June 2016 Trends Report

What has been bringing buyers to Bid on Equipment through the month of June and what are they looking for when they are here?
 
Below are the top ten search terms that have shown the largest increases from Internet search traffic this month.

 

Interest in each of these terms has grown 100% – 1500%!

Used Woodworking Tools Used AC Units For Sale
Used Restaurant Equipment For Sale Boilers For Sale
Used Dairy Equipment Used Printing Equipment
Used Water Heaters Parrot Ice Machine
Used Bakery Equipment Used Refrigeration Equipment
 
The top ten overall categories for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Woodworking Equipment HVAC
Bakery Equipment Conveyors
Machine Shop and Tools Lathes
Dairy Equipment Tanks
Restaurant Equipment Welding and Soldering
 
The top ten overall Manufacturer Pages for Bid on Equipment in the last month.
Sweco Combi
Trane Cherry Burrell
Bakers Pride Flexicon
Multivac Alto Shaam
Waukesha Bosch

What happened to those Supplies?

Several weeks ago, we launched a pilot project to start offering Packaging Supplies via Bid on Equipment, but we ran into a few unexpected issues and decided it was best to take a step back and reevaluate. After ensuring that all existing orders were completed, we took down those pages to give us a chance to work through the issues we identified and ultimately provide you the best service that we can. We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused.

Powder Blending (and the Difference Between Tumble Blending and Ribbon Blending)

Powder blending is crucial for many reasons. In the food industry, powders need to be blended to form the right ingredients or to provide the correct flavor. In the agriculture field, blending is required to mix the appropriate nutrients for fertilizers. Blending is also extremely important in the pharmaceutical industry, as it helps to create medications to treat various conditions. Additionally, powders are blended for the purpose of coating certain products or materials, for the purpose of improving product quality or to alter current properties of materials, among others.

Powder blending is nothing new or revolutionary. In fact, it’s among the oldest unit operations in solids handling. What is new, however, is the technology and equipment that continues to evolve for powder blending purposes as designers and engineers better understand what types of powders need to be blended and address challenges or equipment shortcomings accordingly.

The Various Types of Blending

As you may imagine, there are several different types of blending, which all boils down to what types of powders need blending and what the end application is. There are three basic types of blenders. These are classified as small-scale random motion (also commonly referred to as “diffusion”), large-scale random motion (also commonly referred to as “convection”) and shear.

As the name implies, diffusion blending works with smaller particles and occurs when said powders are distributed over a fresh interface. Diffusion blending is important when high homogeneity is desired. It’s also a rather slow blending style. Conversely, convection blending works with large particles and uses an impeller or similar instrument to move particles from one point to another. Convection blending is ideal for cohesive materials, and this type of blending also enables liquids to be added during the process. Finally, there’s the shear style of blending, which incorporates additional materials, such as granules, to help the blended mix reach a certain level of consistency.

Now that we’ve briefly gone over the different types of blending, it’s worth pointing out some of the more popular solid-solid blending equipment. The three most popular are ribbon blenders, tumble blenders and vertical blenders. In this piece, however, we’ll focus more on what is involved in tumble blending and ribbon blending.

Tumble vs. Ribbon Blending

Tumble blending and ribbon blending are two of the most popular types of blending for solid-solid mixing purposes. Ribbon blenders, specifically, are a good example of high-speed convective blending in that they’re able to move large particles from one point to the other and in a very fast manner. Ribbon blenders typically consist of a U-shaped trough and an agitating device that consists of several ribbons, which thereby work to move material in various directions. These ribbons are fast operating, with the potential of reaching 300 feet per minute, or fpm. These ribbons move powder in both radial and lateral directions. Ribbon blenders are available in both vertical and horizontal configurations.

Tumble blending, on the other hand, is best for materials that require low impact. Specifically, tumble blenders are rotating mixers that are often available in several configurations, two of the most notable being double cone and V-shaped. Often times, these configurations are also interchangeable.

