I wrote an earlier blog on how a blue jean manufacturer used EXAIR Air Operated Conveyors to help transport pumice stones into washers for stonewashed jeans. You can find it here, “The EXAIR Air Operated Conveyors with stonewashed jeans.” This same company contacted EXAIR again for another application. With great customer service and thousands of products in stock, this customer stated it was an easy decision to come back to us. This time it was for a spraying application. I was happy to help them again.
Beside stone-washing, there are other ways to give that “worn out” look to blue jeans. In this operation, they would scuff areas on the denim material with sandpaper. To brighten that area, they would manually spray Potassium Permanganate over the jeans. This reaction would fade the blue in the scuffed areas during the washing cycle. They wanted to automate this process and move away from the manual operation (reference photo above). So, I recommended our Air Atomizing Nozzles.
To tell you about EXAIR Air Atomizing Nozzles, they use compressed air to shear liquid into very fine particles. The smaller the particles, the more surface area is produced. Thus, less liquid material is required which will save money on the expense of the liquid. EXAIR offers three different body sizes in NPT or BSP conversions; 1/8”, 1/4”, and 1/2”. They are made from stainless steel for corrosion resistance. We have an Internal Mix and an External Mix for use with pressurized liquid, and a Siphon Fed for open containers.
With each body style, we have a variety of liquid caps for different flow amounts, and an assortment of air caps to direct the fine mist. For the Atomizing Nozzles, EXAIR can offer a No-Drip option and brackets. The No-Drip option will stop liquid flow when the compressed air is turned off which will not allow the liquid to drip from the nozzle. The brackets fit snugly around the body to support the Atomizing Nozzles for precise spraying.
For this application, I recommended the model AW9010SS. This is a 1/8” NPT No-Drip Internal mix Atomizing Nozzle with a wide-angle round pattern. The liquid flow rate fit their application with a maximum of 3.5 GPH (13.2 LPH). The wide spray angle was able to cover the patterns on the denim material. The potassium permanganate was delivered to the Atomizing Nozzle with a liquid pump, and with the No-Drip Option, they could start and stop spraying accurately and quickly with a simple compressed air solenoid valve. Also, the model AW9010SS is a durable lightweight nozzle; and with the model 901786 bracket, the Atomizing Nozzles were easily mounted to the end of a robot arm for automation.
The EXAIR Atomizing Nozzles were able to replace the manual operation. The amount of liquid material that this denim manufacturer was able to save was near 20%. Depending on the expense of the fluid that you use, this can be quite a savings. Also, they found that the “worn” areas were more consistent with accurate spraying and an even amount of potassium permanganate.
And as an added note with the safety issues in spraying potassium permanganate, the Atomizing Nozzles were a more effective way to reduce the hazard as a substitution control. The operator with personal protective equipment, or PPE, is the least effective way for controlling occupational hazards. The automated system with EXAIR Atomizing Nozzles was able to remove the operator from the hazard.
If you have a liquid that you would like to spray evenly, efficiently, and effectively; EXAIR Atomizing Nozzles can do that for you. As with the customer above with the Air Operated Conveyors or Atomizing Nozzles, the quality of the products and the great customer service was what caused this customer to use EXAIR. If you would like to experience the EXAIR way, you can contact an Application Engineer. We will be happy to help you.