THREE-LAYER LINE DESIGNED FOR HIGH VOLUMES

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CHICAGO — Brampton Engineering Inc. (Booth E9302) is running a three- layer blown film line incorporating several developments.

The three-layer line, mainly for high-volume production, is part of the new technology center at its Brampton, Ontario, headquarters. The firm shipped the line to NPE and will return it to Brampton after the show.

The line features a 13-inch SCD streamlined coextrusion die with Brampton's Dial-A-Gap die-gap adjusting system. Operators can adjust the gap for optimum production for a specific resin system and for quick changeover to a different resin. The die's inner lip moves up and down to vary the gap between the lip and die. It moves by a ratchet and gear system, the company said.

The line also has a 3-Sigma auto-gauge control and a 64-inch oscillating haul-off with a tendency-driven collapsing frame. Completing the system is a dual-turret winder with linear lay-on, gap winding and tapeless transfer. The winder lacks a center shaft, allowing film rolls as large as 32 inches, vs. the 24-inch maximum in Brampton's previous winders. The whole system is controlled by Brampton's new Italycs II control system.

The company said three 31/2-inch extruders feed the system, which can run at 900 feet a minute. The line cost about C$2.5 million (US$1.8 million) to build. It will run various polyethylenes, including metallocenes and other single-site catalyzed PEs.

Brampton said the technical center line will be available as a pilot plant to third parties for testing, product development, research and training. The center also has a seven-layer blown film line with a 6-inch Streamlined Coextrusion Die, which Brampton claims offers superior melt-flow streamlining, temperature isolation and die design simplicity.

Although Brampton specializes in blown film lines, it also makes dies for a range of other, round applications, such as dies for 36-inch corrugated pipe, three-layer tubing and netting, and a five-layer die for blow molding use.

Brampton's sales grew to about C$30 million (US$21.6 million) last year; about half of that was to offshore customers. One sale was Brampton's first commercial nine-layer coextrusion line for an undisclosed customer in Asia. At the time of the May 14 open house, Brampton had about a C$20 million (US$14.4 million) backlog in orders.

The firm continues work with Superex Polymer Inc. of Waltham, Mass., on liquid crystal polymer film. A trimodal die rotates the film core in a different direction from the film's two outer skins, providing high strength in both transverse and machine directions.