Trust was not betrayed
The first HEUFT TORNADO flex now labels swing top bottles at the M. C. Wieninger private brewery.
Integrating a prototype along a filling line without any previous tests? That really needs a great deal of trust! Such a risk can only be entered into by those who have found the know-how of the supplier to be more than satisfactory - for example the M.C. Wieninger private brewery in Teisendorf, Bavaria. The HEUFT team of experts recently commissioned a new servo-controlled labeller there for the first time: the HEUFT TORNADO flex. Successfully.
"We had an old labelling machine with a mechanical bottle alignment" recalls Herbert Meier the head brewer at the Wieninger brewery. "Of course the wear and tear was tremendous. The financial expenditure for maintenance reflected this." The medium-sized business, which produces 100,000 hectolitre beer annually, wanted to bring an end to this. At the same time it aimed to increase the performance of the filling process of swing top bottles considerably. A new labeller which aligns them using servomotors had to be acquired.
Good experiences with the HEUFT inspection systems
"At that time a servo machine was not officially available from HEUFT but the idea regarding its construction had been born" said Mr Meier. The suggestion to develop a prototype just for the Wieninger brewery was accepted. After all one had already made best experiences with the HEUFT InLine empty bottle inspector, the HEUFT VGX full case check and the HEUFT LGX returned crate check among other things. The latter is equipped with a rubber seal inspection tailor-made specially to the brewery´s requirements. A complete package was put together comprising the prototype of the HEUFT TORNADO flex servo labeller (this was presented at the BRAU Beviale 2008 exhibition and has meanwhile gone into series production), the HEUFT synchron conveyor control system and the highly efficient HEUFT PROFILER line analysis tool because the Bavarian brewery was also dissatisfied with its existing conveyor control system and wanted to introduce a precise production data acquisition system (PDA) as well.
Trouble-free commissioning of the labelling machine
A standard HEUFT TORNADO was used in the brewery to bridge the gap until the new servo labeller was ready. The new HEUFT TORNADO flex was installed and commissioned in October 2008. "It went without a hitch" explained the head brewer. "The machine arrived on schedule on Friday morning. It was in the bottling hall that evening. It was already running on Monday." "A very acceptable degree of efficiency was achieved" from the beginning. And now almost two months later the servo labeller is working very well: "Our expectations have been met to date. There were no problems whatsoever with the standard brand and the swing top alignment also works very well." The proportion of faulty alignments is between 0.1% and 0.2% - only a fraction of the 1.5% which was the order of the day with the old, mechanical alignment procedure.
Servomotors easily replaced
The customer was also impressed with the high level of flexibility during a brand change / retrofit, the simple operation, the network-based connection to the competent HEUFT TeleService, the tidy construction and the time-saving clean in place function for cleaning the labelling stations independently. Mr Meier assessed the especially easy replacement of servomotors particularly favourably compared with the labellers of other competitors: "Anyone can do this - I do not need an electrician for this." Long and costly standstills are therefore a thing of the past.
A labelling machine in line with the latest technological developments
The new conveyor control system and the new PDA system also increase the efficiency of the Wieninger production line: "For a start we have seen where our weak points are due to the HEUFT PROFILER." The equipment achieves an output of 25,000 bottles per hour at present - that is 25% more than previously! However this is due to the fact that the closer is only designed for this maximum number. The HEUFT TORNADO flex is capable of considerably more: it has precisely aligned and labelled 42,000 swing top bottles per hour during tests - this is even 72,000 in the case of standard containers. "We now have a machine which is in line with the latest technological developments" said Mr Meier happily. He never had any doubts about it working. Because he knows: "HEUFT will go to any lengths to see that the customer is satisfied".