hopper vibrator

Mike Stratis

Truck Vibrators – What Are The Options?

Mike Stratis
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When it comes to unloading dry or semi-dry bulk materials from a hopper trailer, belly dump, side dump, end dump or similar type of truck, there are a few vibratory options available to the market. Depending on the power supply available on the mobile equipment, air or electric, the vibratory components change. We will first look at the air powered vibrator options then turn to the electric powered vibrator options.

The pneumatic or air powered units that are available are the piston style vibrator or the turbine style vibrator. These two are by far the most common air powered vibrators found on mobile equipment. The Cleveland Vibrator Vibra-Might air piston vibrators are popular units in the field. These vibrators have a dual diameter piston which allows for start up at any mounting angle and there is no spring on the inside of the vibrator. No spring equals less wear parts. These vibrators also have a single exhaust port and come standard with the exhaust port protector. The exhaust port protector helps keeps dust, dirt, water and other contaminants out of the bore of the vibrator. These Vibra-Might air piston vibrators come in both 4-bolt square base and 2-bolt rectangular base designs. Read More…

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Mike Stratis

The Importance of Proper Installation of Industrial Vibrators

Mike Stratis
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“If you don’t have the time to do it right, when will you have the time to do it again?” – John Wooden, former UCLA Men’s Basketball Coach and Presidential Medal of Freedom award winner.

We have a few frequently asked questions in regards to bin vibrators and many of them revolve around how to get the unit installed. Here is the down and dirty:

  1. Determine the best location of the piston vibrator. Keep in mind, sometimes multiple vibrators are necessary for proper material flow out of bins and hoppers. It comes down to the diameter of the bin or hopper. If the hopper diameter is less and 8 ft. wide, only 1 vibratory unit is necessary. For medium sized hopper that fall within the 8-15 ft. width, 2 units will get the job done. Lastly, large hoppers and bin with a diameter greater than 15 ft. require 3 vibrators.For multiple vibrator unit installs, placement is key. Mount the vibrator to the hopper wall 1/3 the distance from the discharge to the top of the sloped wall. Should a second vibrator be necessary, it should be mounted opposite and approximately 1/4 way up the sloped wall. For large hopper applications requiring three vibrators, mount the third vibrator 1/2 way up the sloped wall.

    The rule of thumb is that a correctly sized vibrator will have an approximate 5ft. radius of influence on material and structure, but when in doubt as to where to install your vibrator, think about where your problem point is and make sure vibration gets to it.

  2. Stitch weld the mounting channel or stiffener plate to the bin wall. Leave the corners on the mounting medium (channel or plate) free of weld. To see why, check out Craig Macklin’s blog titled, “Vibrators Don’t Damage Equipment, Wrong Installations Do.” 
  3. Use the grade 5 fasteners provided by CVC. Tighten them down. The VMS, VMSAC and SI series offer the 4-bolt pattern. This may take an extra few minutes but it offers twice the support compared to 2-bolt pattern units.
  4. Thread the provided port protector or muffler included with the pneumatic vibrator into the exhaust port. Securely tighten.
  5. Loop the safety cable through the hole in the casting as a precautionary measure. Always put safety first!

Read More…

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David Strong

Vibrator Testing and Data Collection – The Story Continues…

David Strong
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I’m not sure but I think it was the really old Batman and Robin series with Adam West where the show would end with the dynamic duo in sort of real trouble.  Some place along the line they’d pick up the story with a line something like “when last we checked in with…” well that sort of applies to my efforts to collect new data on Cleveland Vibrator’s line of pneumatic piston vibrators, both impact and air cushioned. Well…when last we check in… Cleveland Vibrator was making efforts to better document the performance of the piston vibrator line and we’d just recently purchased a CoCo-80 Dynamic Signal Analyzer as part of that effort.  I’d Blogged about my efforts and initial results a while back.

The initial plan was to capture the acceleration of a heavy plate to which we bolt an impact vibrator or air cushioned piston vibrator and isolate the plate with very soft airmounts.  Then using the equation F=ma, we’d calculate the force output of the vibrator, it all seemed reasonable.  At the time I wrote about data collected on the VM-25, miniature piston vibratorRead More…

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Glen Roberts

Vibratory Sizing: Rocky Balboa Inspiration & Railcar Vibrators

Glen Roberts
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Railcar unloading can be a difficult task depending contributing factors such as the type of material, size, moisture content, if the material is frozen, or if it was compacted during shipment, just to name a few. Add to the fact the weather could change from transportation to delivery point, this creates an interesting sizing situation. At Cleveland Vibrator, we use our 1350 VMRR Vibrator as the “one size fits all” unit for rail car unloading. We realize that at times, our valued customers may require a vibrator or vibrators with a little more or less force and may even require a unit that operates at a lower noise level. Cleveland Vibrator understands our customer needs may have  changed from what was used ten, twenty or thirty years ago.  Tried and true methods of that era may need to be changed to accommodate new rail car designs.

