Processors have been fighting a battle against material separation in blends for years. Preventing such separation is the foundation of a new blending option developed by Advanced Auxiliary Equipment Inc. for its CA6 loaders. The brainchild of company founder and longtime auxiliary-equipment executive Donald Rainville, the technology makes it is possible to load and blend a few shots of material at the machine throat.
The blending system works by injecting puffs of compressed air upward from the bottom of the sight glass. “The key is creating a circular motion at the bottom of the chamber,” says Rainville. When deployed with the CA6 loader, the filter pulse valve is used to control the air, making it a $35 option. The firm is filing patents on this design, covering vacuum chambers that blend as they load.
A major application includes blending regrind in a two-material loader. “Processors are always concerned about layering with proportional loaders,” says Rainville. Processors who draw material from a blender will also benefit from the new technology, he adds. “They often experience color drift when the material separates during conveying and in the machine hopper. This is extremely important for molders who are running tools with very small shots. They typically draw as many as 30 shots each time the loader loads. The ability of the CA6 to load only a few shots and then blend them offers a clear advantage.”
The accompanying photo shows the blending sequence. For a video of how the device works, click the accompanying video link.
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