What value would you assign to a properly designed aggregate processing plant?

What value would you assign to a properly designed aggregate processing plant?

Proper engineering design and equipment reliability are essential to a profitable aggregate processing operation; without which significant downtime and other financial losses are inevitable.

Proper engineering design and equipment reliability are essential to a profitable aggregate processing operation. Just a small interruption in production can affect a company’s bottom line. If your plant is not operational then you are not making money. A primary purpose of your equipment provider and servicer is to get you up and running no matter what brand(s) you are using – a team who are not only experts on their components but also on their competitors’ components. A team who can resolve your problems, alleviate pains, and reduce your company’s operating and maintenance expenses – increasing your R.O.I. Here is an excellent example of how our conscientious solutions team did just that.

Within one month of operation, the company observed the rotary counterflow drum mixer drifting and lunging uphill and downhill. The great force of a unit that is 11 ft. in diameter x 50 ft. long rotating with 250 HP did not just run hard against the thrust rollers (which holds the unit in either the uphill or downhill position), but impacted them hard enough to tear them loose from their hard mounts and even breaking the idlers themselves at times. Within their first 30 days of operation, this failed design caused four of the thrust rollers to rip loose – causing their entire plant to shut down.

In 2005 a major U.S. aggregate processor wanted to consolidate some of their production facilities in the Midwest and decided to go with a large 600 TPH plant. They contracted for a ‘super plant’ with a major manufacturer, who assured the customer that they could supply the plant without any major problems. Yet, appearing to only upsize one of the OEM’s existing models – without executing a thorough engineering study and comprehensive structural design analysis, a string of costly major problems began unfurling.

crew loading a silo onto a barge

Operational damage to thrust rollers, tires and trunnions can often be avoided through proper plant design and precise alignment.

Since the thrust rollers sat at an elevation of 11 ft. in the air, it was very difficult, cumbersome, and concerning safety-wise to get access to them to perform damage repair and component replacement. Plant breakdowns became so predictable that the company was forced to purchase an $80,000 man-lift to provide them with sufficient access to safely change out the broken thrust rollers. Without a better solution on hand, the designated change-out crew had to work hard to reduce the change-out time down from a few days to between four to seven hours that were required to do the removals and replacements.

crew loading a silo onto a barge

An $80,000 manlift had to be purchased to minimize downtime every time the thrust rollers had to be replaced. Although nice to have onsite for maintenance, that was a painful and avoidable expense.

The repetitive scenario for their multiple emergency breakdowns required calling the mobile changeout team, positioning the tools and equipment, and waiting for plant components to cool down to a safe temperature. Meanwhile, as the plant remained idle and the silos stood empty, a queue of hauling trucks would line up for blocks – waiting for their orders to be filled. Imagine the disappointment, frustration, stress and dread this repeated scenario caused the plant operators and owners!

crew loading a silo onto a barge

Unscheduled plant downtime from breakdowns is expensive for plant owners and negatively impact their customers, including material haulers lined up, waiting, and delayed from performing their jobs.

Within the first two years of operation, the company called on the OEM to provide support and some warranty consideration to help lessen their financial losses. The OEM did not honor the request and indicated they would consider looking into the equipment problems as a paid service. Upon looking into the problems, they were unable to fix the root cause of the issues. The operating company was simply told they needed to learn how to operate the plant in a better manner per the written guidelines and ensure that the tires and trunnions were aligned properly. The OEM themselves could not do what they were asking the customer to do.

Throughout the next 10 years, the company experienced nothing but trouble from the OEM’s 11’ x 50’ dryer. During that time, 28 thrust rollers were sheared off, multiple tire-rigging bolts broke, numerous discharge sweep end-rings wore or broke off, and they never truly had operational control of the drum.

Hoping to remedy the situation, the company purchased new heavier duty trunnions, bearing assemblies and trunnion bases from another source, but that didn’t solve their problems. In fact, the problem became more severe. Their next step was to bring in an independent company to diagnose and resolved the issues. But that company failed to get the drum under control. Meanwhile damaged thrust rollers continued to pile up in the scrap yard behind the plant.

crew loading a silo onto a barge

Unbelievable damage to thrust rollers, trunnions and tires can result from improper design. In the poorly designed system revealed in this article, 28 thrust rollers had been torn off from the uphill and downhill thrust of its dryer.

