Graco Endura-Flo pump solves multiple issues for large paint booth

Problem:

The customer came to Air Power wanting to upgrade their pump package that supplies material from their paint kitchen to two applicators on each end of their booth.  The booth runs 60’ long, with a width of 20’ and would be used to touch up dump truck beds.  After running a pressure drop calculation we determined that the material could fall out of solution if there were a day or 2 that no spraying was needed.

Air Power Solution

After reviewing the application with the customer, Air Power proposed using a 3:1 Graco Endura-Flo pump.  This option allows for the 3x the pressure, which was more than enough to overcome any pressure loss during the materials travel, as well as, has a much larger fluid section requiring less wear and tear on the pump while in operation.  Since this is strictly a touch up process and not guaranteed to be an everyday event, we also recirculated the fluid lines to prevent any material from falling out of solution.

Results

This solution provided more than enough pressure to power the required spraying.  Additionally, if there’s an occurrence where the system isn’t used for several days, the customer only has to run the pump a few minutes before spraying to move the stagnant material back within the agitated drum requiring no waste or quality concerns.

The Air Power solution solved the pressure problem, the potential solution issues, and provided a much larger fluid section to prevent wear and tear.

 

 

 

Intelligent Multi Spindles Increase Production and Quality

Problem:

A local axle manufacturer has had ongoing issues with accurate torqueing of axle shaft bolts. The bolts are inaccurately torqued with pneumatic pulse tools or missed altogether by the operators as they are in 8 lug and 12 lug patterns and require many accurate rundowns to produce a quality part.

Air Power Solution

Apex Tool Group intelligent 4 spindle multi-spindles with torque management arms eliminate both inaccurate torques along with potential mishits of fasteners. The 4 spindles will be adjustable to hit both patterns, highly accurate within a few percent of the targeted torque, and have rotational transducers that will tell us which fasteners have been hit and eliminate missed fasteners and re-hits by the operators.

Results

This solution will decrease the amount of manual operator input of fastener tightening thus speeding up the manufacturing process, as well as, eliminate re-hits and missed fasteners by the operators. This system will collect data and communicate with their existing MES system to confirm the accurate torque of each set of axle bolts, providing data points and a birth certificate of a successful assembly. This will have a profound effect on both the quality of the parts produced as well as the speed at which they are produced. One ergonomic bonus – the system will remove the operator from handling the existing large pneumatic pulse tools manually creating for a safer and more sustainable work environment.

Apex Tool Group intelligent 4 spindle multi-spindles with torque management arms eliminate both inaccurate torques along with potential mishits of fasteners.

 

 

Counterweight Confusion

This case study was presented by Baltimore Key Account Manager Lorne Rickert.

Challenge

A counterweight was attached to a turntable before the Hydraulic Motor which “keys” the turntable to the frame, located underneath.  The counterweight caused the turntable to rotate until it was so far off balance that the Turntable with Counterweight fell off the Frame, coming to a rest about 2’ from a Team Member!  This posed a significant safety hazard, as well as, assembly frustration to the onsite engineering team.

Air Power Solution

Air Power utilized an Ingersoll Rand QX Power Tool and Sturtevant Richmont Digital Wrench to positively confirm that all of the tightening’s have been completed before the Counterweight can be installed.

Results

Air Power’s Engineering Team, Michael John and Jesse Bryant, designed a “Lifting Sling Lock” device that will not release the lifting sling for the counterweight until the Tightening’s are complete – a Poke Yoke control to insure safety.  This “Lifting Sling Lock” is utilized in conjunction with the I/O output of the Ingersoll Rand QX and the STR Digital Wrench, thus eliminating the safety hazard of a dropped counterweight.  The Lifting Sling Lock will only unlock once all tightening have been positively confirmed, removing a safety hazard and improving overall production quality.

Counterweight Confusion

 

 

Carlisle Fluid Technologies – Winning with Airless

Problem

Flooring Manufacturer was looking to increase pass yield coverage while spraying their Waterborne Topcoat on their flooring.  Their old process was using two Automatic Anesta Iwata air spray guns.

Air Power Solution

Through Air Power’s partnership with Carlisle Fluid Technologies we were able to offer the customer a solution by providing two Binks Automatic AG-364 Airless Spray guns fed by a Binks MX Series Pump.  The results were tremendous.

