A Burst of Air From Our Super Air Nozzles Keeps Vacuum System Pipes Clean

Bales of cotton and polyester fibers
Bales of cotton and polyester fibers

An overseas textile company had many automated spinning machines to manufacture yarn from raw cotton and polyester fibers. They used a vacuum collection system to remove any floating fibers from within their spinning machines for safety reasons.  In this facility, they had three rows of ten spinning machines.  Above each row, a collection duct, ranging for 8” to 30” in diameter, would collect the fibers and transport them to a baghouse.  The difference in diameters was to keep the vacuum pressure the same in each spinning machine.  The machine that was the farthest from the baghouse had the smallest diameter pipe, and the machine that was closest to the vacuum system had the largest.  They needed to keep an optimum vacuum pressure inside each machine because too much would affect the production of the yarn and too little would allow the fibers to migrate into the production area.  The concern with fibers migrating in the production area was a fire hazard, a big safety issue.  In order to have each row of machines performing effectively, they needed to keep the static pressure as low as possible.

Blending Machine (Note: the spinning machines are behind this)
Blending Machine (Note: the spinning machines are behind this)

The issue that they had was the discarded fibers would gather and collect in the ductwork. Each machine had a 4” duct that would draw the fiber from the spinning machine into the bottom of the collection duct overhead.  The velocity profile inside the main line was being disrupted by each feed duct, as it allowed a “dead” spot for the fibers to gather.  As fibers would entangle with each other and become larger, the static pressure would increase.  This would cause the vacuum pressures to change inside the spinning machines, affecting production.  They would have to shut the row down, open the ductwork, and clean the entire piping system.  This was time consuming and costly as it stopped production.

The customer tried a homemade nozzle made of a copper tube. He flattened one end and placed it in the bottom of the ductwork just upstream of the problem area.  He triggered it intermittently, and after a while he noticed that he still had the fibers collecting in the pipes, but in different areas.  In knowing how the velocity profile is very sensitive in dust collection systems, any additional obstructions could cause the problem to change to another location within the system.  He contacted EXAIR to see if we could help him.

I put on my engineering hat to help solve this issue. I suggested our model 1104 Super Air Nozzles because it had enough force to reach the other side within the range of diameters.  The EXAIR Super Air Nozzles are very powerful and efficient nozzles.  It is designed to entrain the ambient air.  This gives it a powerful force without using a lot of compressed air.  My suggestion was to place them along the top of the collection pipe as we needed to keep the profile smooth along the bottom section of the pipe.  As a recommendation, I suggested for them to use an angled extraction port (not made by EXAIR).

Extraction Port (Not sold by EXAIR)
Extraction Port (Not sold by EXAIR)

It screws to the outside of the ductwork, and it has a 2” opening with a 45 degree angle (reference photo above).  They could aim the Super Air Nozzles at the “dead” spots to lift the fibers off the bottom; allowing the system to pull them toward the baghouse.  Without having to redo their entire collection system, they were able to cut an opening in the top of the duct and mount the Super Air Nozzles.  As an added benefit, the nozzles were not in the air stream; so, there was no additional static pressure in the system.  The customer was able to design a solenoid triggering system to have only one Super Air Nozzle to operate at one time.  It would start from the farthest point, and trigger one at a time toward the bag house.  With a short burst of air, it would keep the fibers in the air stream without affecting the operations of the spinning machines.  This customer was very happy as they were able to keep their operation running without a buildup of static pressure in the vacuum system and without allowing fibers to escape into the work area.

EXAIR Nozzles
EXAIR Nozzles

If you have contamination that gets stuck in your system, and you need a powerful burst of air to break it up, EXAIR may have the right nozzle for you. It can save you from much frustration, headaches, and waste of time in making your own blow off devices.

 John Ball
Application Engineer
Email: johnball@exair.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_jb

High Power Super Air Nozzles Provide Forceful Air Flow

When considering the application of a compressed air product, we have an awful lot of discussions with callers about the amount of force generated.  Now, if that’s all you want, you’re not going to get more force from compressed air flow from anything but an open ended blow off.  There are problems inherent with this: it’s unsafe, it’s loud, and it’s a horribly inefficient way to use compressed air.  By the time they’ve called EXAIR, they probably know this, but the main concern is still the same: solving their application.

Good news is, you don’t need a lot of FORCE for most blow off situations.  Think about it…how much do sawdust, machining chips, coolant droplets, etc., weigh, anyway?  All you really need to do is optimize the air flow, which is EXACTLY what EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Products are engineered & designed for.  So, we talk a LOT about how often a high amount of force isn’t needed in compressed air blowing applications.

Then…I got a call from a user who needed force.  They had an air knife installed to blow parts out of a mold, as the halves separated.  There’s a rectangular array of parts in a multi-cavity mold, and the air knife just wasn’t getting them all out, all the time.

