M-b-290, Sup. 1: Flo-StarTM Milking Claws Model Numbers 8506848 and 8506864

<< Back to Index of Memoranda of Information (M-b) Main Page

TO: All Regional Food and Drug Directors
Attn: Regional Milk Specialists

FROM: Milk Safety Branch (HFS-626)

SUBJECT: Supplement to M-b-290 Flo-Star™ Milking Claws Model Numbers 8506848 and 8506864

This memorandum is a supplement to M-b-290 (Flo-Star™ Milking Claws), Model Numbers 8506848 and 8506864, issued May 26, 1987 , and provides for the acceptance of a redesign of Model Number 8506848 and the new fabrication of the Flow-Star® milking claw. The redesigned Flo-Max® Milking Claw includes Model Numbers 8512558 with a 5/8 inch outlet and 8512559 with a ¾ inch outlet.

In accordance with M-I-00-2, Milk and Milk Product Equipment-A Guide for Evaluating Construction , FDA's Pacific Region Dairy Products Team (DPT) and CFSAN's Milk Safety Team have evaluated and validated the technical information submitted by the Pacific Region Dairy Equipment Review Committee (PRDERC) addressing the Bou-Matic Flo-Star® Max Claw with 5/8 and ¾ inch outlets.

When constructed, installed, operated and maintained as outlined in the instructions of the manufacturer's manual 9E-858A, the Bou-Matic Flo-Star® Max Claw, Model Number 8512558 with a 5/8 inch outlet and Model Number 8512559 with a ¾ inch outlet have been found to comply with Section 7, Item 9r-Utensils and Equipment-Construction of the Grade "A" Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (PMO).

The technical information that was reviewed addressing the Bou-Matic Flo-Star® Claw, Model Number 8512558 with a 5/8 inch outlet and Model Number 8512559 with a ¾ inch outlet constitutes the PRDERC's Engineering Design and Technical Construction File (EDTCF) PR-04-02. The material in the EDTCF is the property of the manufacturer and may be shown at their discretion.

For additional information regarding this piece of equipment please contact:

P.O. Box 8050
Madison , Wisconsin 53708
Attn: Gary Steingraber
Phone: (608) 222-3484
Fax: (608) 222-9314

FDA's review and acceptance of this piece of equipment does not constitute FDA endorsement or approval. Any representation on a label or in printed literature citing or indicating as "FDA Approved" is false and misleading.

back to top

An electronic version of this memorandum is available for distribution to Regional Milk Specialists, State Milk Regulatory Agencies and State Milk Sanitation Rating Officers in your region. The electronic version should be widely distributed to representatives of the dairy industry and other interested parties and will also be available on the FDA Web Site at at a later date.

If you would like an electronic version of this document prior to it being available on the CFSAN Web Site, please e-mail your request to

Randy Elsberry
FDA Regional Dairy Specialist

Jonathan M. Gardner
FDA/MSB Milk Sanitation Officer


Flo-Star® Milking Claw
Installation and Maintenance Instructions
Table of Contents

Picture of the Flo-Star Milking Claw

Installation & Maintenance Instructions 
Patent #5,586,518, other patents pending

back to top

Instructional Content and Purpose
These instructions aim to aid those responsible (outlined under "Responsibilities") for installing, operating, maintaining, troubleshooting, and servicing this product.

Procedures in these instructions are to be performed according to applicable codes (state, local, and other) by the person(s) qualified (licensed, if applicable) to do so - that is:

  • welding must be done by a qualified welder.
  • high-voltage AC power wiring must be done by a qualified (licensed) electrician in compliance with the latest-edition of the ANS/NFPA Standard 70, National Electrical Code, and in compliance with the local wiring codes as applicable.
  • other installation, major maintenance, and service work must be done by an authorized Bou-Matic® dealer.
  • product/system checkout and troubleshooting steps are to be performed by an authorized Bou-Matic® dealer.
  • deviation from these instructions could affect product performance or create a hazardous situation. Under no circumstances will Bou-Matic® be responsible for any problems caused in whole or in part by any deviation from the procedures specified in these instructions without prior written approval from Bou-Matic®.

Bou-Matic LLC
1919 S. Stoughton Rd.
P.O. Box 8050
Madison , WI 53708-8050
(608) 222-3484 Fax: (608) 222-9314

  • operation steps may be performed by the owner/operator once the dealer or technician has successfully finished the product/system checkout. The owner/operator is responsible for properly operating, maintaining, and monitoring the product/system to ensure that it works properly.

Close compliance with the procedures herein is essential for the owner to get maximum benefit from the product/system.

No warranties are contained in these instructions. The division of responsibilities, stated above, is a general reminder of those provisions in the applicable dealer contract and does not change any agreement between Bou-Matic and the dealer. Information in these instructions is not all-inclusive and cannot cover all unique situations.

Figure 1. Claw Vent Location And Front Indication

Figure 2a Parlor Hanger- Mountable permanent hanger

back to top

Short Mike Tubes
Use only short mike tubes designed for the Flow-Star® MAX claw. For a 2 piece liner, use the curved milk tube (P/N 8507140) or a special straight mike tube, available as part number 8516245 (package of 8). Push the short milk tubes fully onto the claw's inlets.

