Maflex machines obey to simple rules: high quality standards, ease of use and flexibility

Maflex has been producing machinery for the converting industry since 1997 and knows that customers need solutions to help with immediate needs, but more importantly they need to be able to quickly adapt to the ever change demands of the market. This is the main reason why Maflex developed the concept of "Modular Converting Lines".

author: Maflex

Industry Insight by:

Maflex Srl

From the simplest Start/Stop Rewinder, to the high throughput continuous lines, all Maflex machines stand out in the market of high-level machinery for their modularity. The application of this concept consists of equipping each section of the machine as a standalone unit. Each has its own onboard electric cabinet (PLC, air conditioner, transformer, etc.), hydraulic & pneumatic controls, touch screen control panel and all the safety barriers. The electrical lay-out is carefully designed and the wires are properly placed in order to avoid any interferences.
Thus, each individual section (Unwinders, Printers, Embossers/Laminators, Rewinders, Tail sealers, Accumulators and Log Saws) are completely independent and can be easily integrated for the most diverse requirements.
When it comes to production, being flexible means being able to quickly execute product changeovers. The Maflex R & D Office has paid special attention to make the changing from one product to the next a simple and fast process. All product-related parameter (such as diameter, length, density) can be modified from the operator panel and verified in real time.
The modular system appears to be an important tool for the budget-minded companies who want to follow a path of growth and evolution. The advantages can be summarized in five key points:

1. Easy installation: during the assembly and testing of the line, Maflex set up the product characteristics the customer needs and save them in the recipe database in the HMI. These setting are validated during the customer check in Maflex facility. After the checkout is complete, the line is simply disassembled in the various sections and packed for shipment. Once the machinery arrives at the customer site, it needs to be placed in position and have the power and air connected. After any interconnecting guards are installed, the line is ready for production.

2. Minor production stops: with a conventional non-modular line, both scheduled or unexpected maintenance tasks require entire line be stopped. On Maflex Modular Lines, the sections can be safely disabled and locked out to allow the required tasks to be executed on while the rest of the line continues to run.

3. Flexibility in machine operation: we all know the growing needs of the rolled product market require considerable efforts by converters to keep up with the demands of their customer’s ever-changing range of products. With this in mind, a relatively new and highly-performing line may be obsolete in the future because it is unable to make products which are in continuous evolution. A Maflex line can be completely reconfigured with little effort should a change be required to make a new product. An additional Unwind stand might need to be added. A D.E.R.L. (Double Embossing Laminator) might need to be moved from one line to another (even from continuous to start/stop and vice versa). Components can be easily added to Maflex lines as well as existing lines of other OEMs. Given the growing need for new products in recent years, the Maflex Engineering Department has developed many projects of this type by incorporating mechanical, hardware, and software changes to meet customer’s specific needs.

4. Easy upgrade: modularity also makes it easy and affordable to upgrade a line without needing to completely replace a working line. A classic example is the transition from an automatic Start/Stop Rewinder to a continuous automatic Rewinder: a line composed of 2 Unwinders – D.E.R.L. – Start/Stop Rewinder – Accumulator and Log Saw can be easily modified by inserting a new continuous Rewinder and a Tail Sealer. Performing an upgrade, the use of our Embossers/Lamination Units minimizes the investment and downtime, since they can operate in both modes D.E.R.L. and D.E.S.L. (Double Embossing Random or Synchronized Lamination) and especially being able to operate on both Start/Stop or Continuous Rewinders – with no need for any modification to switch them from one configuration to another. Other examples can be the transition from a Rewinder which runs at lower production speeds or limited products to a very flexible Rewinder capable of running production speeds of 550 m/min or more. Additionally a low speed D.E.R.L. could be replaced with one which is capable of running at higher speeds and more product flexibility.

During the assembly and testing of the line, Maflex set up the product characteristics the customer needs.
A Maflex line can be reconfigured with little effort should a change be required to make a new product.

5. Future value: the last point of equal importance as those mentioned a.bove is related to the residual value of the machines or better the “the future value”. In a Maflex line, each unit maintains a high residual value at the time of resale because of its complete independence. In a standard line (not modular), if a unit is replaced (assuming it is possible), the value of the non-complete unit would present a problem. This happens because the unit removed from the line cannot be used without a massive renovation (creation of a new framework, electrical hardware, software installation, programming, etc.) which could be very expensive and complicated. The individual Maflex machine units are self-sufficient, so they can be moved from one line to another and consequently also sold to third parties individually. The buyer will only have to position them, and will not need anything else because all the necessary components are included and ready to be used.
In a constantly evolving global market in demand of high-quality products, a growing number of companies have found the solution to their needs in Maflex.

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