A number of factors contribute to mass finishing success. Machinery, consumables, compounds, and process water must be evaluated individually and as a whole to create optimal results and stable process conditions.
When considering the flow rate of compound and process water into the processing bowl of a mass finishing machine, careful calibration is required based on the machine type and size, finishing task, condition of the raw work pieces, and process water conditions.
For example, high‐energy machines require a much higher flow rate than vibratory finishing systems. Similarly, work pieces heavily contaminated with oil, grease, and/or dirt require more compound and water than less contaminated work pieces.
Water flow and compound dosing rates are usually determined by processing trials in the test lab of the equipment supplier. Once a finishing process has been defined, the user must make sure that the established water and compound flow parameters are precisely maintained. This requires a well-calibrated and well-maintained dosing system.
At Rosler, we draw upon more than 80 years of worldwide experience to create and maintain effective mass finishing systems and deliver precise results. Our ability to do so is thanks, in part, to understanding the importance of water flow and compound dosing.
Compound & Water Dosing Systems
While the specific machines and processes they support range widely, basic components of compound and water dosing systems are quite similar.
Basic components of a compound and water dosing system
Each system includes the following components:
- Electronically controlled solenoid diaphragm pump for precise compound dosing
- Manual water shut‐off valve
- Water pressure reducer
- Solenoid valve for turning water flow on/off
- Manual valve to adjust the water flow
- Water flow meter
How It Works
- The dosing pump (1) injects the compound directly into the machine. Specific dosing rates can range between 0.4 to 2% of the water flow.
- A freshwater inlet (2) serves as a manual shut-off valve.
- The water flow is caused by the water main’s pressure. If the pressure exceeds 60 PSI, it must be lowered with a water pressure reducer (3).
- Water flow is turned on or off using a solenoid valve (4).
- When on, the water flow rate is adjusted to the desired flow rate with a manual valve (5).
- The flow rare can be monitored with the built-in flow meter (6).
Adapting to Change
If working conditions change, the compound and water flow parameters should be revaluated and accommodated as needed.
Changes that may require parameter adjustments include, but are not limited to:
- Switching the material for die‐castings from aluminum to magnesium.
- Adding new stampings to the work piece range and carrying more oil into the mass finishing machine.
- Changes in the workflow which require better corrosion protection.
- Too much foam in the machine.
- Spots suddenly appearing on finished work pieces.
- A desire to use a lower-cost compound, etc.
In each of these cases, seeking professional advice from the experts at your equipment and/or compound supplier is advised.
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Maintaining & Enhancing Your System
Basic maintenance is key in delivering precise finishing results as well as minimizing process downtime. Regularly checking all connections for unwanted leakages and examining the pump diaphragm for wear and/or damage are essential.
Make sure that the compound pump delivers the right amount of compound as well. If necessary, recalibrate the compound dosing pump.
Installing and monitoring a precise compound dosing system will improve the finishing results, enhance process stability, and reduce costs. These systems can be retrofitted onto any mass finishing machine.
The Rosler Way
At Rosler, our mission is to learn about our customers’ needs and issues in order to develop and deliver solutions. Contact us today to discuss your water flow and dosing challenges. We’ll partner with you to find a better way!
The Mass Finishing Water & Compounds Series also includes Part 1 – Identifying, Correcting Hard and Soft Water Conditions.