The air knife, was, of course, originally chosen for its efficiency, but it just wasn’t delivering the needed “punch.” They even tried other shim thicknesses (which increases the outlet air gap) to increase the flow & force delivered, and that helped a little, but wasn’t 100% effective.

The solution came in the form of an array of HP1125-9212 2″ High Power Flat Super Air Nozzles, supplied with 12″ Stay Set Hoses.  They’re able to mount these closer to the mold than the air knife, and the ability for each nozzle to operate independently meant they were able to be aimed precisely where they can do the most good.  They are now able to evacuate the molds the first time, every time.

Sometimes, you DO need the high force of the HP1125 2″ High Power Flat Super Air Nozzle

If you have questions about how to get the most out of your compressed air use, give me a call.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
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Part Ejection Improved by Choosing the Right Air Nozzle

Recently, I was able to work with a gentlemen from a stamping company that produces small metal stamped lids for the cosmetic industry.  He was frustrated because the current blow off setup, a copper tube and nozzle (shown below), was too weak and narrow to be effective with parts ranging from 1″ to 2.5″ wide.  Whenever a lid did not get completely discharged, the machine would jam and double hit on the next cycle, ruining (2) parts in the process, not to mention, potentially damaging the the tooling.

blowoff
Stamping Operation with Original Nozzle

After reviewing the process, which is very high speed, we wanted a strong, concentrated blast of air that matched the part profile to maximize the air flow contact patch.  We agreed the model HP1125 – 2″ High Power Flat Super Air Nozzle would be a good nozzle to implement and test.  In addition to the Nozzle, the customer ordered the model HP1132SS Shim Set, to allow for flow and force adjustment of the nozzle to obtain the best possible performance under production conditions.  The HP1125 nozzle provides 2.2 lbs of force with the standard .025 patented shim installed, and can be decreased or increased by changing the shim to .020″ or .030″ thick. Preliminary testing has proven successful, and reliability testing and data collection is underway.

2 Inch Flat
2″ Flat Super Air Nozzle

EXAIR has available, the Air Nozzles Blowoff Guide, a handy reference with 23 pages of technical data for OSHA safe nozzles and Safety Air Guns for every application imaginable.

blowoff guide
The EXAIR Air Nozzles Blowoff Guide

To discuss your part ejection, blowoff, cooling or drying application, feel free to contact EXAIR and one our  Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.

Brian Bergmann
Application Engineer

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Maintenance Free And Proud Of It

Caller: Do you sell rebuild kits?
Me: Yes, but…why?

This is a WAY oversimplified summary of the start of a popular conversation that an EXAIR Application Engineer might have with a caller looking to restore a particular product to proper operation. Truth is, most of our products have no moving parts, and if you supply them with clean, dry air, they’ll run maintenance free, darn near indefinitely. We’ve documented this in specific cases regarding a Reversible Drum Vac from 1999, a Vortex Tube from 1987, and a Cold Gun from 1985.

Product & year of manufacture, from top left: Reversible Drum Vac (1999,) Cold Gun (1985,) Vortex Tube (1987.) All still performing within factory specifications.
Product & year of manufacture, from top left: Reversible Drum Vac (1999,) Cold Gun (1985,) Vortex Tube (1987.) All still performing within factory specifications.

Caller: So…DO you sell rebuild kits?
Me: Yes, but…only when necessary.

It’s important to note that none of the products mentioned above needed any parts replaced to return to service. Sometimes, a good cleaning is all that’s required. We can help you with a video tutorial if you want to know how to restore a Reversible Drum Vac, an Air Knife, or an Atomizing Spray Nozzle, for instance.  And we’re making new videos all the time for product maintenance, operation, tips & tricks, etc.

Caller (again): So…you DO sell rebuild kits?
Me: Yes, of course!  I mean, who wouldn’t sell rebuild kits for their products?

Take our Safety Air Guns, for example. We offer Service Kits, if the trigger and/or internal valve of a Soft Grip or Heavy Duty Safety Air Gun starts to wear or leak, it’s super easy to replace. We’ve also got replacement springs for the “fail shut” feature of the ball valve of a Super Blast Safety Air Gun. Just about anything else that could be wrong with a Safety Air Gun’s performance can be addressed by cleaning the nozzle.

We also recently added Rebuild Kits for our Atomizing Spray Nozzles to inventory. These contain all of the seals (and moving parts, for the No-Drip models) to restore an EXAIR Spray Nozzle to rated performance.

Keep your EXAIR Atomizing Spray Nozzle (left) in perfect working order with a simple & inexpensive Rebuilt Kit (right of the nozzle.) Contact an Application Engineer to select the one for your product.

