Concrete Pipe Casting MachineryPost Processing & Handling
The modern precast factory aims to reduce its dependence on human ability and instead invest in robotic handling solutions to solve its product handling and production needs. HawkeyePedershaab possesses a unique competency in this area and has commissioned over 60 fully or semi-automatic factories ranging from pipe factories, pipe & manhole combination factories as well as large bore pipe & box culvert factories from diameters ranging from 250mm to 3000mm and up to 3m x 3m box culverts.
HawkeyePedershaab offers a full range of solutions from fully integrated automatic facilities to stand-alone robotic handling modules and everything in between.
Concrete pipes, manhole & box culverts are heavy unwieldy items which are difficult to move and easy to damage especially in their uncured state. HawkeyePedershaab takes this physical and emotional stress out of the production equation through their full range of automated product handling solutions.
Whether the need is carefully transporting freshly produced 300mm pipe from the pipe machine to the curing area where the slightest accelerations can damage the product or the need is taking a cured 3000mm concrete pipe removing its massive pallet and header and transporting it out of the building, untouched by human hands, HawkeyePedershaab has expertise and experience in handling the task.
Automatic Demoulding Cranes
Often the pace setter in a concrete pipe factory is the man either driving the pipe cart or operating the overhead stripping crane. A plant’s productivity and efficiency is in the hands of one man – a man who can become ill, take a vacation, quit his job, etc.
Whether the machine is a self-stripping machine like a Mastermatic or a KastMaster or is a crane-stripping machine like a PipePro or a packerhead, HawkeyePedershaab can offer automatic and reliable solutions for moving the fresh concrete pipes from the machine to the curing area.
This is often the most critical piece of automation in the factory ensuring the plant’s efficiency and productivity remains at the highest levels day after day.
Moving Floor Systems
The most advanced and effective way to cure your concrete products is to use a moving floor system. Such a system immediately brings your concrete products into a humidity and heat controlled environment and advances them through a carefully controlled curing process that in approximately 6-8 hours result in a sufficiently cured product that it is able to be automatically handled with confidence.
Such moving floor systems consist of a series of large flat pallets on which the products are placed that ride on floor-mounted rails and are carefully controlled by floor-mounted rubber drive wheels – advancing the concrete products through pre-cure, curing and post-cure chambers and ultimately to an automatic unloading station where the cured products are removed from the flat pallet. It is then returned to the production machine for more products.
Set Ring Removal
In automatic factories that are using temporary set rings rather than stay-in-place headers HawkeyePedershaab provides robotic manipulators to remove the set ring from the pipe or manhole after the concrete has had its initial set and return it to the machine for re-use.
This is a critical safety element in the factory as it prevents human personnel from entering areas of operating automatic equipment. HawkeyePedershaab provides set ring retrieval solutions for both moving floor curing systems and open – floor, overhead crane-based curing solutions.
Automatic Pipe Handling Cranes
In order to keep the production machine in an automatic factory running at its peak efficiency it is important to eliminate any downstream bottlenecks. A common factory bottleneck is getting the cured products out of the curing system to make room for new fresh products. HawkeyePedershaab offers numerous solutions for this task for many different plant layouts including both moving floor and open floor curing setups.
One of the most time consuming processes in a concrete pipe or manhole factory is the removal of the pallet from the cured product. HawkeyePedershaab has designed numerous depalletising solutions each tailored to the specific task required.
The HawkeyePedershaab depalletising solutions are uniquely effective in their use of a combination of horizontal high-frequency pneumatic tapping and vertical hydraulic pulling ensuring a quick and gentle removal of the pallet from the concrete product.
In fully-automatic systems the pipe or manhole is introduced into the depalletiser using an automatic manipulator and in standalone or semi-integrated systems the pipe is carried to the depalletiser using a fork truck or electric transport cart.
Removing headers (top rings) from cured concrete pipe is a delicate time consuming process that if done improperly can result in a damaged or pulled spigot – necessitating the scrapping of the pipe. HawkeyePedershaab’s patented header removal system utilises the principle of “D-Wedge” to carefully and consistently remove the header without damaging the spigot.
The HawkeyePedershaab header removal systems engage a machined groove in the header at either two or four points and use a combination of pneumatic tapping and gentle hydraulic pulling to quickly remove the header.
In fully-automatic systems the header removal device is built into the product manipulator and in stand-alone or semi-integrated systems the pipe is carried to the header removal station using a fork truck or electric transport cart.
