Blog : How to install machines stress-free.

Integrating New Equipment

You’ve selected new equipment for your packaging line, and you’re confident that, for the money, it’s best in breed.

You imagine it working seamlessly with your existing machinery. All you need to do is install it, which the OEM (original equipment manufacturer) may even have offered to do for you.

However, getting a packaging line to run at optimal speed and function is a skillset all on its own.

Your shiny new piece of equipment will only operate as fast and efficiently as the upstream and downstream equipment. Most likely, its optimal functioning will depend on the buffering and accumulation on the rest of the line.

Accumulation is the temporary collation of product for downstream processes. Buffering is the process by which the collated products are delivered to downstream processes at a different rate to what they are received. The key to mastering these and maximising the benefits of your new equipment is integration.

While original equipment manufacturers have expertise in their own technology, good packaging systems integrators have whole-plant expertise.

Integration refers to both the conveying that connects equipment on a line as well as machine to machine communication.

Not all integrators handle all the mechanical, electrical, software and automation aspects of a project, including machine to machine communication.

You want one that does.

The best integrators will ensure that the machine software is correctly programmed, that it works together with every machine on the line, which in turn works with all the others. At every juncture, there will be an electronic “handshake” that signals the next piece of equipment to take over.

If the timing isn’t perfect, a fault could be detected and operations suspended.

A good integrator can also help you select the right equipment for your needs. No machine works perfectly for every application, so you want an integrator that will walk you through all the options despite their OEM agreements and partnerships (most have them).

Equipment should be selected on the basis of its ability to meet the application challenge and long-term return on investment. Your integrator should have enough experience to be able to find machines with the features and accessories you do need—minus the ones you don’t.

Deal with just one supplier

Using an integrator that offers project management means that OEM suppliers are negotiated with and deliveries managed; the equipment is installed correctly, integrated with the entire line and an overarching control system if required, and then commissioned. The integration team is on-site and takes full responsibility for the whole line’s speed and reliability, dealing with start-up issues as they arise.

For a stress-free introduction of a new machine to your packaging line, have a chat with one of our friendly engineering team members.

They’ll walk you through the options for a solution—one that fits you like a glove.


Read some integration case studies:

Thinking of new packaging automation?

FLEX it and only pay for machine output, not the machine itself.