Skip to Content

Air Knife Positioner

Precision Air Knife Adjustment for the Steel Industry

A steel manufacturing plant was looking for a way to improve their setup and changeover when running different sizes of materials. During the hot dip galvanization process of the steel, an air knife setup was utilized to control the thickness of the galvanization for different material sizes. Historically, the height of the air knife was set by two screw jacks connected by a link shaft. In this particular application, the vat was roughly 120´ wide. The large width resulted in very long link shafting and slow travel rates of the air knife assembly. The slow travel rates were causing high scrap rates due to the incorrect and inconsistent galvanization thickness.

It is common to use line shafting to connect multiple jacks together in various arrangements, such as "H", "U", or "In-Line" arrangements. But sometimes this can cause challenges in the application. Often the product or structure may impede the line shafting from connecting to each jack. Or, in this case, the length is too long resulting in lower RPM preventing critical speed issues of the line shafting. In these cases an alternative solution is needed.

Application Solution

In conjunction with a local distributor, Nook was able to provide a solution that not only improved the customer´s scrap rate, but also improved the process capabilities. It was the team´s decision to eliminate the connecting shaft between the screw jacks and provide a system with electronically linked Rockwell servo motors that was paramount in improving the speed and repeatability of the process. The rapid, precision capability of the 2R-BSJ-U ball screw jack allowed for fast and easy changeover for different product dimensions. The 2R-BSJ-U was specially configured for seamless integration to a Rockwell MPL-B430P servo motor. The jack was configured with 10" of travel, and a 6:1 worm gear ratio. This solution has helped the manufacturer cut nearly $5000 of daily scrap.

Nook Advantages

  • Local application expertise
  • Seamless servo integration
  • Proven ActionJac quality
  • Made in the USA
  • 2 week delivery on standard jacks
  • Nook "Blue-Book" part number protection

Customer Benefits

  • Decrease in changeover time
  • Scrap material reduction of $5000 per day
  • Increased speed and repeatability with a servo controlled screw jack
  • Overall decrease in processing cost