Graphalloy bushings handle tough washdowns


Graphalloy® recently assisted a major food processing plant with a problem with one of its applications. The company produces name-brand sliced luncheon and deli-shaved meats which are distributed throughout the United States.

The application is in the caustic washdown area of their meat-processing conveyor. The load is 3-4 pounds, speed: 193 RPM, in ambient temperature. 

The plant was having issues with grease washing out of the bearings during the washdown process, which increased maintenance time. The metal bearings also had to be replaced on a weekly basis, which increased costs.

In 2010, they worked with engineers at Graphite Metallizing, the makers of Graphalloy, who recommended Graphalloy copper-grade bushings to replace the greased bearings, since Graphalloy does not require external lubrication. They initially tested four pieces of Graphalloy and, after a few weeks, converted one entire conveyor to Graphalloy.

Graphalloy bushings are self-lubricating and maintenance-free. They are chemically resistant and can operate in submerged
conditions, with hostile liquids. Graphalloy will not swell. FDA acceptable grades are available.

This plant has been using the Graphalloy copper-grade bushings in their meat processing conveyors, with caustic washdown, for more than 11 years now and the plant manager is very pleased with the performance and cost-savings.

Over the years they’ve converted the rest of their conveyors, and Graphalloy engineers are working with them on additional applications at this plant.

Graphalloy Bushings offer solutions in places where traditional bearing lubricants will not work, including high-temperature applications, clean environments, submerged operation applications, and more.  The Graphalloy material is self-lubricating, non-galling, chemically resistant, and can withstand temperatures from -400°F (-240°C) to +1,000°F (+535°C).

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