In the past, most rail cars were steel and fitted with dove tailed female brackets either at the factory or in the field to accept the male wedge type railcar vibrators. This is still one of the preferred way to vibrate material out of rail cars even today. Read More…

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Glen Roberts

When A Vibratory Set Up Duplicates the Sledgehammer Motion of Five Workers at the Same Time…

Glen Roberts
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I have said for years to my “better half”, you can never have enough “toys” especially as it pertains to tools and for sure in my case golf clubs. This can be said about a recent spray dryer hopper application. We normally mount one industrial vibrator to the side of a hopper or bin and sometimes two by placing the second vibrator 180 degrees apart from the first vibrator installation area. In rare cases, we will actually mount three vibrators 120 degrees apart. The spray dryer customer wanted to mount five of our 1125 SI Single Impact Air Knockers on one hopper to dislodge sticky material. Not only did they want to mount five vibrators, but they also wanted them to impact at the same time. So, the folks of Cleveland Vibrator got creative.  Read More…

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Glen Roberts

Maintaining Proper Greasing of Rotary Electric Vibrators While Operating in the Field

Glen Roberts
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Being involved in manufacturing either directly or indirectly for 45 years, I hopefully can relate to the uncertainty surrounding when you should grease Cleveland Vibrator’s Rotary Electric Vibrators and how much grease you should apply. Cleveland Vibrator Co. provides our customers with an easy-to-follow Installation, Operation, and Maintenance Manual, specific for each individual drive ordered and is shipped with every vibratory product order. A section of the manual addresses proper greasing of the bearings and also indicates when you should apply the grease and how much is needed. The manual explains the intervals to actual running hours ratio which tells you when greasing the units supplied with manufacturer installed grease fitting is needed. There is, in my opinion, a  “grey” area. There is an amount, measured in grams, that is needed to properly lubricate the bearings of our Rotary Electrics. How do you determine the amount of grease you are loading into the bearings when the amount of grease per pump of the grease gun handle lever is unknown? Read More…

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Craig Macklin

Vibrators Don’t Damage Equipment, Wrong Installations Do

Craig Macklin
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I am just back from a whirlwind trip through the heartland where I had the opportunity to visit a few plants and equipment makers installing and using vibrators.  In the plants in particular, I came across a few instances of damaged and repaired equipment, such as cracked hopper walls that had to be re-welded.  Too often, the vibrator gets a bad rap in these situations, where in reality, the damage is a function of not sizing or installing the vibrator correctly.  In this post, I want to make three easy recommendations for industrial vibrator users to hopefully prevent future perception of industrial vibrators causing damage: Read More…

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Jack Steinbuch

Are You Afraid to Ask About Sizing Industrial Vibrators for Bins or Hoppers?

Jack Steinbuch
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I’ve been told that my last blog regarding the importance of wall thickness when utilizing external industrial vibrators for bins or hoppers seems to have struck a chord.  I plan to expand on that blog by providing some recommendations for sizing external vibrators since I merely referred to a vibrator with proper force previously – and you just may have been afraid to ask!

Essentially, we need to apply enough external force to the wall of the bin or hopper to assist gravity in getting material to flow.  While I previously stressed properly flexing of the wall to get the material to flow, we still need to determine the correct amount of force to apply based on the configuration of the hopper as well as the bulk density and flowability of the material. Read More…

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Craig Macklin

More Grain Entrapment and Engulfment: Hopper Bottoms

Craig Macklin
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As further follow-on to my previous post, I wanted to look at a specific subset of Grain Entrapment and Engulfment cases.  As I mentioned, I don’t think industrial vibrators and/or timed knockers are the silver bullet for preventing all cases.  However, I do think they can be effective for Read More…

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Craig Macklin

Grain Entrapment and Engulfment

Craig Macklin
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Due in a large part to the efforts of NPR, I recently became more aware and educated on a tragic and horrifying issue in the Feed and Grain industry: Grain Entrapment and Engulfment.  Basically, this is the incidence of being buried and/or drowned in bulk grain.  I shudder to even think about the experience.

Reading through NPR’s listing of incidents, I noticed a couple of things that had me thinking more about why this is happening and whether Cleveland Vibrator Company might play a part in future prevention.  First, the incidents reported seem to be more frequent in the past few years.  Second, there is some recurrence of incidents stemming from people climbing into bins, hoppers and silos that have stuck material in order to “unstick” it.

Certainly, the second item connected with me as we are a manufacturer of material flow aids, like industrial vibrators and knockers, that are used to prevent or correct material sticking, clogging, rat-holing and bridging.  I wanted to learn more about what we could do.  So, I called Read More…

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