Critical Conveyor Components


January 1, 2008

Whether it’s an idler, bearing, belt cutter, or scale, the myriad conveyor components are vital to keeping production moving along.

by Tina Grady Barbaccia, Senior Editor

High-performance aluminum

The Milltronics brand MBS conveyor belt scale, from Siemens Energy & Automation, Inc., boasts an accuracy level of plus or minus 1.0 percent and features high-performance parallelogram-style aluminum, strain-gauge load cells to provide instant response to vertical loading.

According to the manufacturer, horizontal forces such as belt drag or idler friction will not affect the accuracy of the belt scales. The load cells are equipped with overload protection that has been factory set at 150 percent of load cell-rated capacity. The modular, medium-duty belt scale — ideally suited for applications involving aggregates, sand, gravel, or crushed stone — does not have a crossbridge, which reduces material buildup and allows for a universal fit on most conveyor widths. With only four bolts, the belt scale is said to be easy to install and there is no assembly of weighing modules required.

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Douglas Manufacturing
Eliminates premature bearing failure

The Freedom Idlers CEMA (Conveyor Equipment Manufacturers Association) B, C, & D Series from Douglas Manufacturing are engineered for demanding applications, according to the company. The idlers feature a deep-drawn, metal-end cap, and a triple-polyurethane contact seal that prevents material contamination of bearing. The heavy-precision life ball bearings that are sealed for life are said to provide as much as twice the uninterrupted service life of regreasable, tapered roller bearings.

The rigid, self-cleaning idlers have a welded steel frame with interchangeable mounting slots and are machined with a shouldered shaft to help ensure proper bearing alignment and a smooth operating surface — as well as to eliminate the potential for premature bearing failure.

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Conveyor Components Co.
Safety switch for quick shutoff

The Model RS cable-operated safety top switch for conveyors from Conveyor Components Co. offers a broken cable option, which ensures actuation even if the cable is broken or cut. The safety switch, actuated by a cable that is pulled by endangered personnel, provides a quick shutoff in dangerous situations. The output contacts can control up to two separate circuits — one for machinery shutdown and one for the alarm.

Once the safety switch has been actuated, it cannot be accidentally reset — which could restart equipment.

The safety stop switch has a cable extending in both directions from the actuating handle with one electrical connection inside, an arrangement that eliminates the double electrical connections from employing a separate micro switch for the cable in each direction. The unit is designed with a maximum use of 100 feet of cable on each side and is housed in corrosion-resistant aluminum with stainless steel hardware and a red powder coated actuation handle. The actuation shaft is made of stainless steel, and a power-coated cast-iron construction is available, if necessary. Epoxy coating of either casting also is available if required.

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Efficiently removes steel mesh

Grasan’s self-cleaning magnetic separator is mounted high on the side discharge conveyor where it can pick up metals from the crushed material and deposit them in a truck or dumpster. The magnetic separator is said to provide efficient removal of steel mesh, reinforcing rods, dowel pins, and other ferrous metals from demolition debris, according to Grasan. It also incorporates an electromagnet and electric motor-driven belt with stainless steel cleats to protect it from damage. The head pulley and splitter chute also are stainless steel, which cannot become magnetized.

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Stephens-Adamson Conveyor
Idler rollers, belt won’t freeze

The Standard Style A-1 Belt Conveyor Hoods from Stephens-Adamson Conveyor cover and protect conveyor material from being windblown and exposed to moisture as well as protecting the belt and idlers. The cover section, which is supported on bands of heavier-gauge steel or aluminum, also protects the belt from being dried out by the sun and prevents idler rollers and the belt from freezing. The support bands bolt directly to the foot brackets, which are bolted to the top of channel stringers or top chords of truss frames.

According to the manufacturer, this is a simple design that lowers the cost and time of constructing it in the field. The hoods consist of cover sections that are supported on bands spaced at 4-foot centers, and the total length of the hoods should be in multiples of the same length. However, if the total required length is not in this spacing, a cover section can be custom cut in the field and can be secured to the support band by field drilling for self-tapping screws.

The steel specifications include 22-gauge cover sections, 12-gauge support bands up to 36-inch belt width, 10-gauge support bands for more than a 36-inch belt width, and 3/16-inch steel foot brackets, and a retaining bar. Belt widths in stock are available in 18-, 24-, 30-, 36-, 42-, and 48-inch increments. Optional aluminum choices include 40-inch thick hood material and 190-inch thick foot brackets and support band.