Tumble blenders operate somewhat slowly, usually at speeds of anywhere from 5 to 25 rpm, or revolutions per minute. They work via the diffusion style, which, as we covered earlier in this piece, blends smaller particles.

But how do you know which one is right for you if speed of powder blending isn’t a huge issue and the blend you’re dealing with would suffice in either application? Here’s a look at some further considerations to help you make the choice between tumble blending and ribbon blending.

  • Tumble blenders are generally larger than ribbon blenders, especially vertical ribbon blenders, which take up the least amount of room on a plant floor. So if space is at a premium in your shop, know that a vertical ribbon blender will likely be the best option. Generally speaking, tumble blenders are the types of mixers that take up the greatest amount of space.
  • Do you need the blender to discharge completely? If that’s the case, then the tumble blender is your best bet, as such mixers discharge near 100 percent.
  • When it comes to producing the highest-quality, lump-free blend, ribbon blenders are the ideal mixer. That’s because the high speeds at which the ribbon blender works at ensures that the product it is processing mixes efficiently. While you can purchase and install lump breakers or the likes of choppers on any type of blender, ribbon blenders are still a cut above the rest when it comes to producing lump-free.
  • Heat or no heat? Ribbon blenders generate more heat than other types of blenders, so this should be a consideration when selecting a blender. However, it’s really only a problem for heat-sensitive applications, as the increase in heat is not significant.
  • Capacity: Ribbon blenders usually only work effectively with powder batches that take up at least half of its capacity, which can be an issue if smaller quantities of product need to be processed. Tumble blenders, on the other hand, usually work just as well when they’re at 10 percent capacity as they do when they’re at 100 percent capacity.
  • Cost: Cost is always a big consideration behind the purchase of new equipment. When it comes to the cost of blenders, they can range from several thousand dollars to tens of thousands of dollars, certainly no small drop in the bucket for companies. Ribbon blenders, however, are considered the most affordable blender compared to other mixing equipment. Now’s also a good time to mention that if you need a blender, you don’t necessarily have to buy brand new. You can buy a previously owned blender, which you can find on a site such as Bid on Equipment and receive a like-new piece of equipment at a used price – no matter whether it’s a ribbon blender or tumble blender.

Though we’ve mentioned many differences between tumble blenders and ribbon blenders, it’s worth mentioning one significant commonality – and that’s blending accuracy. Specifically, both are very good at doing their jobs and creating a well-blended end product when they’re used under the appropriate circumstances. So while it’s important to note the differences between tumble and ribbon blenders, rest assured that each do their job very well when used with the right powders.

For more information on tumble blenders, ribbon blenders and all other types of blending systems – and to browse available equipment currently in stock – visit Bid on Equipment today.

How to Choose a Pump

Pumps are somewhat of an unsung hero in many industrial applications. Their purpose is to move fluids to and fro via mechanical action. These fluids may be liquids, gasses or even slurries, which are considered combinations between the two. This piece will briefly review the functions of pumps, the general classes of pumps and also provide input on how to select the right pump for your application, whatever it is that it may be.

Pumps 101

We already told you how important pumps are in any industrial application, even though it may be a part that you totally take for granted. And industrial pumps are actually usually divvied up into three main categories – direct lift, displacement and gravity. Pumps may be further classified based on their methods of placement. For instance, some popular types of pump types are positive displacement, or PD, impulse, velocity, steam and valve.

Pumps work thanks to some type of mechanism, whether that mechanism is reciprocating or rotary. Some pumps run on electricity, while others may be powered by engines or by the wind. Some pumps are even operated manually. Depending on your application, you may require either a large pump or a small pump. Some pumps are huge, perhaps the size of a room, while others – mainly those used in the medical field – may be microscopic.

Needless to say, but there are lots of different types of pumps available, but knowing which one is the right fit for your application could be the difference between success or failure. So just how do you know what’s the right pump for your application? It starts with knowing a bit about the pumps you’re considering so that you can make the best choice.