After several attempts to remedy the situation, enduring breakdowns for nine years, the company engaged us at Louisville Dryer Company (LDC) to assess and resolve their drum control problems. Following our initial onsite inspection and measurements of the relevant components, we dispatched a field team of engineers and technicians to observe the problematic dryer in operation. Following several days of inspecting, measuring, and testing, our team came to some dramatic conclusions.

Our solutions team observed that when the rotary dryer heated up and expanded, the supporting base and unitary frame heated up at a different rate. Sean Kyser, LDC Project Engineer, reports that “there was a significant difference between static non-loaded conditions vs. dynamic loaded conditions. This system had a built-in problem of deflection because it allowed movement of the trunnion and base. Thus, the dryer did not have a solid operational base of carrier roll trunnions, framework and thrust rollers.”

It was revealed that the OEM had not had this 600TPH design aggregate dryer system back when they had originally agreed to supply it. They basically had only upscaled the motor horsepower and trunnion size – without upgrading the frame, base support and thrust rollers. Such a quick manufacturing approach ignored fundamental engineering practices. Our team further determined that the OEM’s drum frame had no gusset support or enough trunnion cross-beaming to support the weight of the drum – especially when loaded.

We engineered optimal solutions and submitted our recommendations to the customer. The suggested remedy was to stabilize the dryer by constructing a monolithic concrete pier under both trunnion base assemblies. By building a foundation directly under the load-bearing of the trunnions, this method would eliminate all deflection and vibration in both the trunnion base supports and the dryer main axle beam. The customer agreed with the solution and the project was set into motion.

crew loading a silo onto a barge

To stabilize the dryer, the Louisville Dryer field service team constructed monolithic concrete piers beneath the trunnions.

The customer also engaged us to build a completely new replacement rotary dryer and separate bases to be isolated on concrete foundations. The foundations were installed and adjusted to the thousandths for stability and parallel alignment with the tires.

crew loading a silo onto a barge

Louisville Dryer Company provided the new replacement rotary dryer.

Ed Stump, Sr. Installer with Louisville Dryer, oversaw the change-out and commissioning of the new replacement shell while Steve Smith, LDC Sr. Field Technician, was on-site to optically align and record the elevations and slope. They oversaw the concrete pouring and inspected the grout for new piers on which to mount the trunnion bases. By transferring all the load from the drum directly into the pier, the defection and vibration was eliminated. Further accelerated trunnion and tire wear was avoided, and the recurring thrust roller/idler damage and expensive replacement problems were solved.

After everything was aligned and the trunnions set, start-up was a success. Ever since the repair/replacement solution was provided in early 2017, the drum has produced mix flawlessly and under control. The trunnion drive motor amps dropped, and stack temps are the best they have ever been. Major pains were alleviated, the owner/operator’s investment was recovered.

The Louisville Dryer replacement drum has processed over 3 million tons – with virtually no maintenance needed (other than replacing worn flight clips, which cost less than $3,000 for parts and labor). And, they’ve never had to adjust the trunnions once since our solution was implemented over five years ago. The plant superintendent reported that, “No one touches the adjustment of that dryer except Ed from Louisville Dryer.”

crew loading a silo onto a barge

The aggregate processor is very pleased with the complete solution provided by Louisville Dryer Co.

To say that this customer is pleased is an understatement. Of course, the plant personnel are happy that the sound they hear now is the repetitive reliable rotation of our custom-engineering rotary drum vs. the dreaded impacts from breakdowns including the honking of truck horns, the ringing of cellphones, and the complaints from bosses.

Now the customer has two related decisions:
1. What do they do with the 28 thrust rollers which were ripped loose?
2. Should they sell the man-lift? (Operators like having it for other maintenances.)

While their return on investment cannot be calculated accurately, imagine breaking off a thrust roller with five empty silos, trucks and paving crews standing by on a 6,000-ton day – 28 times!

That situation should never have happened. We at Louisville Dryer Company will do whatever it takes to get you up and running for the long term – at the Lowest Cost Per Revolution.

Furthermore, our pleased customer reports incredibly positive results from their chain supplied by Hotmix Parts & Service. To date, the plant has processed over 4.5 million tons using that same chain!

