Dust Control Systems Ltd (DCS) has recently completed a major energy-efficient dust extraction scheme for leading furniture manufacturer Ellis Furniture at its factory in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire. Established in 1891, Ellis Furniture design and manufacture strong, durable and safe furniture to meet challenging environments such as universities, care homes and hotels.
The company’s Huddersfield site has 200,000 sq. ft. of production space occupying two separate buildings on either side of a road. On one side is a 65,000 sq. ft. Facility, which is dedicated to machining and panel production, and on the other side is the company’s extensive assembly and CNC routing facility.
Ellis Furniture’s engineering manager, Paul Dudley, explains: “Our two existing filters were already working at full capacity and, with further investment in new equipment planned for the assembly area, we knew that the filters would no longer be fit for purpose. The board gave us the go ahead to look at the various dust extraction options available and we were tasked with coming up with recommendations for a system that would provide the best long-term investment. After undertaking a detailed review of the pros and cons of different filter systems on the market we decided on an energy-efficient system proposed by DCS which centres round a Schuko ECOVAR VALIDUS filter.”
New generation ECOVAR VALIDUS filters feature a fan cascade system whereby fans are brought on-line or taken off-line according to demand. Cleaning cycles are also tailored to specific needs by employing a cleaning train regeneration system. The Validus also benefits from a standardised construction system which means that the filter can be installed quickly, with reduced transport costs. Built using corrosion resistant galvanised external panels, units can be fitted with thermal insulation to save on energy usage and to provide soundproofing.
“We were impressed with everything about the Validus filter”, says Paul Dudley, “and we already had proof of DCS’s capabilities following their highly successful installation of Ecogate throughout our machine shop, from which we continue to reap the benefits of massive energy savings.”
Ellis Furniture contracted DCS to install the new extraction system during the firm’s Christmas shutdown. This meant disconnecting and removing two enormous old drag chain filters, installing the new Validus filter, including all new ductwork, and having everything fully operational in just seven days. The new plant, sized at an air volume of 110,000 m3/hr, extracts from a total of 23 machines, with waste collected by the filter being discharged pressure-free from a rotary valves, via a screw conveyor, into an enclosed skip. The energy-efficient system employs four 37kW cascade fan units that operate in conjunction with an Ecogate energy-saving system, and are controlled from a touch screen control panel.
Matthew Thomas, a maintenance engineer at Ellis, who developed his engineering skills through the company’s internal development programme, and was involved with the dust extraction project from start to finish, says: “DCS engineers did a thoroughly professional job and executed our time line plan perfectly. Had we gone for a traditional filter, which would have been delivered flat-packed, it would have been a near impossible task. The Validus filter was supplied in three pre-assembled sections, which considerably simplified installation when compared with erecting traditional filters. ”