Short Pulse (Air) Tube Installation Instructions
The following tube lengths are recommended with the narrow airfork (patent#5,586,518).

Bou-Matic Short Pulse Tube
Shell Length
Vis-Shell 9"
Std. Stainless Steel 7"

Hold the claw upright (as it is when milking). Connect the liner and shell assembly to the claw with the shell pulsation nipple facing down (towards the bottom of the claw). Connect the short pulse tubes to the claw's air fork. This shell/nipple position provides the best short air tube alignment and routing when the complete milking unit is in operation.

1.3 Ensuring Proper Vacuum

Because of the Flo-Star® MAX claw's streamlined flow pattern, you may need to adjust the systems and adjust the milking vacuum level accordingly. The average vacuum at the claw should be 11 to 12.5 inches of mercury (37 to 42 kPa) during milking (see System Analysis Instructions, literature 9e-312). Higher claw vacuum is recommended if proper prep procedures and quicker takeoff settings with detachers are used.

1.4 Installing Optional Items

Mounting the Parlor Hanger
During CIP cleaning, claws may hang from either of two styles of parlor hanger. If using the permanent hanger bracket (Figure 2a), mount it either way shown. If using the portable hanger (Figure 2b), hook it onto the jetter holder's hook and hang the claw from it during cleaning.


Adding Extra Chain Links - Arm Detachers
You may need to add extra links to the hose support chain to ensure full drainage during milking. (See Figure 3)

back to top

Using a Backflush Hanger
For parlors with backflush, order hangers to allow the claw to rotate upside down in the detached position. Place the hanger over the outlet before installing the milk hose. Ensure the claw drains fully after backflushing (See figure 4).

Adding Weight to a Claw
If more weight is desired, a heavy nut or shell weights are available.

2. Maintenance 

After Every Milking - Wash Claw
After every milking, attach a jetter to it for CIP washing.

Use only Bou-Matic cleaners at recommended concentrations. Use of nonrecommended chemicals will be done at the owner's risk, and damages to the plastic parts from improper cleaning will nullify any warranty covering those parts.

As Needed 
As needed, clean the non-milk-contact (outside) surfaces of the claw, tubes, and other plastic parts using a sponge and mild detergent, followed by a clear water rinse.

As Needed - Cleaning Air Vent
If claw tops are vented, ensure that the vent is always open during milking. If the air vent in the claw top should become plugged, open the hole with Bou-Matic are vent cleaning tool.

Flo-Star® MAX Claw Installation and Maintenance Instructions    

Figure 3 Flo-Star with Arm Detacher

Periodic - Gasket Tension
Periodically check for proper tension to ensure a proper seal. To get proper tension and seal, tighten the nut until the stainless-steel ring around the center bolt's gasket just makes contact with the claw halves. Do not over-tighten.

Periodic - Washing Claw Manually
Though designed for clean-in-place washing, the claw should be hand-washed periodically.

Periodic and Annual - Parts Replacement
Check all gaskets to ascertain their condition. Replace them if they frayed or cracked. Replace all rubber parts annually.

To disassemble the claw:

back to top

  1. Remove the nut and disassemble.
  2. Slide the center bolt and bumper out of the claw.

Use only Bou-Matic cleaners according to label instructions.

To reassemble the claw:

  1. Slide center bolt with bumper (with O-ring installed) in claw bottom. To ease bumper in place, moisten vertical sides of beveled portion with a sanitary lubricant or water.
  2. Slide the small gasket and the stainless-steel ring over the center bolt and install the large gasket on the claw top's rim. Align notch in large gasket with notch in top.
  3. Assemble claw halves together, being sure to reinstall with tab and notch aligned. Always mount the top so that the largest spacing between inlets is used for the front teatcups. F must be on the top towards the front of the cow (see Figure 1). The claw bottom and airfork bracket may be rotated 180° for use in a parallel parlor (milking between the hind legs).
  4. Install other parts and tighten the nut until stainless-steel ring just makes contact. Do not over tighten.

Check tightness of the claw periodically to ensure a proper seal. Tools used for disassembly and assembly should be readily available.

P.O. Box 8050
Madison, WI 53708
August 2, 2004
Updated December 7

Flow-Star® Max Claw

1. Table of Contents

  1. Table of Contents
  2. Overall Drawing
  3. Detailed Drawings
  4. List of 3-A Sanitary Standards Or Practices Used
  5. 3-A Symbol Authorization
  6. Verification Of Compliance To Other Application Standards
  7. Instruction Manual
  8. Quality Measures
  9. Engineering Reports
  10. Laboratory Reports
  11. Description of Materials Used.
  12. Writing Diagrams
  13. Appropriate Materials Needed To Verify Compliance
  14. Test Reports Indicating The Product Can Be Operated In A Sanitary Manner.
  15. Required Safeguards
  16. Alternate PMO Testing Procedure

back to top

Page Last Updated: 06/22/2015
Note: If you need help accessing information in different file formats, see Instructions for Downloading Viewers and Players.
Language Assistance Available: Español | 繁體中文 | Tiếng Việt | 한국어 | Tagalog | Русский | العربية | Kreyòl Ayisyen | Français | Polski | Português | Italiano | Deutsch | 日本語 | فارسی | English