Steel Fab - Roller conveyor

2/19/2009

Wheelabrator® Roll Conveyor:
Providing Blast Cleaning Solutions for a Specialty Steel Fabricator  

Burlington, ON – (February 18, 2009) – With their recent plant facility move (Summer 2008) from Markham to Aurora, Ontario, Modern Railings and Metal Craft Ltd., purchased a Wheelabrator® Roll Conveyor system for their new location.

The Canadian-owned and operated structural steel fabricator, employs approximately 40 skilled crafts people and serves the North American construction industry as well as creating Metal Craft Art Décor for a diverse client base. Their typical range of parts for cleaning includes flat bars, angles, channels, wide flange beams, I-beams, and HSS (Hollow Structural Steel) tubing.

When Modern Railings President/Owner, Mr. Ken Lilley, decided to move his operations from one city to another, he approached Wheelabrator Group to design a new Roll Conveyor system to replace two older roll conveyor machines that were showing their age. Modern Railings considered re-building these existing models but realized it would be too expensive with the re-furbishing process and the logistics in relocating the equipment.

“The primary consideration in the design was in reducing the height of the dust collector to ensure it did not interfere with the overhead cranes,” said Ms. Joan Lilley, Vice-President. “However, we did require the design to be revised mid-way through the design stage to account for space related issues with the blast machine and associated duct work”.

Wheelabrator Group sales representative, Don Pelle, brought Mr. Lilley and his team to a customer site to showcase a similar operating Wheelabrator Roll Conveyor system that had recently been installed. Impressed with what they saw, it did not take Modern Railings long to realize the best decision for their future operation was a new Wheelabrator blast cleaning system.  A final decision was made and the system was purchased in February 2008 and installed in August 2008.

Running one shift per day, five days a week, the cleaning process has been extremely simplified with their recent investment. Equipped with new technology processes and four 15 HP EZEFIT® blast wheels, the new Wheelabrator system effectively meets Modern Railings and Metal Craft Ltd needs.

“We generally run our shot-blast system on the highest speed setting for blasting mild steel parts, typically to a SP6, commercial finish. The steel parts can range in length from 10 feet to 60 feet.  The machine also has safety features that were not on our old machine. We have also been using our new system to clean material for other fabricators’ projects“, Ms. Lilley states.

The steel is loaded by an overhead crane on to the entrance roll conveyor with the blast system set in automatic mode. When the steel to be cleaned enters the blast chamber, the steel activates a sensor which automatically starts the steel shot abrasive flow. The system automatically turns the abrasive both on and off. The system also includes an automatic abrasive blow-off at the exit-end of the machine. The installation of the new Wheelabrator cleaning system provided the immediate benefits of increased production capacity, improved blasting efficiency, and reduced operating costs.

“In our old facility we had two machines. One to clean small parts and pieces of material and, one used for larger steel parts,” confirms Ms. Lilley. “Our new shot-blast system has a larger opening which allows for the cleaning of parts and pieces of material of various sizes at the same time. This machine is considerably quieter than our old machine and we are saving on steel shot mix as we are using a 1/3 of the amount of abrasive with this machine as previously required. We are also saving on maintenance and replacement parts”.

The Wheelabrator Roll Conveyor was the first piece of machinery installed in the company’s new Aurora facility. Prior to shipping, the machine was fully-wired and wet-run with abrasive to ensure a smooth installation. A full installation package was purchased consisting of complete mechanical and electrical installation, start-up and equipment commissioning, plus operation and maintenance training. In total, a little over two weeks were required to complete the work.

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