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Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.
2

Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

(OP)
My company designs and builds machines that use a grinding process to re-profile railroad rail heads. They travel down the track at slow speeds and several grinding stones set a different angles grind the rail heads to a desired profile. One of the byproducts of the grinding process is obviously swarf. We have no problems picking up the air borne particles but the heavier particles get deposited on the tracks. Our cusomers are requesting our machines to do a better job of cleaning up after themselves so we are looking into different ways of picking up those ferrous particles from the tracks. One idea was to use magnetism to pick up the particles but none of our engineering staff are experienced in magnetics so I am posting the issue here. Is it feasible to try to pick up grinding swarf off off a railroad track? To stay safe the magnets would need to be positioned approximately 12 inches away from the material we would like to collect. Is this possible? Can anyone point us to any companies that may be able to assit us?

RE: Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

Why do they need to be 12 inches away?  That makes it almost impossible to anything efficiently.

What's the downside of just adding high pressure air blowers around the rail to loft the swarf to be picked up whatever you're using to pick up airborne particles?  If not air, then mechanical agitation, i.e., brushes.  I'd put anything magnetic last, since you then need to figure out how to remove the swarf from the magnets, which probably requires some sort of mechanism and additional moving parts.

TTFN
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies

RE: Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

(OP)
The customer will not allow anything to hang below the top of the rail. There is existing track structures that are in the way. Adding a high pressure blower has been discussed but space limitationsand power requirements have ruled those out. Brushes would have the same problem with interfering with track structures.

We were kicking around the idea of a rectangular plate magnet inside a non-magnetic housing. The housing would keep the particles from contaminating the magnet. Once the magnet is removed from the hosuing, the particles fall off into some sort of container. I know I have seen rod magnets inside stainless steel tubes arrainged in grids for removing metal from various types of bulk materials.  

RE: Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

I'll go along with IRS's comments.  Even if you could implement it the magnetic system would only pick up metal, pieces of abrasive would remain on the rails.
Use shrouds and a blower to send all of the debris into your dust collection system.  Then brush the rail heads with tampico brushes to make sure that no residue is left.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
Plymouth Tube

RE: Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

??? You've got "grinding stones" right on the tracks already, how come they're not a problem?  If you can get grinding stones in there, you can get brushes in there.

The best permanent magnets will pick up iron filings from about an inch above.  So, you'd need a minimum of 144 times the face field to get anywhere close to an equivalent condition.  AND, that's without a humongous chunk of steel right in the middle of everything, which is going to warp the field so badly that you'll pick up pretty much nothing.

TTFN
FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies

RE: Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

2
You can't use magnets alone to remove iron particles from an iron surface.

RE: Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

Compositepro has a head screwed firmly onto his shoulders.

A big +1!

Adriaan.
I am a Mechatronics Engineer from South Africa.
www.martin-electronics.co.za

RE: Using magnets to pick up grinding swarf from railroad track.

you can always uses magnets but not to lift the pieces off the rails rather as part of the fines collection, typically mounted under conveyor belt system to trap the particles then to convey to a collection bin

contact any airvey system house there are standard method for accomplishing your task

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