Not any more.

EXAIR: You knew the specs when you accepted the order.  If you couldn’t deliver, why did you accept the order?

Vendor Manager: We thought you’d be OK with the changes.

EXAIR: We can’t accept the changes.  Will you deliver what we ordered?

Vendor Manager: No, we won’t do it that way anymore.

EXAIR: Why not?

Vendor Manager: We don’t want to.

EXAIR: Are you serious?

Vendor Manager: Sorry, won’t do it.

[Exasperation sets in]

EXAIR: So let me make sure that I have this right…you knew the specs, right?

Vendor Manager: Yep

EXAIR: And you accepted the order months ago?

Vendor Manager: Yep

EXAIR: And somewhere along the way, you decided that the specs didn’t matter?

Vendor Manager: Yep

EXAIR: And you didn’t think that was worth a phone call?

Vendor Manager: Um.  We probably could have handled that better.

EXAIR: And now you are saying you can’t deliver what we ordered?

Vendor Manager: No, we can’t.

EXAIR: Do you realize how much money is at stake here?

Vendor Manager: Yes but we thought you’d be OK with the changes.

EXAIR: We already told you that we aren’t OK with the changes.

Vendor Manager: There’s not much we can do now.

EXAIR: We’ll send over the cancellation notice.

This clueless vendor lost a six-figure contract because they accepted an order, ignored the specs, and then didn’t think it was worth their time to talk to us about the changes.

Needless to say, this company is now an ex-vendor.

EXAIR doesn’t do business this way, and we don’t do business with companies that do.

Bryan Peters
President
bryanpeters@exair.com

The Right Tools Lead to Victory or Don’t Bring a Butter Knife to A Sword Fight

“Fear my mighty battle-axe!” roared across the basement. I involuntarily reacted with my forty-year-old catlike reflexes (which in all likelihood resemble the reflexes of my 12 year old dog) by becoming lighter on my feet and scanning the room for enemies. Much to my chagrin, no-one was in sight. Then, in a slightly more childlike voice, thunders the phrase “Watch out dad, we’re gonna get ya!” Two things quickly crossed my mind – ONE: I’m out numbered. TWO: That second thundering phrase is not one I expected to come from any nemesis.

In any case this was not the time to ponder, it was time for battle. Except I was ill prepared. I clearly lacked the tools necessary to fend off these decided rivals. There were no visible weapons in sight as I took the first blow to the ribs from this:

With a second helping of airborne-rotating-spikes-of-death heading straight for my heart which looked like this:

I proceeded to fight as valiantly as possible after suffering these certain mortal wounds, but alas, it was not looking good. These fearless warriors on the attack must have noticed my waning strength because the smaller of the two found it in his heart to offer me this:

…except without the shield. That’s right a 9″ dagger versus a two-sided battle-axe and a three-bladed weapon named Warlock. Two things quickly crossed my mind – ONE: Thanks for the butter knife son, if I were fighting toast this would be handy. TWO: I always did like that small one better. Sadly it was too late, I had been defeated. An ambush and the simple lack of proper tools for victory were my downfall.

It can happen to any of us. We can all be surprised be a sneak attack and be left without the best tools for the job. EXAIR does not want you to be found in this position. You shouldn’t use an open compressed air pipe on an application, only to be ambushed by your machines crashing due to a lack of air pressure. Ambushes like that may be avoided by outfitting those pipes with the proper tool; engineered Super Air Nozzles which will use much less compressed air.

You shouldn’t be left using an electric vacuum that will soon be defeated by continuous use or a nasty environment. You deserve the victory of our continuous duty industrial vacuums. These products are powered by compressed air and since they do not have any moving parts they keep fighting in nasty environments, elevated temperatures or continuous heavy-duty use.

Beware of an ambush from your friendly OSHA representative ready and willing to hand out fines for improper use of compressed air because you are exceeding the 30 PSIG dead-end pressure limit found in OSHA’s standard 1910.242(b). EXAIR’s efforts always concentrate on meeting or exceeding this standard, making our products are the right tool for increasing the safety of your people. And don’t forget about the sneak attack from your boss who is checking on the progress of your energy savings program. Our squad of Optimization products and the Six Steps To Optimization process can help you begin your savings program and relish the victory of providing your boss the feedback he is requesting.

Lastly, as I write this blog entry two things quickly come to mind – ONE: You need the right tools for safe, efficient and successful compressed air applications. TWO: EXAIR can help you identify them.

Kirk Edwards
Application Engineer
kirkedwards@exair.com

 

 

Pain and Frustration or is it Just Me?

Before the holidays my wife announced it was time for her to look for a new lease vehicle. I had forgotten exactly when the lease was up but she knew, 30 days to go. How many miles had she done on the vehicle? She knew exactly how many were left. I took note, this was important to her.

Her current vehicle is an all wheel drive mid size SUV that she’s had for three years. What make is it? Well let’s say it was a top of the range American made vehicle three years ago. Consumer Reports didn’t give it high marks but she’s had very few problems.