Louisville Dryer Delivers The Lowest Cost per Revolution

Louisville Dryer Delivers The Lowest Cost per Revolution

5 Proven Ways + 3 Examples

As defined by our customers (global manufacturing companies, process and reliability engineers and maintenance teams), successful outcomes of our custom engineering process are system installations that are:

      • On-Time
      • On-Budget
      • For Decades of Reliable and Precise Performance with Minimal Maintenance.

Over 5,000 rotary drying system installations and hundreds of repeat customers have used Louisville Dryer equipment as a core to their business operations. With that proven experience, following are:

Examples of Outstanding Dryer Longevity

1. Your Process Dictates our Technology:

Whether your application requires New Rotary Dryers, Replacement Drums/Shells, or other Rotary Products, our engineering teams expertly design, build and install entire solutions – including dryers surpassing 140 feet in length, 20 feet in diameter, and 200 tons in weight.
crew loading a silo onto a barge

2. Your Service Requirements Drive our Mechanical Design:

We routinely bring operational needs from concepts to design to production – considering your production requirements and process parameters, material characteristics, site and environmental conditions, and so much more.

steam tube dryer standard steam chest

3. Your Products are Thoroughly Tested in our Testing Lab:

When our customers request our advice on the most effective processing solutions for their specific application, we implement pilot scale testing in our own in-house lab to assess their material performances and outcomes with live test data and analysis.

man performing a quality check on a piece of fabrication

4. Your Equipment is Custom Manufactured in our own ASME-accredited Facilities:

Louisville Dryers are fabricated by our expert craftsmen who build dryers every day. Each dryer has a highly specific written inspection and test plan and quality control assessments. What makes a very large piece of rotating equipment reliable is not only the structural integrity of its design, but the precision with which it is fabricated and assembled.

louisville dryer company crew standing in front of an industrial dryer

5. We provide Professional Field Installation and Commissioning Support:

Our professional rotary equipment installation technicians ensure that each Louisville Dryer is properly delivered, assembled, aligned, and secured on its foundations. The service and maintenance life of any piece of rotary equipment is not based solely on the design and quality of the equipment – but also on the precision in which each component is installed, aligned and performance-tested, and on the thoroughness of the operational and preventative maintenance training provided to your team.

industrial dryer installation in progress
engineers inspecting an industrial dryer

Examples of Outstanding Dryer Longevity

As you can see, it is no surprise that the individuals and companies operating these units are extremely pleased with the results from our dryer systems which operate campaigns, often for months and even years with minimal maintenance or issues.

Success Stories about the dryer longevity our clients have enjoyed:

1. One owner-operator processed highly abrasive materials. We reengineered their system’s components to extend the life from a few months up to years. As one measure, we installed abrasion-resistant cast flighting and chrome carbide liners inside their unit to achieve exceptional performance and longevity.

flighting inside an industrial dryer component

2. As another demonstration of success, a large chemical processing company requested that we perform an extensive FEA (finite element analysis) of a rotary unit which they needed to operate under full load for a five-year period without shut down for maintenance.

tubes running into an industrial steam tube dryer

3. As another example, in recent years a company asked Louisville Dryer to evaluate the potential replacement of rotary dryer units in their processing plant. Their units had been operating dependably for decades and decades. Yet this was a complex project as their building had been constructed around the units, plus there was a river on one side of the building.

replacement dryer being installed by louisville dryer company crew

Louisville Dryer was pleased to assist the customer change-out their units with new shells, drives and bases. And it was not surprising that they selected new Louisville Dryer units since their original/legacy units had also been manufactured and installed by Louisville Dryer – in 1943 – providing over 70 years of reliable operation!

Longevity in Motion

Louisville Dryer custom engineered systems routinely deliver what our customers need and expect:

On-Time, On-Budget, for Decades of Reliable Precision Performance with minimal maintenance.

We provide The Lowest Cost per Revolution for Your Team. Contact us today to learn how.

Solutions for a Wet Corn Milling Plant

Solutions for a Wet Corn Milling Plant

Customer’s Problem Dryer had Material Build-up and Tube Failures

 

When a prominent wet corn milling plant contacted Louisville Dryer Company for solutions to their drying problems, our process engineers promptly met with their production staff. Loss of their drying capability resulted in a loss of revenue for their company, a problem we were eager and fully equipped to help solve.

