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Speed of the Make Ready

Bohler-X-Press-Steel Rules Partwell
Cutting Rule
Bohlerstrip X_PRESS 2013_05 EN
böhlerstrip_4C_original 144dpi

Speed of the Make Ready

Working as a Technical Business Development Manager for Partwell and having gained over 35+ years industry experience, previously working as a Cut/Crease Machine Operator, I am continually challenged by one particular issue;  Speeding up the Make Ready process for Packaging Manufacturers.

What is Make Ready?

Make Ready is the process during which a Cut/Crease Machine Operator at the Packaging Manufacturer changes the tooling from one production run to the next. Therefore, switching tooling from one end user’s carton design to another.  During this process, there is a significant amount of time where the machine is idle, which is classed as ‘DownTime’.

‘Down Time’ of an idle machine typically cost the Packaging Manufacturer a few hundred pounds per hour, therefore it is imperative to keep it to a minimum. Reducing ‘Down Time’ is the golden ticket for most carton convertors, as such, they are always on the lookout for that ‘Holy Grail’ product guaranteeing them to be more cost effective.

Reducing Down Time

Imagine if you could use a cutting rule product that would reduce this ‘Down Time’. The use of a Self-levelling type rule (SLR) has long been seen in the industry as the ‘Holy Grail’. Successful results would have a significant impact in saving machine ‘Down Time’ and effectively saving the Packaging company money.

Bohler invested heavily in this, and using their R&D Department, took a standard Tip Hardened 2pt 23.80mm CF Bohler Universal Cutting rule, with a Body of 340Hv and a Tip of 640Hv and profiled the back of the rule giving it a micro-serrated effect. In simple terms, under machine pressure the micro-serration will deform flattening out to any high spots on the cutting plate on the machine platen. Using a SLR type rule reduces the amount of time required for the patch up process, hence saving the company time and money. This product supplied by Partwell, is the Bohler X-Press rule.

Other than using Bohler’s  unique X-Press cutting rule product, the Machine Operator can reduce down time between jobs through effective processes. The Operator can analyse data, and look to understand the information about each individual job from its previous production run. Machine pressures from previous production runs are a good indictor and time saver when using similar substrates for your next identical production run. Through understanding the information, when performing the job again for the same customer, the process can be sped up as they have gained knowledge from reviewing old worksheets.

Benefits of a SLR blade

The main impact this style of blade has, is to allow the machine to be used at a higher initial cutting pressure, this in turn will eliminate the need for some (not all) of the timely patch up process on the patch sheet. Instead of running a manufacturer recommended 80% - 20% cut through process before you start your patch up, upwards of 90% sheet cut through can be achieved, this in turn will virtually eliminate the patch up process.

Another Benefit of using a SLR blade

When using this type of SLR blade, due to the weak spot of the rule being the serrated back edge, when you put the cutting blade under pressure in the machine the sharp cutting tip remains sharp and undamaged, giving a benefit of longer cutting tool life with cleaner cutting.

So which Packaging producer wouldn’t want to speed up expensive make ready times, and have the added benefit of cleaner cutting, and a longer lasting Cutting tool?

For more information on speeding up the make ready, please call the sales office on 01254 671875


6th June 2017, 8:30