Brainstorming: Need to manipulate 55# bags and lots of them.

Brainstorming: Need to manipulate 55# bags and lots of them.

Joined: June 2nd, 2015, 3:34 am

April 17th, 2018, 1:06 am #1

Ok.  My latest misadventure involves feeding tremendous amounts of raw material into a industrial mixer..    Most of our materials come as large slabs,  big chunks,  bricks,  bales or 55# bags.   All of these in various combinations get thrown onto the charging belt to produce the proper mixture.

The problem we have is not hefting and throwing entire bags onto the belt.   That's not hard.   There are various suction hoists and devices for that.   The problem we have... there are batches of material that we run where say we need  80 pounds of what's in the bag.    The standard solution is to throw one on the belt,  cut one open,  heft it and dump half into a poly-bag.   This is a lot of extra manipulation and slows the infeed down.   It gets worse when we have multiple bags needing to be split.

I need a means of holding the bag suspended over the scale where I split them.   Rather than heft the bag and pour it,  I envision holding the bag with a means or device,  removing the portion I want and putting the bag into the process.   

It would have to be simple enough that people with varied backgrounds can operate it.  It needs to be hold a variety of bag configurations and it needs to be simple enough to fab up in a garage or inexpensive enough it could be acquired via petty cash rather than budget.  

I spent a few hours googling,  and while I can find suction devices that are beyond our means... and I can find "super sack" handling equipment...  I can't find what I am looking for.

And with that,  I toss the ball into play.    
It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness. That is life.
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Joined: December 13th, 2015, 9:29 am

April 17th, 2018, 1:45 am #2

Used to use those for making dry dog food. move them around using a forklift, to get smaller amounts, we used a hopper on scales, empty required amount into hopper, then transfer hopper to conveyor into mixing machine.
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Joined: March 8th, 2004, 11:48 pm

April 17th, 2018, 1:45 am #3

What sort of bag? Paper, plastic, woven plastic, burlap, etc.

I would think a clamp on the upper end would be a start.
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Joined: June 2nd, 2015, 3:34 am

April 17th, 2018, 1:48 am #4

Plastic.   All of our bags are plastic, and we toss them right into the mix.
It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness. That is life.
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Joined: March 8th, 2004, 11:48 pm

April 17th, 2018, 2:07 am #5

Okay. Buy one of those Dust Deputy cyclone separator things. Put it on a 5 gallon bucket on a scale. Poke a hole in the next bag and use the vacuum to pull out as much as you don't need. Tape the hole in the bag. Label the bucket and move on with life. You should really have somebody make up the bags in advance during slack times.
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Joined: June 2nd, 2015, 3:34 am

April 17th, 2018, 2:15 am #6

Mark-T wrote: Okay. Buy one of those Dust Deputy cyclone separator things. Put it on a 5 gallon bucket on a scale. Poke a hole in the next bag and use the vacuum to pull out as much as you don't need. Tape the hole in the bag. Label the bucket and move on with life. You should really have somebody make up the bags in advance during slack times.
No one wants to be that person because it's a lot of extra lifting.    Which is why I am soliciting ideas to reduce the labor requirement.    
It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness. That is life.
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Joined: April 25th, 2016, 7:52 pm

April 17th, 2018, 2:24 am #7

something like a 20 or 30-gallon barrel sliced in half lengthwise, supported by ropes or chains from engine hoist.
Connection points close enough to the middle so it will tip.
Prob want better wheels than the typical cherry-picker engine hoist has.
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Joined: September 19th, 2014, 6:28 am

April 17th, 2018, 2:40 am #8

just what are you mixing? concrete? 

How is your scale set up?  The solution I'm thinking of is to whip up a wooden or steel platform with a 12-18" hole that stands over the scale.  place a 5-gallon bucket with your empty bag in it on the scale.  The platform and scale are positioned as close to the conveyor belt as possible.

the bag you want to subtract from is placed on the platform.  you cut the bag open and push material from the bag into the hole until the scale reports the desired subtracted weight is reached.  the bag is then pushed off the platform onto the conveyor. The bucket is pulled off the scale, the bag changed out, and placed back on the scale ready for the next material.
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Joined: June 2nd, 2015, 3:34 am

April 17th, 2018, 4:15 am #9

Puffie40 wrote: just what are you mixing? concrete? 
Enormous batches of polymer.
It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness. That is life.
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Joined: April 25th, 2016, 7:52 pm

April 17th, 2018, 4:43 am #10

and that's why the plastic bags can go in with the raw materials?
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