Effect

The Customer Experienced the following benefits:

  • Increased Pass Yield Coverage by around 40% on average.
  • Reduced coating use by around 50%.
  • Reduced clean up with the reduced amount of over spray
  • Improved coverage on edges and profiles, eliminating the shadow effect.
  • Elimination of CFM air usage.

The above benefits save the customer TIME and MONEY!

 

ProDispense – Always accurate and Always Correct

Problem

An axle manufacturer has had ongoing issues with accurate filling of gear oils in axle hubs and center differentials due to the operator having to manually select the oil dispensed along with the quantity of oil being dispensed into a given axle. There would be issues with the operator selecting the incorrect oil or volume of oil which often resulted in quality issues of an axle or batch of axles. There was no way to confirm which oil and volume of oil was dispensed into a given axle, which operator did the dispensing on a given axle. All data was on the build sheet for the axle and it was the responsibility of multiple operators and quality technicians to ensure it was filled correctly. All build sheets would have to be read by operators on both sides of the line, then they would have to select the correct oil and volume of oil based on what they read or thought they had read. Quality tracing was extremely difficult using this method. Oil spills and drips were also extremely common, leading to waste and safety concerns

Air Power Solution

Multiple Graco ProDispense systems have been introduced to the facility to eliminate these issues by utilizing advanced technology and programming to ensure error free selecting and filling of fluids. The facilities engineering team will be integrating the ProDispense into their existing PLC’s with new HMI’s which will contain each axles information and location in real time on the line. This will allow each axle’s build sheet to be loaded into the system. By using the axle’s build sheets in the system each operator will touch each axle’s hub or center diff on the HMI which will automatically select the correct oil and oil fill volume for that particular component which will have been preloaded into the PLC and ProDispense by the engineering team. Once the location on the axle has been touched on the HMI the ProDispense will have the appropriate recipe selected via the PLC and the system will illuminate an LED light next to the correct hose reel which contains the appropriate oil. The operator will then unwind the hose reel and dispense valve and insert it into the appropriate oil fill port. Once that is done they will touch the start button on the HMI which will trigger the ProDispense to fill the appropriate volume into the axle. This information will be recorded in their network and will be easily traced back to the axle, oil used and operator performing the fill for traceability. The ProDispense will accurately dispense the correct oil every time within +/- 1%. This will reduce rework, defects and axle failures for the end user. We are utilizing no drip valves to ensure drip free operation to reduce waste and spills to improve safety at the line sides.

Prodispense

Effect

The ProDispense allows for accurate selecting, fill tracking, capturing data associated with each fill to prevent defects, failures, waste and improves safety and accuracy of the entire filling process. Repeatability of the process with operators both new to the line and veterans is much improved as each selection is now automated by the system.

Prodispense

 

Controlling Viscosity through Proper Temperature Control

Problem

Automotive manufacturer was having trouble controlling their paint viscosity with the change in temperature in their facility from morning to afternoon.  The customer was constantly changing fluid pressure to try and keep up.

Air Power Solution

Controlling Viscosity

With Air Power’s partnership with Saint Clair Systems we offered the customer a solution providing them with a Temperature Control Unit and heat exchanges for each color for each of their spray booths.

The Customer Experienced the following benefits:

  • Maintained constant viscosity at point of use to their automatic spray system.
  • Reduced re-works which reduced labor and paint costs.
  • Learned about other deficiencies by maintaining constant viscosity
  • Improved and kept a consistent appearance on all vehicles

Effect

The above benefits save the customer TIME and MONEY!

Controlling Viscosity Setup

 

Schmalz Vacuum Lifter Case Study

Problem

A local chemical supplier has to manually inspect and repack bags of their product which has been requiring manually lifting, inspecting and repacking of 60lb bags from one pallet to another. This has introduced an ergonomic liability for the manufacturer and has opened the door for multiple operators to injure themselves. The answer has been to station multiple operators (5-6) in the area to tackle this problem. They rotate lifting, repacking, and inspecting to limit the risk and keep everyone safe.

