Finishing: Are Mini Spray Booths a Great Fit for Small Spots?

Posted: 06/04/2014 10:08AM

 

Smaller format automated reciprocating spray booths may fit physically in tight quarters. But is it a fit for your operation?

One of the best ways to learn about these systems is to see them live in action, where you can watch movement of the spray heads, the work piece and the general operation. This opportunity will come in a big way at the International Woodworking Fair, August 20-23 in Atlanta. At the last IWF in 2012, Stiles showed its Makor QOne, an oscillating spray machine with four automatic spray guns aimed at shops that spray multiple types of coatings each day, small batch runs, or want to lay down glue or fast-drying coatings with consistency.

Touch-screen controlled, the Makor QOne features a pressurized booth enclosure with filtered air. Its internal air flow is adjustable by means of inverters.

The conveyor is a self-winding disposable paper roll, so no need for a belt cleaning system or to clean the machine in between jobs. It has a quick change gun mounting system to accommodate different gun types and coating colors.

In anticipation of IWF, or to get a feel for features and benefits that you should weigh in choosing these machines, watch them in action on videos. In one posted in 2012, Jeff Allen, Scm’s Superfici America product development manager, shows the operation of the Compact Plus spray machine. Allen programs the Compact at a highly visible graphic user interface screen, feeds an MDF door into the rollers, and 42 seconds later retrieves it at the other end fully stained.

The camera captures the spray head action. Cut to five minutes later when Allen resets the machine for a clear coat.

“When considering the benefits of a flat bed spray machine, one of the key features to look at is the air flow inside,” Allen explains. “Airflow must be controlled and balanced in such a way that it maximizes the overspray recovery.” It is also important that air pattern directions don’t create turbulence, assuring an even coat, and maximizing recovery overspray.

Positive air pressure inside the chamber of spray machines keeps air flow moving from top to bottom, so spray is continuously moving in the direction of the workpiece.

”Another key feature of an automatic spray machine is to consider how the fluid is delivered to the spray guns,” Allen says. “It’s very important that you get as even pressure and as controlled flow rate as possible to the spray guns, to enable each gun to get the same amount of fluid onto the workpiece.”

Making It Easy
Manufacturer Cefla says its compact Easy represents a new “state-of-the-art” in two-arm oscillating spray machines. It works on wood products, but also can be used on plastics, glass, metal, and composites, and to spray glue. Available with either a wet (captures and recycles overspray) or dry filtration, it also uses photo diodes for visioning parts, so the spray is targeted, minimizing overspray. Its 77” belt accommodates a wider variety of part sizes. Its Airsphere Plenum System improves transfer efficiency and returns more coatings material for recycling.

 


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