Sacmi Imola S.C. of Imola, Italy, introduced a 24-station compression molding press that it said produces blemish-free plastic caps with diameters up to 70 millimeters.
Typical wide-mouth caps are 43mm or 63mm.
Sacmi developed the new press, the CCM24L, to eliminate blemishes - or cold or compression marks - in the compression molding of wide-mouth caps with continuous threads, said Claudio Scudellari, North American closures manager for Sacmi's PET and closures division.
The maximum rate is 450 caps per minute. The optimal cycle time is 3 seconds.
In the rotary process, a large turret revolves continuously. Each of the 24 cavities receives a gob of resin, usually polyethylene or polypropylene, and is raised to clamp with the forming upper punch. The station opens and ejects the cap after a complete 360-degree turn of the turret.
Depending on the number of cavities and the application, a CCM24L costs $310,000-$750,000, Scudellari said in an interview at NPE 2006 in Chicago.
In 1992, Sacmi pursued improvements in compression molding and, in 1994, manufactured and sold its first industrial model. At NPE 2000, Sacmi displayed a compression machine that produced a 63mm closure.
For the tamper-evident band secondary operation, Sacmi introduced a combination folding and slitting machine, the FSM12L, with speeds up to 2,000 caps per minute.
Band slitting leaves isolated bridges or posts that secure it to the closure's main body and are designed to break while unscrewing the cap. Some band designs require folding.
Sacmi can equip or retrofit its CVS200 video, quality-control inspection system on the compression molding machine or the folding and slitting machine.
Separately, the Sacmi division's automation and inspection systems branch showed a Surveyor 900 noninvasive laboratory X-ray inspection system for analyzing internal cap profiles. The machine's list price is about $180,000, said Fabrizio Dematte, vision systems manager.
Sacmi sold the NPE-displayed machine to Berry Plastics Corp. for use at Berry's technical center in Lancaster, Pa.
Sacmi manufactures the Surveyor 900 in Turin, Italy, and introduced the system in 2005.
Sacmi began developing visual inspection production machines in Imola in 1989.
About 11 years ago, Sacmi began installing the closure vision system, under the CVS brand, in its own machines initially for making crown and aluminum caps. Sacmi brought out the adaptable modular CVS2000 line in 2001 and now has improved the software. The update is the CVS3000.
Sacmi has simplified the user interface, used distributed computing for two to six personal computers and increased inspection speed to 6,000-8,000 parts per minute, Dematte said.