Aero mechanical Conveyors – Caring For Your Rope and Discs

by Dave Hesketh

Aero mechanical Conveyors – Caring For Your Rope and Discs

In this blog, we will discuss maintaining an Aero mechanical conveyor rope and discs and how to care for them. The rope and disc is the essential part of the aero mechanical conveyor as it moves at high speed to create an air flow which fluidises product.

While we aim to provide advice for troubleshooting common problems it is not a substitute for expert technical advice which you can get from our service and support team.

Rope Tension

One of the first things to look at when you are servicing your aero mechanical conveyor is the rope tension. You should always check the tension when the conveyor is empty of product and make adjustments accordingly via the access to the feed housing. It is advisable not to adjust the tension from the discharge housing due to the weight of the rope assembly on longer conveyors which could appear to be tensioned correctly but in fact, are not placed in inlet sprocket. Checking this tension regularly is a key step in preventative maintenance as often it will not need to be adjusted. Remember that the longer the aero mechanical conveyor, the longer the rope and used on heavy product this will cause more significant stretching in the rope so we advise you to check these more regularly for signs of wear.

Under Tension

A slack rope will continue to loosen as the conveyor runs until eventually the discs will drag along the underside of the feed housing and will wear the rope and discs. An easy way to spot a loose rope is to pay attention to the sound of the conveyor. A slack rope will start to flap around in the tube which will get noisier as you run the conveyor.

Over Tension

Just like an overly slack rope can cause excess wear in a  rope so can over tension. The most common cause of an over tensioned rope is staff errors so training is essential to keeping the rope correctly tensioned. The most obvious sign of an over tensioned rope is that you cannot move the discs by hand in the notch.

DART – Dynamic Automatic Rope Tensioner

The DART Automatic Rope Tensioner offers the ultimate in reduced maintenance and peace of mind for users of Aero Mechanical Conveyors. Investing in an automatic rope tensioner will help extend the life of your aero mechanical rope with minimal manual input.

1. Basic Model
Clean dry air, from 0.35 to 4 bar/ 5 to 60psi, is used to maintain a constant force in the conveying rope and disc assembly via a regulator. The pneumatic circuit maintains the force in the event of interruption to the air supply. Alternatively, an optional pressure switch provides a signal which can shut down the conveyor until the air supply is restored.2. Air Purged Seals
This option is essential where there is a likelihood of product becoming trapped in the sliding seals and thus compromising the effectiveness of the tensioning apparatus.

3. Basic Control Panel
This model has the benefit of sensors on the pneumatic cylinder that tensions the rope. These sensors warn that the inspection of the rope is required and warn when maximum rope stretch has been reached and that a replacement is essential. This panel can be offered complete with a Motor Starter for the conveyor.

4. Control Panel & Tension Feedback System
This model uses a load cell system that actually checks the tension is at the correct force. This is determined by the diameter and length of the conveyor. It maintains it at a level by constantly adjusting air supply to accommodate changing conditions. This is especially desirable where the product or the ambient air is subjected to significant changes in temperature.

Help & Advice

If you are struggling with the tension in your aero mechanical conveyor and need some advice get in touch with our Service & Support team. We have over 45 years experience in the solids and bulk handling industry and there is no problem we can’t solve!

Service & Support Team