The Dust Doctor is in

ALL mines run into the issue of clogged water sprays, but a quick-change water spray system from West Virginia-based Repair King is one possible solution that not only enhances production but also helps keep workers safer and healthier.

Donna Schmidt

Published in the December 2009 Coal USA Magazine

It is not uncommon for continuous miner water sprays to clog due to water contamination and mineral build-up as the fluid travels though the fittings, motor housings, control panels and manifolds of a system.

The result not only slows down production, but also puts workers assigned to rectifying the problem in a precarious position as they work in areas that are difficult to access.

As a result, Repair King developed a customizable water spray system specifically to facilitate a quicker change-out of damaged or clogged sprays.

The first component of Dust Doctor is a high-strength aluminum cylindrical manifold which holds spray nozzles placed at intervals and a quick-connect fitting.

The manifold is docked in a protective steel housing which is weld-installed to a continuous miner or other machine and then secured with staple locks.

The design allows for the staple lock and quick-connect fittings to be exchanged within seconds, keeping miners out of hazardous and difficult areas such as conveyor throats, beneath cutter head gear cases and aside gathering pans.

As clogs occur after the installation of Dust Doctor, the water supply line can be rapidly detached and a new manifold with spray nozzles placed while the just-removed components can be cleaned and renovated for later use.

Repair King noted the major advantages to the product, aside from the most significant benefit of effective dust control, is that the replaceable sprays can be easily carried to the location and are durable, so installations – and even re-installations – are easily performed.

Because workers aren’t contortioned in tight, dangerous spots and don’t have to stop production for a significant length of time when clogging occurs, a mine’s downtime is greatly reduced while productivity increases.

Additionally, operations can experiment with an infinite number of spray combinations to find what is right for them, as the design accepts any collection of jet, fan or cone patterns in spray sizes No. 2, No. 3 or No. 5.

Once installed, mines may also notice that spray nozzle use time is increased – a benefit the company said came from the

60-mesh internal replaceable filter (half the size of a No. 2 spray orifice) fitted on each Dust

Doctor manifold.

Electric motor life can also be lengthened, heightening availability, through more efficient cooling.

The system is available for several other applications, including belt feeders and transfer points.

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