Graco’s Four Reactor Sprayers for foam insulation at International Insulation job sites
Foam insulation can reduce home heating and cooling expenses. By installing four Graco I Gusmer Reactor E-20 foam insulation sprayers from Graco in the trailer, the crew pulls to the job sites, International Insulation in Maplewood have created awareness in the local market.
Most contractors pull a trailer that contains a single sprayer. The amount of work the contractor gets done in a day is limited to the foam sprayed from that one sprayer. With the four sprayers, International Insulation is typically in and out of a new home in a day.
There are other reasons why International Insulation use multiple sprayers. One is the travel time between the shop and job site. The drive time to the sites can take a couple of hours. So, to optimise the amount of work at the job site, four sprayers are used. The startup procedures include heating the material, starting the sprayers, waiting for the heated hose lines to reach the correct temperature, and hauling hose and guns into the house.
It takes about 20 minutes to bring the material to working temperature and get setup before the daily spraying begins. While the material is heating, one crew member is getting the rest of the system set up, three men are hauling in the hose and guns, and the other two crew members are prepping the house poly the windows and other such activities.
To eliminate non-productive return trips to the same job site, and start up chores at the same site on consecutive days, using multiple sprayers have allowed International Insulation to train additional spray operators without affecting productivity.
Furthermore, if one of the sprayers broke down, the crew would be able to pick up the slack with the other three sprayers. The crew never had any mechanical or maintenance problems with the Graco E-20 sprayers. The Reactor sprayers have self-diagnostic capabilities that allow the crew to discover quickly where the problem was located.
The whole system was designed and installed in the 24-foot truck box by EnDiSys in Rogers, MN. The company specialises in designing fluid delivery systems for foam and polyurea contractors. According to EnDiSys, International Insulation required a fully self-contained system for applying foam in both hot and cold weather using four Graco Reactor sprayers.
The key components of International Insulation’s foam system are Graco I Gusmer’s Reactor E-20 plural component sprayers. They are mounted on the trailer’s interior walls, reducing clutter and simplifying housekeeping. Each Reactor features a 200 ft. heated hose assembly with whip hose, and air purge Graco I Gusmer Fusion spray gun.
Each system is capable of spraying 18 lbs/minute. All of this application equipment, as well as a 50 kW generator, 7.5 hp air compressor, 7.5 hp air dryer, 240 gallon capacity SS tanks with chiller and heater capabilities, raw foam components, spare parts, and safety equipment are transported in a 24-foot work trailer, specially designed for the company to contain everything the crews needs on the job site. In addition, the truck box is insulated, allowing the crew to work in residential areas without creating a noise nuisance.
Graco I Gusmer low-pressure pumps transfer the resin and isocyanate (ISO) from 55- gallon drums to the Reactor proportioners. In addition to proportioning the resin and ISO, the Reactor’s electronics provide diagnostic, data reporting, pressure readout, temperature and pressure controls, as well as auto-shut down capabilities should a ratio imbalance occur.
From the proportioner, precise ratios of resin and ISO are pumped through the heated hose to the spray gun. The Reactor Sprayers can heat or cool the 1:1 foam during the extreme temperature changes, and maintain a constant 130 to 140 degree temperature throughout the system. After the desired temperature is reached in the morning, the Reactor maintains this temperature the entire day.
Fluid pressure at the gun is also maintained at a constant pressure. The system’s maximum fluid pressure is 3500 psi, assuring significant pressure to atomize even viscous materials. The optimum fluid pressure for the 2-lb. closed cell foam spray is between 2,000 to 2,300 psi.
In addition to providing superior atomisation at high pressures, the Fusion gun has been designed to reduce a number of time-consuming maintenance chores that typically plague other foam spray guns. One of the problems associated with spraying foam is the tendency of the material to clog the spray gun’s mix chamber and tip.
When this occurs the spray operator must stop work, tear the gun down and clean it. It’s a time consuming job and can occur many times a day. The Fusion gun features a patented Air-Blast air cap that provides an extra blast of air across the orifice. This air stream reduces build-up around the tip orifice where clogging typically occurs.
The Fusion gun also features stainless steel side seals for long life. Polycarboloy side seals are also available for contractors who spray waterbase blowing agents. The fact that no tools are required to tear down the gun also reduces downtime related to gun maintenance.
Another labour saving feature is the gun’s patented Quick Shot grease port. During breaks and at the end of the day, the spray operator simply shoots grease into the head of the gun, coating the entire fluid section to prevent moisture exposure. It takes only a couple of seconds and assures the foam in the gun will not set and that it will be ready to spray the next time it is picked up and triggered. Guns that don’t feature this grease port must be taken apart to clean out the mixed foam that has set in the spray tip, mix chamber and seals and then manually greased a chore that can take at least half-an-hour.
International Insulation use the big rig every day but there are circumstance when it is not feasible to send it out on a smaller job. For those jobs International Insulation have two smaller trailers. Yet, each of those trailers carries two Reactor E-20 sprayers.