Air Dryers in Parallel

Sometime back (a few years now I think) I bought an HF refrigeration type air dryer off of Ebay. When the item didn't show up when it should
I contacted the seller. Again now show so I emailed him. It went on like that for a few days. He never emailed or messaged me back to start with. Then all of a sudden I wound up with four of them. I only paid for one.
They all seemed to ship from a warehouse in Chicago that I think is owned by Harbor Freight. He may have been an agent resellers for HF and didn't have direct control of the inventory.
I suppose I could have been dishonest and just kept them, but I messaged the sellers and asked him why I now had four (4) air dryers. He asked me to ship them back, but my cost for shipping would have been exorbitant. I asked about a deal to keep one to have on the shelf as a spare. He made me a smoking deal so I kept all of them and paid him.
I then resold two of them and more than the cost of the two I kept. It turned out Harbor Freight didn't have any more (at the time) and the guys who bought them had already tried Harbor Freight. One drove over to Yuma from Mes, and the other came from Lake Havasu, and both were thankful to get them.
Well, now some years later my spare is still in the box on the shelf, aad the original is still working just fine. I did put in on a stand and drill a hole int eh bottom of the case so the drain line wouldn't act like a trap sometimes keeping the internal separator from draining.
I think I may be reaching the capacity of the dryer. Particularly on humid days. No I haven't seen any moisture in downstream separators (one at every machine), but it just feels like it. The only time I had a moisture problem was when a 3 coupling block blew out of a manifold and the system ran at capacity for the whole time I was eating lunch in the house. It took me two days to get the moisture out of the lines and equipment to my satisfaction. Anyway, it works, but I may be near capacity. I am getting ready to add another spindle with an air seal, but that doesn't use as much air as you might think. The big deal is I am seriously considering adding a permanent air blast on the machine I use most of the time for milling steel.
ALL of the preceding information was background. I'm not asking for validations on any of it. LOL.
Here is the quandry. Could I double my dry air capacity (pretty sure I could) by just tying in my spare air dryer in parallel with the first? Sure thee would be double regulators and double other hardware and plumbing at the compressor, but what other drawbacks might there be?
I currently close a valve at the tank drain the lines, and shut off my air dryer every day at the end of the day. This allows it to fully drain, although it periodically drains when in use.
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On Thu, 26 Sep 2019 08:36:03 -0700
<snip>

I was hoping someone else would chip in with a good answer...
I would think you would want to put them in series, not parallel. First unit would bring it down to say 50, then second would bring it down some more. In parallel I suspect it would be difficult to control the flow between the two equally. Say for instance one failed or only worked half as well as the other. Then the output would be no better than the worst of the two negating one of them running perfectly...
The other choice would be to plumb their input in parallel but split the outputs to different sets of machines (shrug).
I'm no expert, just some random thinking out loud :)
--
Leon Fisk
Grand Rapids MI
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On 9/27/2019 7:16 AM, Leon Fisk wrote:> On Thu, 26 Sep 2019 08:36:03 -0700
> > <snip> >> Here is the quandry. Could I double my dry air capacity (pretty sure I >> could) by just tying in my spare air dryer in parallel with the first? >> Sure thee would be double regulators and double other hardware and >> plumbing at the compressor, but what other drawbacks might there be? >> >> I currently close a valve at the tank drain the lines, and shut off my >> air dryer every day at the end of the day. This allows it to fully >> drain, although it periodically drains when in use. > > I was hoping someone else would chip in with a good answer... > > I would think you would want to put them in series, not parallel. First > unit would bring it down to say 50, then second would bring it down > some more. In parallel I suspect it would be difficult to control the > flow between the two equally. Say for instance one failed or only > worked half as well as the other. Then the output would be no better > than the worst of the two negating one of them running perfectly... > > The other choice would be to plumb their input in parallel but split > the outputs to different sets of machines (shrug). > > I'm no expert, just some random thinking out loud :) >
Its parallel to some of my own thoughts. I thought that if I had one fail I might just close the valves to that unit, but if a unit fails I still have to dry everything out again.
If I needed lab** air I might run them in series, but I don't think it would help with volume. If the air goes through to fast they just don't dry it. Like when I had a triple tap block blow out of a wall manifold. (The nipple actually broke. I am using the triple tap elsewhere.)
**If I was running lab air I think I would still have to run a double stack auto switching desiccant drier (one stack heated, one stack flowing) as well with a reserve tank for the "lab" area.
Lab is used generically. Not to indicate truly clean air.
I am sure a refrigeration type drier/dryer (both work in my spell checker) only makes the air "pretty dry." Not really dry.
You know I could use the output to feed one of my HPA compressors and see how much less moisture is squeezed out to fill an SCBA bottle compared to just open air input. I bet the HPA compressor would fill faster anyway. LOL. My SCBA bottles are used for pneumatic rifles. Not for breathing air.
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