Getting A Little More Vacuum and Flow

Last week, a customer called and indicated that he was a long time user of the model 6013 High Velocity Air Jet.

6013
Model 6013 High Velocity Air Jet

The customer was using the Air Jet to remove light trim scrap from a manufacturing process. The Air Jets utilize the Coanda effect (wall attachment of a high velocity fluid) to produce air motion in their surroundings.  A small amount of compressed air to the Air Jet is throttled through an internal ring nozzle at speeds above sonic velocity.  In the above image, this produces a vacuum at the left side, pulling in large volumes of surrounding air. By utilizing this vacuum pull and ducting the right side exhaust, air and scrap stream to a collection area. The customer assembled a small, efficient, and inexpensive scrap removal system.

The reason the customer had called in was there were some recent changes to the manufacturing process and needed a bit more vacuum force and flow to handle larger scrap and longer travel. We explored using a larger shim, but they were already using the largest size (0.015″.) We talked about the other products that EXAIR offers (Air Amplifiers, Line Vacs) that are used for scrap removal and conveyance.  But with any change, there are usually other modifications and approvals that must be dealt with in order to proceed. So we hit upon the Adjustable Air Jet, which is an adjustable version of the model 6013.

6019
Model 6019 Adjustable Air Jet

The model 6019 Adjustable Air Jet utilizes an adjustable air gap in place of the fixed shim thickness.  This allows for greater air flow, which results in greater vacuum and conveyance distances. As is the case for many customers, we gathered some additional data to help this customer make a decision. We set up each of the units and tested them at maximum capabilities, and the model 6019 was shown to deliver upwards of 50% greater flow.  The customer felt certain this level of performance would handle what the changed process would require, and best of all, no modifications to any part of the set-up would be required, simply install the 6019 where the 6013 was currently placed.

The High Velocity Air Jet is also part of the model 1909 Blowoff Kit, and is also used in the model 8193 Ion Air Gun and model 8194 Ion Air Jet, for Static Elimination applications. Of course, each can be purchased as an individual item.

To discuss your application and how an EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Product can make your process better, feel free to contact EXAIR and myself or one of our other Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.

Brian Bergmann
Application Engineer

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Super Ion Air Knife Removes Foil Dots In Lid Cutting Operation

I recently received an inquiry from a food manufacturer about a packaging line they were having issues with.  The plant fills continuous rows of thermo-formed cups which is then sealed with a single foil lid. Once sealed, a machine cuts the row to separate the cups, which creates small scrap pieces of foil. After the cutting operation, they try to collect as much of the waste trim as possible but some small pieces of foil, they call “dots”, cling to the surface of the cup and cutter due to static charge.  The company installed a vacuum collection hood in this area, to try and help keep the foil pieces or any dust from falling onto the cup during the process. While this did help somewhat, some dots would remain and eventually fall off further down the line, making small piles that needed to be manually cleaned to avoid potential jams, which slowed down their production cycle.

The cups are filled and separated on a 44″ wide, mesh-screen conveyor with individual lanes to process multiple rows of cups. After being cut, the cups are moved to the inspection area and then packaged for shipment.  I recommended they mount a 48″ Super Ion Air Knife above and below the cups and direct the airflow to the end where the vacuum collection hood is located. The idea is, as the ions eliminate the charge, the small foil dots will release and the laminar airflow would keep the parts moving toward the vacuum hood, thus removing all foil trim and preventing any piling of trim further down the production line.

The Super Ion Air Knife produces a sheet of ionized air capable of dissipating 5 kV in just a fraction of a second!

EXAIR offers a wide selection of Static Eliminators for use in a variety of industrial processes. If you are experiencing static concerns in a particular area or to discuss a specific process, please contact an application engineer for assistance.

Justin Nicholl
Application Engineer
justinnicholl@exair.com
@EXAIR_JN

Super Air Amplifier Removes Unwanted Scrap Material

IMG_20160406_104509
EXAIR Super Air Amplifier used for scrap material removal

A few months ago I wrote a blog about using a Super Air Amplifier to remove film from an application workspace and direct it to a waste container.  Earlier this week I had a different end user contact me about a very similar application.

