Case Studies: Oil Mist Recovery Cleans Machine Shop Air

Oil Mist Recovery Cleans Machine Shop Air

“Look how clean,” says Orbit Machining Company President George Zarytsky, pointing to the walls of his Schiller Park, IL, CNC precision machining plant. “Our old plant didn’t look this good,” he adds. “Dirt and grime were everywhere. There was an oil haze in the air.”

Oil mist recovery stytemOrbit uses advanced turning and milling equipment to manufacture high-performance metal parts like hydraulic manifolds for hospital beds and printing presses; oil and gas drilling equipment; and sophisticated refrigeration valves. The process uses an oil mist spray to capture dirt and bits of metal that are removed during the high-speed machining process.

“We needed to keep oil mist out of the plant’s air,” Zarytsky explains. He called in Hastings Air-Energy Control, New Berlin, WI, to handle the job. These specialists in air cleaning designed two air handling and oil mist collection systems, using 0.5 micron filters to remove “swarf” (dirt, oil and mist) and to improve working conditions around equipment in Orbit’s plant.

“It’s been one of our best investments,” Orbit’s president says of his oil mist collection improvement. “Having it prolongs the electronic life of our equipment. There’s no dirt anywhere; no dust; no oily residue collected on cutting parts or cabinetry of machines,” Zarytsky observes.

- Polyurethane Hose Connection -

Two or three feet of flexible, polyester polyurethane Master-PUR hose connects the Orbit machines to hard ducting in the overhead oil mist recovery systems. In use for over two years, these tough hoses collect oil mist residue from the inside working area of the CNC machines for recycling.

“The only maintenance I do is to clear out the swarf inside of the hoses by tipping them up and pouring the liquid back into the machines for filtering,” says plant manager Brian Kowal. These reliable PU hoses were purchased by Hastings from Masterduct, Inc., Houston, TX, as part of the oil mist recovery system. hard ducting in the overhead oil mist recovery system

IVEC™ systems, which control the Hastings air-handling installation, are secured inside of boxes on the wall to keep them dust-free. “The system runs lean,” Orbit’s President George Zarytsky comments, referring to the energy management controls that ramp fan speed up and down to reduce energy use.

“We can shut off part of the machining department to save CFM,” he explains. “Compared to our old building where we had fewer machines, our electric bill is not significantly higher with our two, new oil mist recovery systems in place. I know we’re saving energy.”