Hennig Helps

Chip Disc Filtration Provides Peace of Mind for Lights Out Production

February 23, 2023

Coolant systems are an indispensable part of the machining process, and chips are an undeniable byproduct. The problem is that if the two mix, you have a recipe for disaster.

So, how do you go about keeping them apart? Traditional conveyors include a slot on the side for the coolant runoff. With this setup, what inevitably happens is that some chips go with the flow and migrate into the coolant tank and clog it up. Next thing you know, the overflow creates your own little Niagara Falls right there on the shop floor. Not to mention the damage free-floating chips in the coolant can cause going through the pumping system.

It’s hard to work lights out if you stay awake at night wondering if chips in the coolant system are going to bring operations to a crashing halt or flood half of the workspace. Well, now you can finally get a good night’s sleep, because Hennig has the solve.

It was one of our shop operators who had a Eureka moment and said, “What if we put a filter on the outside of the conveyor?” Our engineers thought about it and said, “You know, this just might work.” Thus, our Chip Disc Filtration (CDF) system was born.

How It Works

The patented CDF is an external filter using a disc design that provides a direct coolant flow path into the coolant reservoir. It works with any type of material, both in water- and oil-based coolant, down to 25 microns nominal. It can be used with hinge or scraper belts, which remove coarse chips before they reach the disc (Image 1).

Small particles that escape the belt naturally migrate with the coolant flow to the bottom of the rotating disc where they are collected, allowing the clean coolant to flow back into the tank.The accumulated particles rotate with the disc filter and are lifted out of the coolant towards a backwash spray mounted on the top of the unit. The spray blasts them onto the belt, where they are removed along with the coarse chips. A coolant blow-off means that the CDF unit is virtually self-cleaning (Image 2).

(Image 1)

(Image 2)

The Disc Difference

Because the CDF system is on the outside of the conveyor, there’s much less chance of damage to the screen. Our disc is made of stainless steel and designed to handle heavy chip loads that can create problems for drum filters that typically use nylon mesh that can be torn.

Another huge advantage is maintenance. Accessibility to the CDF is a snap. Because it’s on the outside, you can do the job in minutes, not hours. Our competitors’ models are down a full day or longer because it’s a real challenge to take those drums out of the system.

Need volume? We can make custom systems with as many 12-or 16-inch discs as required. The largest system we've made has twelve 16-inch disks. That flows 1,200 gallons of coolant a minute at twenty-five to thirty microns of nominal filtration.

CDF to the Rescue

Here’s a true story that illustrates the advantages of the CDF. A major global machine tool builder was having a problem with their standard hinge belt conveyors. Their horizontal machining centers were automated, and they were ready to run lights out. But because of all the aluminum they cut, chips flew out the standard hole as fast as the coolant. Before the evening shift, the system would fill up with chips and the coolant would overflow. We demonstrated the CDF system and it wasn’t long before the third shift finally became a reality. This year the company took delivery of 200 CDF units.

Bottom Line

Thanks to its patented design, customer tank for every application, compact size, and an affordable price point, the CDF is an excellent solve for anyone who is frustrated by the limits of chip and coolant management during lights out production. Sweet dreams.

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