Blow Off Systems for the “W”

Many times we have tendencies to overcomplicate things. I remember a time when I was visiting my sister in Phoenix, and she was making a fancy 3D Scooby-Doo cake for my nephew’s 4th or 5th, and she needed the brown icing. Now when decorating these cakes, the common practice is to make white icing and use food coloring to make all of the other colors you need. She left that morning around 10:00 to look for brown food coloring. Around noon she called to tell us that she could not find brown food coloring at any store on this side of town, and was driving to the far side of the city to look at those stores. I asked her why she couldn’t just use chocolate icing, and she was having no part of it. She was so laser focused on her solution that she couldn’t hear that that chocolate icing is also brown… Fast forward to 6:30 PM, and she comes walking through the door frustrated and exhausted from her day of going store to store all over the large city looking for the elusive brown food coloring. As you can probably guess, she had chocolate icing with her because it finally hit her that the chocolate icing is brown… . The cake turned out amazing, and the lesson was learned.

So, why this story? I feel that in life and in business we sometimes leave our blinders on and become laser focused on one certain way of doing something. We know that the way we se it will work, and think that we know best, and we are going to make it happen exactly how it is playing out in our head. No other way seems possible, and when someone offers up a simpler solution, our immediate thought is “it can’t be that simple”, or “if it’s that simple of a solution, there is no way it could work”. Have you ever said these things? As an application engineer, I take a lot of calls from people that are much smarter than me with grandiose plans. Many times the problem they need to solve, is much simpler than the solution they have in mind. I’ve seen elaborate plans, that probably took hours if not days to develop, come down to simply needing a simple out of the box Blow-Off System.

At EXAIR, we specialize in intelligent compressed air products with a primary focus on blow off, drying, and cooling. When it comes to these things, our product lines (pointedly for this blog, our Air Nozzles and Jets) are head and shoulders above our competition. The vast majority (with the exceptions of the High power or high force nozzles – for obvious reasons) all meet both OSHA standards concerning noise and dead end pressure. Here is a list of all of our Super Air Nozzles showing the SCFM, Force and Decibels:

Our Blow Off Systems (some sample pics below) are a fantastic and smart solution for so many applications. It really doesn’t get much easier than this, a Magnetic base, a Stay-Set Hose, and a Super Air Nozzle, all in one. I feel that these are heavily under utilized. Simply connect your air hose, bend the Stay-Set Hose to the direction of spray that you need, and boom, Bob’s your uncle…

Mag Bases come with one or two outlets. Stay Set Hoses come in lengths from 6″ to 36″.

Sometimes things can be as simple as using chocolate icing for brown icing, or using an EXAIR Blow-Off System in your application. Of course if you need more than that, we will help you find the right solution for you. Call today to speak with an experienced application engineer that is eager to help.

Thank you for stopping by,

Brian Wages

Application Engineer

EXAIR Corporation
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EXAIR Blowoff Systems For Easy Air Nozzle Installation and Aiming

EXAIR engineered Air Nozzles are quiet, efficient, and safe, which makes them ideal solutions for air blowing applications. Selection is largely determined by the size & shape of the desired air flow. Our Air Nozzles & Jets catalog section lists them all, from smallest to largest, along with performance data and airflow patterns, so determining the right one for your application is pretty easy.

The next question is, how do you install it? If it’s replacing another blowing device, odds are, you’re an adapter fitting away (if that) from a quick & easy install:

Compression fittings and Model 1100 Super Air Nozzles transformed the part ejection on this press from “loud and wasteful” to “quiet and efficient” in about a minute.
Swivel Fittings for Air Nozzles.

For new installations, your compressed air drop may be located some distance from the installation. Properly sized pipe or hose can get you from the drop to the point of installation, but what happens when you get there? If you use hard pipe, and you can run it right to the spot where you want the air to blow, your Air Nozzle will essentially be as well supported as the piping. A Swivel Fitting will then allow you to aim it precisely.

Compressed air hose is inexpensive and easy to work with, but it provides no support for a blow off device at the point of use. This is where EXAIR Blowoff Systems come in. Any EXAIR Air Nozzle, up to our 1/4 NPT models, can be fitted with a Stay Set Hose which, all by itself, could be used at the end of a properly supported piping run instead of a Swivel Fitting. It’ll give you more reach – they come in lengths from 6″ to 36″ – and more flexibility in adjustment than the Swivel Fittings.

Precise aiming and location is a breeze with EXAIR Stay Set Hoses.

If you don’t have a pipe manifold like the one shown above, but you have an iron or steel surface in close proximity, a Magnetic Base can be used. EXAIR offers three styles:

Model 9042 Single Outlet Mag Base (left), 9043 Dual Outlet Mag Base (center) and 9029 Swivel Mag Base (right), and some typical uses.

If you’re looking for an efficient, quiet, and safe method of blowing compressed air, EXAIR has you covered with a wide variety of Intelligent Compressed Air Products to choose from. If you have questions about them, or how to mount them for optimal performance, give me a call.

Russ Bowman, CCASS

Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Optimize Your Intelligent Compressed Air® Products with EXAIR’s Accessories

EXAIR offers a wide variety of various accessories that can help you to better control and fine-tune any of your compressed air operated products. Most of EXAIR’s line of Intelligent Compressed Air Products have no moving parts and require no maintenance. The caveat to the “no maintenance” aspect is proper filtration at the point of use. Many products have very tight orifices that could get clogged from any contaminants such as particulate, condensate, and lubricant. EXAIR recommends point of use filtration to be installed just upstream of any EXAIR Product for this purpose.