This processor had multiple dryers which were demonstrating broad swings in processing rates. The primary dryer in question was a rotating tube bundle dryer. The dryer had a stationary housing with a tube bundle that rotated inside the casing.

When they fired up their steam bundle, material would build up in the unit causing variations in retention timewhich resulted in some under-drying and some overdrying of their product. The issue was exacerbated by two catastrophic failures of the tube bundle. Such unplanned outages can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars in repairs and millions of dollars in lost revenue.

Louisville Dryer Solutions for Wet Corn Milling Plant

Louisville Dryer Co. provides effective and profitable drying solutions for Wet Corn Milling processors

Using custom mixing protocols to match their needs, we developed a successful recipe for their recycle stream. Along with our performance guaranty, the company engaged us to build a replacement steam tube dryer for their plant.

Steam tubes on dryers engineered by Louisville Dryer Co. process material with precise accommodation of temperature, pressure and speed requirements

Steam tube dryers generally rotate at a slower speed and operate at a lower temperature than other rotary dryers. Within steam tube dryers, the material tumbles gently around the tubes which rotate with the shell. Once we custom fabricated their dryer, with Louisville Dryer field engineers on-site for installation and startup, the dryer ran exactly as we had designed and predicted.

This is but one of hundreds of examples of our commitment to high quality, long-lasting customer solutions using our proven Application Engineering, Custom Design, Project Management, Manufacturing, Installation and Commissioning services.

Why are Consistent Drying Temperatures Important for Wet Corn Milling?

 

Drying conditions influence corn wet-milling performance as well as the physiochemical and functional properties of corn wet-milled fraction. The effect of the drying process on the quality of starch, gluten, germ, and fiber recovered during the wet-milling process help to develop more accurate engineering and economic models. Drying temperature combined with the initial moisture content of the grain has a significant impact on the wet-milling performance and the quality of recovered materials.

We are Ready to Help you Solve your Mission-Critical Challenges

 

At Louisville Dryer Company, we stand ready for jobs that are out-of-the-ordinary. Each project creates new challenges and opportunities for us to provide custom-engineered solutions to complex problems.

We have vast experience in processing materials including organic and inorganic chemicals, petrochemicals, grains, metals, aggregates and waste byproducts.

Louisville Dryer Co. is an ASMA Division I design and manufacturing center

Louisville Dryer Company is qualified as an ASME Division I design and manufacturing center. We have completed thousands of installations, processing hundreds of materials around the world, and pioneered many of the industrial drying technologies. We focus on:

Let us know how we can assist you and your company.

 

Contact Us Today

Why Processors Value Our Hemp Dryers

Why Processors Value Our Hemp Dryers

With the increase of popularity and mainstream approval of CBD oils and other hemp products, the hemp growing and drying industry is booming. As we continue to understand the uniqueness of hemp, more market opportunities are arising. It’s no wonder hemp processors are developing ways to have more control over the quality of incoming product.

Hemp farmers are experts in growing and harvest, and while the whole process from seed to sale is precarious, the drying process is especially volatile. A lot of crop rots because, without the right equipment, farmers can’t keep up with the drying demand. In our last article we talked about the growing popularity of co-ops and drying facilities to help streamline the process and make it more affordable for the farmers; but, there is another rising trend.

Hemp Processors Are Offering Drying Services

Many hemp processing plants are starting to offer additional services to their farming customers. By adding drying services, for example, they keep their farmers focused on growing more acres of plants while assuring their processing plants produce the best quality products available on the market.

Improving on the hemp drying process means providing a higher quality product while decreasing product loss.

The Right Equipment to Speed Hemp Drying

Louisville Dryer Company is an industry leader in hemp drying solutions. Just like processors want farmers to be able to focus on farming, we want processors to do what they do best. We know that most farmers and processors are not experts in drying equipment, but we are. We support our customers long after they make a dryer purchase because it’s important to us that your equipment operates properly and safely.

10 Benefits Of Our Hemp Dryers

Our hemp clients have improved the efficiency and thoroughness of their drying process by incorporating one of our hemp dryers while also protecting their cannabinoids and profitability. Here are 10 benefits to Louisville Dryer Company’s robust hemp steam dryer system:

#1: Continuous Process

Traditional batch processing is labor-intensive and requires handling the material multiple times. Our hemp dryer continuously dries and discharges material for as long as desired. Materials can be stored for delayed extraction or made immediately ready for the next step in the process.

