“We walked away with so many people wanting trials,” Stark said. “At least 20 customers want to trial our blending equipment.” Wittmann displayed its Gravimax G56 gravimetric blenders and Gravimax G14 and G34 blenders and underscored new controls, color touch screens and user interface design.
“More than half of our auxiliary equipment leads came from the extrusion market” including interest in products processors powders and rough regrind, Stark said. “That is a market we are developing with new equipment. Extrusion products were a hit at the show.” That included the Yieldmax self-regulating additive feeding system.
Equipment sold directly off the show floor included a large tonnage MacroPower 650/8800 BSP molding machine purchased by Hansen Plastics, a MicroPower 15/10 molding machine bought by Octex and a W843 pro robot.
Other equipment ordered during the show included the sale of a MacroPower 850 two-shot molding machine to auto supplier Mann + Hummel USA Inc., three turnkey work cells sold to Ensinger-Putnam Precision Molding and the sale of seven turkey workcells including seven molding machines to an unnamed molder.
A large multiline order included six Tempro temperature controllers, three modules for Drymax battery dryers, six Feedmax S3 net single conveying systems and three Mas2 granulators.
Another purchase order covered two G34 blenders, eight Feedmax S3net loaders and four Tempro plus D controllers.
From the show floor, a Wittmann customer ordered a MC volumetric dosing system and an extrusion throughput controller.
Wittmann Battenfeld is incorporating light-emitting-diode display strips or rings on multiple products, that allow an operator to view the status of the unit quickly from a distance.
The manufacturer recognizes the difficulty of customers in finding trained individuals to run auxiliary as well as primary equipment.
As a result, Wittmann Battenfeld believes simple is better, service is essential and one-stop shopping works, Stark said.
Looking at trends, “the market wants simple but doesn't want to sacrifice anything,” Stark said. “Wittmann wants to give simple but the best technology at the same time.”
Web-based servicing for central material handling controls can lead to solutions in a matter of minutes.
“Coming out of the recession, customers learned to run lean,” Stark said.
As for one-stop shopping, Wittmann Battenfeld has seen at least a two-fold boost in orders for turnkey work-cell-type Multi-Line equipment with integrated controls over three years, Stark said.
“Those requests are absolutely increasing,” he said.
Energy efficiency is another requirement.
“Materials are a processor's number one expense,” Stark noted. “We can achieve huge savings for customers through accurate blenders that can use more recycled material and less colorant.”
Wittmann may talk to a customer using colorant at 4 percent and reduce that demand down to 2 percent, Stark said. Of course, a color concentrate supplier may not mind if a customer is using inefficient blending equipment because it can lead to a higher consumption of the concentrate.
Smaller footprint for TCUs