Engineered for Success: Easy Clean Vacuum Manifolds

Cover Remover Vacuum Manifolds Redesigned with Maintenance in Mind; No Silicone Sealant Required.      

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: We strive to exceed your expectations. We’ve been reviewing our service and support calls looking for ways that we can improve performance not only in our new lines, but also in existing systems. One item that popped up was the difficulty that maintenance personnel had with the vacuum manifolds.

The cover remover vacuum manifold serves a very important purpose, picking up and holding the cover of each petri dish and then dropping it into the perfect position to allow for the media to solidify with minimal moisture being trapped on the cover. If the vacuum cups lower into and aspirate the wet media, it can cause mess on the belt and can prevent the proper lift and placement of the cover causing quality issues or station errors downstream.

In the past, cleaning the vacuum media was a chore. The fill plate was held into the manifold body using silicone. To clean the manifold, the silicone seal would need to be cut away, the manifold body and fill plate cleaned, and the silicone seal replaced and allowed to cure. The curing time especially caused the process to be completed outside of production, rather than as spills occurred. With this in mind, our engineers took the vacuum manifold back to the drawing board.

Cover Remover Vacuum Manifolds
Cover Remover Vacuum Manifold – Original (left) and Easy Clean (right)

The silicone seal has been replaced with a polyurethane o-ring, which rests in a groove inside the manifold body. To clean the vacuum manifold, maintenance need only remove the screws holding the fill plate(s) in place. No curing required. The seal is independently replaceable, although the expected service life is quite long.

During the redesign, an optional change was also made. As seen in the drawing above, a split manifold is now available. The split manifold allows for operation of the system with only half of the lanes used. This option can reduce media waste, particularly during setup, making smaller batches more cost effective even on our largest systems.

The easy clean manifold is standard on all new projects and available as an inexpensive upgrade to all existing all MultiLANE™ and MultiDISH™ systems. Reduced lane operation is optional on new projects and will be available as a retrofit to many existing models. Email support@online-engineering.com for more information.

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