How can I prevent conveyor sprockets from clogging?

Written by Darran Green on 19 August 2020

FB Chain offers specially designed anti-clog conveyor chain sprockets with self-cleaning grooves to prevent loose, moist material from clogging up the driving flank of the sprocket tooth. This ensures the smooth running of the conveyor chain, reduces wear, and increases the service life of both the sprocket and chain.

The type of material your conveyor is moving could be causing your sprockets a problem, especially if it’s mixed with some moisture.

Over the years we’ve been called in to take a look at sprockets that are wearing prematurely in applications from infeed conveyors in sawmills to wet ash conveyors in biomass plants.

Below is a standard sprocket with a bush and conveyor pin – the most common chain used in industry today. As the sprocket rotates, it drives the bush on the conveyor chain, which in turn drives the chain conveyor.

Standard sprocket

If product can get between the chain and sprocket – especially if the particles break down and have some moisture – they will get stuck between the bush and sprocket teeth.

This, initially, can increase the wear to both the sprocket and chain. In addition, if it is allowed to build up, it can cause the chain to jump teeth. If you have a twin chain driving your conveyor, this can cause major damage as the two chains are now out of sync and attachments will bend or buckle. If this is left, as the chain rotates it will be out of alignment and when it goes back around the sprocket it will cause damage to the chain and sprocket.

Small improvements with big results

In our experience, the simplest solutions usually work the best and this instance is no different. Working with our factory, we have developed special anti-clog conveyor chain sprockets with a groove at the base of the tooth. Quite simply, it allows any debris build up to fall away leaving the driving flank of the sprocket clean to drive the chain.

By adding this groove to the sprocket, it has drastically increased the life of the sprocket and helped the life of the chain. Should the conveyed material be abrasive or hard, then the need for anti-clog conveyor chain sprockets is even greater.

Learn more about our sprockets or get in touch to discuss how we can increase the life of your sprockets and conveyor chain.


Topics: Conveyor chain, Biomass, conveyor, Sprockets, Anti-clog

Darran Green

Written by Darran Green

A time-served apprentice, Darran has more than 30 years’ experience in the field of mechanical engineering, including the manufacture and sales of transmissions and other linear motion products.