Effectively and Efficiently Remove Chips and Debris from Blind Holes

I was recently contacted by an automotive parts manufacturer that was looking for a solution for cleaning out blind holes in a variety of machined parts. After discussing the application, we settled on a 1697SS-6-CS VariBlast Compact Safety Air Gun with Pico Nozzle, 6” Extension, and a Chip Shield. The small M5 nozzle at the tip of the gun allowed them to insert it inside of the hole and dislodge the hard-to-reach chips inside of the holes.

1697SS VariBlast Compact Safety Air Gun

This worked very well for removing the chips, but they were encountering an unexpected issue as these chips were now getting lodged in other areas of the part as they were ejected. They then had to visually inspect the entire part after each blowoff to ensure that everything was completely removed.

What they thought to be an ideal solution, ended up not being the best fit. They gave us a call back to inquire about an alternative solution. We offer another product, the Deep-Hole Vac-U-Gun, that is capable of both removing chips and debris from blind holes and also vacuuming it away simultaneously.

This addresses the problem of dislodged chips being caught elsewhere on the parts. Fortunately, EXAIR offers an unconditional 30-day guarantee for all stock products. They were able to return the previously purchased gun and apply the credit towards the purchase of the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun system.

The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun is a low-cost solution to quickly remove chips and contaminants from grooves, containers, and drilled holes. In applications where simply blowing the debris out of the hole isn’t suitable, simply position the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun over the hole and press the trigger. A small blow tube (3) dislodges and lifts the chips while the large suction tube (5) vacuums them away. The operator is then protected from flying debris since the contaminants are then contained within the suction tube and directed into a filter bag or other container with the included vacuum hose.

Sometimes we don’t always get it right on the first try. But, with the ability to take advantage of the 30-day guarantee we’ll make sure to get the best product to you for your application. With same day shipments with orders received by 3:00 ET for stock products, EXAIR can get a solution out to you quickly!

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

Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun – Blow Chips Loose and Vacuum Them Away in One Step!

Last week, we looked at the Vac-u-Gun, and you can take a look at that blog here.

This week I wanted to present the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun, a special iteration of the Vac-u-Gun, designed to provide a solution to the troublesome process of cleaning cavities and drilled holes.

The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun is a low cost solution to quickly remove chips and debris from grooves and drilled holes where blow gun could create potentially hazardous flying debris. The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun is simply positioned over the hole, and the trigger squeezed and then a small blow tube delivers a a stream of air to dislodge and lift the chips while the large suction tube vacuum them away. The operator is protected form flying debris since all chips and debris is contained within the clear suction tube. The device is capable of cleaning holes up to 1-1/4″ (32mm) diameter and 18″ (457mm) deep!

How does the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun work?

How the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun Works


Compressed air, normally 80-100 PSIG (5.5 – 6.9 bar), flows through the inlet (1) into an annular plenum chamber (2) when the trigger is pressed. A small amount of air is injected into the blow tube (3) to provide agitation and lift to the chips or debris. The larger airflow is injected into the the throat of the gun through directed nozzles (4). The jets of air create the vacuum at the intake (5) which draws the material in and accelerates it through the unit. The chips, debris or other particulates can then be exhausted into a filter bag or hose attached to the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun System.


We have found many applications where the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun is beneficial- including removing chips and debris in:

Holes in fixtures, drilled plastics, T-slots’groove cleaning , coolant evacuation from parts, woodworking, tapped holes, cavity evacuation, and many more!

There are many advantages to the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun, and some are:

Low cost, no moving parts/maintenance free, durable die cast construction, eliminates shock hazard – no electricity, meets OSHA pressure requirements, safe operation – no flying chips, lightweight and portable, and quiet.

The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun uses less compressed air than ordinary blow guns, and the amplified output flow is 12 times the air consumption rate.

Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun Specifications

Note that the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun should not be operated without a filter bag or vacuum hose attached to the exhaust.

There are three (3) Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun System options-

Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun Systems

The Model 6094 is the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun only.

The Model 6194 comes with a reusable bag and clamp for debris collection.

The Model 6394 comes with the reusable bag and a 10′ (3m) section of vacuum hose for transferring the debris to a collection point.

If you have questions about the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun or any of the 16 different EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air® Product lines, feel free to contact EXAIR and myself or any of our Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.

Brian Bergmann
Application Engineer

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The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun = Dual Problem Solver

A little while back, I was contacted by a customer who was looking for a way to clean chips and debris out of tapped holes in an engine block. They were familiar with our products, having used them in several different areas in their plant, and had done some early research into our Air Nozzles.

