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September 13, 1999

2 Min Read
Automotive molder shifts to low-speed granulation

Many automotive customers are asking their suppliers of molded parts to install fully integrated, closed loop recycling systems to minimize materials contamination. Framatome Connectors Interlock Inc., a division of FCI Automotive (Westland, MI), one of the largest suppliers of automotive electrical connectors, was no exception.

But in its search to find the best type of granulator to work efficiently with its Demag, Rochester, and Engel molding machines, Framatome ran into a messy problem. It found that the more conventional high-speed, screen-type granulators worked fine for offline grinding of sprues, runners, and nonconforming parts. But high-speed granulators generated too much dust and too many fines. Integrating such granulators into manufacturing cells at its two plants in Westland would have caused a housekeeping nightmare.

“We finally reduced our granulator selection down to two slow-speed models,” says Duke De Alwis, Framatome’s senior manufacturing engineer. “We found that the slow-rpm-speed granulators were ideal for our application, because they kept dust down to an absolute minimum. Also, they could handle our larger sprues, and they worked well with our sprue pickers.” After two weeks of testing and monitoring factors such as cutting accuracy, productivity, downtime problems, and maintenance, Framatome selected Nissui’s SA Series S-Cutter granulator.

“It had the low rpm we required, and its S-shaped blade design performed better when it came to processing larger runners,” De Alwis says. “Also, it ran smoothly without clogging, and it consistently cut even our larger sprues, up to 14 inches long, down to a pellet size that did not pose any processing issues. Using the Nissui granulator also allows us to quickly change from one product to another.”

In addition, De Alwis found that the S-Cutter two-stage cutter blade design provides low maintenance. “For more than a year we have been using the original cutting head,” De Alwis explains. “If we need a new cutting blade, we simply rotate to another cutting head. The top of the Nissui granulator swings out so that you have access to the interior components for fast, easy maintenance.”

Nissui was able to customize its equipment to meet Framatome’s special requests for Allen-Bradley controls, new timers, custom pellet movers, and revised base and chute designs. The company is already running 20 Nissui S-Cutters and plans to install 24 more at its two Westland plants.

Contact information
Framatome Connectors Interlock Inc.
Westland, MI
Duke De Alwis
Phone: (734) 728-2100
Fax: (734) 728-0230

Nissui Corp.
East Lansing, MI
Kazuo Otomo
Phone: (517) 332-7400
Fax: (517) 332-2148
Web: www.nissui.com

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