Where a belt is loaded at more than one point along the conveyors length, care must be used in the positioning of the skirtboard at the loading points. The skirtboard at the subsequent load points must be designed to allow the previously loaded material to pass freely, without being “plowed” off the belt by the skirtboard or chute steel of the following loading point.
Because it is impossible to rely on material being loaded evenly and centrally onto a conveyor with multiple load points, a certain amount of plowing and spillage of the material is probably inevitable. This fugitive material contributes to higher operating and cleanup costs as well as premature equipment failures. Therefore, it is a sound practice to incorporate continuous skirtboards.
When loading points are relatively close together, it is usually better to provide a continuous skirtboard between the two loading points and a deeper trough angle than would be normally used rather than use individual skirtboards at each loading point.
Another excellent approach for situations with multiple load zones would be the installation of an air-supported conveyor. Air-supported conveyors are uniquely suited for multiple load zones, as they require only a centered load, rather than conventional skirtboard or skirt seals.