Line Vac Air Operated Conveyors: What to Know When Specifying

So you are thinking about using a Line Vac… Is it time to replace that ladder and bucket, and automate? There are many factors involved when deciding to use a conveyor system such as EXAIR Line Vacs. First of all let’s take a look at your product that needs conveyed. Will the integrity of your media be compromised by adding this much air to it? How heavy is it? What type of (how much) surface area does it have?

You know your media better than most. You should be able to answer most of those questions pretty easily, but what about the weight? For the weight, we work best knowing the bulk density, or pounds per cubic foot. If you do not readily know, this is easily found by finding the weight of your media in a box (or container). Then take the total cubic inches of the box (L x W x H) and divide that by 1728 (cubic inches per cubic foot), this will give you the cubic feet of that box. Then you simply divide the weight by the cubic feet, and you now have the density.

Line Vacs can convey many things.

Next we need to focus on your conveyance run. We would like to know what type of container is your product sitting in? A super sack, a hopper, a drum, a box? And where is it going? How far away is the destination hopper, dumpster, assembly station, etc.? This will help us determine the type of fitting or tools necessary to extract or release the media. How high do you need to go? How far horizontally? Our Line Vacs, are amazing, but they do have their limits. We will also need to know if there are any turns, and at what angles. Turns are many times unavoidable, but will have an adverse effect on the conveyance run as the airflow is halted and or deflected. Is there a way to minimize or eliminate the turns?

The final question is; how many pounds per minute do you need to be conveyed?

With the size, mass, and geometry of your parts, along with the vertical lift length, and the horizontal conveyance length, added to the turns and twists, you are just about ready to call one of our our application engineers for recommendations. We have some comparison materials for conveyance rates, to get you close to your actual needs. Here are some published conveyance rates as well:

There is one more part to this equation. What type and size of Line Vac will you need? EXAIR has many types of Line Vacs to choose from. As with most products, we have options that take into consideration the temperature and the abrasiveness of your product. We also have options to fit the type of conveyance hose or pipe you want to use , such as sanitary fittings, or threaded. And since we manufacture these right here in Cincinnati, OH, we can make custom Line Vacs for customers fairly quickly. We have designed and manufactured them with custom bolt on flanges, special materials or inlet sizes to name a few.

EXAIR Line Vacs: For bulk material conveyance through lines from 3/8″ to 6″, in aluminum, 303SS, 316SS, or abrasion resistant hardened alloy, available from stock with the widest variety of connections in the industry.

Please do not hesitate to call. We will be happy to help you with any technical questions about our products.

Application Engineer

Brian Wages

EXAIR Corporation
Visit us on the Web
Follow me on Twitter

Yellow Ladder pic from OpenClipart-Vectors / 27385 & Bucket Pic from Jazella / 704 images on a Pixabay License

More And More Award Winning Products From EXAIR

As you might expect, a LOT of things have changed at EXAIR Corporation since 1983. Most of our current senior management had yet to graduate high school, and a fair number of current employees had yet to BE BORN. According to our computer system (another BIG change since 1983), our first ten customers were here in southwest Ohio (#11 was in Michigan), and now, we sell direct across the US & Canada, and our worldwide distributor network offers representation on six continents. One thing that hasn’t changed, though, is our founder’s vision of manufacturing quiet, safe, & efficient compressed air products for process improvement in just about any industry that uses compressed air. And THAT, dear reader, continues to gain high profile attention. The photo above shows the seven awards that our products have recently won, which were announced in 2021 or early 2022. Here’s a rundown:

Plant Engineering 2020 Product of the Year (Fluid Handling) GOLD AWARD:
1/2 NPT No Drip External Mix Air Atomizing Spray Nozzles

No Drip External Mix Atomizing Spray Nozzles

The 1/2 NPT models are the latest addition to our newest product line. The External Mix version offers the highest liquid flow rate, and largest pattern coverage. Among the applications where they’ve excelled so far are:

  • Snack food provider – applying flavoring to bulk snack materials.
  • Commercial bakery – spraying cooking oil onto pans used in a conveyor oven.
  • Sporting goods manufacturer – applying adhesive to the tops of skateboard decks to glue the grip tape on.

Plant Engineering 2020 Product of the Year (Material Handling Systems) GOLD AWARD:
2-1/2 NPT 303SS Threaded Line Vac

EXAIR's Threaded Line Vac Family
EXAIR Threaded Line Vac + Your Pipe + Compressed Air = Instant Conveyor System

For bulk material conveyance, it really doesn’t get any simpler than EXAIR Air Operated Conveyors. Stainless Steel models are especially popular when the environment – or the product – is corrosive, or hot…they’re good to 400F (204C), and can even be modified with High Temperature components for exposure up to 900F (482C). The Threaded versions have been successfully used to:

  • Recycle sprinkles applied to wafers into a return hopper in a candy production facility.
  • Replacing an auger conveyor to allow for homogenous mixing of grains & supplements in feed stock at an agricultural mill.
  • Providing a low cost solution to convey product into a hopper at a grain processing plant.

