Line Vac Air Operated Conveyors: What to Know When Specifying

So you are thinking about using a Line Vac… Is it time to replace that ladder and bucket, and automate? There are many factors involved when deciding to use a conveyor system such as EXAIR Line Vacs. First of all let’s take a look at your product that needs conveyed. Will the integrity of your media be compromised by adding this much air to it? How heavy is it? What type of (how much) surface area does it have?

You know your media better than most. You should be able to answer most of those questions pretty easily, but what about the weight? For the weight, we work best knowing the bulk density, or pounds per cubic foot. If you do not readily know, this is easily found by finding the weight of your media in a box (or container). Then take the total cubic inches of the box (L x W x H) and divide that by 1728 (cubic inches per cubic foot), this will give you the cubic feet of that box. Then you simply divide the weight by the cubic feet, and you now have the density.

Line Vacs can convey many things.

Next we need to focus on your conveyance run. We would like to know what type of container is your product sitting in? A super sack, a hopper, a drum, a box? And where is it going? How far away is the destination hopper, dumpster, assembly station, etc.? This will help us determine the type of fitting or tools necessary to extract or release the media. How high do you need to go? How far horizontally? Our Line Vacs, are amazing, but they do have their limits. We will also need to know if there are any turns, and at what angles. Turns are many times unavoidable, but will have an adverse effect on the conveyance run as the airflow is halted and or deflected. Is there a way to minimize or eliminate the turns?

The final question is; how many pounds per minute do you need to be conveyed?

With the size, mass, and geometry of your parts, along with the vertical lift length, and the horizontal conveyance length, added to the turns and twists, you are just about ready to call one of our our application engineers for recommendations. We have some comparison materials for conveyance rates, to get you close to your actual needs. Here are some published conveyance rates as well:

There is one more part to this equation. What type and size of Line Vac will you need? EXAIR has many types of Line Vacs to choose from. As with most products, we have options that take into consideration the temperature and the abrasiveness of your product. We also have options to fit the type of conveyance hose or pipe you want to use , such as sanitary fittings, or threaded. And since we manufacture these right here in Cincinnati, OH, we can make custom Line Vacs for customers fairly quickly. We have designed and manufactured them with custom bolt on flanges, special materials or inlet sizes to name a few.

EXAIR Line Vacs: For bulk material conveyance through lines from 3/8″ to 6″, in aluminum, 303SS, 316SS, or abrasion resistant hardened alloy, available from stock with the widest variety of connections in the industry.

Please do not hesitate to call. We will be happy to help you with any technical questions about our products.

Application Engineer

Brian Wages

EXAIR Corporation
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Yellow Ladder pic from OpenClipart-Vectors / 27385 & Bucket Pic from Jazella / 704 images on a Pixabay License

EXAIR has a Line Vac for your Application!

With countless number of different Models to fit every application, EXAIR Line Vacs are used to convey everything from the lightest of packing peanuts to heavy steel shot.  They’re versatile, reliable, durable, and incredibly easy to install and operate. 

Line Vacs are EXAIR’s current promotion too, see the offer here.

EXAIR Line Vacs use a small amount of compressed air to generate a powerful vacuum by a Venturi effect.  The unique design of the generator creates a high velocity of air to create a low pressure on one side and a powerful thrust on the other. The Line Vac can pick up and move solid material from light and fluffy batting to dense, heavy and abrasive material and pieces.  They can transfer product horizontally up to 100 feet (30 meters) away and vertically up to 20 feet (6 meters) high.  You can watch a video on the operation of a Line Vac HERE.  Compared to other vacuum or conveying systems, the EXAIR Line Vacs are very quiet, rugged, and powerful. They are exceptionally simple to install and solve many “bucket and ladder”, loading and scrap removal applications. EXAIR makes a variety of Line Vacs in different sizes, styles, and materials to best fit your application.

