When Josef Wagner designed and produced the diaphragm-pump system in 1964, it became a defining technological achievement for the Wagner Group, altering its trajectory.
Wagner Group, a global manufacturer of equipment and systems for the application of liquid and powder coatings, has flourished in the line marking and paint application markets.
The Wagner Group now services the commercial and consumer line marking sectors with its innovative portfolio of products distributed by more than 70 company-owned branches and service offices globally, including Australia.
Last year, Wagner Australia marked 40 years of servicing the Australian market with the its expansive Wagner product range. This year, the business is celebrating another major milestone as it releases a brand new range of Titan line markers, including the model with the latest diaphragm pump spraying technology.
Hayden Smythe, Technical Support and Development Manager at Wagner Australia, says the Titan brand – part of the Wagner Group of companies – is a market leading brand in the US but is still fairly new to the Australian market.
“About three years ago we launched a small Titan range tailored to trade painters. All of the products we’ve distributed in Australia have historically been branded Wagner, but we started to change this year and consolidate some of the product range – so we now have a complete, and less fragmented, range of products.
“With the new Titan range, we now have a full suite of products, from lightweight grass or turf stripers right up to the heavy-duty line marking equipment that will work all day on airports, roads and carparks, with a broad range of accessories and innovative technology to complement them.”
The new range incorporates long stroking, slow cycling hydraulic piston technology for heavy-duty use as well as compact, lightweight machines tailored to entry-level projects, each with varied capabilities and degrees of innovation. This includes the Titan PowrLiner models, the LazyLiner self-propelled series and the larger Promark 2K and ThermoMark line stripers.
Mr. Smythe says one of the more prominent inclusions in the range is the PowrLiner 3500 – a medium-sized unit that uses Wagner’s low-wear diaphragm pump, which has no piston, packing or clutch to wear out.
The PowrLiner 3500 is designed specifically for continuous daily use on asphalt, sports line marking and grassed areas, and Mr. Smythe says the unique diaphragm pump technology makes it an efficient alternative to traditional contractor-level sprayers.
Mr. Smythe says the main problem with line marking using conventional piston pumps with a clutch is deadband – the drop in spraying pressure when the gun is actuated before the clutch engages and starts the pump. The diaphragm system means there is no clutch and instead uses continuous strokes, which eliminates deadband and delivers consistent lines. “With the diaphragm pump you get very smooth lines and there’s no chance of sawtoothing or pulsating,” he adds.
Maintenance tasks are minimised, due to a number of small but efficient design deviations from traditional line marking units.
“The two pressure valves, which are the main wear items, are a cartridge design on the PowrLiner 3500. They’re very easy to change – we call them quick change valves because all you need is an adjustable spanner – there’s no skill involved,” Mr. Smythe says, adding that a technician or service centre would typically undertake this maintenance on a conventional machine.
“There’s not a lot of downtime with the PL3500 – if an operator has a spare valve set already on hand, they can just do it themselves,” he says.
In addition to the extensive range of lightweight entry-level products and the full contractor range of models, the Titan line markers include a number of smart features that prioritise ease of use and productivity for the operator.
“On the bigger units we’ve got features such as the Smart Arm,” Mr. Smythe says. “Typically, you’ll have guns mounted on the spray rack on the side of the unit – all adjusted to the specific requirements (heights and widths) of the job. Normally, you need to remove the gun mounts/arms for transport, which means upsetting the adjustments. But with the Smart Arm we don’t have to disturb the set-up or change anything – the arm just folds up on the sides and the unit remains complete and undisturbed. This is a real time saver.”
Another ergonomic inclusion is the DeadLock Handlebars, which can be adjusted on three planes – in and out, up and down and backwards and forwards. “It doesn’t seem like much, but it is a big benefit for ergonomics and operator comfort,” Mr. Smythe adds.
“The last innovative addition is the PowrCenter between the centre of the handlebars for easy operator access at all times. It even has a 12-volt phone charging port and cup holder,” Mr. Smythe says.
“All of these little innovative upgrades improve operator comfort and usability. They’re very self-sufficient as they keep maintenance to a minimum and have exceptional ease of use.”