Modular conveying and packing system

Modular systems for in-house transport are flexibly adapted to individual customer wishes and operational processes and provide independence from large-scale technology and complicated systems.

Modular systems for in-house transport are flexibly adapted to individual customer wishes and operational processes and provide independence from large-scale technology and complicated systems. Whole conveyor lines can be shut down or used additionally, depending on the requirements and work load.

The modular technology enables easy extension of a packing system, depending on what the operating situation requires. This keeps the procurement costs low.

At Fritz Berger GmbH in Essen, a modular conveying and packing system optimises the dispatch of lightweight metal and steel wheels. The system has been planned, installed and serviced by Evers GmbH in Oberhausen (www.eversgmbh.de).

Customer's requirement
The manufactured products are to be packed in cases at two packing stations, and then forwarded by means of conveying technology to an automatic strapping station. The auxiliary line is only used during increased production demand periods. The main and auxiliary line are finally merged to transport the cases packed ready for dispatch and assigned transport documents in shipping containers made ready.

Advice and planning
Following in-depth discussions with the customer and joint planning, the whole conveying and packing system is first produced as true-to-scale models. This is followed by the second planning stage. The Evers project team uses construction and building plans to produce a true-to-scale AutoCAD drawing.

Evers recommended conveying and packing machines of Soco A/S, a worldwide operating Danish specialist for modular machines for end packaging (end-of-line packaging machinery) be used for the implementation. For the strapping technology, Berger chose a fully-automatic machine of the Japanese company StraPack, which has the reputation of producing the worldwide most reliable machines of their type.

Realisation
An operator positions the flat case in the semi-automatic Soco flap folder, Model F-100. This machine fulfils the function of an ergonomic packing table and is installed in a space-saving way, directly in front of the case sealing machine. The pneumatically controlled machine automatically folds the bottom and side flaps. The cases are then fed to the user and environmentally friendly Soco case sealing machine Type T-55, which fully automatically seals the bottom of the cases with a 50 mm wide self-adhesive polypropylene tape. The robust machine is available as a bottom or top sealer or for simultaneous sealing of bottom and top and automatically adjusts to varying case formats.

The bottom-sealed cases are fed to a 4 metre long, free-running roller conveyor. There they are packed with steel and lightweight metal wheels by two dispatch employees. The modular design roller conveyors are easy to install and can also be easily changed, relocated or added to. They are free of wear and easy running. The gradient of the non-driven conveyors should be between 2.5 and 5 º to enable unassisted flow. The plastic rollers can be installed without tools. Changes to the axle pitch and replacement of the rollers are child's play.

The finished, packed cases are conveyed on a driven Soco roller conveyor to an automatic side sealing strapping station. The StraPack RQ-8Y with side head can be easily integrated in automatic packing lines. The two photocells enable the machine to automatically strap the cases with two polypropylene straps as they pass through it. The RQ-8Y is ideal for heavy goods, as their weight is supported by the conveyor belt and not by the strapping machine. The machine can be easily removed from the packing line for maintenance. The cases packed ready for dispatch "run" over the roller conveyor to an end stop where they are assigned the relevant shipping documents.

An auxiliary line will be installed parallel to the main line to enable flexible response to increased production demand and will only be used when required. The whole conveying section consists of driven roller conveyors which can always be used if the transport is to run quietly and reliably. Typical examples are sections which join at right-angles or branching points at which the conveyed goods from one section are transferred to branch lines. The conveyors are fitted with smooth frames and have no sharp edges. If necessary, they can be extended by adding coupling elements. They are driven by polycord belts, which act from the coupled axles on the respective roller.

Already sealed cases are manually strapped on the auxiliary line and are conveyed by the Soco roller conveyor to an automatic "transfer station". Photocells signal whether the main conveyor section is free or not. A Soco pusher feeds the cartons into the main conveyor section. If the roller conveyor is full the pusher waits until space is available for pushing on the goods.

The cases packed ready for dispatch with transport documents are conveyed directly into the shipping container.

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