EXAIR has a line of Automatic Drain Filter Separators and Oil Removal Filters, available from stock, to make sure the quality of your air supply is sufficient for proper operation of any EXAIR product. Particulate filters remove any suspended solids from the airstream, ensuring the tight orifices in the products remain free of debris. If your system has residual oil, this should also be removed with a coalescing filter. Check out this short video from my colleague, Brian Farno, that demonstrates these filters in action:

Controlling your compressed air pressure at the point of use is an excellent way of minimizing your compressed air usage. Pressure regulators are available to control the air pressure within the system and throttle the appropriate supply of air to any pneumatic device. As the last of the six steps to optimizing your compressed air system, controlling air at the point of use can often be overlooked. using them to minimize your pressure can result in dramatic savings to your costs of compressed air. As pressure and flow are directly related, lowering the pressure supplied results in less compressed air usage. EXAIR recommends operating your Intelligent Compressed Air Products at the minimum pressure necessary to achieve a successful application. If you notice a desirable result at a pressure of 60 PSIG, or even less, there’s no need to run full line pressure. In-line point of use pressure regulators are the simplest and most reliable way to allow you to dial down to the pressure to any compressed air operated product.

Taking this idea of minimizing air usage one step further, you can achieve even greater savings by simply turning the air off when not needed. The most basic option for turning off the air supply is a simple manual valve. EXAIR offers a range of various sized valves to allow you to do just that.

This process can also be automated as well. If you’d like to automate the control of your blowoff, EXAIR offers solenoid valves that can tie into your existing PLC and eliminate unnecessary air usage. For those that want a solution ready to go right out of the box, EXAIR’s Electronic Flow Controller utilizes a photoelectric sensor and solenoid valve tied to a timer that allows you to shut off the air supply when a part or component is not present. This can lead to dramatic air savings in many applications where parts are traveling along a conveyor.

Once you’ve selected an engineered compressed air nozzle for your blow off application, you’ll likely need a solution to mount and position it as well. Here’s where EXAIR’s Stay Set Hoses and Magnetic Bases come into play. EXAIR’s Stay Set Hoses are available from 6”-36” in length with ¼ NPT male threads on each end, or a ¼ NPT male on one end and 1/8 NPT female on the other. The Stay Set Hoses are rigid and allow you to maintain precise positioning of the blow off nozzle. The hoses have “memory” and will not creep or bend. They’re easily repositionable as well, making them an ideal solution for applications that may require frequent repositioning due to varying parts.

In addition to the Stay Set Hoses, EXAIR also has Magnetic Bases available as well. The powerful magnet permits both horizontal and vertical mounting. A manual valve is also included that will allow you to vary the force and flow. Magnetic bases are available with one or two outlets and can be combined with any of our nozzles and Stay Set Hoses to create your own customized blowoff system.

Regardless of your application, EXAIR has the products available from stock to help optimize your processes. These accessories allow you to help optimize the use of your blowoff products and ensure reliable, repeatable performance. If you’d like to discuss an application, give us a call.

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

EXAIR Celebrates Manufacturing Day With A Win For A Manufacturer

In 2012, the National Association of Manufacturers organized an effort to proclaim the first Friday in October (hey, that’s today!) as Manufacturing Day.  According to the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office (a division of NIST, the National Institute of Standards & Testing,) the purpose of MFG Day is “to raise awareness among students, parents, educators and the general public about modern manufacturing and the rewarding careers available.”

Today is kind of a big deal around here.  Not only is EXAIR Corporation a manufacturer, but many of the companies that use our products are as well.  A lot of us have a rich story, woven into the cloth of the history of American manufacturing (which, in turn, is woven into the larger cloth of American history.)  Have you heard the one about the motivated inventor with an idea to make innovative products who started an operation out of his home that, with inspired direction & vision, became a worldwide leader in their industry?

Yeah; that’s us.  Today, we’re honoring Roy Sweeney’s legacy (he founded the company in October 1983,) and celebrating MFG Day, by publishing a new Case Study, proving out the benefits of the use of EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Products in regard to the monetary savings associated with the reduction in compressed air use, and the noise level reduction from the implementation of our engineered products.

You can download the complete Case Study here, but while we’re on the subject, here’s a basic rundown:

  • A roll forming operation used to blow off their product with a combination of loud and inefficient devices: copper tubing and modular flexible hose which is designed primarily for machine tool coolant, but often misapplied for use with compressed air.
  • It worked just fine, but an engineering study noted it as a potential wasteful use of compressed air.  That’s when they called us.
  • By replacing those blow offs with Model 1100 Super Air Nozzles and Model 1122 2″ Flat Super Air Nozzles, their noise levels dropped from 107 dBA to 83.8 dBA.  To put that in perspective, it went from the approximate sound level of a rock concert to that of a leaf blower. (ref: Centers for Disease Control & Prevention: What Causes Hearing Loss?)
  • Compressed air consumption dropped by more than half, from 190 SCFM to 86.8 SCFM…an annual savings of over $3,200.00.  All for an investment of $654.00 (2020 pricing) for those engineered Air Nozzles, Stay Set Hoses, and Magnetic Bases.  That means they’ll have paid for themselves in just under two months.
  • In addition to that, for participation in this Case Study, we’re giving them a generous credit on their order.  Happy Manufacturing Day!

And frankly, I think the engineered products just look better too.

Last but certainly not least, this reduction in compressed air usage decreases the load on their air compressors, reducing the electrical power consumed.  Product impact, along with our own consumption of resources and waste recycling, is a key component of EXAIR Corporation’s Sustainability Plan.  We’re making the world a better place, by making products that make the world a better place, using methods that make the world a better place.  I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Manufacturing Day.  If you want to get in on it, give me a call.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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MFG Day logo courtesy of nist.gov