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Low Budget Baler and High Friction Ejecting

  1. Aug 17, 2011 #1
    As part of an engineering project I'm in, we've been asked to bale hops on a very low budget (close to 1500 dollars, instead of 15000 like most balers out there).
    These things take a good amount of force to compact but don't stick together well, so we've figured out easily how to compress some hops into a cube, but getting it out of the chamber has proved...problematic. the bale will stay together well on all sides except the two (top and bottom) in the direction of compression, if that makes sense.
    Our thought then was to compress this bale a bit more than necessary so that when we've withdrawn the ram, there will be time enough to shove the bale sideways (orthogonal to compression direction) out of the chamber and into an area that will keep some pressure on the top and bottom of the bale, where it can be bagged and vacuum sealed, as hops should be.
    This was a great idea until we realized that in compressing these things, they produce a good amount of force on the walls, and that means friction if we're pushing it sideways.
    What I'm hoping for here is maybe someone's seen something like this before in a different application. Most balers out there will push bales out in the same direction they were compressed, which would be easier but not an option for us, because of hops' strange characteristics.
    thanks for any help!
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 17, 2011 #2
    How about a tapered "mold".

    Or eliminate the baler entirely and just use the vacuum bagger to compress it. If that's not powerful enough, do it in a high pressure environment.
  4. Aug 18, 2011 #3


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    Here is a video of a robotic sawdust baler. The balers are able to process wood shavings, sawdust, chopped hay or straw, hemp wood, glass fibre, glass wool or other similar products


    Notice the rollers that the bale is pushed into. Less friction.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
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