OH&S Products

Unique design pulley takes wing

When it comes to fine-tuning a conveyor system to match the materials being handled, there are many options with unique innovations. Conveyor pulleys are a good example of this.
In circumstances where spilt material can build up around the pulley, use of a conventional drum pulley can result in abrasion and a reduction in traction of a conveyor belt over the pulley.
This has resulted in some manufacturers offering wing pulleys, comprising a central hub and a series of radial wings, that allow material to escape between the ?wings? to avoid material build up. An alternative to this is a drum with spiral ribs wound around it, causing spilt material to move to the outside of the pulley, where it can escape.
While the wing pulley is effective, material can become trapped between the wings and the belt, causing damage to the wings as well as abrasion to or puncturing of the belt. There can also be considerable noise from the beating action as the wings engage and then disengage the belt.
Spiral drum pulleys also have limitations in that it can take time for spilt material to work its way to the outside of the pulley, causing material to build up.
Material spillage can cause an escalating range of problems if it is not addressed. This can start with material adhering to the pulley, increasing its effective diameter and tightening the belt. This, in turn, can cause the belt to walk from side to side, wearing skirting and causing spillage and increasing the requirement to clean up under the conveyor. Ultimately this leads to reduced belt life, increasing downtime and reducing production.
With these issues in mind, Superior Industries developed its Chevron wing pulley, with the ?wings? being V-shaped rather than straight. This patented pattern means that any spilt material has a short, clear escape path to either side of the pulley. The angled impact of Chevron wings on trapped rock deflects the material to the side, whereas the direct impact of trapped material on the straight edge of the fins of a conventional wing pulley can cause them to bend and fail.
Another advantage is that with the V pattern of the Chevron pulley, there is a constant external radius of the pulley compared to the point contact made between the extremities of a conventional wing pulley and the belt. This eliminates the beating effect and reduces noise levels (70 decibels versus 120 decibels).
Compared to a spiral drum pulley, the Chevron wing pulley is more effective and less expensive, providing a two-pronged advantage.
Superior makes drum pulleys, conventional wing pulleys and Chevron pulleys in light-duty, heavy-duty and extra heavy-duty specifications, and also offers a medium-duty drum pulley. It does this because where there are minimal spillage problems, a drum pulley is the most cost-effective solution, and where there are moderate spillage problems and noise is not an issue, a conventional wing pulley may be an acceptable, more cost-effective solution than a Chevron pulley.
Conventional and Chevron wing pulleys are meant only for use with fabric belts. The light-duty pulley is designed for scenarios where the belt is evenly loaded, the conveyor is not started under load and stops are infrequent. Superior launched its Conveyor Equipment Manufacturers Association (CEMA) rated version of the Chevron wing pulley in April 2011 and it became standard on all Superior conveying equipment that use conventional wing pulleys. This version suits light-duty portable conveyors that make infrequent starts and stops.  Customers are able to upgrade to heavy-duty (Mine Duty) or extra heavy-duty (Super Duty) specification.
Mine Duty and Super Duty pulleys are designed to handle uneven belt loading, starting under full load and frequent stops, but the extra heavy-duty pulley is designed to a higher service factor.
While Chevron pulleys are commonly used as tail pulleys, they have also had success in gravity take-up applications. The acceptance of the Chevron wing pulleys is such that since being introduced to the market three years ago, they now account for 20 per cent of Superior?s total manufacture of wing pulleys.
Superior offers its Chevron and standard wing pulleys as an option on all of its conveying equipment. These pulleys are also available as aftermarket products for producers experiencing build up on drum pulleys, or who are frustrated by fugitive material being trapped between the wings of a wing pulley. The Superior pulleys can be fitted to other brands of conveyor.
?The purpose of our Chevron wing pulley matches our commitment to designing conveyor components that solve problems and maintenance issues occurring every day in quarries around the world,? says Bob Domnick, Superior?s vice president of sales, marketing and engineering.
?Over the last five years we?ve increased our commitment at developing new products to solve belt tracking issues, more effectively shed sticky material and eliminate spillage. Our Chevron wing pulley is part of a growing list of Superior?s problem solving conveyor components division.?
Source: Superior Industries

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