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A vibrating feeder is a piece of industrial equipment designed to deliver a controlled supply of loose material. People pour material into the top of the feeder and it vibrates as the contents pour down the sides, controlling the way material is delivered. The vibrating feeder can be shut on and off as needed. These devices are used in a range of settings and come in an array of sizes for different kinds of applications. In addition to being available for purchase both new and used, they can also be leased or rented.
In addition to simply feeding materials, like candy for packaging, a vibrating feeder can also sort materials. As the feeder vibrates, materials of smaller size tend to sink to the bottom, while larger materials stay at the top. The feeder can act to screen materials for processing, delivering smaller materials to one area and larger materials to another. Additionally, a screen can be fitted at the end of the vibrating feeder to only allow materials of a certain size through. The size of the outlet also can be adjusted to control the size of particles delivered while the feeder is in operation.
Assembly lines commonly use vibrating feeders, especially towards the packaging end of the line. Materials can be delivered by conveyor belt, scoop, and other equipment. The feeder may be designed to shut on and off automatically, releasing a controlled amount of supplies with each activation. It can also be manually controlled, or designed to work with an assembly line where packages move through so quickly that the feeder doesn't need to stop between containers, since a new one moves into place as soon as the filled container moves down the line.
Usually, vibrating feeders are adjustable to allow people to configure them for different needs. The intensity of the vibration can be changed and the device can be programmed to perform different kinds of functions. Screens can be fitted to the opening as needed, and it may also be possible to increase or decrease the size of the opening by adjusting it or adding an attachment. This is designed to keep the device flexible so it can be used in many different applications.
Costs for a vibrating feeder vary, and it is important to consider maintenance expenses when evaluating overall costs. Manufacturers should be able to provide information about the estimated life of the feeder with normal use, and can provide data on average maintenance costs. This information can be used to select the most cost-effective product.