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Blending drums help automate mold, sand handling.

As the metalcasting industry continues to automate, the demand for more innovative use of vibratory equipment continues to evolve. Process engineers have recognized the need for new vibratory equipment techniques that are designed to improve operating efficiency. Designs are continuously improved through innovation to measure up to today's standards of manufacturing efficiency and environmental regulation.

To meet those needs, General Kinematics Corp., Crystal Lake, Ill., offers Vibra-Drum units that are an important component in promoting process efficiency, reducing energy costs and improving the environment for operations that require continuous mold and sand handling. The patented equipment concept consists of a single processing unit that reduces sand lumps to original grain size, removes sand without damage to castings, and equalizes shakeout sand and casting temperature--all in one continuous, enclosed process with superior dust control. The units produce a gentle tumbling action that permits Vibra Drums to be used in both ferrous and nonferrous molding lines.

The heart of the Vibra-Drum system is a two-mass, sub-resonant natural frequency drive that automatically adjusts to varying material loadings. Natural frequency vibration produces an action on the material that reduces sand lumps while gently tumbling the castings and sand. The non-rotating design simplifies the installation of air handling and optional moisture addition auxiliaries.

Further, the Vibra-Drum has no internal moving parts and few external moving machinery components to maintain. Replaceable drum liners are tailored to the demands of the specific applications. Energy-saving two-mass drives and imaginative application engineering specifically size the Vibra-Drum to the customer's product line.

Customer process needs have resulted in many application innovations. These include ventilation systems that completely enclose the units for fume control in the working environment and the introduction of fresh air sweeping across castings to pick up tremendous heat loads after shakeout. Fresh air prevents build-up in ductwork and effectively removes thermal loads.

The most recent improvements include controls to monitor and regulate heat load, moisture content and material volume for precise management of the heat transfer process. The company also has designed heated outer plenums to prevent material build-up from high-moisture sand, balancing of vibratory force to foundations and thermal shells for extreme heat loads in high-temperature nobake applications. Special water addition systems also have been developed for green sand applications.

Recent Vibra-Drum installations have covered a breadth of capacities and applications, ranging from 10 tons/hr for nobake sand to 400 tons/hr for green sand.

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Title Annotation:New Product
Publication:Modern Casting
Date:Mar 1, 2004
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