Custom Shims – Literally A Breeze For EXAIR

As proud as we are of being able to ship most any catalog product, same day, from stock (99.9831% of the time for on-time shipping in 2017…22 years straight for 99.9% or better,) we take a certain amount of pride in our ability to offer custom solutions for challenging applications as well. Our Engineering and Production teams have a deep well of resources (knowledge, experience, and capability) to draw from, which allows us to meet those challenging applications head-on, in short order.

The one I’m writing about today isn’t exactly one of those challenging ones…

A machine fabricator had a special need for an Air Knife. It had to be Stainless Steel, and it had to be 30″ long. No problem so far…that’s a Model 110030SS 30″ Stainless Steel Air Knife, and it’s on the shelf. Thing is, they only needed 26″ worth of air flow; a full 30″ width was going to disturb, and maybe damage, the edges of the sheet of material that the air was being blown onto.

So we made a custom shim for the Air Knife.  Now, we make these all the time, in all kinds of configurations…hence the term “custom.”  Since this one was blowing onto a web where they didn’t want to disturb the material on the far edges, we made this shim to provide 26″ of flow, on center.  We could just as easily made it to provide 26″ of flow starting at one end or the other, or a specified distance from one end or the other.  Or 13″ of flow on both ends, with 4″ of no flow in the middle, for a total of 26″.

If your application is more challenging than a custom shim, we’ve also made Air Knives with (left to right) curved radius, special material (glass filled PEEK shown here,) flat, double-sided, and even one with end-mount threaded holes.

Regardless of how challenging (or not) your compressed air product application is, we’re here to discuss, any time you’re ready.  Call us.

 

First Time For Everything

We’ve got a lot to be proud of at EXAIR. Over 32 years of experience in providing superior engineered compressed air products for demanding applications worldwide. A 19 year track record (we can only claim 19 years because it’s when we started keeping track) of over 99.9% on-time shipments. 35 Industry Awards (and counting) for new product excellence.

The thing I want to brag on today is…well, me. OK; not just me, but the whole Engineering staff at EXAIR. See, in addition to knowing the ins & outs of 192 pages of compressed air products and accessories in our catalog, EXAIR Application Engineers are well-versed in the situations where our products will…and won’t provide a successful solution.

Sometimes, a user is looking for something different. Same principle of operation, functionality, method, etc., but in a different size. Or shape. Or material of construction. And that’s where the Design Engineers come in…we’ll work together to determine the best way to apply all those years of experience and successful track record and solve your application. And usually, pretty darn quickly.

Case in point: I had the pleasure of discussing an application requiring a special Super Air Knife yesterday afternoon with a caller. Seems they had a tight spot that they needed to fit the Air Knife into, and saw that we had made a special flat Super Air Knife:

Flat Super

This design goes back about 16 years, and has been No, at times, for other applications as the need arises. Because of the large variety of these simulations, we’re probably already pretty close to the next simulation. I realized this was the case when, within 5 minutes of submitting my request to Design Engineering, the office printer (which sits next to my desk) started up, and one of our Design Engineers was on his way over to retrieve the print…of an approval drawing for my caller. Not to swell any heads around here (past our current level of well-deserved swagger, that is,) but this was just about the same amount of time that it took the caller to communicate the requirements to me, and for me to transcribe them into my inter-departmental request.

There’s always a first time for everything…and we look forward to each one of them. If you need help with a compressed air solution, give us a call.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
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EXAIR Can Customize for Your Application

Once again this week, I had a customer call in with a special request on one of our products.  The customer had purchased a 6030 Adjustable Air Amplifier to cool plastic components after they were formed in a previous process.  These components are made continuously and the only way to test the cooling capabilities was during a production run.  If there was any error in the system, a whole batch of product was rejected, so the customer needed to be able to fine tune the process easily.  The space was very confined, so the customer had taken the 3/4″ outlet and connected a 3/4″ hose with hose clamps in order to direct the air to the proper area.  From the 3/4″ hose, they had necked down the line to 3/8″ hose to fit into their process.  By necking down the outlet of the air amplifier, the customer was limiting the output of the 6030, but it was enough air to get there job done.  Now that he had successfully used the 6030, the customer wanted to rollout the idea to other product lines and create a more robust system than hose clamps and homemade reducers.  Fortunately, for this customer and many others, EXAIR has the skill and flexibility to manufacture custom solutions.

air amp

The customer wanted to roll the project out into 25 production lines, and create a more robust system.  The first idea that came to mind was using a threaded Line Vac to replace the Air Amplifier.  This would be a stock item that would produce a similar amount of air flow as the air amplifier through a 3/8″ hose.  Obviously, the Air Amplifier would produce more airflow in free air, but since we are restricting that flow with a 3/8″ hose, the Line Vac and the Air Amplifier would produce similar air flow in this application.  Unfortunately, the customer didn’t have the ability to test the process with the Line Vac, because of his production schedule and the risk of losing a batch of product during the testing.  Because of these requirements, the customer asked us to produce (25) Special Air Amplifiers with threaded outlets to replace his 6030 that he was currently using.  The Adjustable Air Amplifier would give the customer the ability to adjust the air flow by changing the air gap in the Air Amplifier to his exact specification.  This adjustability means he can set the Air Amplifier to meet his current requirements, and adjust if the conditions change on his production line.  Also, the system would now be threaded so he could install hard pipe to make a permanent and robust system throughout the facility.

Special Air Amplifier

Dave Woerner
Application Engineer
davewoerner@exair.com
@EXAIR_DW