The standard Line Vac is the most versatile product in this family.  EXAIR stocks a wide range of sizes, materials, and styles for targeting the best solution for moving material.  We have two types of connections, slip-on ends for hose connections and threaded ends for pipe connection.  EXAIR can swap the connections with a slip-on hose on one end with a threaded connection on the other.  They range in diameters from 3/8” (10mm) up to 5” (127mm).  We manufacture the Line Vacs in aluminum, 303SS, and 316SS; but don’t let that deter you if your need them manufactured in any other type of material.  We have high temperature models that can withstand temperatures up to 900 deg. F (482 deg. C).  These Line Vacs work great in applications for loading plastic pellets in hoppers, discarding scrap pieces, trim removal, and transferring material.  If an operator has to carry a container of dry material and climb stairs, a Line Vac could be a much better alternative.

Heavy Duty Line Vac: Hardened Alloy Construction and High Performance

The Heavy Duty Line Vacs are made from a hardened alloy steel for abrasion resistance.  The generators inside these Line Vacs are more powerful than the standard models; so, that they can also convey heavier materials at higher conveyance rates.  They can reach rates as high as 40 lbs./min. (18.2Kg/min) of material.  With the hardened alloy construction, they are great for sand blasting applications, ceramic, glass and steel shot.  They are manufactured with inlet and outlet connections for ship-on hoses or threaded pipes.  EXAIR stocks the Heavy Duty Line Vacs in the range from ¾” (19mm) to 3” (76mm) for both hose and NPT connections.  These Line Vacs are our most powerful design with great wear resistance.

EXAIR’s Light Duty Line Vac

On the other end of the Line-Vac spectrum, EXAIR also manufactures the Light Duty Line Vac.   They use much less compressed air than the other Line Vacs which work great for moving lightweight materials over short distances.  They can also be used for removing smoke and fumes from a work area.  The Light Duty Line Vac ranges from ¾” (19mm) up to 6” (152mm) diameter for slip-on hose connections.  This two-piece design provides an effective way of moving material at a lower cost.  It can be used in applications like hopper loading, fiber tensioning, filling operations, and smoke removal.   For moving material within a short distance, the Light Duty Line Vac could be the proper product to use.

Model 161200-316 – 316 Stainless Steel Sanitary Flange Line Vac

Our latest engineering design within the Line Vac family is the Sanitary Flange Line Vacs.  They can fit within sanitary piping systems to convert pipes into a useful conveyor for bulk material and waste removal.  They use an ISO2852 flange for easy disassembly and cleaning to reduce bacterial entrapment.  They ae made from 316 stainless steel material for superior corrosion resistance.  They come in four different sizes to fit the sanitary flanges from 1-½” up to a 3” flange.  For sensitive applications where cleanliness is a major requirement, the Sanitary Flange Line Vac are manufactured for these conditions.

We are also able to make custom Line Vacs to mean any application, see an example of some unique to the application Line Vacs here, https://blog.exair.com/2020/07/01/custom-products-for-custom-applications/

With all of the EXAIR Line Vacs above, they can be sold as kits.  A kit will include a filter, regulator and a bracket.  (A bracket is not sold with the Light Duty Line Vac kits.)  The filter will help keep the Line Vac clean as well as the product that it is conveying.  The regulator is a great tool to vary the conveyance rates for better control.  The bracket helps to mount the Line Vac to a sturdy base for support.  A useful accessory to conveniently hide the compact Line Vac for ease of use and operation.

If you have any questions on how our Line Vacs can help save you money give us a call! One of our application engineers will be happy to assist!

Jordan Shouse
Application Engineer

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Bulk Material Transfer Made Simple: EXAIR’s Threaded Line Vacs

EXAIR’s Line Vacs are the ideal low-cost solution for bulk material transfer or trim and scrap removal. Available with NPT threaded connections, EXAIR’s Threaded Line Vacs allow you to convert ordinary pipe into a powerful conveying system for parts, scrap, trim, and other bulk materials. With performance identical to that of the Standard Line Vac, the Threaded Line Vac is available in sizes ranging from as small as 3/8 NPT and up to 3” NPT there’s a suitable Line Vac for most standard sized NPT pipe common an any industrial facility.