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Ensure uniform blade contact

The Eliminator H-Type conveyor belt pre-cleaners from Flexible Steel Lacing Co. (Flexco) strip away carryback residue at the head pulley to keep more material in the product stream. The belt pre-cleaners are independent, segmented blades offered in two styles for both mechanically fastened or vulcanized belts, and self adjust to the irregular contours of belt surface wear patterns to maintain efficient cleaning throughout the life of the blades and avoid the need for frequent retensioning.

The cleaner automatically ensures that there is uniform blade contact across the belt by keeping each blade segment individually under constant pressure of a pre-tensioned rubber cushion. It is intended for installation with blade tips contacting the belt at a point 15 degrees below the head pulley’s centerline, offering a compact design that allows for mounting either on the conveyor frame or inside nearly any discharge chutes. Any tension adjustments that are needed can be performed from the side of the conveyor or from the outside of the chute.

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Eliminates stops and lockouts

InterSystems’ RS Mid Belt Sampler for sand and other aggregates material is designed to take representative samples up to 4 inches from moving belts. A rotating scoop makes a pass at pre-determined intervals across the moving belt taking the sample. The sample is then deposited into a gravity side chute for delivery to a collection system.

According to the manufacturer, the sampler eliminates the need to have an individual assigned to the sampling process, time-consuming production stops and lockouts, and wear and tear caused by frequent stops and starts. The sampler meets ASTM specifications for automatic sampling. The power requirements are an electric 110-volt single-phase control; one-phase and three-phase motors are available in 3 to 15 horsepower motor drives.

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24-hour emergency service offered

Drive Source International Inc. (DSI) /Dynamatic DCD line of aggregate and asphalt duty drives can be used for cold-feed conveyors, incline conveyors, AC pallet pumps, vibratory feeders, and crushers.

These eddy current variable-speed drives, brakes, and controllers are offered up to 3,000 horsepower. They can serve as drop-in replacement units. The custom-engineered controllers come in up to 100 amps of DC output. A three-year warranty is offered on drive/motor/controller packages, and 24-hour emergency service is available.

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Kemper Equipment
Variety of components offered

In addition to custom conveyor systems such as stationary conveyors and radial stackers, Kemper Equipment also offers conveyor components including mine-duty pulleys, grip strut walkway and handrails, belt scrapers, and head and tail pulleys.

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NTEP-approved, single-point load cells

The Schenck Process Conveyor Belt Scale precisely weighs continuous flow rates of sand, gravel, and crushed stone in processing plants producing up to 15,000 tons per hour, according to the manufacturer. The belt scale is offered for single and multiple idlers with measuring accuracies of plus or minus 1 percent of total weight.

Each unit is designed with NTEP (National Type Evaluation Program)-approved single-point load cells, integrator, and configured for use with 18- to 60-inch wide CEMA idlers. The INTECONT MS Integrator is supplied with the belt scale, and the measuring system is packaged in a NEMA 4 enclosure that features two-line alphanumeric display, three internal totalizers, and a menu-driven interface for programming, calibration, and operation.

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Reduces noise by 50 decibels

The patent-pending pulley design for Superior Industries’ Chevron Wing Pulley can deflect threatening material, extend the life of conveyor belts, and reduce noise by nearly 50 decibels, according to the manufacturer. It’s designed to provide more reliability in tail pulley applications. A round bar wing cap design is said to prolong wear life, and its V-shape aids in bringing the belt to the center of the pulley.

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Last three times longer than steel

The new Moxie idler roll from Superior Industries is said to last three times longer than steel. It’s designed with a specially formulated high-density polyethylene (HPDE) material and was developed to solve problems caused by abrasive material and buildup, according to the manufacturer.

The rolls are manufactured with the company’s SpinGuard seal system, which is designed to protect the bearing from contaminants. The rolls are a lightweight alternative to steel and can be retrofit into any idler frame or bracket.

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Mettler Toledo
Converts conveyors into weighing systems

The new SWC515 Pinmount compact weigh module from Mettler Toledo comes in 7.5-, 15-, and 22.5-ton capacities and is able to be convert tanks, hoppers, and conveyors into weighing systems. The modules can be used for static weighing as well as dynamic applications such as mixers and conveyors.

The 360-degree horizontal bumper and self-restoring feature on the rocker-pin load cell help to ensure an easy and accurate installation, according to the manufacturer. The stabilizer option can be added any time in dynamic applications. Two anti-lift bolts as well as four vertical safety stops come standard on the weigh module.

