Choosing a Drum Mixer
Drum mixers are designed to do exactly what their title implies – mix things in a 55-gallon drum. However, not all drum mixers are created equally. If you need a new drum mixer for your business, then you should work through these five sets of questions in order to find just the right one.
1) What do you plan on mixing? And can one mixer handle everything for you?
This is the most important thing to consider since the type of mixer that you need depends largely on the material that you’ll be combining. Some drum mixers, like the ones sold by Even Mix™, do double duty. They can handle everything from viscous liquids to powders. However, others are made for just one specialty.
2) Do you need non-shear mixing or shear mixing?
The term “shear” here works similarly as wind shear. Usually, the term is applied to aircraft when they’re flying. Basically, force pushes the materials in one direction and simultaneously in another. Shear mixing is used for things like emulsification, homogenization, and powder-liquid dispersion. To simplify that, it mixes things together very well so that in the end, you have one very well-combined substance.
3) What about cross-contamination?
If you’re worried about cross-contaminating your mixtures, then you need a drum mixer that’s very easy to clean – or several mixers so that you can have dedicated ones, in which case price is an important factor. This worry comes up quite often in the food industry, especially when you’re mixing different types of nut butter. You don’t want to end up with almonds in your peanut butter.
4) Are you performing an initial mix or are you recombining a settled mixture?
Depending on the product in the drums, in some cases, it’s tougher to recombine a mixture that’s settled. This is something that happens a lot when you’re dealing with things like animal feed or fertilizer. The initial mix is done, and then the product sits until you need it again – sometimes months later. Recombining the ingredients might require more force than initial mixing.
5) How fast should your mixer spin?
Determining your ideal speed is about more than waiting impatiently for the mixer to complete the task. Instead, it’s actually taking into consideration how fast those contents need to be mixed in order to be properly combined.