The DFK is MAXSON’s mill duty dual knife rotary sheeter, providing the cleanest cutting action available. Capable of running both paper or board efficiently, it is outfitted with various productivity enhancing designs.

Sheeter Switches Substrates

In 1990, Progressive Converting was established to fill a need for quick turn around, high quality sheeting in the Wisconsin market. Armed with a business plan and a Maxson sheeter, Progressive Converting began offering its services to the paper industry as a contract converter. Success soon followed and within a year, a second Maxson sheeter was installed.

Building on its reputation as a reliable supplier of sheeting, in 1995 Progressive Converting opened an eastern converting and distribution center near Hazelton PA. Positioning itself as an external converting supplier to paper mills, merchants and large sheet fed printers, Progressive Converting invested in state of the art equipment, adopted stringent quality control procedures, developed packaging capabilities that copied a mill’s finished product, computerized inventory control and warehoused roll stock to allow quick response.

substrate-switch1

Continued growth led to a western US presence in 1998 with the launch of the Sparks NV facility.Progressive Converting enhanced its standing with their ability to sheet a wide range of substrates. Progressive Converting has also developed expertise in niche markets like synthetic paper and cut to registration of watermark and preprinted materials.

Quick to respond to emerging trends, the company helped major paper companies service the digital press size and small office/home office markets. Remarking on the digital sheet market, Vice President Norb Schreiber notes, “It’s a tough market because the tolerances are more critical and there are lots of size changes and different substrates. Pro Con has done pretty well and we believe that market will continue to grow.”

Today Progressive Converting employs over 200 people among their three locations, with five sheeters and a rewinder in Appleton WI, three sheeters and a rewinder in Hazelton PA, and two sheeters in Sparks NV. The company continues to hold true to its model of responding to the needs of the Customer with a quality product in a timely, cost efficient manner using state of the art technology. The company’s most recent investment is an example of their commitment.

During 2002, Progressive Converting’s Appleton WI facility was operating at full capacity and finding it difficult to schedule more business. As Norb Schreiber relates, “We were running 7 days a week, 24 hours a day and working our employees very hard. Based on that we decided to purchase a new sheeter.”

Consistent with Progressive Converting’s philosophy, an investment in sheeting equipment required that it be state of the art and of modern technology, but with a reliance on the Operator to maintain strict quality control. “Automation is wonderful,” observes Schreiber, “but it cost money. “Although it takes one less human factor out of the equation, by the same token we rely on our operators to maintain a level of quality. Some automation we don’t feel is necessary and we elect not to put it on the machinery.”

The process of selecting a sheeter involved soliciting bids from equipment manufacturers. The primary consideration was insuring that the proposed machinery could convert the wide range of materials that Progressive Converting needed to sheet. Said Schreiber, “We run 24# bible paper up to 36 point board, and we are not bashful or shy about running any of it. When we buy sheeters around here, we want the equipment to run a wide range of materials.”

After visiting other sites to see the various offerings and reviewing the pricing, Progressive Converting chose a Maxson DFK Sheeter. “We felt comfortable we could run board down to light weights on the Maxson sheeter.

substrate-switch2The DFK Sheeter was outfitted with five shaftless roll stands, each outfitted with individual tension control and motorized decurlers capable of handling rolls up to 72” diameters. A splice detector, programmed to divert splices at the sheeter’s reject gate, insured no bad sheets reached the pile.

Progressive Converting elected a dual slitting rig with digital read out positioning. Says Schreiber, “I think when it comes to a dual slitting station, that’s a feature we really like, because when we are running certain grades up to 0.014” thick, we can put a web through each slitter. If you are 60# label paper, we can run three webs through one set of slitters and two webs through the other, which results in better quality.”

The cutting section uses a dual rotary knife design and is equipped with dual AC motor technology. “The machine is very accurate and sheet length is very important. You also get a good quality cut which is equally important”, declares Schreiber. “It has to cut accurate and clean.”