The Threaded Line Vac is available in a range of different materials: Aluminum, Type 303 Stainless Steel, Type 316 Stainless Steel, and as a Heavy Duty conveyor constructed of a hardened alloy steel for use in abrasive applications. Where most materials or hard anodized coatings wear out or wear off over time, the Heavy Duty Line Vac is the ideal solution for heavy and abrasive materials. In addition to being abrasive resistant, it’s also more powerful and suitable for longer vertical and horizontal transfer distances.

Each style of Threaded Line Vac is also available as a High Temperature option. By replacing the traditional o-rings with graphite seals, we’re able to provide a solution capable of withstanding temperatures up to 900°F!!!

The conveyance rate through the Line Vac is infinitely adjustable by regulating the air pressure supplied to it. At lower pressures, the conveyance rate (and air consumption) will decrease. At higher pressures, the conveyance rate will increase. If you have a Threaded Line Vac with the standard performance but need just a little bit more, the option also exists for a High Power unit that would match the performance of the similarly sized Heavy Duty. This can be ordered from the factory with an “HP” prefix, or modified yourself. Check out our video to see just how simple it is to get more out of your Threaded Line Vac.

With all sizes and materials on the shelf and in stock, we’re able to get a solution out to you quickly. We’ll ship out the very same day for stock orders received by 2:00 ET. Backed by our Unconditional 30 Day Guarantee, you’re able to make sure it is the right solution for you before committing to keep it. If you have an application that could be better served with an in-line pneumatic conveyor, give us a call. We’ll be happy to help you determine the most suitable size for the application.

Tyler Daniel
Application Engineer
E-mail: TylerDaniel@EXAIR.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_TD

EXAIR’s Sanitary Flange Line Vacs: An Overview

EXAIR’s Sanitary Flange Line Vac is the ideal solution for customers looking to convey bulk materials in food & pharmaceutical applications (among others). Operating in the same manner as EXAIR’s smooth and NPT threaded Line Vacs, the Sanitary Flange Line Vac is available in (4) common flange sizes: 1-1/2”, 2”, 2-1/2”, and 3”.  All of EXAIR’s Sanitary Flange Line Vacs are constructed of Type 316 Stainless Steel for superior corrosion resistance.

There are different styles of flanges in industry. The Sanitary Flange Line Vac has been designed according to the flange standard outlined in ISO 2852. This standard was prepared by Technical Committee ISO/TC 5, Ferrous metal pipes and metallic fittings, Sub-Committee SC 1, Steel tubes. This is the second edition that replaces the first edition (ISO 2852:1974). The standard specifies the dimensions, tolerances, surface roughness, materials, assembling, and the hygienic requirements for the flange. These styles of flange are intended to be used with stainless steel tubes, specified in ISO 2037. ISO 2852 is considered an international standard, defining the connections used for non-permanent food-grade piping systems used within the pharmaceutical, food processing, dairy and agricultural industries.

In these industries, it’s required for the components to be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized. Using this type of connector, components within the piping system can be easily removed, sanitized, and then reassembled. A lipped flange with a grooved indentation is on each end of the pipe or Line Vac. A sealing gasket is then placed in between each section of pipe. A raised groove on either end allows it to seat onto the mating end of each flange. A clamp is then placed on the outside, forcing the sections together and compressing the gasket, creating an air-tight seal.

If your processes currently utilize sanitary flange piping, EXAIR’s Sanitary Flange Line Vac is the ideal solution to help you convey bulk materials from one point to another quickly, safely, and efficiently. If you have interest to test one out in your process, EXAIR offers an Unconditional 30 Day Guarantee on all stock items. They’re on the shelf now available to ship same day with an order placed by 2:00 ET!

Tyler Daniel
Application Engineer
E-mail: TylerDaniel@EXAIR.com
Twitter: @EXAIR_TD