Capping Machines - Inserts and Fitments
Automatic capping machines exist for virtually every type of cap and bottle combination, and in most cases the machines will simply tighten or seal based on the type of closure being used. However, some packages will use more than just a simple cap to help with the convenience of the product, among other things. For instance, some juices will use a fitment and a cap to help the customer easily pour the liquid. Some soaps and cleaners will use pumps or trigger sprayers that require a tube to be placed in the container, with the closure attaching to that tube.
When closures are combined with fitments, one solution is to double up on the capping machinery, allowing first the fitment to be placed on the package and the cap to be sealed on to the fitment, and not necessarily in that order. For one recent project, LPS designed a conveyor system that included pucks on the conveyor for the fitments. A sorting device would deliver the fitment to the puck, which then passed through another sorting device to receive the cap. Spindles were then used to tighten the cap to the fitment. Of course, the manner in which this is done will depend in large part on the packaging itself, as some containers come with the fitment already in place, or as a part of the container. Every project using a fitment will be analyzed individually in order to find the best solution for that project.
For projects that include inserts, such as brushes or tubes, the presentation of the cap and insert to the container may need some modification from a simple sorter and chute. Typically, one of two methods will be used to insert stems or brushes into containers. The first would involve a pick and place solution, meaning each closure (cap and insert) is individually picked up and placed in to the container just before entering the capping area where sealing will occur. The second solution involves timing screws, one for the bottle and one for the closure. The timing screw for the closure would descend, again introducing the closure to the bottle just before the two enter the capping area. Like projects with fitments, each project with inserts would need to be analyzed on a case-by-case basis to find the best solution for the project at hand.
To learn more about capping machinery or to discuss your own capping or packaging project, contact Liquid Packaging Solutions toll free at 1-888-393-3693.