One of the largest family-owned pork producers in the United States needed to improve the flow of water and subsequently find a valve design that could efficiently and effectively deliver water to their hogs. Addressing an inconsistent water flow through the valve was the first step to improve the valves performance. To improve water flow Specialty engineers recommended a redesign of an internal plastic nozzle that could be used with the existing valve. Prototypes were developed and tested successfully. The result was more consistent and predictable water flow.
The second phase, implemented after the use of the new nozzle design for a year, involved improving the overall valve design’s manufacturing inconsistencies and early valve wear and tear. Specialty Manufacturing would need to engineer a solution that could eliminate leaks, last seven to 10 years and work with the existing water distribution system as well as a new, planned water system. The Specialty solution involved changes to threading, internal springs and a new toggle design. While major design customization was required, Specialty took only eight weeks, accessing its in-house engineering, machining, prototype and testing capabilities.
With an operation that spanned 44 farms and four Midwest states, the stakes were high. Specialty engineers reengineered the valve to eliminate design flaws and optimize water flow. Once implemented, the customization yielded an annual savings of millions of gallons of water and thousands of dollars in manure transfer costs.