The sheeter is also outfitted with a non stop, rapid pallet discharge system that allows continuous operation with out the loss of any sheets during pallet changes. At a preset count, the full pallet is lowered and moved off line while an empty skid is raised into place. “The shuttle discharge is important because we get paid for the material we produce, so there is less waste when there is no dumping material on the floor. The discharge system is efficient and works well for us”, reports Schreiber.

The installation of the sheeter and the training of operating crews went smoothly according to Schreiber. “The sheeter was shipped between Christmas and New Year’s Day. It was installed in a couple of weeks, followed by two weeks of training. By the end of January it was running in production.”

Schreiber also noted the DFK Sheeter’s simplicity of design and machine profile. “From a maintenance standpoint we feel very comfortable addressing the mechanical and electrical components. The drive system has been dependable. And with a US manufacturer, anything close to home is better for service and repair parts.

Concludes Schreiber, “The user friendly design provides us with the ability to set up the sheeter on most grades in an acceptable time and change over times meet our schedules, while maintaining our quality standards. This machine keeps it simple and straightforward. We are certainly happy with what we have.”

Investing in such converting equipment has assured Progressive Converting’s success in its objective to help paper mills address the challenges of efficiently meeting the needs of printers demands in today’s quick delivery, challenging environment

Reprinted from Converting Today, February 2004

Building on its reputation as a reliable supplier of sheeting, in 1995 Progressive Converting opened an eastern converting and distribution center near Hazelton PA. Positioning itself as an external converting supplier to paper mills, merchants and large sheet fed printers, Progressive Converting invested in state of the art equipment, adopted stringent quality control procedures, developed packaging capabilities that copied a mill’s finished product, computerized inventory control and warehoused roll stock to allow quick response.

substrate-switch3Continued growth led to a western US presence in 1998 with the launch of the Sparks NV facility. Progressive Converting enhanced its standing with their ability to sheet a wide range of substrates. Progressive Converting has also developed expertise in niche markets like synthetic paper and cut to registration of watermark and preprinted materials.

Quick to respond to emerging trends, the company helped major paper companies service the digital press size and small office/home office markets. Remarking on the digital sheet market, Vice President Norb Schreiber notes, “It’s a tough market because the tolerances are more critical and there are lots of size changes and different substrates. Pro Con has done pretty well and we believe that market will continue to grow.”

Today Progressive Converting employs over 200 people among their three locations, with five sheeters and a rewinder in Appleton WI, three sheeters and a rewinder in Hazelton PA, and two sheeters in Sparks NV. The company continues to hold true to its model of responding to the needs of the Customer with a quality product in a timely, cost efficient manner using state of the art technology. The company’s most recent investment is an example of their commitment.

During 2002, Progressive Converting’s Appleton WI facility was operating at full capacity and finding it difficult to schedule more business. As Norb Schreiber relates, “We were running 7 days a week, 24 hours a day and working our employees very hard. Based on that we decided to purchase a new sheeter.”

Consistent with Progressive Converting’s philosophy, an investment in sheeting equipment required that it be state of the art and of modern technology, but with a reliance on the Operator to maintain strict quality control. “Automation is wonderful,” observes Schreiber, “but it cost money. “Although it takes one less human factor out of the equation, by the same token we rely on our operators to maintain a level of quality. Some automation we don’t feel is necessary and we elect not to put it on the machinery.”

The process of selecting a sheeter involved soliciting bids from equipment manufacturers. The primary consideration was insuring that the proposed machinery could convert the wide range of materials that Progressive Converting needed to sheet. Said Schreiber, “We run 24# bible paper up to 36 point board, and we are not bashful or shy about running any of it. When we buy sheeters around here, we want the equipment to run a wide range of materials.”

After visiting other sites to see the various offerings and reviewing the pricing, Progressive Converting chose a Maxson DFK Sheeter. “We felt comfortable we could run board down to light weights on the Maxson sheeter.

The DFK Sheeter was outfitted with five shaftless roll stands, each outfitted with individual tension control and motorized decurlers capable of handling rolls up to 72” diameters. A splice detector, programmed to divert splices at the sheeter’s reject gate, insured no bad sheets reached the pile.

