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Product Focus: Dryer drying and toughness, too


Tuff-Wrap coverings prevent heat from radiating out of the dryer.

A demonstration on Dri-Air?s Tuff-Wrap hoppers proved that the durable covering can take a beating.

Helping dry materials stay protected from ambient air moisture is the Mini-Feed system, supplying a fixed amount of materials to the machine?s feed throat when requested.
An invulnerable hopper and a stingy feeder are two of the latest products from Dri-Air Industries Inc. (East Windsor, CT). The new dryer hopper uses a nonconductive and easy-to-clean outer polymeric covering called Tuff-Wrap. The covering increases the drying system?s efficiency, since it doesn?t allow the hopper to radiate heat. Of equal importance in some shops, it also resists dents and scratches.

The new hopper is also equipped with a novel gasket-free access door and an air distribution cone that reportedly dries all the resin in the hopper, right down to the slide gate. Dri-Air?s new Tuff-Wrap hopper is available on all sizes of hoppers from 5 to 2000-lb capacities.

?These new designs were born from an effort to actively pursue alternate and improved solutions to our advanced line of dryer systems,? says Charles Sears, Dri-Air?s president.

?The solid construction design provides superior damage resistance, as well as long-lasting aesthetics. We?ve seen on many occasions in molding plants hoppers that have dents on them from mold changes, or just from general use. This Tuff-Wrap hopper eliminates that problem.?

Drying-friendly feeder

Also new from Dri-Air is its Mini-Feed system, which only moves small amounts of dried material from the drying hopper to a molding machine?s feed throat during a run. It?s engineered to help you make sure your dried material stays dry.

With more conventional drying systems, the amount of material stored outside the hopper in gaylords, or in machine-mounted receivers, can store anywhere from two to four hoppers worth of material. During this time, the dried material can absorb moisture from ambient air, ruining its use in many applications.

With Dri-Air?s new stainless steel Mini-Feed system, the material is held in the -hopper until the machine-mounted receiver calls for new material. When it does, a shuttle moves a pre-determined, fixed amount of material into a moving air stream, transporting it to the receiver. This fixed amount can be as small as 7 g, or any multiple of 7 g, depending on shot size.

A quick disconnect under the feeder makes cleanouts and material changeovers a snap. Mini-Feed is ideal for small molding machines running demanding, high-quality parts, such as medical devices or connectors, according to Dri-Air sources. It?s available for all the company?s small, portable drying systems with one or two hoppers, and for Dri-Air?s hopper banks, which can be used as compact, centralized drying systems.?CK
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