Bottle Fillers and Nozzle Selection
Even with the best filling machine for any given packaging project, using the wrong type of nozzle can create short and long-term performance issues. Just as there are a number of different filling principles from which to choose, there are a variety of nozzles that can be used on most bottle fillers. From material to size to a number of other factors, selecting the best nozzle for any packaging project will stem from an analysis of the unique characteristics of each individual job.
At least one filling machine principle is actually based on the type of nozzle used to complete the fill. Overflow fillers use a special nozzle that descends to create a seal over the bottle. In creating the seal, two ports appear on the nozzle, one to fill the bottle and a second to overflow liquid as the fill reaches a specific level. The use of the overflow port allows each and every bottle to be filled to the same level, regardless of small discrepancies in the internal volume of the different containers. While overflow nozzles may still vary in size and some component material, for the most part, the make up of the nozzle will remain the same for almost all bottle fillers using this principle.
Other bottle fillers use principles based on how the product is moved to the containers, such as gravity fillers, pump fillers and piston filling machines. The make up of the nozzles used on these machines can vary greatly from project to project based on the product, the container or range of containers and more. While a standard fill head may be made up of an actuator, ball valve and nozzle or nozzle tip, the variations on this set up and the type of nozzle or tip used are nearly limitless. Nozzles and tips may be made from different materials, such as stainless steel or plastic, depending on the product being filled. The size of the opening of the nozzle tips can range from very small for vials or tubes to a wide open tip for jars and other wide-mouthed containers. Some projects may use a simple inch long nozzle to deliver product while others may use eight or twelve inch nozzles that dive into containers. Special nozzles or tips may also be utilized for problem products, such as stringing, dripping or other project specific needs.
Of course, custom projects come along from time to time that simply require a completely custom nozzle. Custom fillers and nozzles will be created by taking into account whatever is necessary to efficiently move product to the bottle, including the product itself, the bottle, the production needs and any other relevant factors. If you have questions regarding filling machinery or the different types of nozzles used on the equipment, contact a Packaging Specialist at LPS today or visit our bottle filler page for more information.