#2: Size

Natural hemp drying requires a large footprint but our steam tube hemp dryer can replace a plethora of drying barns with the relatively small footprint of the dryer system.

#3 Speed

The chemical process of the hemp plant starts as soon as it is harvested. Hemp needs to be stabilized quickly so it isn’t actively rotting. The plant loses potency and value when you lose speed. With our steam tube dryer, hemp can be dried within minutes instead of days. Residence or dwell-time for materials in the unit is typically less than one hour at our quoted throughputs.

#4: Temperature

By using steam as the heating medium, you can directly control the pressure and set a “do not exceed” temperature to ensure there is minimal to no product degradation.

#5: Consistency

Depending on where you live and how the weather changes, drying times and efficiencies are likely to change a lot. A machine built for hemp drying provides a consistency to your process that you can count on. Even with varying particle size and moisture content, a Louisville Dryer hemp dryer adjusts to deliver consistent uniform material.

#6: Scalability

Our dryer’s production is directly related to the surface area of the tubes and can be easily scaled to match the desired throughput.

#7: Ease of Operation

The Louisville Dryer steam tube dryer is the easiest dryer to operate in the industry.

#8: Efficiency & Processing Rates

Our steam tube dryer has significantly fewer energy losses than a hot gas-fired system. It only uses as much steam as is required to heat and dry the material. Thermal efficiency is 80% in the steam tube dryer compared to 50%-65% in convective systems.

#9: Green/Environmental

Our steam tube dryer has less exhaust than other dryers – which means fewer greenhouse gases are produced.

#10: Process Simplification

Partial decarboxylation of the hemp that takes place within the steam dryer leads to less processing needed downstream. Decarboxylation requires heat and time to unlock the therapeutic effects of cannabinoids. Hemp naturally contains CBD-A, which needs to be activated through decarboxylation to make CBD. It’s a very important process but timing is EVERYTHING. Our hemp dryer puts you in control of the decarboxylation process and prevents significant loss of your crop and profits.

Why Are Processors Choosing Louisville Hemp Dryers?

Processors are thinking ahead towards future growth and they want a machine that makes it possible to grow and process more plants at top quality. They cannot afford to risk ruined products because the hemp farming business demands are growing faster than the farmer’s processing capabilities. A hemp drying system by Louisville Dryer Company is a wise solution to helping processors (as well as farmers and drying facilities) to achieve a level of production needed for their business growth.

Processors need:

  • Dry, stabilized biomass
  • Moisture levels at 10% or less
  • Free of mold or mildew
  • No excess fiber which dilutes the CBD numbers
  • Finely shredded materials

Louisville Dryer Company’s hemp dryers are manufactured to be easy to use and act quickly and gently on hemp biomass.

Whether you are growing and processing for cannabinoids or using other parts of the plant for various hemp products, our hemp drying technology makes all the difference in the quality of your end-product. Louisville Dryer Company’s hemp dryers are the right choice to grow and scale your business.

Contact Our Hemp Expert

Hank Lawson, Senior Process Engineer at Louisville Dryer, made it his personal mission to learn the best way our company can support hemp farmers, processors, and co-op hosts. He gained his experience first-hand by operating a small hemp farm so he could understand our hemp customers and their unique struggles. We invite you to reach out directly to him for insights into the unique issues involved with growing and drying hemp.

If you’d like to contact Hank or any of our team members about an industrial dryer, please call us at (800) 735-3163 or fill out our online contact form. A more efficient and profitable drying method could change everything for your hemp business.

Hank Lawson, Senior Process Engineer at Louisville Dryer

Could Hemp Drying Co-ops Make Farming More Profitable?

Could Hemp Drying Co-ops Make Farming More Profitable?

Reducing moisture is an essential part of hemp processing. The traditional method of hang drying is a long and tedious process where the hemp is hung upside down and dried by hand. Growers must remove the stems and then cut the plants into small pieces to dry more thoroughly. It is a time-consuming process that leaves little room for error. 

