Packagers looking to automate their process will almost always, among other things, look for filling, capping or labeling machinery. Having covered arguably the most popular filling machine last week, we will take a look at one of the most popular capping machines this week, the Spindle Capper.
Capping machines are manufactured to handle a specific type of cap, so it only seems logical that a popular capping machine would handle a popular cap type. Spindle cappers are used to tighten a variety of continuous thread, or screw-on, type caps. These caps can range from the simple flat caps found on bottled water and other beverages to sports caps, flip tops, pump closures and even the trigger sprayers found on window cleaners and other products.
Most of the spindle capping machines produced by NPACK are manufactured to run automatically. The automatic cappers are built to roll up to a conveyor and continuously tighten caps as they move down the conveyor system. The machine uses sets of spindle wheels or disks that contact the cap as they move through the machine. Typically, the automatic spindle capper will use three sets of disks, each tightening the cap a little more as the bottle and cap combination move through the capping area. Gripper belts will be used to stabilize the bottle and ensure reliable and consistent tightening and on the automatic models, a cap delivery system is used to ensure continuous capping.
However, not all spindle cappers will be manufactured to work automatically. From time to time, a full frame spindle capper may be manufactured to run in a semi-automatic manner. The main difference between this machine and the automatic machine is the cap delivery system. The semi-automatic machine will require the operator to place caps on the bottles prior to entering the tightening zone. While requiring labor and not quite as fast as the automatic machine, the semi-auto spindle capper still offers the benefits of increased speed and reduced labor over hand capping bottles.
Finally, on occasion packagers with lower production demands will require a smaller machine to assist in the capping process. Tabletop spindle cappers take up little space and require the operator to both place the cap on the bottle and place the combination in to the capping area. These machines are typically used for trigger sprayers or similar screw-on type caps where production is low but consistent and reliable capping are a necessity. For lower production facilities, the chuck cappers often offer a better solution, one that we will touch on later this week!
To learn more about spindle capping machines and how they can benefit your own packaging process, visit the Spindle Capper section of the NPACK website.