Lightweight, modular machine masters large-pipe fusion in tight spaces


McElroy introduces new sizes to the Acrobat™ machine line which feature the revolutionary QuikFit™ carriage that allows operators to meet the challenges of fusing large-diameter polypropylene pipe in close-quarter working environments. 


“Acrobat with QuikFit carriages provide a solution through a modular single-size jaw design that is going to make a huge difference in how large-diameter polypropylene pipe is installed,” said Paul Donaldson, Manager of Mechanical Engineering at McElroy. “The beauty of this design is that it simplifies the fusion process to help serve the needs of the plumbing, mechanical and HVAC industry.” 


The new machines, which fuse 355mm to 630mm (14” to 24”) polypropylene pipe, was in response to a demand in the industry for lightweight, large-diameter butt fusion equipment that would make overhead pipe installations more safe and efficient. Fusing large pipe on plumbing and mechanical installations is intricate work whether it’s new construction or a building retrofit. Operators work around ducting, framing, stud walls and other obstacles, leaving little space to fuse pipe, especially when fusing pipe many feet in the air. If the fusion machine is heavy and bulky, it makes the job difficult or even impossible.


McElroy took on the challenge by custom designing the Acrobat with QuikFit carriage to break down into multiple components to reduce weight and size. The ability to assemble the upper and lower jaws of the carriage around the pipe by hand eliminates the need for extra equipment and manpower that would be required to lift and fit an entire carriage into a cramped space. The carriage is half the weight of alternative machines and can be arranged in 4-, 3- and 2-jaw configurations for an even smaller footprint.


All of the fusion equipment, including the carriage, drill-powered facer, heater and hydraulic power unit (HPU), can be loaded on a single scissor lift platform. The flexibility of the machine allows it to fuse pipe in any orientation that is required on plumbing, mechanical and HVAC installations, including vertical and overhead. 


The Acrobat is offered in single pipe sizes to eliminate the need for inserts which also keeps the machine lightweight. Each Size Package includes the jaws, heater and lightweight facer blade holders. To complete the machine, there is a common Core Package that can be paired with any of the sizes which helps reduce costs. It includes the cylinder assemblies, clamp assemblies, carriage skid, facer stand, a detachable facer motor for easy maneuverability, a heater/facer rolling cart to move everything easily from joint to joint, an HPU with DataLogger® capability and shipping container. 


The Acrobat with QuikFit carriage is another example of McElroy’s dedication to the industry by designing machines to meet the unique challenges seen in the field. McElroy offers the world’s most complete line of fusion equipment with sales, service and support worldwide. Equipment is purchased through an international network of distributors. To find a location, go to www.mcelroy.com/en/distributorlocator.htm.


For more information on the Acrobat, there are specifications available for each size: 355/400450/500 and 560/630.