Air Power Solution

Schmalz Vacuum Lifter

A custom solution provided by Air Power consisting of Schmalz vacuum lifters, Gorbel jibs and Presto P3 spring lift/turntables. The one handed bag lifter allows the operators to effortlessly lift the bags after inspection to be repacked on the next pallet. The Gorbel jibs allow them to reach multiple pallets from a single vacuum lifting system. The P3 turntables allow the operator to maintain a very small footprint by bringing the bags to them via the turntable rotation. It also prevents bending, stretching and reaching for bags with the vacuum lifter which reduces operator injury risk and allows the vacuum lifter to maintain a vertical lift throughout the unpacking and repacking of pallets.

Effect

What formally took 5-6 operators to complete is now completed using 2 operators with a much reduced injury and fatigue risk for the operators. They are able to alternate inspection and repacking effortlessly between them throughout the day since they are no longer manually handling the bags. The takt time of each inspecting and repacking operation has been reduced as well due to the speed and ergonomics at which the single handed vacuum lifter operates.

Schmalz Lifter

Isolated Paint Control Panel Brings Consistency and Speedy Changeovers to the Production Line

Problem

A local gearbox manufacturer has had ongoing issues with multiple paint operators making changes to the paint system throughout the day. They rotate painters every couple of hours so the paint quality and consistency is all over the board throughout the day. We have isolated the spray gun controls and implemented electrostatic painting but they still have issues. All colors run through a manual color change manifold and fluid pressure regulator which limits the fluid pressure even when color changing. There are also issues when the colors aren’t changed on a long run that the other colors settle out in the lines.

Air Power Solution

Paint Control Panel

Air Power built a custom, lockable, control panel with a multitude of controls for the company and for the operators.

  1. Hi/Lo fluid pressure settings though independent air regulators controlling a single Graco air piloted fluid pressure regulator. These are set with supervision and management and are locked from the operators. They have 2 fluid pressures to select from and nothing else to minimize operator adjustments. Pressure selected is visible via included gauges.
  2. Select-able color valve stack via a rotary control to select the color being sprayed as well as the solvent flush.
  3. Graco back pressure regulators on each recirculating line for the 3 colors to allow paints to recirculate when not in use.
  4. Atomizing air pressure adjusted internally and locked out from the operators.
  5. Integrated inlet air filtration to ensure clean, dry air to feed the spray gun

Effect

This solution will eliminate the operators each making many adjustments throughout the day and tighten the quality and consistency of their paint process. It will also speed up color changes now that they are select-able via the color stack rotary control along with a flush setting that will allow full solvent pressure to clear the lines. When the flush cycle is selected the atomizing air will be cut off to eliminate the estat safety concern associated with a solvent flush. The re-circulation of the colors will improve the quality and consistency of each color when selected via the color stack. The integrated air filtration will extend the service life of the spray gun while improving the quality of the paint process also.

Ingersoll Rand – Makes it Easy

One of the main causes of injury in a manufacturing facility is due to lifting heavy objects. In this case study, Air Power helps a customer eliminate the risk of injury with an Ingersoll Rand custom monorail lifting system.

 

Challenge

 

A local machinery manufacturer has had issues finding a suitable solution to include as part of their OEM machinery builds. They had a history of using electrical hoists and I beam trolleys which have not been well received by their end-users. The previous offerings by others were hard to maneuver and difficult to position the load for final placement.

 

Air Power Solution

 

Air Power proposed an Ingersoll Rand Zimmerman rail system, which are easily adaptable, cost-effective and easy to use. We designed a system for them that included 4 individual monorails with rigid mount hanger kits to increase clearance and ZAW air balancers with pendant controls for load lifting and proper part positioning.  The solution allows each of the 4 sides of their machine to be covered from end to end.

 

Results

 

The proposed solution provided the necessary benefits including:

  1. The ZRA1 monorails utilized minimum push/pull forces, allowing ergonomics on the operator and ease of use.
  2. For future integrations, the individual monorails provide an easily adaptable solution, should the OEM design change over time.
  3. The aluminum profile ZRA1 provided a reduction in solution weight.
  4. The ZAW air balancers allow the end-user to position the load close to its final destination then use the “float” of the balancer for final (and exact) placement of the part; further enhancing the user experience.