Semi-automatic Liquid Fillers
Semi-Automatic Liquid Fillers
Some facilities, or even some products run by facilities, simply do not meet the production demands that would require a fully automatic packaging line. For instance, holiday products or packages are normally only produced at certain times of the year, keeping production numbers lower than most products. These holiday products may also include special sizes or packaging not run during the normal course of business. Other products may be run throughout the entire year, but may simply serve a local or regional market, again not requiring the numbers warranting a fully automatic packaging system. Semi-automatic liquid fillers are an ideal packaging machine for these unique situations.
Semi-automatic filling machines are driven by an operator to increase efficiency and productivity over hand filling individual containers. Rather than the power conveyor used on an automatic liquid filler, the semi-automatic packaging machine will come equipped with a slide track. This slide track is used by the operator of the filling machine to load empty containers and slide them into place under the individual fill heads. Once in place, the operator simply steps on a footswitch to activate the fill cycle. A simple PLC will be used to set the duration of the fill for each cycle. Once the fill is complete, the operator moves the containers along the slide track to remove the filled containers from the filling area, delivering them to the next packaging phase, most likely to a capping machine or station. This process will be repeated for each group of containers to be filled.
Semi-automatic filling machines offer several advantages over hand filling product. First and foremost, these packaging machines offer an increase in speed, and thus production output. Semi-automatic fillers allow several containers to be filled at one time, usually up to sixteen at once depending on the filling principle being used and the product being filled. In addition, the filling machine allows for an efficient, systematic approach to packaging, allowing an operator to quickly fill containers and move them to the next packaging phase. The accuracy of the fill can also be increased by using a filling machine versus a hand fill. The semi-automatic filler will allow for consistent fills on each container, eliminating manual labor factors such as worker fatigue, lack of attention or simple negligence.
Another benefit of the semi-automatic filling machine is that in most cases, the packaging equipment can be upgraded to a fully automatic machine should production demands increase. This process will require some modification, but removes the need to purchase completely new filling machines. As noted above, a semi-automatic filler uses a slide track. To automate the machine, the slide track will be replaced by a power conveyor. The power conveyor will also use an automatic indexing system to move containers into and out of the fill area. This automatic indexing system will be added to the filling machine to remove the need for the operator to load and unload bottles after each cycle. The PLC used on the semi-automatic system will also require some upgrading, allowing the operator of the automatic machine to make adjustments to the filler at one centralized location while also adding controls for vision systems and the filler conveyor. The vision systems allow the machine to see bottles entering and leaving the fill area, keeping operation of the machine automatic.
Whether you are looking at a semi-automatic filler as a solution for special products and packaging or as a starter for your main product, these filling machines can add efficiency and productivity to your packaging while also leaving room for growth. For more information on any of the liquid fillers or other packaging equipment manufactured by Liquid Packaging Solutions, browse our website at www.liquidpackagingsolution.com or call toll free today at 1-888-393-3693.