The new VTM 3 went online six days ahead of the contract schedule, thereby achieving a total plant downtime of just 30 days from paper to paper, that is, between dismantling the previous equipment and erecting and starting-up the new machine. Besides this outstanding achievement, the second jumbo roll of tissue paper already provided marketable quality, and the machine reached its maximum operating speed during its first week in service.
All of the new VTM 3’s technologies and components are seamlessly coordinated and integrated with each other. Besides the new XcelLine tissue paper machine and its auxiliary equipment – not counting the Yankee cylinder, which has been reused from the old machine – Voith’s scope of supply also included stock preparation and approach flow systems, a steam box, a gas hood, and a mist removal and dust reduction system. The order was rounded off by Voith’s automation package, comprised of the DCS and MCS systems, as well as field services.
This project’s key benefits include an improvement in paper quality and increased production capacity, since the new machine will now be producing at a speed of more than 1,800 meters per minute.
All of these measures are not only indicative of the project’s enormous success, but also the outstanding synergy between the Voith, Little Rapids Corporation, and Contract Companies teams. “We are extremely proud of the teamwork demonstrated by all parties involved to safely execute the rebuild within a very compressed timeframe. We are also encouraged by the performance that we are seeing at this early stage of the machine’s start-up ramp and optimistic that this investment will provide additional capabilities and quality enhancements that our customers value,” said Ron Thiry, Vice President and General Manager at Little Rapids Corporation.
About Little Rapids Corporation
Little Rapids Corporation was founded by Charles Egan in 1947 and remains a family-owned business. The company’s core product lines serve the medical and beauty market segments, flexographic printing for a variety of packaging markets, and tissue, MG paper, and wet crepe paper for the specialty paper market. With headquarters and manufacturing facilities in Green Bay, the company, which employs 450, also has a paper manufacturing facility in Shawano, Wisconsin. In addition, the company donates to the region via the Little Rapids Corporation – Egan Family Foundation, a private foundation established by the Egan family in 1986 with the mission to fund charities in communities where Little Rapids Corporation has facilities.