Standard Features - Automatic Filling Machinery
As we've stated before, nearly every piece of machinery manufactured by Liquid Packaging Solutions qualifies as custom machinery, in as much as each piece of packaging equipment is built specifically for the project and product at hand. However, there are standard features on different pieces of equipment, such as automatic filling machines, that tend to be a part of every machine regardless of the project or products. While some exceptions do exist, below is a list of features that will almost always be included on automatic bottle fillers.
Stainless Steel Construction
Almost all filling machines will be manufactured using sturdy, stainless steel materials because almost all products interact well with stainless steel. The material insures not only a long machine life, but also limited wear and tear from everyday use. Solid, robust construction ensures consistent and reliable performance as well. Of course, some products, such as acids, bleaches and other chemicals, will actually have a negative effect on stainless. In these cases, an alternative material, typically HDPE, will be used for the machinery.
Each automatic filler will include vision systems which use sensors to guard against bottle jams and ensure the correct number of containers are in place before a fill begins. These vision systems are also used to ensure fluid performance by eliminating spills, downstream bottle jams and backups at the liquid filler itself. While the vision systems used on each automatic bottle filler may be different, they will all include the systems necessary for smooth production runs.
Touchscreen Operator Interface with PLC
Simple controls are always a plus for packaging machinery. On LPS automatic filling machines, the controls are centralized on a simple to use touchscreen interface which works with a PLC to control all delay and duration times for things like indexing, filling, pump activation while also allowing manual control of some components for troubleshooting and bottle changeover. The centralized location for the filler may also include controls for some auxiliary equipment such as power conveyors or loading turntables, making set up of the filling system, as a whole, quick and convenient.
Power Height and Tool Free Adjustments
Quick changeover from one bottle size to another on a filling machine is not only convenient, but can save both time and money in the long run! Every minute the machine is down is a minute of production time, and therefore a minute of profit, lost! Quick changeover, requiring no tools and a simple power height adjustment helps to maximize the run time of the machine for efficient production runs.
The Recipe Screen, one of the menus found on the operator interface mentioned above, is also a standard feature on automatic filling machines. The recipe screen takes all of the settings associated with a specific product and bottle and stores them for simple recall at a later date. This saves operators from finding indexing times, fill times, pump speeds and more each time a product and bottle combination is run. And when samples are provided to LPS, all settings for these combinations will be factory set, saving time on even the initial set up.
Of course, each type of filling machine may also include different standard features, such as individually timed fill heads on a gravity filler. In addition, the options available for automatic liquid fillers are simply to numerous to list here. However, these options, combined with the standard features found on most machines, are what help LPS find the best filling solution for each and every packaging project.