When the grain upload system at Miller Brewing Co.’s Fort Worth, Texas plant needed a complete redesign and equipment upgrade, staff engineer Roy Marin saw an opportunity to eliminate the troublesome automatic diverter, which plugged regularly, with a more cost-effective and efficient solution.
The design specifications initially called for a manifold with a dozen 4-foot radius sweep elbows to be installed at the base of the grain silos, but there simply wasn’t enough room at the intended installation point. You can read the complete case study here.
While researching components to help solve this engineering quandary, Marin discovered Smart Elbow® deflection elbows from Hammertek and was intrigued by their innovative design. Smaller than the traditional 4-foot-long radius sweeps, the Smart Elbow product was an attractive choice for the tight quarters of the brewery.
A dozen 6-inch Smart Elbow models were installed in the new manifold and, thanks to their vortex design, there was significantly less degradation of the malted barley conveyed through the lines.
For brewers, maintaining the integrity of the barley hulls is especially important. Shredded hulls lose their efficacy as a filtration medium. Hammertek’s Smart Elbow deflection elbows preserved the integrity of the barley hulls moving through the conveying lines, even around corners.
Since the installation of the Smart Elbow deflection elbows into the new pipe manifold (which came in $30,000 under budget due to design streamlining and ease of installation), the Fort Worth plant hasn’t experienced a single plugging-related issue or failure.