Plant Engineering 2020 Product of the Year (Maintenance Tools & Equipment) SILVER AWARD
Occupational Health & Safety 2021 New Product of the Year (Industrial Hygiene-Dust Control) WINNER
Occupational Health & Safety 2021 New Product of the Year (Health & Safety/Cleanup) PLATINUM

EasySwitch® Wet-Dry Vac

Like our Spray Nozzles product line, our Industrial Housekeeping Products line has also grown considerably over the years. The Deep Hole Vac-u-Gun and Heavy Duty HEPA Vac were real game changers when they came along, and the EasySwitch® Wet-Dry Vac Systems are likewise making an impact. Switching from wet to dry operation is, as advertised in the name itself, INCREDIBLY easy. Among our satisfied customers are:

Occupational Health & Safety 2021 New Product of the Year (Lab Safety) WINNER
Intellistat® Ion Air Gun™

The newest innovation in a long line of EXAIR static elimination solutions, the Model 8500 Intellistat® Ion Air Gun is made for laboratories, clean rooms, medical & electronic applications, and carries an ISO 14644-1 Class 5 rating for clean room use. Because of their rapid decay rates and lightweight construction, they’re used in a diverse range of applications and areas, including:

  • A supplier of fiberoptic parts uses an Intellistat® to remove dust and static charge from product prior to packaging.
  • A medical device manufacturer has one in a Class 7 clean room for silicone parts cleanliness.
  • A nutritional supplements maker uses their Intellistat® to remove static charge & powder residue from the tops of plastic bags before sealing them. The excess/residual powder causes them not to seal correctly.

Machine Design 2021 Big Idea! (Electrical Components) BRONZE AWARD
Gen4® Static Eliminator Power Supply

All EXAIR Gen4 Static Eliminators use one of two Power Supplies – your choice of the 2-port Model 7960, or the 4-port Model 7961.

EXAIR Static Eliminators produce ionized air via a Corona discharge, which requires high voltage, low current electricity. The Gen4® Static Eliminator Products feature armored & shielded cables with an internal ground, for safety and reliability. The ground path is completed through the cable and the Power Supply port, eliminating the need for an external ground connection. Faults in external ground connections result in the majority of the problems with those devices, so the internal ground is a “Big Idea!” indeed. The Gen4® Static Eliminator Power Supplies are switchable for 115VAC or 230VAC voltages, and are offered in 2, or 4 outlet designs, which can power any 2, or 4 EXAIR Static Eliminator Products. Like most EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air Products, they’re used for a wide range of applications, in a wide range of industries:

If you’d like to find out more about these, or any of our other engineered compressed air products (we’re pretty proud of them all), give me a call. I can talk about them all day long…and sometimes I do!

Russ Bowman, CCASS

Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
Visit us on the Web
Follow me on Twitter
Like us on Facebook

EXAIR has a Line Vac for your Application!

With countless number of different Models to fit every application, EXAIR Line Vacs are used to convey everything from the lightest of packing peanuts to heavy steel shot.  They’re versatile, reliable, durable, and incredibly easy to install and operate. 

Line Vacs are EXAIR’s current promotion too, see the offer here.

EXAIR Line Vacs use a small amount of compressed air to generate a powerful vacuum by a Venturi effect.  The unique design of the generator creates a high velocity of air to create a low pressure on one side and a powerful thrust on the other. The Line Vac can pick up and move solid material from light and fluffy batting to dense, heavy and abrasive material and pieces.  They can transfer product horizontally up to 100 feet (30 meters) away and vertically up to 20 feet (6 meters) high.  You can watch a video on the operation of a Line Vac HERE.  Compared to other vacuum or conveying systems, the EXAIR Line Vacs are very quiet, rugged, and powerful. They are exceptionally simple to install and solve many “bucket and ladder”, loading and scrap removal applications. EXAIR makes a variety of Line Vacs in different sizes, styles, and materials to best fit your application.

The standard Line Vac is the most versatile product in this family.  EXAIR stocks a wide range of sizes, materials, and styles for targeting the best solution for moving material.  We have two types of connections, slip-on ends for hose connections and threaded ends for pipe connection.  EXAIR can swap the connections with a slip-on hose on one end with a threaded connection on the other.  They range in diameters from 3/8” (10mm) up to 5” (127mm).  We manufacture the Line Vacs in aluminum, 303SS, and 316SS; but don’t let that deter you if your need them manufactured in any other type of material.  We have high temperature models that can withstand temperatures up to 900 deg. F (482 deg. C).  These Line Vacs work great in applications for loading plastic pellets in hoppers, discarding scrap pieces, trim removal, and transferring material.  If an operator has to carry a container of dry material and climb stairs, a Line Vac could be a much better alternative.

Heavy Duty Line Vac: Hardened Alloy Construction and High Performance

The Heavy Duty Line Vacs are made from a hardened alloy steel for abrasion resistance.  The generators inside these Line Vacs are more powerful than the standard models; so, that they can also convey heavier materials at higher conveyance rates.  They can reach rates as high as 40 lbs./min. (18.2Kg/min) of material.  With the hardened alloy construction, they are great for sand blasting applications, ceramic, glass and steel shot.  They are manufactured with inlet and outlet connections for ship-on hoses or threaded pipes.  EXAIR stocks the Heavy Duty Line Vacs in the range from ¾” (19mm) to 3” (76mm) for both hose and NPT connections.  These Line Vacs are our most powerful design with great wear resistance.