The final step in the product handling process involves taking the pipe or box culvert from the vertical to the horizontal position for fork truck yarding. This tilting-down process is very laborious and is a common source of factory injuries as well as product damage.
HawkeyePedershaab offers numerous tipping solutions ranging from massive stand alone tippers used in the tip down of large pipes and box culverts to more moderately sized tippers that are integrated into fully-automatic handling systems.
Pipe Sorting Systems
One of the benefits and hallmarks of HawkeyePedershaab mass production systems is their ability to process two or even three sizes of pipe simultaneously reducing pallet and mould investment as well as increasing plant flexibility.
In automated systems HawkeyePedershaab provides sorting systems as the final step in the robotic pipe handling process to sort the pipe into like diameters for easy yarding by fork trucks.
HawkeyePedershaab offers two distinct solutions for this task using either an overhead stockyard crane or a turntable coupled with three separate out feed rails allowing the customer to choose whatever system best fits his plant layout.
Joint Ring Handling
One of the most crucial elements in the production of high quality concrete products are the joint rings (pallets, headers and set rings) that form the male and female ends of the pipes. In order to ensure the production of quality products it is key that these joint rings are kept clean and in shape.
The flow of joint rings throughout the production process is also integral to the efficiency of a factory as it is necessary for every product cycle to have the right number of joint rings in the right place at exactly the right time.
The HawkeyePedershaab joint ring handling solutions address both the quality and the efficiency issue by providing systems that automatically transport clean and inventory the joint rings eliminating the organisational bottlenecks and ensuring the efficient consistent production of high quality concrete products.
HawkeyePedershaab joint ring handling systems are available either as stand-alone components used to incrementally assist plant efficiencies or as a part of a fully-automatic integrated production facility.
Joint Ring Cleaning Systems
In order to ensure quick joint ring cleaning HawkeyePedershaab uses the approach of using multiple cleaning brushes simultaneously – each cleaning a different surface of the ring. This allows for a thoroughly cleaned ring in a cycle time that will not slow down the entire system which involves a sub 60 second cleaning time for the Mastermatic systems.
Another benefit of the HawkeyePedershaab joint ring cleaning systems is that they actually clean the ring as opposed to many competitive systems that fail to do so satisfactorily. The HawkeyePedershaab cleaners use pneumatics to control the pressure of the brush compensating for brush wear and allowing for adjustable cleaning pressures for different size rings. In addition HawkeyePedershaab pallet cleaners use a scraper to clean the critical underside of the top flange to prevent it from damaging core seals.
Joint Ring Inventory Systems
After automatic removal and cleaning of the pallets and headers (joint rings) HawkeyePedershaab offers space saving inventory systems that stock the joint rings in tall stacks either stored for future use or returned to the production machinery for the next cycle all without human intervention.
High speed joint ring stacking manipulators precisely maneuver the pallets and headers into and out of inventory as well as carefully stack the joint rings in 3.5m tall stacks.
Joint Ring Oiling
Before the pallet or header is introduced back to the production machine a release agent needs to be applied to it to ensure easy removal the following day. HawkeyePedershaab provides a number of automated solutions to this task including both dipping and spraying systems.
The HawkeyePedershaab spray oilers use wands that automatically adjust to all joint ring sizes and apply the release agent to all concrete surfaces of the joint ring.
Automatic Test & Process Lines
At their core HawkeyePedershaab is all about enabling and assisting the customer to produce consistently high quality concrete products. Part of this initiative is embodied in the Tec-Line automatic testing and processing lines normally integrated into a fully-automatic production system but also available as a stand-alone off-line process.
Spigot & Bell Deburring
In order to improve a pipe’s cosmetic appearance it is helpful to deburr the inner and outer joint shoulders of the pipe’s bell and spigot. HawkeyePedershaab automates this process through the use of pneumatic powered crushing cones pulverising the fins on the pipe shoulder and leaving crisp, sharp joint shoulders.
The HawkeyePedershaab deburring systems are customisable to include both inner and outer deburring to both the spigot and bell or any combination of the above.
Printing – Inside & Outside
HawkeyePedershaab offers printing solutions for both the inside and outside of pipes. The printing equipment is complete with a structure to support and guide the printing device, a linear actuator and a 32-valve, one-color ink jet printer with a five gallon ink supply and a low ink warning indicator. The printing equipment automatically actuates when the product enters the marking station.
The pipe printer is able to print a wide range of figures and letters and is integrated to an operator’s interface so that all pipes can be marked with a production reference, date, manufacturer’s code or logo. Additionally the printer can be integrated with the vacuum test station or a bell/spigot measuring system to indicate a passed vacuum test.