I was given the green light to check out the gadgets on the potential new vehicle. She’s not a gadget person but once she sees something that’s useful it’s used. I thought to myself “this won’t take long”. At the car company’s website I reviewed the options and I’m DONE. The electronic wizardry built into the vehicle was fantastic and the videos sold me, hook line and sinker.

Then I thought to myself what do the experts say about the new model? A few clicks later I was on Consumer Reports website. All of the information was there but not for the model my wife wanted.

Sunday we were at dealers looking at the new vehicles in the snow. She was worried about the vehicles color and interior – were they a good match? The salesman said lets go for a ride. The key’s were found, the salesman opened the door for her to step in and she looked at me and said you drive please. After a smooth but very short ride (I think we did get in to fifth or six gear) we were back at the lot. The wet snow made the light grey carpets look dirty, even stained. The salesman sprang into action “don’t worry about the carpets we’ll clean them for you”. I saw her face, after three years in the old vehicle it was commented on as show room condition, one ride in the new vehicle and the carpets looked three years old.

Trying to move forward I asked about the leasing information and he said “we get the new rates next week, if you want to take the vehicle you’ve drove I can arrange that now”. I knew at that point he was an optimist, I had read my wife’s body language. We left the dealership.

Our daughter is very intuitive and recognized the difficulty. She conducted an online search and found the exact vehicle my wife had set her mind on. It was five hour away. After contacting that dealer he wouldn’t trade his vehicle with my local dealer. Something had to give and it was me.  At the end of the day I extended the lease for an additional two months, paid an additional premium over the previous lease rate on the old vehicle and wait for the new vehicle to be manufactured.

I compared my experience above with the company I work for, EXAIR. We have experienced application engineers who give the very best information and stick by it. If we don’t have a product to help you but we know someone who can we will point you to them. Our products, specifications (including CE and ROHS items), CAD drawings, 3-D models and prices are on our website. We hold stock of catalog products from basic items to complete systems. We have videos, PowerPoint presentations, blog posts and energy cost calculators to inform a customer. If you want a special we will quote you and give you a delivery date. Last year 99.9% of our orders were shipped on time. Outside of the US we have a global distribution network. All in all we are easy to deal with. So I ask the question why can’t all companies work this way especially if the price for the lease will be over $20,000?

Ivan Banks, Business Development
ivanbanks@exair.com

Got Questions? We’ve Got Answers

There is an old adage that two heads are better than one.  All successful engineers have an established support network of bright minds other than their own. Drawing upon the experiences and knowledge of others is what makes these engineers stand out among their peers. It’s all about building upon the achievements of others and taking it to the next level.

Although EXAIR manufactures intelligent compressed air products, our real marketability is providing solutions using compressed air products. Our focus is talking to the customer which is why we make ourselves available through so many venues; phone, fax, email, Twitter, Facebook, website, and online chat.

We have a staff of engineers with shop experience and are adept at visualizing your application with you. They handle hundreds of applications a week so they have seen it all. Quite often we have customers call in claiming they have a unique application but in actuality, its something that we have done before.

We would be honored to be added to your network of experts. So if you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. Call us.

Joe Panfalone
Application Engineer

Phone (513) 671-3322
Fax   (513) 671-3363
Web: www.exair.com 
Twitter: www.twitter.com/exair_jp
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/exair

It’s Still Winter :(

In case you haven’t realized it lately it is still Winter.  Here in Cincinnati, OH we see all four seasons at their best.  We get the Spring showers, heat and humidity in the Summer, nice crisp Fall mornings, and even the snow and ice in Winter.  Now, I understand there are places that receive a considerable amount more snow than us each year but, I don’t think I would want to live where they see snow as often as Bigfoot.  I am however, ready to be done with what is in the picture below.

This picture was taken around 3:00 PM EST yesterday, 1/20/2011.  It then continued to snow through the evening and drop to single digits so ice formed everywhere.

This Winter has turned into a rather long one for me.  It seems every time I step foot into my garage my motorcycle starts to taunt me.  It’s currently sitting up on two race stands with a full tank of gas and battery charger just waiting for the ground to thaw.  Unfortunately I don’t see that happening anytime soon. What I want is in the video below.

I want to be back on the track in weather that is just warm enough the tires are nice and sticky and the bikes are sucking in the cool air then shooting it out as hot exhaust fumes.

So this is my statement to Mother Nature, Jack Frost, or anyone else in charge of this white, cold, crippling powder.

Please go away soon.   While I do love getting snow, I want to ride.  At least give me 50 degrees and clear roads.  That’s all I ask.  But not before this weekend, I still have to take the little one for her first sled ride.

Sincerely,

Brian Farno
Application Engineer, Motorcycle Enthusiast, Cool Dad
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
___________________________________________________________

2008 SV650 w/ too many upgrades to list.

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