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A Problem with Hog Hair: Hayward Gordon Finds a Solution

Food & Beverage
Hayward Gordon A Problem with Hog Hair Hayward Gordon Finds a Solution

A Problem with Hog Hair: Hayward Gordon Finds a Solution

Problem

A fresh pork processing plant in Michigan faced a serious problem with hog hair. The plant is part of a major, family-owned pork production business headquartered in the United States.

At the Michigan facility, hair and blood is removed from freshly processed hogs then drained into a sump pit in the floor. Water, hair and blood is then transferred to a rendering department in the same plant.

Excessive hog hair kept clogging up the existing submersible pumping system, starving flow to the pump. When this happened, the pump motor overheated, seals failed then the pump itself would fail. If a particularly large amount of hog hair was being pumped, the discharge piping became clogged.

Production would shut down as maintenance crews laboriously cleaned out wiry hog hair from hundreds of feet of pipe.

Stoppages of this kind were happening every two to three weeks, at a cost of around $3,500 to repair the existing pump. The plant had to deal with the frustration of having unreliable equipment that was expensive to maintain.

Clearly, something had to be done to stop the clogging.

Hayward Gordon A Problem with Hog Hair Hayward Gordon Finds a SolutionSolution

Drawing on over 60 years of company knowledge, Hayward Gordon engineers quickly determined that the existing pump at the Michigan plant was inadequate for the job at hand. The pump wasn’t chopping up the clumpy hog hair, making clogs almost inevitable.

The recommendation was to replace the pump with an immersible ChopX Chopper pump. The ChopX Chopper pump is designed with an impeller and cutter bar that act together in reducing the size of solids by continuously shearing and cutting the material apart.

The cutter bar and impeller also feature a non-clog design, to prevent hog hair from obstructing the inside of the pump. In this manner, chopped material is continuously discharged through the pump.

In addition to being highly efficient, the ChopX Chopper is built tough. The impeller and cutter bar are constructed from wear resistant, hardened tool steel.

The cutting capability of the ChopX pump eliminates the need for having a separate grinder on-site. By chopping up particles to make them smaller, the ChopX also protects downstream equipment. The pump is available in horizontal, vertical and submersible configurations to meet the installation needs.

Results

An immersible ChopX Chopper pump was added to the sump pit at the Michigan hog processing plant in September 2019. The immersible version of this pump is capable of operating in a wet or dry pit environment.

The facility made a few tweaks to their pumping system but didn’t require spare parts for the ChopX Chopper until it had been up and running for nine months. After nine months, the impeller and cutter bar showed some signs of wear and were replaced.

The cost of spare parts and maintenance in the nine months after installation came to around $7,000. Had the original pump remained in place, that expense would have been six times higher, based on what the processing plant was spending each time a shutdown occurred. In addition to cost-savings, clogging issues have been largely resolved and production is now unimpeded.

The client was so impressed, they purchased a second ChopX Chopper pump to use as a spare. When the original ChopX pump requires maintenance, it can be pulled from the line and the spare put in its place, minimizing downtime. Repair work on the first pump can be conducted at the plant’s discretion while the spare unit maintains clog-free operations. Another pumping issue solved with Hayward Gordon pumps.

Hayward Gordon is a North American firm with over 60 years of experience making highend industrial pumps and mixers. Hayward Gordon designs, engineers and manufactures its own line of mixers and pumps for the oil and gas, mining, chemical, food and environmental sectors. The company takes pride in producing what it calls, “problem solving pumps”—highly engineered equipment designed to provide solutions for specific challenges.

Hayward Gordon A Problem with Hog Hair Hayward Gordon Finds a SolutionChopX Chopper Pump
Powerful cutting action achieved by hardened intake plate with profiled cutter bars acting against sharpened, rotating impeller blades. Sharpened rear cutter on impeller shroud sweeps over spiral grooves in the casing backplate to cut and then expel stray material from behind the impeller.

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