Drying only batches at a time, traditional hang drying requires:
  • Around 5-10,000 square foot per acre
  • Many days to dry
  • Days of curing after the drying
  • 12-15 people to do it successfully
  • Numerous fans and dehumidifiers for more consistent drying.

It’s a fickle process, and a lot can go wrong. If the hemp is dried too slowly, the resulting product can be low-quality or ruined completely. Higher moisture takes more time and energy to dry, and a lot of crop rots because farmers can’t keep up with the drying demand and the army of people it takes to complete it. 

This method is not scalable or profitable, and most hemp farmers who try it will only ever do it once. 

As we heard someone recently say, “There aren’t enough arms and barns for where the hemp industry is going.”

Reliability and Profitability from Seed-to-Sale

Success in the hemp industry starts with the farmer. If the farmer can’t grow successfully, the whole industry is affected. 

While the former process of harvesting, drying, and storing was adequate for growing a couple of acres of crop, hemp growers who wanted to increase production needed to speed the processing rate of wet biomass. 

With the increase of popularity and mainstream approval, the hemp growing and drying industry is booming. Laws have shifted to allow growth, processing, and transportation of hemp—even across state lines. Improving the hemp drying process means farmers can provide a higher quality product and decrease their product loss.

The problem for many farmers is cost and sustainability. 

       We understand. 

Known for our robust dryer systems, Louisville Dryer understands that the hemp market is turbulent and requires affordable dryers. We have worked diligently to bring a dryer to the market which also meets the needs of hemp producers. 

Hemp farmers need practical solutions to enhance reliability and profitability from seed-to-sale.

Our equipment is tailored to the process and we examined the return on investment for the end-user. When we work with farmers, they need to know they can trust our reputation and experience because they are not experts in industrial dryers. Our service to our hemp clients doesn’t stop with the purchase. We provide customer support after the sale to make sure the equipment operates properly and safely.

A Unique Option: Hemp Co-Ops and Drying Facilities

If you’re a farmer that wants to grow in the hemp and CBD industry, you will need to produce a top-quality product. Yet, many hemp farmers are unsure if they need an industrial-sized hemp drying system. 

Hemp co-ops and drying facilities may be the way of the future. 

Hemp co-ops and drying facilities team people together to share industrial machines—like our hemp dryers. They pool their money to purchase manufacturing equipment and then allow farmers to become members to gain access to their resources.

These co-ops and drying facilities provide a cost-effective opportunity for farmers and allow local-areas access to drying services. They maximize profit, reduce the cost of doing business, and mitigate risks. Also, members help other members through education, knowledge, expertise, experience, influence, capital, relationships, and other resources. Their commitment is to serve the farmer, from the field to the final product.

Don’t have a hemp drying co-op near you? This may be an opportunity to join with other growers in your area and get one started.

The Highest Standard of Hemp Production

Louisville Dryer has a desire to partner with the agriculture industry, drying co-ops, and drying and bagging facilities to create the highest standard in hemp production. We can help you speed up the long and tedious process of drying hemp for more efficient and consistent results.  

There are three things you should consider before investing in a hemp dryer:

  1. How much material do you want to dry?
  2. Calculate the dryer production rate in pounds per hour. 

Divide the pounds you plan to produce by the daytime hours you have to harvest. 

  1. Submit your Request for Quote for the dryer early. We suggest starting your purchase process in the winter

Allow five (5) to six (6) months to build and install the equipment. 

Our custom-designed hemp drying system is ideal for improving the process of hemp drying. Our equipment uses the proper time and temperature controls to remove the plant’s moisture without damaging its integrity. Our engineers also understand the importance of the decarboxylation process, which requires the proper heat and time to unlock the therapeutic effects of cannabinoids. 

 

Let’s Connect And Grow Together

Whether you already own a hemp co-op or drying house, or you are considering starting one, we’d love to talk to you about how our hemp dryers can be part of your scalable plan for growth. You’ll be making an investment that will create future growth for yourself and many other farmers and processors. Over time you’ll find that your expenses can be significantly minimized by automating your process, reducing risk, and cutting overhead costs.

Louisville Dryer is a leader in hemp drying solutions. Our hemp clients have been able to improve the efficiency and thoroughness of their drying process. We have the knowledge and experience to help businesses like yours increase profit and sustainability. We can help you meet the unique needs of your business to produce a final quality product.

