Sanitary Flange Line Vacs for Bulk Conveying

Piping systems have been a hallmark of human civilization for almost as long as people have been living in community with each other. Evidence of complex earthen pipe systems, with flanged fittings & asphalt sealants, date to 2700 BC. These were used for crop irrigation, potable water distribution, and wastewater removal in ancient civilizations from the Mediterranean to the Far East.

Over the centuries, new ways to use pipe led to new ways to make pipe.  Scientists and engineers figured out ways to make pipe stronger, lighter, cheaper, and in a variety of materials.  One of the more recent milestones is the development of sanitary piping and fittings.  The stringent cleanliness controls in certain industries (food and pharmaceutical, I’m looking at you) require highly corrosion resistant materials of construction.  The inside & outside surfaces of the pipe have to be finely finished so that they can be thoroughly and positively cleaned, with no crevices, “nooks & crannies,” etc., for material to gather or cling.  And since regular cleaning & sterilization is performed, the fittings must be able to be made & unmade in a manner that still provides for positive sealing when the system is restored to operation.

EXAIR Line Vac Air Operated Conveyors have always been well suited for applications like this.  With their open, unobstructed throats and smooth bores, they’re intuitively easy to clean, by design.  And we’ve made them, for years, in Type 316 Stainless Steel – the preferred material of construction for many food and pharmaceutical applications.  Many users in these industries were able to install them in sanitary piping systems by welding the flanges on our Stainless Steel Line Vacs, or by installing adapters on our Threaded Stainless Steel Line Vacs.

In the spring of 2017, EXAIR released the Sanitary Flange Line Vac with those same users in mind – eliminating the need to weld or thread flanges onto existing products.  They feature the same conveyance power as our Stainless Steel Line Vacs, and can even be modified to meet Heavy Duty Line Vac performance, if needed.  There are four sizes: 1-1/2″, 2″, 2-1/2″, and 3″…which covers the most popular size range of sanitary pipe systems.

While the sanitary piping systems are certainly most often found in those cleanliness-critical food & pharma type applications, other users incorporate them because of the smooth, continuous bore of the pipe and fittings, as opposed to a threaded pipe system, where the OD of the pipe threads into the ID of the fittings, causing a “step” in the throughput.  Because sanitary fittings mate via face-to-face flange seals, this eliminates that “step” which can make for a catch-point for certain items.  It’s for this very reason that a popular ammunition manufacturer uses sanitary pipe systems to convey shell casings…because they tumble with such turbulence in the air flow, they are especially prone to hanging up on any kind of catch-point.  So, they use sanitary piping & fittings, long radius elbows, and EXAIR Model 161150-316 1-1/2″ Sanitary Flange Line Vacs.

Air conveying of certain items, like these ammo shell casings, can be prone to clogging or jamming in systems where pipe, hose, and/or fittings are inserted into each other, creating catch-points.

EXAIR has a wide selection of engineered compressed air products that are “textbook” solutions for certain applications, but also make perfect sense for use in places you might not have thought of.  If you have a bulk material conveyance operation you’d like to discuss, give me a call.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
EXAIR Corporation
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Shells photo courtesy of hydropeek  Creative Commons License

EXAIR Line Vac, Air Operated Conveyors, Expand to Include Sanitary Flange Models

EXAIR’s Air Operated Conveyor product line just expanded, making it easier than ever for a wide range of industries to solve an ever growing range of bulk conveyance applications. Before we get to that, let’s look at just how versatile the Line Vacs are:

The standard Line Vac has been making bulk conveyance as easy as it could get for years now. They come in sizes from 3/8″ to 5″, and all you need is a hose to move material from point A to point B.

Lightweight and durable aluminum is the most popular choice, but we make them in stainless steel (Types 303 and 316) for heat and corrosion resistance. For extreme heat, the High Temperature option affords protection to 900F (482C) in either 303SS or 316SS.

When rigid pipe is preferable to hose, our Threaded Line Vacs offer the same performance:

These come with male NPT threads from 3/8″ to 3″. They’re also available in aluminum, 303SS and 316SS, and High Temperature versions, same as the standard Line Vac.

If you need high power for higher conveyance rates, longer distances, or very dense material, the Heavy Duty Line Vacs are what you’re looking for.

They come in sizes from 3/4″ to 3″, with options for slip-on hose or threaded pipe. They’re also made of a hardened alloy for superior abrasion resistance.

Light Duty Line Vacs are aimed at applications implied by the name…when smaller volumes of low density material don’t require all the head & flow generated by the standard or Heavy Duty models, these are as quick & convenient as the rest, and come in sizes from 3/4″ to 6″.

They’re also ideal when fragile parts might be subject to damage in the high velocity, turbulent air flow produced by the other models.

The newest additions to the Line Vac family are the Type 316 Stainless Steel Sanitary Flange models:

Also known as Tri-Clamp or Tri Clover, these connectors have a variety of advantages beneficial to certain industries: Quick to make up & take apart. No nooks or crevices, so they’re easy to clean. Wide variety of fittings, pipe and tubing are readily available.

These are especially popular in pharmaceutical, food, and brewing applications.

If you’d like to find out more about how to move bulk product quickly, easily, safely, and cleanly, give me a call.

Russ Bowman
Application Engineer
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Custom, Flanged Air Amplifier Solves a Fume Evacuation Problem

We blog about this topic quite a bit, and almost every section of our catalog has a page set aside just for special / custom product configurations that have been created by request from many of our customers.

This is the latest and greatest special that I have seen roll through the production area here at EXAIR.   This is a special 4″ 303 Stainless Steel Adjustable Air Amplifier with a 4″ Tri-Clamp flange on the discharge side and a 6″ Tri-Clamp flange on the suction side of the amplifier.

 

This had been an ongoing project with the customer that started with them testing a stock Adjustable Air Amplifier in the application to ensure that the performance would meet their needs.  The application was to boost a low flowing fume exhaust that was causing slow downs in their production line.  Fans and other traditional methods would require maintenance and would wear out.  The stock Adj. Air Amplifiers exceeded their performance needs but did not easily mount into their duct work because they used all standard size tri-clamp fitting in the ducting, so the next step was to see if we could manufacture a Special Adjustable Air Amplifier just for their needs.  The dimensions of the existing Adjustable Air Amplifier came close enough we were able to easily create a Flanged Adjsutable Air Amplifier that would clamp straight into their existing duct work, exceed their performance expectations, help their process, and be ready to ship within a very reasonable lead time.

Like we have said before, if a stock, cataloged, product doesn’t fit your application exactly, contact us and let us find a way to customize and fit the need.

Brian Farno
Application Engineer Manager
BrianFarno@EXAIR.com
@EXAIR_BF