Cama Group CL 179 side-load cartoning machine ticks all the boxes for customer’s immediate
needs and will seamlessly adapt to match future throughput requirements
A recent plant-upgrade project for one of Cama’s UK customers couldn’t have come at a more important time. The customer, a major science and technology company that supplies a multitude of market-leading products to both industry and consumers, needed to replace a 20-year-old packaging machine in order to significantly boost its line’s throughput. “The incumbent machine, which is used to package face masks, was creating a bottleneck in the production line,” explains Mark Brooker, Director of Cama UK. “Our customer needed to take its packaging throughput up to 400 product per minute, from its current level of 300. Even though the on-site engineers were highly capable and had already overseen multiple machine enhancement projects on other elements of the line, this two-decade old machine really had maxed out its potential and needed to be replaced.” Regarding the replacement technology, Cama was not only up against the incumbent machine’s supplier, but also other OEMs in the secondary packaging market. “As it turns out, the engineers on site really liked our proposal,” Brooker elaborates, “and they realised that our CL179 machine would not only fit the physical space, but would also blend and integrate very well with the existing technology – in terms of both its hardware and software. We were also able to offer a wider variety of option and could deliver multiple proof points of these machines in action in similar applications around the globe.”
Cama CL179 side load cartoning machine is well suited to non-woven products such as face masks, where it is already serving customers, handling soft-compressible materials, such as those found in feminine hygiene products and cosmetic & baby wipes.
The company’s CL horizontal cartoning machine series has been developed and continuously improved to offer high-performance and reliable solutions for side-loading applications. The cartoning machines, which exploit state-of-the-art automation technology can be easily integrated into complete production lines in both the food and non-food markets.
The CL179 variant is an electronic intermittent-continuous motion cartoning machine suited for the packing of flow-wraps, pouches, bags, thermoformed trays, blisters and jars. The machine loads and closes (hot-melt or tuck-in) two or more cartons with each machine pitch by means of intermittent-continuous motion. It can be combined with different loading apparatus according to the product’s characteristics and specific production requirements.
In this application, the machine exploits a high speed, pocket based in-feed solution where products are fed either as single elements or pairs (depending on the product type). The products are gently compressed individually before being compiled into the packaging counts, where they are compressed once again before being inserted into cartons, in boxes of 20 or 40. Switching from single valve-equipped masks to double arrays of basic non-valve masks takes a matter of minutes.
“In this instance, as well as its operating performance, the machine was well suited to this application because of the way that it can be tightly integrated with the existing line, not only physically and mechanically, but also electronically, due to its Rockwell Automation control platform,” Brooker adds. “The main collaboration with our engineers and those at the customers is based I/O alignment and integration.
“The machine is tailored to this application in the fact that it has a leaflet insertion and verification solution, which is unusual for these types of machines,” Brooker concludes. “It also has in-built flexibility to cater for future performance upgrades, especially in terms of throughput. Indeed, the packaging element of the production line is now no longer a bottle neck. The customer is looking to upgrade other elements of the line and can do so with the confidence that the packaging machine at the end can already cater for any future throughput gains.”