We engineered our hemp dryers to be fast and gentle on hemp biomass. Whether you are growing for cannabinoids or using other parts of the plant, our drying technology makes all the difference in the quality of your product.

Think about your future. Not only can our hemp dryers help you now, but they can also help you grow into a larger operation. We’re here to grow and scale with you. 

 

Modernizing Hemp Drying for Efficiency and Profit

Modernizing Hemp Drying for Efficiency and Profit

For years, farmers hung hemp plants in environmentally controlled tobacco barns, where the harvest required a drying-time of three to five days. The barns needed to be retrofitted with forced-air units to dry the excess moisture out of the plants. Each farm required as many as 20 barns, each large enough to hold up to an acre’s worth of harvested plants. 

There has been a steep rise in the hemp growing industry since the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-derived products. It’s no wonder many farmers started looking for ways to cash in on this rapidly growing market. Just three years ago, the U.S. hemp industry was producing around $820M in revenue, but experts expect that number to rise by approximately 15% by 2022.

A Better Way for Hemp Drying

When properly dried and processed, valuable CBD oil can be extracted from the hemp plant and used in a variety of in-demand products. While the former process of harvesting, drying and storing was adequate for growing a couple of acres of crop, hemp growers who wanted to increase their production quickly realized the need to speed the rate at which wet biomass is processed. 

Louisville Dryer did extensive research to develop a dryer that would alleviate the need for faster drying. We started with a desire to understand the unique position of hemp farmers. Hank Lawson, our Senior Process Engineer, made it his mission to learn how our company could best support hemp farmers and improve their business. 

“Properly drying your hemp is an essential part of processing it for CBD oil extraction or other medical or industrial purposes. I made it my mission to get you the best equipment to speed up your drying process, while also understanding all of your pain points as a grower.”

– Hank Lawson, Senior Process Engineer

Hank grew two-acres of hemp and saw the farming process through to drying and extraction. It provided invaluable insights into what hemp farmers experience as they plant, grow, harvest, dry, and extract. The most notable thing Hank learned was how much work it takes to grow hemp. After enduring the entire process, it was even more motivating to the Louisville Dryer team to develop the best agricultural-grade direct heat dryer available to our hemp farming clients. 

 

Farming, Drying, and Processing Hemp to Maximize your Harvest – Our Journey

 

Specific Needs for Drying Hemp 

Using Hank’s research, Louisville Dryer designed and manufactured our hemp drying system to improve your specific hemp-drying needs. Our design implements the same technology we have been using for decades to dry other agricultural products successfully but addresses two particular needs. 

Steam Tube Dryer

Steam Tube Dryer

#1: Moisture Levels Reduction

Hemp has a naturally high moisture level content, making it is critical to reducing its biomass to an acceptable level of moisture to extract quality CBD oil. 

#2: Decarboxylation Process 

If you wish to create CBD products from the cannabinoid-rich oil extracts derived from your hemp harvest, decarboxylation is essential. It is the necessary process of converting THCA or CBDA into the THC or CBD. 

Get The Outcome You Need

What if you could expedite decarboxylation through the drying process? You can.

Hemp dried in our Steam Tube Dryer aids in the decarboxylation process at the same time moisture is removed. This makes the extraction process move faster. 

We developed our steam dryer models to specifically dry 4, 6, 8 and up to 10 tons of wet hemp biomass per hour with an output moisture content between 10-12%. The result is a more efficient extraction with a higher yield. And a higher yield means higher profit per acre.

Louisville Dryer also builds direct heat dryers for customers who do not have steam.

Removing a Barrier to Higher Profit

While our hemp dryer shares many similarities to our other direct heat dryers, one distinguishing factor for this product is that it’s priced especially for the agricultural economy. It is more affordable than some of our other models of direct heat dryers.

If you’re looking for a more efficient drying system that includes decarboxylation, we can help streamline your process. 

We Are Here for You

Reach out directly to Hank for his specific insights into the unique issues involved with growing, harvesting, and drying hemp. He is always happy to have a conversation and is uniquely positioned to anticipate your needs.

If you’d like to contact Hank or any of our team members about a direct heat or steam tube dryer, please call us at (800) 735-3163 or fill out our online contact form. A more efficient and profitable drying method could change everything for your hemp business.