How We Custom Design Filling Machines
It is no secret that one single filling machine will not work for every product on the market or even for every company packaging similar products. At Liquid Packaging Solutions, we consider each and every one of our liquid fillers to be custom designed equipment, simply based on the fact that we would never start building a machine without knowing our customer product, needs and desires.
Product will play a large part in identifying the correct filling machine for any project. The range of viscosities packaged by any given company will help to identify the best filling principle for any specific project. With many projects, more than one filling principle may be viable. When this is the case, other factors will be taken into account, such as production demand, ease of changeover, ease of cleaning and other considerations.
Once the best filling principle is chosen, different options will also be identified, including the automation level of the packaging machinery. Semi-automatic machinery may be used for facilities that have lower demands or where there is simply not space for an automated line. Other options to consider are simply to numerous to set out a complete list here. These options may include a heated product pathway for products that are filled hot, diving nozzles to avoid foam and cavities or even tank agitation or mixing for products with particulates. Understanding the product will once again lead to the identification of the ideal options for the filling machine.
Finally, whether completely automated or semi-automatic, the best layout for the packaging machinery can be identified based on both needs, wants and space. Inline packaging systems will work well where a complete conveyor system can be placed on the production floor, allowing the liquid filler and all other equipment to be placed along the conveyor. Monoblock systems can be ideal for locations with limited space or for certain containers such as vials and tubes. Tabletop machinery can also save space while increasing production over a hand fill system. And from time to time, something completely different will need to be engineered for unique filling projects.
Once the best solution has been identified, the manufacturing process can begin! But the construction of the machine is not the end of the job for LPS. In almost all situations, sample products and packages will be requested for every project. This allows LPS to run performance tests at our plant to ensure that there are no surprises when the finished machine is put into production. This testing may be done by LPS technicians alone, or with the customer present for a Factory Acceptance Test (FAT), with the FAT preferred to ensure that the machine performs to the packagers standards. The performance testing also provides the advantage of having the machine at the LPS plant if modifications are necessary.
Once all testing of the filling equipment is completed to everyone's satisfaction, the machine will be shipped to the packager's production floor. From here, LPS can provide onsite installation and training while also offering technical service and wear parts from afar, meaning that part of the LPS custom design of the liquid filler includes ongoing support for the packager. Of course, this is a very simplified version of the manufacturing process, but to learn more about the equipment and services offered by LPS, feel free to call and speak with a Packaging Specialist today!