EXAIR’s Light Duty Line Vac

On the other end of the Line-Vac spectrum, EXAIR also manufactures the Light Duty Line Vac.   They use much less compressed air than the other Line Vacs which work great for moving lightweight materials over short distances.  They can also be used for removing smoke and fumes from a work area.  The Light Duty Line Vac ranges from ¾” (19mm) up to 6” (152mm) diameter for slip-on hose connections.  This two-piece design provides an effective way of moving material at a lower cost.  It can be used in applications like hopper loading, fiber tensioning, filling operations, and smoke removal.   For moving material within a short distance, the Light Duty Line Vac could be the proper product to use.

Model 161200-316 – 316 Stainless Steel Sanitary Flange Line Vac

Our latest engineering design within the Line Vac family is the Sanitary Flange Line Vacs.  They can fit within sanitary piping systems to convert pipes into a useful conveyor for bulk material and waste removal.  They use an ISO2852 flange for easy disassembly and cleaning to reduce bacterial entrapment.  They ae made from 316 stainless steel material for superior corrosion resistance.  They come in four different sizes to fit the sanitary flanges from 1-½” up to a 3” flange.  For sensitive applications where cleanliness is a major requirement, the Sanitary Flange Line Vac are manufactured for these conditions.

We are also able to make custom Line Vacs to mean any application, see an example of some unique to the application Line Vacs here, https://blog.exair.com/2020/07/01/custom-products-for-custom-applications/

With all of the EXAIR Line Vacs above, they can be sold as kits.  A kit will include a filter, regulator and a bracket.  (A bracket is not sold with the Light Duty Line Vac kits.)  The filter will help keep the Line Vac clean as well as the product that it is conveying.  The regulator is a great tool to vary the conveyance rates for better control.  The bracket helps to mount the Line Vac to a sturdy base for support.  A useful accessory to conveniently hide the compact Line Vac for ease of use and operation.

If you have any questions on how our Line Vacs can help save you money give us a call! One of our application engineers will be happy to assist!

Jordan Shouse
Application Engineer

Send me an Email
Find us on the Web 
Like us on Facebook
Twitter: @EXAIR_JS

Heavy-Duty Line Vac Air Operated Conveyors Climbing to New Heights

During this COVID-19 shelter in place circumstance, as an avid outdoors man (specifically I do a lot of rock climbing), things have been frustrating to say the least. In the Cincinnati area with all the climbing gyms closed down climbers are flocking to their local crag to get that last climb in for the foreseeable future. My local crag is Red River Gorge in Rodgers, KY. As the climbing season has now ended due to this pandemic the season of indoor (aka at home) training has began to ramp up with everyone hitting their hang boards and starting harder work out routines in their free time. It came to my mind that now is the time to also check out my old gear and see what needs to be replaced.

Climbing gear needs to be strong, durable and light weight so that the gear does not fail you in your time of need. If properly set up, a climbing rated carabiner can withstand a force of 24 kN or 5395 lbs. Every bit of climbing material needs to be taken care of and replaced when the time comes. When your life is hanging by the gear that you use durability and maintenance is the difference from dropping or not dropping from a cliff. But climbing equipment isn’t the only thing that you want to be strong and durable; you also want your material handling equipment as well.

Climbing a 5.10d “Return of Manimal” at the Bruise Brothers Wall in Muir Valley

At EXAIR we strive to make strong, durable, and maintenance free compressed air products. One such product is our Heavy Duty Line Vac air operated conveyor; the Heavy Duty Line Vac is a stronger and more durable version of the standard aluminum Line Vacs. The body and cap of the Heavy Duty Line Vac is made out of a hardened alloy which provides abrasion resistance. This means that it can withstand materials such as sand, salts, steel shavings, tumbling and blast media, etc. They are available from 3/4″ through 3″ and are used with identical sized hose, tube or pipe. 

Heavy Duty Line Vac

The Heavy Duty Line Vac is also designed to lift heavier material and move it farther and/or higher. Materials such as steel shot, garnet and ground glass are common. More power also increases the distance materials can be conveyed. Heavy Duty Line Vacs convey 6 times farther than standard Line Vacs. 

Male NPT Threads make permanent and rigid installation into a piping system a breeze

The Heavy Duty Line Vac also comes with either smooth connections or threaded connections. The smooth connections allow for our reinforced PVC conveyance hose to attach to the ends using a standard hose clamp. If a flexible hose is not appropriate for your application the threaded connections allow the line vac to connect to a hard pipe. Both types of connections are interchangeable to fit your conveyance needs.

If you have questions about our Heavy Duty Line Vacs, or would like to talk about any of the EXAIR Intelligent Compressed Air® Products, feel free to contact EXAIR and myself or any of our Application Engineers can help you determine the best solution.

Cody Biehle
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
Visit us on the Web
Follow me on Twitter
Like us on Facebook