Matching Capacity & Batch Size For Economies Of Scale
Checking that your powder coating production equipment is appropriate for your batch size could lead to substantial and sustained additional profitability.
When equipment capacity and batch size are mismatched, the consequences for profitability are serious. Short runs on a large extruder lead to lengthy downtime and high material loss while long runs on a small extruder incur high labour costs. This sounds obvious but data gathered from our recently-launched gearbox condition monitoring system suggest that these practices are not uncommon.
The gearbox condition monitoring system directly measures and analyses gearbox vibration, which varies with load. This makes it possible to track when the machine is producing, idling or stopped and we consistently find trends showing that extruder utilization could be improved by correct batch / extruder size pairing.
Many manufacturers produce both small and large batches for their customers and our data suggest that many fall into the trap of fulfilling small orders with large-capacity extruders, and vice versa. Where a customer operates both large and small machines the problem could be addressed by proper scheduling. Where they have only one type the financial case for additional capacity is surprisingly easy to make.
With our extruder output capability ranging from 20 to over 2,400kg per hour (44 to over 5,280lb/hour) in a choice of six machine sizes, there is plenty of potential to accurately match production capacity to load.
There is, clearly, often a strong capital investment and cost-of-ownership case for installing and running a small batch machine alongside a medium or high output extruder.
For advice, please call Baker Perkins to assess your own batch and extruder size pairing.