Building a lemonade smasher w/pneumatic cylinder

Old 06-15-16, 02:34 PM
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Building a lemonade smasher w/pneumatic cylinder

Hello guys, im wanting to build a lemonade smasher device. Just like the lemon smashers you see at festivals. I'm stumped as to how to go about purchasing the proper food grade cylinder that would work for my build. I have absolutely no experience when it comes to Pneumatic but the idea comes easy for me. When the setup is complete, I'll be using an Air compressor for the functionality. Any assistance is appreciated!
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Old 06-15-16, 03:58 PM
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"Food grade" can be a bit of a loose term but it relates to the materials used. The most critical would be those parts actually touching the food which would not be the cylinder. The thing you attach to the end of the cylinder will. I most often use Bimba brand cylinders if you'll be buying new. You can also check with Surpluss Center to see if they have something that might work.

You can go with either a single acting cylinder with spring return or a double acting cylinder. Which you choose will depend on the valve you have. You put air to one end of the single acting cylinder to make it extend (usually). Then when the air is turned off and the air line opened to vent the air the spring in the cylinder retracts it. A key to making it work is a valve that opens to dump the air in the line when it's not activated. The other option is a double acting cylinder with an air line going to each end and you send air to whichever end to make the cylinder move. So, you power it up and down.
Old 06-15-16, 04:15 PM
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And the cylinder will exhaust air when the valve is released, so, depending on how "food grade" you want or need to be, a "typical" air compressor may or may not be suitable, as oil is carried in the lines. In an ideal world, you would be looking at an oilless pump and/or integrating the appropriate food grade filter(s). I think you will find too that certain air lines may or may not be an acceptable practice.
Old 06-16-16, 09:34 AM
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Is that the actual press or just an example? Looks pretty light-duty compared to the leverage and pressure you can get out of a mechanical lemon press.

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