If you’re purchasing a ribbon mixer, you’re going to need some tips on how to pick out the right one and use it. These guidelines will help keep you on the right track.
1. Choose the Right Location
Ribbon blenders are floor-mounted items, meaning that you need to have the appropriate floor in place and make sure it is level. Mezzanines can also accommodate these mixers as long as they are stable and level. However, bolting your blender to an unlevel surface can deform your machine and cause your mixer not to operate correctly.
2. Pick Out the Right Size and Power
Use your intended batch volume to pick out the size of your machine and the bulk density to calculate your necessary horsepower. Additionally, standard-duty agitators can generally handle up to 35 pounds per cubic foot. If your bulk density is heavier than this, go with a heavy-duty agitator. Otherwise, you could end up damaging your blender and having to purchase another one. That is why you should always guess your volume and bulk density measurements before you start shopping.
3. Fill Your Blender
Thorough mixing and optimal energy efficiency require enough ingredients, generally a minimum of 30 to 40% of the maximum fill capacity. When you work with less than this, you won’t get a good mixture, and you’ll waste electricity.
4. Tell Your Supplier About Your Cleaning Plans
There isn’t a need to take your agitator shaft out when you are cleaning your blender most of the time. However, some manufacturers need to avoid cross-contamination with certain ingredients. Since they are not built for this frequent disassembly, it is best to tell your supplier if you plan on removing the shaft for regular cleanings. Then, they can recommend modifications to make the process easier.
5. Use a VFD
Variable frequency drives are used to start your blender when it is loaded, so there is not a sudden spike in torque. You can then adjust these to your necessary speed once the ingredients are in motion, making startup easier on your machine.
6. Fine-Tune Your Machines
The best thing about ribbon mixers is that they have many options for add-ons, such as paddle agitators and high-speed chopping blades that you can use to mix a plethora of products. Use these options not only to increase the number of mixtures you can make but to fine-tune your processes.
Picking out and operating your ribbon mixer doesn’t have to be complicated. By following these guidelines, it will be relatively easy.