I had a customer that was visited by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration). If you do not know, OSHA is a federal agency charged with the enforcement of safety and health standards. In order to protect workers, they can enforce fines and penalties for violations. Some of the main violations that they find are with compressed air guns. Open-type nozzles are very loud and will not meet the dead-end pressure requirements. Many companies will modify their compressed air guns to better fit their applications, but the problem occurs when they no longer meet OSHA regulations. The two directives are 29CFR Part 10910.95 (a), OSHA Maximum Allowable Noise Exposure, and 29CFR Part 1910.242(b), Dead-End Pressure.
A customer was using a smashed pipe on an air gun to blow across a table. With an “open” pipe design for a nozzle, the noise level can exceed 100 dB. This was a major concern. The customer called EXAIR because they needed to replace their existing air guns with a safer and quieter air gun. Just as a note, the main component that makes an air gun safe is the nozzle. With the EXAIR, Safety Air Nozzles, we engineer them to not only be safe by reducing noise and eliminating dead-end pressure, but also to entrain the ambient air to give a hard-hitting force with less compressed air. This will save you money.
In the application, they were cleaning the exit table from a machining operation. They had to clean the chips prior to the next part coming through. They needed 24” (610mm) to reach across the table. I recommended a model 1360-24 Heavy Duty Safety Air Gun with a 24” extension. The model 1106 Super Air Nozzle that is used with this Safety Air Gun could match the blowing force with less noise and compressed air usage. The noise level was decreased to 87 dB. With the unique design of the nozzle, it entrains ambient air to help create a powerful force to remove the chips. The model 1360-24 Heavy Duty Safety Air Gun would only use 60 SCFM (1,699 SLPM) of compressed air at 80 PSIG (5.5 bar). The unsafe air gun that the customer was using previously required 144 SCFM (4,078 SLPM) at the same air pressure. So, every time that they would use the EXAIR Safety Air Gun, they were able to save 84 SCFM (2,379 SLPM) of compressed air, saving them money and adding additional capacity back into their pneumatic system. The customer was so happy that they shot a short video demonstrating the operation of the Heavy Duty Safety Air Gun from EXAIR.
We are all individually responsible for safety. EXAIR has a variety of Safety Air Guns and Super Air Nozzles to make your operation quiet, safe and help meet the OSHA regulations. It can become very costly if you get a fine from OSHA. EXAIR can remove that concern as well as save you money by using less compressed air; a win-win scenario. If you need any help in determining which Safety Air Gun would best fit your application, you can contact an Application Engineer at EXAIR. We will be happy to hear from and help you; like the customer above.