For other products, we can also provide replacement gaskets & seals for the Reversible Drum Vac & Chip Trapper products, O-rings for the Line Vacs, Chip Vacs, and Heavy Duty Dry Vacs, new elements for Filter Separators & Oil Removal Filters…just to name a few.

Bottom line: if your EXAIR product isn’t performing the way it used to, give me a call.  It will be my pleasure to help you get it working like new, so that you can continue to get the most out of it.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
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EXAIR’s High Velocity and Adjustable Air Jets – Now Available in Stainless Steel

Newly released, the EXAIR High Velocity Air Jet and Adjustable Air Jet are now available in Type 303 Stainless Steel, providing greater durability, corrosion resistance and a higher maximum temperature rating of 400 °F.  Type 303 stainless steel has good resistance to mildly corrosive atmospheres along with good oxidation resistance at elevated temperatures, making the stainless steel Air Jet a great choice for blowoff or part drying in your harsh environment. Both types of Air Jets are also available in brass, for applications at 275°F and below, and when corrosion resistance is not as critical.

6013ss
Model 6013SS – High Velocity Air Jet

Air Jets utilize the Coanda Effect – wall attachment of a high velocity fluid – to produce air motion in their surroundings. As illustrated above, a small amount of compressed air to the inlet (large black arrow) is throttled through an internal ring nozzle above sonic velocity.  A vacuum is produced, resulting in large volumes of surrounding, or “free” air, being pulled in through the jet (blue arrows.)

air jet How Air Jets Work

Both the outlet and inlet can be ducted for remote positioning applications.

If the end is blocked, flow simply reverses at well below OSHA dead end pressure requirements, ensuring safe operation.

The High Velocity Air Jet comes standard with an .015″ shim, and a Shim Set is offered that includes .006″ and  .009″ shims to provide additional adjustability and control.  The Adjustable Air Jet has a variable gap design, and can be adjusted and locked to meet the required airflow and thrust parameters.

When you are needing a simple solution to reduce excessive air consumption and noise levels on compressed air blowoff operations, EXAIR has a large line of Air Nozzles and Jets to solve your problems. You can contact an Application Engineer to discuss which Air Jet or Nozzle to best fit your application.

Brian Bergmann
Application Engineer

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Video Blog: How to Adjust an EXAIR Adjustable Air Nozzle

Here is an informal video on how to adjust the EXAIR Adjustable Air Nozzle models #1009 and #1009SS and explanation of the benefits of proper adjustment.

 

John Ball
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation

Practice Makes Perfect

2016 Eagles
NEW Eagles Football Jersey for 2016

Last year, I wrote a few blogs about how I was an assistant coach for my oldest son’s youth football team. We had an amazing season that ended with a 2nd round playoff loss and a 3rd place finish overall. Not too shabby for a new group of players and coaches. Now, the new season is upon us with practice beginning next Monday. Our new roster is pretty much the opposite of last season, as we now have 11 returning players from last year’s team and 4 newcomers. The coaching staff has stayed intact as well, so we are hoping to improve on last year’s successes and bring home the championship this year! But hey, we are talking about 7 and 8 year old boys here, so ANY type of success is a win in itself.

After a brief coaches meeting over the weekend, we have decided to hold practice 3 days a week this year, compared to 2 days last. We are hoping the extra practice will help us implement some more pass plays in the offense and work on extending our defensive sets, which cost us at the end of last year. For me personally, I am excited to see how my own son has grown from his first season of learning how to block and tackle the right way, to being more involved in the offense. He is one of the fastest kids on the team but got a little nervous whenever we tried to get him the ball on a rush or pass play. He and I have spent A LOT of time this spring and early summer, throwing the ball and working on his ball carrying skills. From what I’ve seen in our yard, I am pretty excited to see what unfolds on the football field. I keep telling him that he’s going to have some dropped passes and fumbled balls, but the important thing is to not get discouraged and keep trying. After all, practice makes perfect.

Here at EXAIR, we adopt the same philosophy. We are dedicated to putting in the time and effort to develop new and useful compressed air operated products. The following is a list of some new products now available:

  • New 2.5″ and 3″ Line Vac and Threaded Line Vac in 316SS and High Temperature construction

    Standard Line Vac: aluminum or SS
    Standard Line Vac in aluminum or stainless steel
  • New 2.5″ and 3″ Heavy Duty Line Vac with smooth or threaded ends. Hardened Alloy Construction for better abrasion resistance.

    Heavy Duty Line Vac: Hardened Alloy Construction and High Performance
    Heavy Duty Line Vac: Hardened Alloy Construction and High Performance

To discuss these new products or any EXAIR product, please contact an application engineer for assistance.

Justin Nicholl
Application Engineer
justinnicholl@exair.com
@EXAIR_JN