HawkeyePedershaab offers several automatic quality control check systems in their Tec-Line program – a popular one being the vacuum testing systems. Vacuum testers are complete with an electrically powered rotary screw vacuum pump and reservoir tank. Horizontal testers include two bulkheads coated with closed-cell neoprene for sealing the pipe ends. Vacuum is drawn to a preset value and held for a preset time. Pressure is monitored during the test cycle. If the product passes the vacuum test the bulkheads automatically release. If the product does not pass an alarm sounds. Models are available for testing manholes and concrete pipe in diameters up to 1800mm.
The most fool proof quality control check one can make of their produced pipe is a true hydrostatic pressure test.
HawkeyePedershaab offers in-line and off-line hydrostatic testing stations designed to quickly fill concrete pipe with water to a pressure of 1 bar (14.5 psi) and then quickly dump the water where it is recycled through a large holding tank for use on the next pipe and send the pipe on its way.
When used in on-line applications the HawkeyePedershaab hydrostatic tester is outfitted with a powerful pump and air bleeding valves in order to quickly fill and empty the pipe of water preventing hydrostatic testing from being a crucial plant bottleneck.
Spigot & Bell Measuring
Positioned along the horizontal pipe outfeed line the spigot and bell measuring devices take multiple readings along the periphery of the pipe joints, accurate to less than 0.1mm, measuring both diameter and roundness and stores this data for generating quality control and statistical reports which can even be printed on the pipe.
As an added benefit the spigot and bell measuring device can be outfitted in conjunction with an outside printing system.
Manhole & Spigot Deburring
In order to improve a manhole’s cosmetic appearance and ensure proper joining in the field it is helpful to deburr the inner and outer shoulders of the spigot. HawkeyePedershaab automates this process through the use of pneumatic powered crushing cones pulverising the fins on the pipe shoulder and leaving crisp, sharp joint shoulders.
The HawkeyePedershaab manhole deburring systems are designed to deburr the manholes in their natural vertical orientation and are customisable to include both inner and outer deburring to the spigot.
HawkeyePedershaab offers printing solutions for the outside of manhole products. In the manhole printing solutions the manholes are printed while the manhole is in its natural vertical orientation and are normally integrated into a fully-automatic manhole production line.
The manhole printer is able to print a wide range of figures and letters and is integrated to an operator’s interface so that all manholes can be marked with a production reference, date, manufacturer’s code or logo.
Manhole Vacuum Testing
The manhole version of HawkeyePedershaab’s vacuum tester tests the manholes in a vertical orientation.
Vacuum testers are complete with an electrically-powered rotary screw vacuum pump and reservoir tank. Horizontal testers include two bulkheads coated with closed-cell neoprene for sealing the manhole ends. The vacuum is drawn to a preset value and held for a preset time. Pressure is monitored during the test cycle. If the product passes the vacuum test the bulkheads automatically release. If the product does not pass an alarm sounds. Models are available for testing manholes up to 1800.
Manhole Hydrostatic Testing
The most trusted quality control check of produced manholes is a true hydrostatic pressure test. HawkeyePedershaab manhole hydrostatic testers are able to test a full range of manhole products including base sections.
HawkeyePedershaab offers in-line and off-line hydrostatic testing stations designed to quickly fill manholes with water to a pressure of 1 bar (14.5 psi) and then quickly dump the water where it is recycled through a large holding tank for use on the next manhole and send the manhole on its way.
When used in on-line applications the HawkeyePedershaab hydrostatic tester is outfitted with a powerful pump and air bleeding valves in order to quickly fill and empty the manhole of water preventing hydrostatic testing from being a critical plant bottleneck.
Manhole Spigot Measuring
The manhole spigot measuring device takes multiple readings along the periphery of the manhole spigot, accurate to less than 0.1mm, measuring both diameter and roundness, and stores this data for generating quality control and statistical reports which can even be printed on the manhole.
As an added benefit the manhole spigot measuring device can be outfitted in conjunction with an outside printing system.
Reinforcement Handling Systems
After the reinforcement cages are made on the cage machines HawkeyePedershaab offers a number of solutions for moving the cages automatically into the production machine’s casting stations. The process of transporting and loading the cages into the machine is often a bottleneck in a factory and by automating this process it is possible to obtain lower more consistent cycle times.
Whatever HawkeyePedershaab production machine is being used a PipePlus, PipePro, Mastermatic, KastMaster or packerhead one can be sure that an automatic reinforcement handling solution is available.