This year marks the 15th anniversary for the Terex Washing Systems (TWS) Finesmaster (FM) BucketWheel range which was first introduced to the aggregates industry in 2000. The FM BucketWheel is still proving a popular solution with sand producers who want a reliable, efficient, durable sand plant offering longevity, reliability and ease of maintenance, all characteristic of the BucketWheel system.
Sand producers have worked with this technology for decades and with the added technology of the cyclone system, this allows producers to reap the recovery benefits.
The unique benefit of the BucketWheel system is the ability to significantly reduce the amount of coarse material coming into contact with the pump and cyclone as it is fed directly from the BucketWheel to the Dewatering screen. It is this coarse material that causes the most wear on rubber lined parts, however the BucketWheel system counteracts this as only the fine sand comes into contact with the pump and cyclone. This benefits the customer with reduced wear costs, reduced power consumption and ultimately reduced processing costs.
Justin Donnelly, TWS applications specialist and TWS’s longest serving member at 45 years, played an integral role in the development of the FM Bucketwheel. Commenting on the range he explained, “When we looked at how we could produce two grades of material in a practical and economical way without adding a second pump and larger cyclones to the FM BucketWheel we turned to the tried and tested method of BucketWheels. BucketWheels are typically operated in the range of 0.5 to 1.3 rpm via a planetary drive. The slow speed coupled with the robust materials of construction ensure that the extremely low connected power requirements and maintenance costs are a fraction of those associated with fitting a second pump. Overall no other technology compares to the long-term low-cost operation of the FM BucketWheel.”
Sand reserves and the lack of them were effectively the driving force behind the demand for this efficient plant design. TWS global distributors and customers required a system that would allow them to capture more sand and eliminate losses to the tailing ponds as well as for customers who were trying to process more challenging materials with higher percentages of silt.
Quarry owners also wanted to produce a drier product which could be loaded directly off the belt onto a truck, reducing the handling process. A number of ideas were proposed from the research and development team at the time, the concept of combining the BucketWheel, cyclones and a dewatering screen on one chassis proved to be the most effective solution to meet the customers’ needs.
The first plant installed outside Ireland was for a customer in Toronto, Canada. The customer had previously used a sand screw set up and the FM Bucketwheel would replace this to produce silt free dry sand. Canada still remains a key market for TWS in 2015.
Customers want to reduce loss of saleable product to their ponds and produce dry sand(s), which is a key benefit of the FM BucketWheel. The combination of BucketWheels and cyclones offers very low levels of maintenance as rubber liners last for long periods.
The FM BucketWheel plant has the added benefit of processing two sands simultaneously. The split is made on the aggregate rinsing screen’s bottom deck with two slurries sent to the FM BucketWheel via two 250-mm mining spec hoses. The BucketWheels process the coarse sand product, while the cyclones process the fine sand. These two sands are dewatered on a split dewatering screen to produce two grades of sand which can be blended before stock piling via the two grade blending chute.
TWS have recently applied modifications to the plant to further enhance its capabilities and effectiveness, creating an option, whereby four cyclones are fitted, this complete fines recovery unit has the ability to capture material down to 38 micron.
Terex Washing Systems, www.terex.com/washing