Q: What are the benefits of a balanced vibratory mechanical conveyor versus an unbalanced vibratory conveyor?
A: Lee Davis, Machine & Process Design, says:
A balanced mechanical conveyor has a counteracting balance bar weldment that’s designed with a ballast and then calibrated during manufacturing to provide a true dynamic balance to the pan assembly’s motion. The result is an exact alignment so there’s little to no load transmitted to the conveyor’s support frame. With the support frame remaining almost completely motionless, the tuning is often checked by positioning a nickel vertically on its edge.
Balancing the mechanical conveyor provides five main benefits to the end user:
Durability. Unbalanced mechanical conveyors will experience high cyclical loads in their support structures, which can lead to fatigue cracking and structural failure, especially when stainless steel is the material of construction. This risk, coupled with insufficient design, makes these units notorious for shaking themselves apart.
Minimal load transmission. Unlike unbalanced mechanical conveyors, balanced conveyors transmit little in the way of dynamic loads into the surrounding plant floor or mezzanine structure and often operate without the additional expense of vibration isolators.
Portability. Many end users, especially food processors, desire portable conveyors for their process flexibility and for the ability to move them to a specialized cleaning location. A balanced mechanical conveyor doesn’t require the use of an extremely large or heavy structural base to provide dynamic stability, making unit portability a practical option.
Flexible design. A balanced design can often lead to greater flexibility when a custom mechanical conveyor arrangement is needed to fit within difficult spatial constraints. Balance bars can be designed to accommodate lower profiles or to be tucked away under the pan and out of sight, which is excellent for safety.
Configurability. These units can also be outfitted with nearly limitless screen perforation choices to separate fines, lumps, oversized particles, or all three to achieve a targeted particle size range.
Machine & Process Design, Anoka, MN, supplies material handling equipment for the dairy, food, chemical, agricultural, and pharmaceutical industries.