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Applied Industrial Technologies
Sensors give immediate notification

The MS1 sensors, distributed exclusively by Applied Industrial Technologies, instantly notify personnel of changes in conveyor operation. Necessary actions can then be taken quickly to prevent further breakdowns and chain-reaction failures, which leads to increased uptime and decreased maintenance costs.

A magnetic rotor snaps onto a rotating shaft, which makes mounting the sensors simple, according to Applied. Because the sensors are not permanently mounted, no guards are needed. They also easily connect to a programmable logic controller and are compatible with the company’s Watchdog Relay System. Other uses include an hour meter to monitor actual run time and alarms, as well as to determine belt speed or zero speed.

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Minimizes dust, dirt buildup areas

The ASGCO Totalizer weight belt scale from ASGCO features a modular design that performs a wide variety of conveyor styles and structures in both the standard and metric systems. The belt scale can be installed in a series to create a two- or three-idler weighbridge, with a minimum of two load cells. According to the manufacturer, installation is easy, taking less than two hours, and the scale’s low profile minimizes buildup areas where dust and dirt accumulate.

Only five field parameters are required before initial calibration can take place, and belt length and speed are automatically calculated and entered. The belt scale provides outputs to drive printers, chart recorders, PLC devices, and controllers. It also comes with the company’s speed sensor. Several options also are available, including a wheel-mount kit for the speed sensor, a cross-tube kit for heavy-duty and high-belt loading applications, low-capacity load cells for light-duty applications, and field-wiring installation kits.

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Protects from metal damage

Eriez Magnetics now offers the Metalarm Series metal detectors, which are designed to protect machinery from metal damage. This new series complements the company’s existing line of metal detector and X-ray inspection systems, vibratory feeders, magnets, and its other industrial process solutions.

The detectors are able to identify ferrous and non-ferrous metals in challenging applications such as limited space areas and vibratory conveyors. The metal detectors’ search coils also are easily installed around existing conveyor systems because of their non-intrusive and fully customized design, according to Eriez. The Metalarm Series has three main control units — the 3500, 3500/QM2, and 6600 — that may be combined with several customizable search coils. Several features such as relay outputs and belt clip detectors are built into the standard controllers. The systems are compliant with CE, EMC, and CSA regulations. ATEX and Zone 22 certification is available upon request.

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Veyance Technologies
Lower cost-per-ton

The line of aboveground conveyor belts from Veyance Technologies, Inc., which manufactures the Goodyear Engineered Products brands, can handle everything from two-ton boulders to grains of sand, according to the company.

The Plylon Plus, Plylon, and Raider conveyor belts are designed to provide a lower cost-per-ton. The Plylon Plus is a nylon/nylon-reinforced product that provides rip and tear resistance and uses the company’s premium rubber cover compounds for cut, gouge, and abrasion resistance. It can be used in crushers, pit belts, mainlines, and high-abuse applications. The Plylon features a low-stretch design and is available with the company’s premium abrasion-resistant compounds. It can be used in for in-plant service and wash plant and moderate-abuse applications. The Raider belt is designed for low-abuse applications such as stacker, loadout, and other sand and gravel applications. It’s available with an RMA Grade II cover pound.

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Robust design prevents bending

The Safe-Guard line from ASGCO works on CEMA B, C, and D series idlers up to 7 inches in diameter, and now has now been expanded to include CEMA E & F return rollers.

The transverse support of the new heavy-duty idlers is angled to provide a more “robust” design that prevents bending and is sized to fit over CEMA E & F return roller brackets, according to the manufacturer.

Both the mounting brackets, as well as the end plates, are made from powder-coated A-36 steel. The return idler guard was designed to prevent injuries from pinch points and to catch the return idler if it should fall, protecting workers from the hazard of contacting the exposed idler. Everything in the Safe-Guard line is fully adjustable for a wide range of idler sizes and belt widths up to 96 inches.

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15 percent better performance

The new Kraftband Super KBX-POWER belt from Optibelt employs advanced production processes, improved materials, and optimized molded cogs. When compared to its predecessor, the KBX Kraftband belt, the new belt is said to offer up to 15 percent better performance. Its low-stretch polyester cord construction makes it a low-maintenance belt. The company says the product’s high-performance transmission in connection with its small pulley diameters and high-engine speeds make possible a reduction in weight and space. The belts can be used with up to five ribs or as a combination of sets.

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