REDwire How to decrease the time spent separating parts

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Plan media selection for ease of separation at the start of the project.

Too much time is often spent moving and screening parts in the vibratory finishing process. There are, however, ways to decrease the amount of time spent on this task, according to Vibra Finish, a leading manufacturer with more than 40 years of experience manufacturing machinery and offering production finishing services

One way is to alter a standard horizontal enclosed barrel tumbler by adding an extra large door opening. The load is then tumble-degated, which removes flash and polishes. The solid door can then be removed and replaced by a screen door. As the barrel rotates, the parts fall out, leaving all the gates in the barrel. This method allows the parts to be degated, deflashed and separated at one station, without having to physically move any parts, saving time in the process.

The same technique can also be applied to oblique (tilt) tumblers. Locks can be added to the mouth of the barrel to clamp on a screen door. The barrel should run at a 45-degree upward tilt until the pieces are broken off and smoothed out. Then, the barrel is tilted down 45 degrees to bring the load forward to the screen.

Another way to decrease the time spent moving and screening parts is by increasing the speed of this task. Barrel tumblers typically run at a high surface feet per minute. It is possible to increase the speed to get a shorter run.

Additional suggestions include:

  • minimize the thickness of the sprue at the point of junction when planning moulds; 
  • use rollers at a slight angle to each other, rotating counter to each other, and spin parts to allow them to fall through the gap;
  • use a drop-off screen — vibrating screens that feed the load to the far end, dropping the scrap through the screen and catching the parts at the end in catch pans. 

The best approach, and the biggest time saver, according to Vibra Finish, is to plan media selection for ease of separation at the start of the project. Designing an elaborate separation system at the end of the project just adds time and costs.

Contact Vibra Finish for more screen separation tips.

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Vibra Finish Limited

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