Plastic Dip Moulding System Retrofit
Global leaders in essential components and solutions; Essentra Components UK required a system integrator with turnkey project experience to help with the upgrade of the plastic hot dip moulding equipment in their Kiddlington factory.
Said equipment, would produce over 5 million components for the company per year, however due to its age, the operation and reliability of the equipment was reducing, effecting their production rate. Unfortunately, this meant the equipment being in service for only 62% of the time and proving difficult for operators to run. To start producing components back up to their desired level, a completely new control system would be required, not only would this upgrade include controls work, other engineering elements would be required.
As specialists in a range of engineering sectors, including control systems, mechanical, electrical and robotics it was only fitting that Essentra opted to use one system integrator to undertake the entire scope of work, rather than issuing it out to multiple suppliers at the risk of delays and logistics.
In addition to the design and install of the new control system for the hot dip moulding equipment, Adbro Controls were also assigned the task of managing the procurement of the 2-stage pre dip tool, pre heat ovens and the 2-stage post dip curing ovens.
With their mechanical engineering experience, the refurbishment of various segments of the hot dip tooling equipment was no trouble. This included an 8 tool position rotary indexing turntable, 3 Axis Servo driven dipping tool, 4 interchangeable tank dipping options, tool water drip cooling tank and an operator dip mould blow of station. Over time safety regulations to change, therefore it is important that businesses look at their systems and make changes and improvements where required. In this case there were a couple of safety elements that needed to be upgraded so they were in line with the latest regulations. These were actioned by the engineers assigned by Adbro.
As a full turnkey project the installation and commissioning of the new system was carried out by the team over a set time frame that suited Essentra’s production schedule.
The system upgrade has enabled Essentra to increase the run time of the dip moulding equipment. With no doubts of the reliability of the system, it is now operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The uptime is now 92% – representing a 50% throughput increase for the business. The energy usage of the hot dip moulding equipment has been cut by 34% – thus representing a saving of over £50,000 per year, alongside savings per component due to the greater throughput achieved thanks to the upgrade.
The cost of the total system upgrade and mechanical retrofit works on this project, were less than a third of what it could have cost Essentra to implement a brand new system and equipment. Proving that in in some cases an upgrade is all you need. Other benefits of the upgraded system include greater moulding precision and quality of the finish products. Substantial decrease in noise, and fume output resulting in a safer working environment for the operators manning the equipment on a day to day basis.