What Pump is Right for Me?

So which pump is right for you? The answer may be a bit more complicated than you think. That’s because there are bevy of factors to consider, such as best efficiency point, or BEP. There are also application details and the operational experience of a pump. And then, there’s also the manufacturer to consider, as a high-quality pump will obviously go further than one that is poorly made and fails prematurely. Beyond all this, however, there’s also the all-important aspect of just knowing what pump will serve your application the most appropriately. Here’s a look at some of the most popular types of pumps and why (or why not) they may be a good fit for your application:

  • Centrifugal pumps: This is a popular type of pump that is often administered when dealing with low viscosity liquids and high flow rates. A centrifugal pump is characterized by impellers that rotate with the shaft, creating energy to move – and pressurize – the thin liquids as it moves along. Centrifugal pumps are commonly used in water, sewage and oil applications.
  • Gear pumps: This is another very popular style of pump, characterized by liquid being pumped as it’s passed between two gears. Gear pumps are available in either internal or external varieties. They’re very strong and can be built to fit within tight tolerances. They’re often utilized in the likes of hydraulic equipment, in automotive applications, machine tools and in semi-trucks.
  • Hydraulic pumps: There are a variety of hydraulic pumps, such as hydraulic piston pumps, hydraulic gear pumps, hydraulic screw pumps and hydraulic vane pumps. These pumps work, simply put, by pressurizing hydraulic fluid. Hydraulic pumps are mostly outfitted on hydraulic machines and other applications. These pumps are designed to be tough and long-lasting, so they perform well in demanding environments.
  • Screw pumps: Screw pumps work similar to gear pumps in that they rely on the use of two or more screws to move fluid through a system. Screw pumps are commonly utilized in oil and gas applications.
  • Submersible pumps: Many pumps are actually designed to work under water. These pumps are known as “submersible pumps,” and they work primarily in water applications, installed beneath the surface of the water. Sump pumps are a common example of submersible pumps, though sump pumps may also be pedestal pumps.
  • Vacuum pumps: These pumps are designed to pull a medium out of an area for the purpose of creating a partial vacuum. The mediums that vacuum pumps work with may be either liquid, gas or air.
  • Plastic pumps: While many of the pumps that we’ve listed here are designed for removing basic liquids and gasses, plastic pumps are specifically designed to transport much more hazardous liquids. Because plastic stands up better when exposed to volatile liquids in many cases, the material is especially useful when dealing with these hazardous mediums.

We’ve listed 7 common pumps here, but that’s only a drop in the bucket when it comes to the total number of pumps that there are available. And while the aforementioned are some of the most common types used in industrial applications, there are a bevy of factors that you need to be considering before deciding whether or not a pump is right for your application. Factors such as the type of liquid or gas that is being dealt with, whether the pump will need to be submersed, what the viscosity of the liquid is, how difficult the pump is to reach on a particular application and what type of an environment the pump will be working in.

The Cost of Pumps

As we mentioned earlier in this piece, pumps vary in all kinds of shapes and sizes. Some are large enough to take up an entire room, while others are small enough where they cannot be observed by the naked eye. Based on this, it likely doesn’t surprise you to learn that the prices of these pumps also greatly vary. While some might only cost a few hundred dollars, others may cost several thousand dollars. But being that pumps are critical components to industrial equipment, the lack of an efficiently operating pump can cause downtime and lost profits. So, simply put, a pump is a component that a successful business cannot do without.

But what happens if a pump failed prematurely and you don’t have the money budgeted to acquire a replacement just yet? After all, a pump is something you need – it’s a necessity, not a luxury. If that’s the case, one option is to purchase a previously used pump from a credible source such as Bid on Equipment. By purchasing a used pump from Bid on Equipment, it’s like getting a new pump at a used price.

For more information on pumps, and to browse the selection available at Bid on Equipment, contact the company today.