22 years after first installing an 18m3 box oven for a former sign making company in Bridlington, engineers from West Yorkshire-based Gallito Ltd recently returned to refurbish the same curing oven for Carnaby Powder Coatings (CPC).
CPC was established by Kevin Clayton in 1998, in the wake of the demise of the sign making business he was working for at the time. With his considerable experience of powder coating, and the prospect of unemployment looming, Kevin identified a potential opportunity and took the laudable decision to rescue the coating side of the business. “I was convinced that a market existed for a company that could provide a general powder coating service to local businesses in the area”, Kevin explained. 20 years down the line it’s evidently clear that this supposition was correct; today, CPC is a small but solid business, with a consistently full order book. CPC has a regular customer base of metalwork manufacturers and fabricators, but will undertake individual projects requiring a powder coat finish – anything from a set of vehicle wheels to a wrought iron gate, or a retail display unit to a bespoke steel balustrade… or indeed anything in between.
Gallito Ltd have been delivering cost effective solutions to fulfil the varying paint finishing requirements of a wide range of industrial processes for over 40 years; providing everything from standard spray booths and surface preparation equipment, through to curing ovens and conveyor systems, as well as complete paint finishing systems. Now a member of the DCS Group of companies – a leading supplier of high quality technology products and services for dust and fume control, Gallito have provided CPC with ongoing maintenance over the years and in 2002, when Kevin relocated the business to a modern 3,000 sq. ft. facility on Carnaby Industrial Estate, a little over 3 miles from Bridlington’s seafront promenades, Gallito were tasked with carrying out the removal and reinstallation of the oven.
However, after operating at 190°C for the best part of 22 years, the oven was beginning to succumb to the inevitable effects of age, and irritating technical breakdowns were becoming more frequent. So, when Kevin determined that the time had come to explore the available options for a suitable replacement, the fact that the old oven had been such a reliable investment over the years meant the decision to contact Gallito again was really a no-brainer.
Andrew Connolly, Apprentice Project Engineer at Gallito, visited CPC to assess the company’s future requirements. “Having listened to Kevin’s appraisal of the business’s requirements, and learning about the type of work that CPC are involved with, I gave the old oven a thorough inspection”, says Andrew, “and, although originally designed and manufactured by Gallito as a box oven, the unit had obviously undergone some conversion work to effectively create a tunnel oven.” At the rear end, Kevin has installed a duplicate set of double access doors, and a series of transport rails has been added so multiple workpieces can be fed manually into the oven at one end, and removed for cooling off at the opposite end; allowing items to stack up in the oven for curing, when production allows or necessitates, and sequentially withdrawn for cooling. But crucially, Andrew’s inspection revealed that the oven was structurally sound and, taking into account the company’s requirements, could be economically refurbished rather than replaced – saving CPC around 50% on the cost of a comparable new oven.
“The existing shell was still fully functional and had no heat spots,” Andrew explains, “and, although it was manufactured before I was born, the exterior simply required a coat of paint to freshen it up! The original engineering design drawings from 1996 had been retained in Gallito’s archives, so it was a relatively easy task to establish a specification for the refurbishment; including remanufacturing and sourcing compatible replacement parts.” Gallito manufactured a new burner box, new recirculation and ventilation ducting, and supplied a new Lanemark burner. Onsite works at Carnaby involved the removal and replacement of these components, which are covered by a new warranty, along with complete replacement of all the rock wool packing and foil insulation. Gallito also brought the technology up to date with the inclusion of a new control panel featuring touch-screen HMI display; built and programmed by XS Automation, another DCS Group company.
“From Andrew’s first visit through to commissioning of the refurbished oven, Gallito’s service has been outstanding,” says Kevin Clayton. “The oven remained fully operational until the end of the day before the team of fitters arrived, and the whole refurbishment was completed and the oven back in use again after just 3 days.”
Gallito manufacture a range of standard and bespoke solutions – from batch ovens, conveyorised ovens and drying ovens, through to curing ovens for operation at temperatures ranging from 30°C to 250°C. Ovens can be specified for use with natural gas, LPG, electricity and hot water or air heat exchangers and, if future needs dictate, the modular design and construction of Gallito’s standard range allows the addition of extra sections to increase the oven size. Ovens are supplied with a PID temperature control panel, including full touch-screen interface, and walls are constructed with an inner and outer skin of steel; incorporating a double layer of insulation, interleafed with aluminium foil.