Liquid Packaging Machinery - A Guide To Bottle Stability
Automatic inline packaging systems are typically made up of multiple machines, connected via a power conveyor system. The power conveyor allows bottles or containers to move to each automatic machine without the assistance or involvement of an operator at each and every step. In other words, once the line is set up by an operator, it will fill, cap, label and otherwise prepare product without the need for manual labor.
Of course, for the bottles to travel without any issues, and for the processes to take place efficiently, the containers must be kept steady and stable. On the power conveyor system, keeping bottles stable is a fairly simple task. Guide rails on conveyor systems can be adjusted to steady bottles as they move down the line. Additional rails can be added for tall or unique bottles that may need extra support. Even smaller bottles or bottles with non-flat bottoms can be stabilized with rails by using a puck system (the bottle sits in a puck as it travels down the line).
However, once the bottles reach the individual packaging machinery, they will likely need some additional components to keep stabile while being filled, capped, labeled and more. For example, bottles with a skinny neck will need to be kept stable and in position while under the fill heads to receive product without spilling or splashing. An indexing system, such as pin indexing, can help keep the bottles in position. Neck grabbers, or bottle locators, may also be used just prior to the fill to keep the bottle opening positioned in such a case by providing additional support at the neck of the bottle.
Capping machinery presents a different challenge. Most automatic capping machines will present the closures to the bottle using a cap chute. The cap will be picked up by the bottle and both the bottle and the cap must be kept stable to ensure a consistent and reliable seal. However, the method will change based on the type of capping machine used for the given project. A spindle capper will use a stabilizer bar for the cap and gripper belts to keep the bottle from moving as the disks tighten the cap. A chuck capping machine will use a starwheel to position the bottles and allow the chuck heads to descend and do their work. Other capping machines may use other designs or components to ensure bottle stability.
Other equipment, from rinsing machines using a clamp to labeling equipment employing bottle separators and belts, will use components to keep the bottle and accessories stabile during the process, ensuring accurate fills, reliable seals and straight labels. All LPS equipment is designed to ensure efficient, consistent preparation of bottles and other containers. To learn more about bottle stability as it applies to any of the equipment manufactured or sold by Liquid Packaging Solutions, call to speak with a Packaging Specialist today.