Wednesday 19th May 2010

Helical flexure helps die cutter efficiency

Abssac has aided the design of a cellophane packaging machine manufacturer utilising its helical flexure technology in a die punch design. Abssac was tasked with improving the life of a plastics die cutter which was prematurely blunting on high volume runs.

The die cutter was originally attached to a solid shaft holder, which had to be adjusted constantly to keep the cutting edge perpendicular to the roller. The machine operated 24 hours a day, at the rate of 180 packages per minute. The normal life obtained from this die cutter was one month, then it had to be replaced. The performance capability of each Helical Flexure is determined by six major characteristics: flexure outside diameter, inside diameter, coil thickness, material, number of coils, and number of starts. By altering these characteristics, torque capacity, angular and parallel misalignment capabilities, torsional and lateral bending rates of flexured u-joints can be modified to suit specific specifications and/or requirements. After a short design period Abssac was able to suggest using a  shaft  manufactured from 17-4pH which is a heat treated stainless steel and the correct flexure design to ensure load and cutting edge perpendicularity.

The end result was in affect a shock absorbing, yet load bearing assembly  that then improved the die cutting life from one month to 10-12 months. Mr Chris Cattle, technical sales manager at Abssac states, “ The flexure product is quite unique and allows the design engineer to Amalgamate multiple part designs into a single piece design. It's one of the few products that really does allow the engineer to dream.”

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