IMG_20160406_104425
An image of the complete setup in this application

In this application the Super Air Amplifiers are used in an automotive manufacturing facility to direct scrap material from car doors into the large bags below each station.  The scrap material is lightweight and proves to be problematic if not fed into a contained system.

IMG_20160406_104533
The bags where the scrap material is collected

This particular customer was in need of some assistance to duplicate their existing setup, shown in the photos above, into four more workstations.  So, they reached out to us to confirm the model number of the units (which have been “working perfectly”) based on dimensions.

Snip of dims
Dimensions of the units in place; used to determine model number

Using the provided dimensions I was able to confirm the model number is 120022, our 2” Super Air Amplifier.  After confirming this I was able to provide a quotation for the requested Super Air Amplifiers, available to ship from stock.

If you have a similar application or think an EXAIR product may be able to help solve an application problem in your facility, contact an EXAIR Application Engineer.

Lee Evans
Application Engineer
LeeEvans@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_LE

Air Conveyor Improves Candy Bar Recovery

This week I worked with a candy company who was looking to improve their overflow product recovery. When their bulk bagging machine is inoperable, the wrapped candy bars are sent to an overflow container where they are manually scooped out by an operator. This process was causing damage to the bars and wrappers, as well as presenting an ergonomic hazard to the employee, so they called EXAIR for a solution.

I recommended using our Line Vac Air Operated Conveyor. The Line Vac  connects to hose or pipe to create an inline conveyor and is able to move large amounts of material over long distances, requires no electricity, has no moving parts, and provides maintenance free operation, making it the ideal choice for this application.

After discussing the details with the customer, they were concerned that the candy bars and wrappers, getting picked up by the airflow and transported through the hose, might continue to be damaged. I advised that by using a pressure regulator they could control the vacuum/conveying rate by increasing or decreasing the supply pressure, but their concern remained. I then offered to perform a conveyance test at our facility, if they were willing to send product. The customer agreed and was kind enough to send some of the candy, with some extra bags inside for the staff here at EXAIR. (Which is pretty awesome! I mean, FREE candy? Who doesn’t love that?!)

With a wide range of sizes and materials of construction, we've got your solution.  Call us.
Available in 11 sizes and different materials to meet many application requirements. Line Vacs have smooth ends for connecting hose with a clamp or threaded ends to connect with standard pipe sizes.

Our set up included our 3″ Line Vac with a 10′ section of 3” conveyance hose on the vacuum side and a horizontal conveyance run of approximately 35′, with a 13′ vertical run into a soft sided hopper. We were successful in conveying approximately 9.9 lbs. per minute, when operating at 80 PSIG, with no broken candy bars and no damage to the wrappers. We also determined that 40 PSIG inlet pressure was the lowest they could run the operation, if they were okay with a lower convey rate.

We provided the results to the customer and included a short video of our testing. Intrigued by the results, they are now looking in to other possible applications throughout their facility.

To discuss your Line Vac application, please do not hesitate to contact us for assistance.

Justin Nicholl
Application Engineer
justinnicholl@exair.com
@EXAIR_JN

The Versatile Line Vac

Of all the tools that I own, my cordless drill has to be just about my favorite. I’m remodeling a bathroom in my house right now, and last night I was setting the new toilet flange onto the new tile floor. I had to drill some holes for this through the new tile. I’d never done this before, and was definitely feeling some heartburn about it. Especially after finding out just how fragile and brittle ceramic tile is…I cracked two pieces, just trying to cut a hole for the heat & AC vent register. Luckily, that was BEFORE I mortared & grouted it in, so it wasn’t a big deal…they’re about a buck a piece, and I got five extra anyway.

I know how to do this...but I have no idea how to fix this.
I know how to do this                                                 but I have no idea how to fix this.

THIS one, though, was fully installed, and, despite all the internet videos I found & watched on how to install a tile floor, I haven’t yet had the need to find one that shows me how to replace a broken tile. And I don’t really want to, so I went slowly and carefully with the drill, using the special glass & tile bit that I bought. On my first hole, when I got the bit through the tile itself, I changed to a different (smaller) bit to pilot the screw hole through the subfloor. Then, I put a Phillip’s head bit in to drive the screw. It occurred to me that I was performing these three related but separate tasks, with the same tool…I just thought that was very cool.

