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Sidel (Le Havre Cedex, France) has developed a new, self-lubricating composite material for studs and wear rings that eliminates the need for greasing moving parts, allowing blowmolders to cut weekly maintenance operations. The Kohlox thermocomposite material has a low coefficient of friction, allowing parts to move freely without any lubrication.

MPW Staff

January 5, 2010

1 Min Read
Self-lubricating composite for blowmolding tool components

Sidel (Le Havre Cedex, France) has developed a new, self-lubricating composite material for studs and wear rings that eliminates the need for greasing moving parts, allowing blowmolders to cut weekly maintenance operations. The Kohlox thermocomposite material has a low coefficient of friction, allowing parts to move freely without any lubrication.

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Sidel's Kohlox mold components.

Developed after two years of R&D, Sidel says this material represents the best compromise between mechanical resistance to impacts and compression while still allowing free movement. Sidel has created two grease-free parts for molds: mold-bottom wear rings, and female studs. In 2009, the parts were tested and validated on the industrial scale in partnership with Nestlé Waters Est France.

Régis Leclerc, technical coordinator for Nestlé Waters, estimates that his company has saved about one hour of maintenance time on its Sidel SBO 20 machine by retrofitting its molds with Kohlox parts. In addition to more uptime and productivity, Nestlé says the self-lubricating material also improves mold cleanliness by eliminating the possibility of grease splashes or deposits from lubricants. Nestlé Waters has decided to order nearly 100 more molds equipped with Kohlox parts and also adapt some existing molds.

Since the composite is four times lighter than steel, it also has lightened the mold base allowing the machine to run at higher speeds of up to 2000 bottles per hour per mold. The reduced mass also lessens mechanical wear on the machine. Patented by Sidel, Kohlox parts are available as an option for most new molds and can also be adapted to several existing molds for all types of Sidel blowmolders. — [email protected]  

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