Apia Con­crete beats the dust quick smart

DEMM Engineering & Manufacturing - - PRODUCT WATCH -

Find­ing in­stall­ers to as­sist in the in­stal­la­tion of a new fil­ter at the site of Samoa’s big­gest pri­vately owned com­pany, Apia Con­crete Prod­ucts, was no is­sue for Neal Eng­land, NZ Duct & Flex’s en­gi­neer­ing man­ager.

Apia Con­crete, es­tab­lished more than 40 years ago, pro­vided a team of helpers when work was car­ried out to re­duce the con­crete dust pro­duced dur­ing mix­ing and load­ing of its 80-unit ce­ment truck f leet.

Ver­non Wet­zell, son of the com­pany’s founder, ex­plained that as the ce­ment bags were cut open and added to the hop­per – which feeds the ce­ment and fill to the mixer trucks – staff were get­ting ex­posed to ce­ment dust.

With many of its 70-plus staff be­ing with the com­pany for more than 30 years, ev­ery­one wanted to help with the in­stal­la­tion – the mod­u­lar fil­ter and match­ing fan that nor­mally takes two to three days to in­stal was stand­ing in just hours.

Wet­zell had ap­proached Ge­off Eb­don at NZ Duct & Flex for ad­vice. Ge­off who has ex­pe­ri­ence of work­ing in the Pa­cific Is­lands rec­om­mended a mod­u­lar fil­ter, avail­able ‘off the shelf’ at the Auck­land ware­house.

The fil­ter needs no main­te­nance – just a change of bags ev­ery few years – and is ideal for the rigours of life in the cy­clone prone Pa­cific, where tech­ni­cal knowl­edge, spare parts and specialist ser­vic­ing are not eas­ily avail­able or are ex­pen­sive.

These fil­ters have no mov­ing parts, apart from the im­peller in the fan mo­tor, so are ideal for a lo­ca­tion such as Samoa. This sim­ple oper­a­tion, cou­pled with Lip Lock duct­ing, which is easy to quickly clip to­gether, meant the whole thing was up and op­er­at­ing in just over two days.

Neal Eng­land and Alex Tau­vala’au from NZ Duct & Flex, trav­elled to over­see the in­stal­la­tion.

“Due to the f lex­i­bil­ity of our duct­ing sys­tem we are able to ’guessti­mate’ the whole job from a cou­ple of pho­to­graphs, ship ev­ery­thing up to Apia a cou­ple of weeks prior and hop on a plane to put it all to­gether,” said Neal.

Alex Tau­vala’au, who has been sell­ing the mod­u­lar duct sys­tem for more than 20 years (orig­i­nally as the Speedlock brand), was fa­mil­iar with the dif­fer­ences in or­gan­is­ing such an in­stall in Apia rather than Auck­land.

Ver­non Wet­zell says the sys­tem is work­ing well and staff have no­ticed the dif­fer­ence.

Ge­off said: “Mod­u­lar fil­ters are the per­fect so­lu­tion for small to medium com­pa­nies with dust is­sues.

“They are rugged, easy to in­stall and can be ex­panded to cope with in­creased de­mand. Sim­ply re­move the end panel, add a mod­ule and then bolt the end on again.

“Un­less you are run­ning your oper­a­tion 24/7 you of­ten don’t need a more ad­vanced but com­plex fil­ter. Com­pressed air pulse fil­ters are ex­cel­lent if you need con­stant us­age but are more ex­pen­sive, re­quire pro­duc­tion of com­pressed air and are of­ten far more de­mand­ing in terms of op­er­at­ing costs.”

demm.co.nz/reader-en­quiry #D131207

Photo / sup­plied

Neal Eng­land form NZ Duct&Flex and an ACP em­ployee who helped in­stall the new fil­ter.

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