Non-flowing product causes downtime every 20 minutes

The Problem: Every 20 minutes, two 30-year old square bins, in use at a leading Midwestern brick maker, had to be shut down in order to manually dig out the ground clay and shale which were clogging the discharge system.

The Equipment: Two, eight-foot diameter Metalfab Bin Activators manufactured by Metalfab, Inc. of Vernon, NJ.

Metalfab Bin ActivatorThe Solution: To find an improved discharge system that would increase the efficiency of the much-used, yet still reliable, square bins, while enhancing the employee safety at a cost-effective level. The 50-year-old company also required equipment which could handle large tonnage, without compaction, to meet its demanding work loads. The plant superintendent found exactly what was needed in the Metalfab Bin Activator with its exclusive dual-baffle construction.

The Metalfab Bin Activator was designed as a low cost, dependable solution to difficult bulk material flow problems. Each unit features a primary baffle, solidly attached to the body with rugged, structural tubular members. A secondary, adjustable baffle, located below the primary baffle, relieves head load above the outlet and vibrates at a separate amplitude, thereby preventing compaction in the lower section and promoting flow through small outlets.

The unique baffle is adjustable vertically and actually “stirs” the material, keeping it mobile and allowing it to flow freely through the outlet. Since clay and shale are hard to work with in Square bins, this feature was particularly important to the company. Its bins were in continual use processing the raw materials into 18 million bricks annually for use in commercial, industrial, and residential construction.

The two Metalfab units handle approximately 165 tons of materials in a seven-hour day and have the capacity to run 20 tons an hour.

The Result: The “live-bottom” design of the Metalfab Bin Activator significantly reduced downtime by eliminating the need to shut down the bins for cleaning every 20 minutes. With the Metalfab Bin Activators, the system can run for several hours and the clay keeps moving, helping the company meet its growing $1 billion in annual sales. The Metalfab units also made working conditions safer by eliminating the need to manually unclog the bins, thereby increasing the production capability of the labor force.


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