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Latest two-cavity FlexBlow2 model SBM system can change over through a range of PET bottles from 50 mL to 6 L in 30 minutes or less.

PlasticsToday Staff

April 10, 2018

3 Min Read
FlexBlow to demo fastest PET bottle format change at NPE2018

Machinery makers need to possess a competitive advantage against other manufacturers to gain customers’ attention and trust in the highly saturated market of PET stretch blow-mold (SBM) machines. Having worked in the industry since 1994, FlexBlow team discovered that, with increasing variety of PET containers, bottle production batches were shrinking and the need for niche PET containers was increasing.

Although started with simpler blowers in 1996, FlexBlow built their first fully electric machine in 2007. It was aimed for higher flexibility when it comes to bottle format change and the possibility to produce a range of different containers on one machine.

Now comes the next generation of blow molding machines.

FlexBlow claims that the latest 2018 two-cavity FlexBlow2 model is by far the most universal 2-stage PET SBM machine on the market. It enables the production of a wide range of PET containers on 1 piece of equipment with necks ranging from 18 mm up to 110 mm and bottle volumes from 50mL up to 6,000mL. Changing the bottle format including molds, neck and gripper parts, and fine-tune the machine afterwards takes no longer than 30 minutes, according to FlexBlow marketing manager G. Sirvinskas.

There are a number of developments that FlexBlow has added to their new machine in 2018 to stretch the ease of use and flexibility even further:

  • A dedicated Siemens control panel now has several new functions to make the experience of operating the machine intuitive;

  • Integrated operator’s manual guides the user along every step of operation to make it repeatable and minimizes the impact of human factor;

  • Integrated catalogue to achieving top PET bottle quality includes visual troubleshooting guide, as well as machine production and efficiency statistics for performance tracking.

EastPack 2018 held June 12-14 in New York City features the latest in manufacturing and automation, a dedicated 3D Printing Zone, hundreds of exhibitors and a jam-packed 3-day packaging conference. For more information, visit the EastPack website.

The challenge of automatically loading a range preforms with significant differences in neck diameter from narrow neck to wide mouth has been tackled by the use of dual-preform loading system. When it comes to minimizing the support ring, FlexBlow uses precision-adjustable feeding slides that allow loading preforms with support ring starting from 0.8 mm—suitable for cosmetic containers. Inversed preforms with body wider than support ring is also compatible with FlexBlow universal feeding system due to innovative gate-like structure that opens slightly at the end of preform slide to allow the thicker preform body to come out.

FlexBlow will be exhibiting at NPE2018 in Orlando, FL on May 7-11 in booth #S10196. The company plans to bring equipment for wide-mouth jar production, SBM machine for cosmetic bottles and a PET blower for large size bottles. Live changeover shows will take place daily to demonstrate the process of switching between wide mouth jar and cosmetic bottle production. You can view the demonstrations at FlexBlow.com

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