Automatic Vacuum System


Building a system for a customer... They are working with a material that is hazardous but not flammable. Most of the work I do is with steel, aluminum or some other random metal. This customer's product is most closely related to fiberglass. They are looking to provide suction at the tool rather than the typical coolant I'm used to and want to do something a bit more professional than a simple wet vac system. The goal is to keep the fibers away from bearings, people and the general atmosphere. Anything you folks know of like this? I immediately thought of the systems built into table saws, etc. but they are a bit too robust and probably not adaptable for what I sell. We would provide either a pneumatic or electrical signal to cycle the suction.
Regards, Joe Agro, Jr. (800) 871-5022 (908) 542-0244 Automatic / Pneumatic Drills: http://www.AutoDrill.com Multiple Spindle Drills: http://www.Multi-Drill.com
V8013-R
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"Joe AutoDrill" wrote

If you are working with hazardous materials, you are going to need professional assistance on dust collection, filtration and disposal. At a minimum you are going to need reliable HEPA filters with sufficient makeup air and vacuum to ensure the material particles have one, and only one place to go, and that's into the collector system. Lead dust (which is fairly heavy) requires 4000-8000 CMF with a makeup air hood (supplies clean air to the work area) large enough to cover the entire work area, and probably a combination of a vacuum table (downdraft) with an additional spot suction nozzle or dust collector assembly around the bit (ShopBot has a pretty good design, Morris Dovey has another).
Dust collection and disposal is going to be a multi-stage system with a cyclone collector with a gated dump chute (should be a dual or even a triple gate to allow disposal while running), particulate filters (baghouse) to capture what the cyclone misses (along with it's attendent collection and disposal system) and finally HEPA particulate filters to clean the exhaust air from the collection system. If the material is indeed listed as a hazardous material, you are going to have to check with the EPA (assuming US laws apply) to determine the maximum allowable emissions, and you are going to have to meet Federal, State and Local emissions regulations.
As a supplier, you are going to have to provide a great deal of documentation and probably even a stack test (emissions measurement), unless you're duplicating an already proven system. Lacking any further information, I'm going to recommend you contact the envoronmental agencies at your customer's locale to find out where to start, and to get a recommendation on who might be available that they already know in the industry that can provide the dust collection you need. You'll also need someone to perform the emissions testing, and they can provide you with a list of companies that have submitted information to them (but without any recommendations).
If the stuff you're collecting is not considered hazardous, but rather an irritant, you MAY consider doing it yourself, but I'd probably shy away from that liability.
In either event, you will want the collection system to be running prior to allowing any tooling to start, and continue running for a time after the tooling has shut down (typically when the work area has been cleaned). You might find starting the collection system when the operator sets up to run, and shutting it down only at the end of the day. Again, if you're dealing with a hazardous substance, you'll have to provide annual emissions reporting to the EPA (again, assuming you're under the EPA's juristiction); having an hour-meter integrated into the system will help you calculate the annual emissions based on the stack test results (distilled to a one-hour average) multiplied by the total hours run per year. Without GOOD records of run time (and I'm thinking that automated records are pretty much the only way to capture this data accurately), you have to assume the worst ... 365.25 days x 24 hours, or 8766 hours per year.
Your baghouse and HEPA filters will also need to be monitored (need to maintain a minimum differential to ensure the filters are actually in place and not breached, a maximum to ensure that the filters aren't blinded), and you'll need some sort of filter cleaning mechanism (vibrators, air pulsers, etc). Again, if the material is hazardous, you'll need to ensure that the dust collected is properly handled.
If your customer is already dealing with all this, you have a good starting point ... but unless you've worked in this area before, I'd be very hesitant to jump in. The risks and liabilities are too great to have this as a learning curve ... especially if this is indeed hazardous materials you're dealing with.
Hope this helps.
Regards,
Rick
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It is similar to fiberglass dust... Not really hazardous, but a real PITA to deal with.
--


Regards,
Joe Agro, Jr.
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Joe AutoDrill (in fqrBf.15782$mj3.11732@trndny06) said:
| Building a system for a customer... They are working with a | material that is hazardous but not flammable. Most of the work I | do is with steel, aluminum or some other random metal. This | customer's product is most closely related to fiberglass. They are | looking to provide suction at the tool rather than the typical | coolant I'm used to and want to do something a bit more | professional than a simple wet vac system. The goal is to keep the | fibers away from bearings, people and the general atmosphere. | Anything you folks know of like this?
[ With thanks to Rick M for the mention :-) ]
Joe...
I have a web page at http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/dust_collection.html that may help to get the juices flowing. There's more info at http://www.mechmate.com/Forum/messages/53/53.html?1135194980 that provides still more solutions that you should find of interest.
And in the best Autodrill tradition, I'd be pleased to work with you to develop a custom solution. :-D
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto
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I'm trying to avoid the sale and liability of the system myself and simply want to send my customer to the right place... The bottom line is that you and the previous poster had some very good information so I will forward the information on to them to review as it all looks VERY good.

LOL. Yes indeed.
--


Regards,
Joe Agro, Jr.
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"Joe AutoDrill" wrote

In that case, you might want to go to http://www.airhand.com /
These are the folks that designed and installed the dust collection system in the New Yankee Workshop. They certainly are capable of a turn-key system and probably forgot more about dust collection than I ever learned.
Penn State Industries http://www.pennstateind.com may have a design group, but they don't seem to indicate so on their web site. They may be dealing components only and while they could advise on certain aspects, it doesn't appear they're a design/build shop ... but don't let my opinion slow you down from giving them a call.
I'm glad your not dealing with hazardous waste ... that's a real pain to deal with compared to nuisance dust and debris. When I relocate my shopbot (real soon, I hope) I'll be making a number of dust collection improvements ... some of which I'm taking right from Morris' web site (thanks Morris!).
Good luck,
Rick
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As a consulting engineer who worked in the air emissions and measurement field for 25 years, I can promise you that you just got some excellent advise for free. I hope you take it to heart.

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