Over the course of the last couple of days, I’ve talked to three different callers, with three different Line Vac applications:

HDLV

 

*One wants to use a Model 150200 2” Heavy Duty Line Vac to convey cement. They’re currently hauling the bags, by hand, up to a hopper, where they cut them open and dump them in.

 

Heavy Duty Threaded Line Vac

*One needs to move small springs, one at a time, from a hopper to an automated assembly turret machine.  The springs are 5/8″ in diameter, and they’ll be fed through a length of PVC pipe.  Our Model 151100 1″ NPT Heavy Duty Threaded Line Vac will be easily installed in the pipe line using standard threaded fittings, and the springs will pass through the 0.75″ throat nicely.

 

sslv

 

*One has a auger-type chip conveyor that removes machining debris from a lathe, and it’s broken…again. They needed a Model 6066 3” Stainless Steel Line Vac, in a hurry, to use until they get their chip conveyor fixed. In fact, if it works, they may not fix the chip conveyor.

 

With a wide range of sizes and materials of construction, we've got your solution.  Call us.
With a wide range of sizes and materials of construction, we’ve got your solution. Call us.

So, kind of like my cordless drill, our Line Vac Air Operated Conveyors have a variety of uses, right out of the box. If you have an application that you think a Line Vac may be able to solve, give me a call.  By the way, if you order one before the end of October, 2014we’ll give you a FREE 2″ Flat Super Air Nozzle.  Really.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Life Hacking = Better Easier Life. So What Happens When You Hack Compressed Air?

The birth of the internet and personal computer brought to light a new form of hacking.  For many years now hacking has been considered a negative action, even criminal.  However, within the past several years the term lifehacking has come to mean a process of bettering your life through tips and tricks.  There are entire blogs and TED talks about life hacking, so that has gotten me thinking of how can EXAIR hack your compressed air system and turn it into a life hack?

All of our products are designed and engineered to make your life easier and better.  The best product I can think of to demonstrate this is our Super Air Knife With Plumbing Kit Installed.  This is an option for any of our Super Air Knives which are longer than 24″ that makes installation even easier on your end.  The plumbing kit has already connected air to each port on the Super Air Knife so all you have to do is plumb air to a single port at the end of the kit assembly.  See the picture below for a better idea.

Alumina dust 3 PKI

Another item that has helped many customers is our Chip Trapper System.   This is essentially a modified or hacked Reversible Drum Vac System which  adds the benefit of filtering the liquid you are sucking up to a 5 micron level.  (Other filter levels/sizes available.) This means you can make your cutting fluid last longer and cut that rancid coolant smell in your machine shop down because the bacteria in the coolant doesn’t have any solids to live upon.  This also means that you won’t be giving your coolant reclamation company any of your valuable solids so you keep more of your scrap profits.

So if you are looking for a way to make your life easier while you are working with compressed air, let us know, we’ll see how you can hack your compressed air applications.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_BF

Line Vac for Matrix Removal from Labelling Application

We have been able to specify Line Vacs for a variety of interesting applications that generally tend to be classified as “hopper loading” types of applications. But sometimes, we also get to see them used for other tasks for which they are perfectly matched in their ability. One is for movement of yarn/string as shown in this video originally mentioned in Brian Farno’s blog “Yet Another Way to Help You, Customer”.

Matrix Removal 1Matrix Removal

Another great application is in the labeling process (1. Line Vac; 2. Conveying hose; 3. Compressed air supply and on/off valve). After the labels have been applied to their respective product, there is a waste stream that is referred to as “the matrix”. No, I’m not talking about the movie, but rather the release liner that labels are affixed to in bulk format prior to being used. The normal method for taking up this waste stream was to use a winder. However, after some amount of time, the winder inevitably becomes filled with the matrix and must be emptied. The Line Vac presents a unique advantage in that it can pull the matrix from the machine and simply blow it out to a waste receptacle. The above photos are the most recent incarnation of this system. Below is an older system that has a little different twist.

Matrix Removal 2Matrix Removal 3

If you have a labeling system giving you trouble due to the winding process getting fouled, give the Line Vac products a try. We have models from 3/8” hose size up to 4” hose size which can accommodate various sizes of product moving through.

Neal Raker, Application Engineer
nealraker@exair.com