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April 10, 2018

What Products Work Well in a Flexible Screw Conveyor?

Flexible screw conveyors live up to their name. They can convey material in any direction – vertically, horizontally, and diagonally. Wherever you need material routed, these flexible machines can accomplish the task. Plus, they offer many benefits. They’re affordable, dust-free, require very little maintenance and energy, and can transport a wide variety of materials. What products work well in a flexible screw conveyor? Although many materials can be successfully conveyed with flexible screw conveyors, there are some limitations to be aware of.

FormPak's FlexFlo Clean Flow Flex Screw

What Products Work Well in a Flexible Screw Conveyor?

To explore the products that work well in a flexible screw conveyor, we need to focus on six factors: size, temperature, moisture, shape, impact of the material on the conveyor, and layout.


Materials of all sizes work well in flexible screw conveyors, from fine powders (including sub-micron powders) to large pellets. However, large solid particles and dense materials may reduce your conveyor’s effectiveness by causing the spiral to lock up. In some cases, a square bar or round wire spiral can help convey these tricky materials. If you’re unsure whether a material will work well in a flexible screw conveyor, we recommend having the material tested in a lab to ensure you buy the best type of conveyor, configured specifically for your application.


Both hot and cold materials can be conveyed with a flexible screw conveyor. Depending on the temperature range, however, an engineered solution may be required.


Dry materials work well in flexible screw conveyors. This type of conveyor system does not handle high-moisture materials, including sludges and slurries that may interfere with the effective operation of the equipment.


Flexible screw conveyors can transport materials of many different shapes, including powders, crystals, flakes, granules, pellets, and irregular forms. They can convey materials that tend to pack, cake, smear, break apart, or fluidize. Compared to other mechanical conveyors, flexible screw conveyors produce less material degradation than you might expect given the proper design and layout.


If you’re exploring the possibility of using a flexible screw conveyor, don’t just think about how your conveyor will impact the material it transports. Also consider about how the material will affect the conveyor. For example, if a material creates too much friction within the conveyor’s flexible screw, it may overtax the motor and cause a mechanical failure if it’s left unchecked. Or if a material builds up on a conveyor’s screw over time, it may cause the equipment to stall. Therefore a design change or regular clean-out maintenance may be required for long-term success to correct any issues that may arise during production.


Flexible screw conveyors boast a simple construction, provide reliable operation, and don’t require much space. Due to their adaptable form, they can easily be manipulated into elevated hoppers, bent around obstacles (4.5″ diameter or less), arranged at odd angles, and passed through holes in walls or ceilings. Plus, they have the added benefit of constantly remixing blends, which prevents the separation of blended products. For high-friction materials or for materials that tend to pack or smear, a straight conveyor (with no bends) less than 20 feet long is generally recommended.


Are you in the market for a flexible screw conveyor? Be sure to check out FormPak’s FlexFlo Flexible Screw Conveyors. These highly efficient machines work well in a variety of industries, including food, chemical, plastic, waste water treatment, mining, and breweries. They can convey many different types of bulk materials, including powders, flakes, crystals, granules, and irregularly shaped particles. Flexible layouts and sanitary designs are available. Plus, FlexFlo Flexible Screw Conveyors are easy to clean, offered in lengths up to 40 feet, and can have multiple inlets and outlets. Distances greater than 40 feet require a transfer system.

With over 50 years of combined experience in the dry materials field, FormPak can assist your company with bulk bag filling, unloading, lifting, as well as fully integrated batching systems, bag break stations, and flexible screws. To discuss the requirements of your bulk bag or dry material handling project, please give us a call or contact us online today.