They were considering using our small M4 Back Blow Air Nozzle in the process. The Back Blow Air Nozzles produce a 360° airflow that blows away from the end of the nozzle and in many cases, are the ideal solution for treating the inside diameter of hose, pipe, machined holes, etc. These unique nozzles, eliminate the concern of forcing particulate further down into a machined hole or the safety issue of blowing material out of the opposite end of an open tube or pipe.

EXAIR Back Blow Air Nozzles come in three sizes, for bores from 1/4″ to 16″ in diameter!

In this particular case, having the material blown out of the hole increased the risk of possible cross contamination somewhere else in the engine block so they were also thinking of incorporating some type of recovery system like our Chip Vac or one of our Line Vacs but were concerned with having to use two separate devices.

Once again, EXAIR has the perfect solution, the Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun. The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun features a small blow tube (1/8″ OD) that provides a small blast of air to dislodge or loosen foreign material while simultaneously providing vacuum to carry the debris away.

If you have a similar application or would like to discuss how an EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Product can help solve a unique situation, contact an application engineer for assistance.

Justin Nicholl
Application Engineer




Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun Cleans Printed Circuit Board (PCB).

An electronics component manufacturer produces high quality, flexible and rigid printed circuit boards (PCB’s) for a wide range of applications.. They were looking for a more reliable solution to clean dust particles from their DIMM or Dual In-Line Memory Module sockets on PCB’s. This particular process is very critical as any dust or debris that remains in the socket, will cause them to fail inspection and the need to be reworked or ultimately considered lost product and remanufactured.

circuit board
Example of a circuit board

They were currently using compressed air blowing through a small open tube to blow out the sockets. While this was successful in some cases, in others they were seeing the blown particulate settle in another location on the board which would lead to the conditions mentioned above. Their thinking was to have a system where they could blow out the small areas on the circuits, while also having a way to vacuum or carry the particulate away from the area. They were looking into a traditional vacuum hood system but these units tend to be for larger industrial type applications where their process was a much smaller scale ranging from 50mm up to 200mm. Another concern was with the boards being so small and lightweight , the vacuum system may try to vacuum the PCB’s themselves.

After discussing the details of the application, I recommended they use our Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun in the application. The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun features a small blow tube that upon squeezing the trigger, provides a burst of air to lift or loosen dust or particulate trapped in small holes or cavities. The unit simultaneously provides vacuum that is able to collect the released fines and carry them away from the area, removing the potential for further contamination.

DH Vac-u-Gun
Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun ideal for cleaning grooves or holes up to 1-1/4″ diameter and 18″ deep.

To discuss your unique application/process or for assistance selecting the right EXAIR product for your needs, please give us a call.

Justin Nicholl
Application Engineer


Circuit Board image courtesy of Rob Swystun via Creative Commons License

Chip Vac Clears Cast Iron Chips from Fixtures

On a recent trip to India, I had the opportunity to visit a few of our end user clients in the field to see how they were using our products. On one occasion, we visited a tractor assembly plant. One department in the plant was responsible for machining the finished surfaces of the cast iron parts that made up the sub-frame of the tractor. The surfaces that mated together needed to have a finish cut made on them so that the gaskets used could seal properly on a flat surface.

The original problem was that once a part was completed with the machining cycle, the cast iron chips remained in the fixture that holds the part. This material interfered with proper mounting of the next raw part into the machining fixture. The customer then tried the EXAIR Chip Vac System to remove the chips from their fixture between each cycle. The Chip Vac System performed excellently for this task. And so the customer decided to up-fit all of their machining centers with Chip Vac Systems.


The advantages of the Chip Vac System in this case were:

  1. They could turn their existing 55 gallon, open top drum in to a collection tank by applying the Chip Vac lid and filter assembly. The drums were not being used prior to applying Chip Vac, so it was viewed as a good re-purposing of the drums.
  2. There are no moving parts to wear out with the Chip Vac. Motors, brushes and impellers used on traditional electric vacs simply do not stand up to industrial use as in these cases.
  3. The sound level produced by a Chip Vac is far lower than an electric vacuum. There are presently no such ministry of health rule in India which govern this issue, but the operators were definitely happy about less noise and so was the shop foreman.
  4. The 10 ft. hose easily reached inside the machine center to allow for quick and easy access to the fixture for vacuuming task.

EXAIR is a company who developed our Industrial Housekeeping Products out of need in our machine shop to have reliable products which were convenient to use. It is always good to see when others who have similar needs, use our product for the same kinds of problems we encounter when working in our own production areas.

Our Industrial Housekeeping Products consist of a wide range of products which include: Chip Vac, Heavy Duty Dry Vac, Reversible Drum Vac, Chip Trapper, Heavy Duty HEPA Vac and last but not least, Vac-U-Gun and Deep Hole Vac-U-Gun systems.

We are here to assist you in selecting the right product for your application. Please call us today to discuss your specific application needs.

Neal Raker, Application Engineer / International Sales