In today’s post, we’re going to focus on one of the less common options for a Waukesha positive displacement pump- Armoloy coating. An Armoloy coated Universal series pump means the rotors, body, and cover have been coated with a super thin deposition of precision chromium. But what is it, what does it do for the pump and in what applications should we consider it? To answer these questions, let’s look at a recent application we found where Armoloy saved the day.
Recently, we were working with a manufacturer of shampoos and other personal care products. They have a large number of Waukesha pumps they run every day and recently had been running a high mineral, scrub-type product. Think salt or apricot scrubs. These are products contain hard, abrasive particles that in conjunction with high salts or mineral contents, can cause tremendous wear on any type of rotating process equipment- effectively slurry polishing it.
About ¾ of the way into their run, the customer noticed they were getting much lower-than-expected transfer rates on one of their U2 model 45 pumps. Further inspection showed an almost aluminum cast appearance on the rotors, body, and areas of the cover where product had come in contact- clear signs that it had been handling a very abrasive product. Due to this wear, the back face clearances on the body were also way out of tolerance, the root cause of our volumetric efficiency problem.
So what was our suggestion? Replace the pump and have the new pump Armoloy coated. Armoloy coating deposits precise amounts of chromium to both increase hardness of the substrate (up to 78 Rc) and reduce the coefficient of friction to as low as 0.12 (as compared the coefficient of friction for plain stainless, which is about 0.58). This adds the lubricity that we need for highly abrasive products and gives us corrosion resistance equivalent to 440C! These wear properties can help maintain efficiency and extend body and rotor life by up to 5x, while significantly reducing downtime due to component replacement.
Armoloy TDC is FDA approved and safe for food contact under a blanket approval from the USDA. Pumps can come from the factory with Armoloy coating or Triplex can have your pump sent for Armoloy on an aftermarket or repair basis. Armoloy coatings give the pump a silver satin appearance and have post polishing options but are not suitable for mirror finishes. Armoloy coatings are permanently bonded to the substrate and will not flake or chip. Armoloy is suitable for a range of temperatures and are not susceptible to thermo-shock when cooled.
We see Armoloy as a great option, not only for personal care manufacturers, but for anyone pumping abrasive materials or looking to get longer life out of their Waukesha PD pump. Think things like mustards or peppery Bloody Mary mixes- anywhere we are pumping slurries with abrasive materials. And as always, if you have any questions about your Waukesha Universal series pump or Armoloy coating, please contact a Triplex Sales Engineer today!