COMPRESSION MOLDING: Cap Molding & Printing Productivity Is Enhanced

Molding speeds 25-67% faster and digital cap printing becomes more versatile.

The latest developments in packaging machinery from SACMI of Italy (U.S. office in Des Moines, Iowa) include enhanced productivity of its continuous compression molding systems for bottle caps, and a newly enhanced high-speed, digital cap-printing system. In SACMI’s continuous compression molding (CCM) system, an extruder and cutoff system feed “hockey-puck” shaped discs of molten plastic to an endless series of compression molds on a continuously moving conveyor. The latest “SC” series, designed specifically for still-water caps, includes a 24-cavity CCM 24 SC, which now can produce 1000 caps/min, up from 600/min previously. A 48-cavity CCM 48 SC (pictured) can mold 2000 caps/min, up from 1600 before. The 27-mm diam. caps weigh 1.29 to 1.35 g and have a 1.44-sec cycle.

Contributing to the increased productivity are the Cool+ molds, which have improved cooling circuits that are more “conformal” to the cavity shape in both top and bottom molds. These molds can be retrofitted to older machines to boost output.

Also new is the latest version of the Colora Cap digital cap printing system. It can store up 1 million images in memory and print up to 600 caps/min, or less than 0.2 sec/cap. The system has four print heads. Previously, the system could print only on white caps. Now it can print on colored caps by printing first a white circle and then printing the color image on the white area.