Vezin Samplers are relatively simple machines to operate and maintain. That being said, even the simplest machines will require maintenance at some point during their service life, and Vezin Samplers are no exception.
Here are a few items to consider in your maintenance planning activities:
While gearbox failures are a very rare occurrence with Vezin Samplers, the oil within the gearbox should be replaced at regular intervals. The oil change interval will vary by application and depends primarily on the amount of time the sampler is in operation. A 24/7 operation will obviously require more frequent service than an eight-to-12-hour–a-day operation.
Regardless, a good starting point is approximately every six months. From this starting point, you can simply adjust the oil change interval upward or downward based on the condition of the used oil.
Cutter lip assemblies
Even in light-duty applications, the constant flow of material over the cutter lip assemblies will wear the edges of this component over time. While wear of this component does not affect the operation of the machine itself, worn cutter lips will have a negative impact on the samples collected. Excessively worn cutter lips will generate errors with samples collected.
Cutter lips are not a high wear item, but they should still be monitored at regular intervals. The length of the inspection interval is again determined by the amount of operating time and flow rate for a particular application. Higher operating times and higher flow rates result in increased wear, which in turn lead to shorter time periods between inspections.
A good starting time frame for inspection is every one to three months. Adjust the inspection interval from this point based on observations from previous inspections.
An inside view of a McLanahan Vezin Sampler showing the cutter lip assemblies.
Cutter lips can be considered worn when the leading edges:
- Become excessively flat or blunted (a leading edge that is greater than approximately 1/8” or 3mm)
- Are no longer in the same horizontal plane
- Are rough in appearance
- Exhibit some other sort of deformation
Inspection door/panel gaskets
While they do not affect the operation of the machine, door and access panel gaskets play an important role in sealing the sampler from the outside environment and preventing the escape of fugitive material.
The gasket material itself is a stable material that could last a long period of time if it were simply installed and left alone. In reality, however, repeatedly removing and replacing access panels along with the opening and closing of inspection doors will cause accelerated wear of the gasket material. It is difficult to state a typical time frame for the inspection of gasket material since any one particular instance of access/maintenance to the sampler could result in damage to seals.
Instead, it is likely better to simply perform a quick check of any gasket material that is present around an inspection panel or access door each time the panel is removed or the door is opened. In this way, any damaged gasket is noticed and replaced quickly.
Gasket material should be replaced if:
- There are missing pieces
- There are loose sections
- The gasket material has been abraded away to the point where a good seal is no longer possible
Spray bars and nozzles (if equipped)
It is most common to see spray bars and nozzles in Vezins used for slurry sampling applications, but spray bars and nozzles are a fairly common option and do require some periodic inspection and maintenance.
The maintenance issues involving these components are generally focused around whether or not the there is a blockage of some kind, or if the valve arrangement that operates the water flow is functioning correctly.
Most common, however, is blockage of water flow. Usually this takes place at the nozzle itself and can be the result of buildup from either inside or outside of the nozzle, but usually it is a combination of both.
Buildup from splashing slurry can slowly accumulate on the outside the spray bar and nozzles, slowly building to the point where flow out of the nozzle is impeded, and then eventually stopped. Similarly, particulates that are suspended in the wash water will slowly build up inside the nozzle, slowly closing off the opening in the nozzle.
Regardless of how it occurs, when the flow of wash water from the nozzles is observed to be significantly reduced (reduced to the point where the spray is not cleaning the cutter lips), the nozzles should be removed (if possible) and cleaned.
If water is not spraying from the nozzles, the nozzles should also be cleaned.
If the problem then persists, the valve controlling the water flow should be checked.
A good starting timeframe for checking the spray bars and nozzles would be monthly. Subsequent inspection timeframes should then be adjusted based on observations from the previous inspection.
Long service life for Vezin Samplers
Vezin Samplers are a very accurate and easily implemented machine that typically offer long service life with minimal maintenance. In the event that some maintenance work is necessary, these common items can help keep your machine up and running.