Viscometer Helps Coating Process
Oxfordshire based Chiltern Connections specialist is a provider of conformal coating machines and associated solutions for a wide range of industrial customers. Applications for their coating machines are generally highly specialised and a means of preventing corrosion or protecting important components from various environmental challenges and thereby helping to extend their working life.
Viscosity control is an essential part of the coating process and as a leading supplier of specialist analytical instrumentation and equipment, including Brookfield Ametek Viscometers, FULLBROOK SYSTEMS have made an important contribution in helping Chiltern Connections to improve the reliability of their coating machines. Measuring viscosity consistently and reliably to a resolution of 1cP is an example of the quality control standards required by the end-user and underlines the importance of the role of the viscometer to the overall performance of the coating machines.
Reliability had been an issue with the original in-house design of viscometer previously used in Chiltern Connections coating machines. As a result the decision was taken to source a commercially available viscometer, preferably with as few moving parts as possible so the objective of improving reliability and reducing unscheduled service call-outs, could be achieved.
As a result of discussions with various suppliers, Chiltern Connections selected Fullbrook Systems as they offered a more cost-effective solution with the Brookfield Ametek AST 100 Viscometer, combined with a fast and positive response to their requirements.
Following trials to establish the suitability of the AST 100 viscometer for their coating machines, Chiltern Connections placed an immediate order for a Brookfield AST 100, followed by an order for another 2 in 2015.
Acknowledged as one of the most innovative means of viscosity control, the AST 100 provides direct, in-line viscosity measurement in a range of 2 - 12500 (cP or equivalent cup-seconds) and with a repeatability of ± 1% of the reading. Among the key features of the AST 100 appreciated by Chiltern Connections are; a rugged 316 stainless steel construction, no moving parts to wear, bind or contact with process materials, hence its high reliability and ease of maintenance. It is also easy-to-install and can be cleaned-in-place.
Bob Speirs, Engineering Manager at Chiltern Connections said, “The biggest benefit has been reliability. Apart from one unit with a small electronics issue which Fullbrook Systems replaced quickly once we had described the fault, there have been no failures in service. As reliability had been our primary concern we are delighted with the performance. We especially like the easy mechanical and electrical interfacing into our systems and the integrated temperature probe”. Bob added ”Fullbrook Systems have been very responsive to our needs and we have no hesitation in using them in the future and recommending to others as the AST 100 has helped us to improve our system in the eyes of our customers.”