Progressive Converting elected a dual slitting rig with digital read out positioning. Says Schreiber, “I think when it comes to a dual slitting station, that’s a feature we really like, because when we are running certain grades up to 0.014” thick, we can put a web through each slitter. If you are 60# label paper, we can run three webs through one set of slitters and two webs through the other, which results in better quality.”

The cutting section uses a dual rotary knife design and is equipped with dual AC motor technology. “The machine is very accurate and sheet length is very important. You also get a good quality cut which is equally important”, declares Schreiber. “It has to cut accurate and clean.”

The sheeter is also outfitted with a non stop, rapid pallet discharge system that allows continuous operation with out the loss of any sheets during pallet changes. At a preset count, the full pallet is lowered and moved off line while an empty skid is raised into place. “The shuttle discharge is important because we get paid for the material we produce, so there is less waste when there is no dumping material on the floor. The discharge system is efficient and works well for us”, reports Schreiber.

The installation of the sheeter and the training of operating crews went smoothly according to Schreiber. “The sheeter was shipped between Christmas and New Year’s Day. It was installed in a couple of weeks, followed by two weeks of training. By the end of January it was running in production.”

Schreiber also noted the DFK Sheeter’s simplicity of design and machine profile. “From a maintenance standpoint we feel very comfortable addressing the mechanical and electrical components. The drive system has been dependable. And with a US manufacturer, anything close to home is better for service and repair parts.

Concludes Schreiber, “The user friendly design provides us with the ability to set up the sheeter on most grades in an acceptable time and change over times meet our schedules, while maintaining our quality standards. This machine keeps it simple and straightforward. We are certainly happy with what we have.”

Investing in such converting equipment has assured Progressive Converting’s success in its objective to help paper mills address the challenges of efficiently meeting the needs of printers demands in today’s quick delivery, challenging environment

Reprinted from Converting Today, February 2004

Sheeter Maximizes Customer Service

Today’s highly competitive folding carton climate makes servicing customers a top priority. Ling Industries, Warwick Quebec, has made this priority a part of its business credo.

In the early 1950s, Ling Industries was a commercial printer servicing the local market. It was in the 1960s that paper board boxes were integrated into the production process. This new line grew to proportions that required a significant change and the commercial line of products was eliminated permanently. In the late 1970’s, a large customer experiencing supply difficulties with their regular supplier of folding cartons due to a work stoppage, got some of the business produced at Ling Industries. After satisfactorily filling an initial order and with the labor strike continuing, Ling Industries was rewarded with the customer’s ongoing business. This customer driven focus introduced Ling Industries to the Paperboard Industry and in time carved out a niche as a folding carton specialist.

sheeter-maximizes1Over the years, the privately held Ling Industries prospered. In 1993, with sales of CAN $ 48 million, Ling Industries was acquired by Rock Tenn (Norcross, GA). Now with annual sales of CAN $ 115 million, Ling Industries employs between 400 – 450 workers in its 450,000 square foot facility. From its Warwick Quebec location Ling Industries services the Canadian, New England and eastern New York personal care, facial tissue and food and beverage markets.

Servicing the customer is preeminent. As Patrick Giguère, Material Handling Manager explains, “We work with the end user from the ‘get go’. With our Custom Design Program we’ll take a client’s product and ask, “What type of box do you want? Where is it going to be retailed? How do you want to display it?” Next, we develop a conceptual model. Then we work with the Customer to refine the box design.”

Once final approvals of design and graphics are received, Ling Industries can deliver a standard box within two weeks – emphasizing how closely they work with their purchasers’ schedules to insure the product is on retail shelves on time.

To meet deadlines, Ling Industries has invested in machinery that provides it with the versatility to meet the market’s demands and the flexibility to schedule quick turnarounds. There are 33 different production lines ranging from printing presses to metal edgers, to die cutters, to waxers, to folder gluers – all playing an integral role in producing 25 million boxes a week.

How Ling Industries chooses to invest in capital projects provides insight into how deep their commitment to customer service is rooted.

Consider the sheeting process. Until Rock Tenn’s acquisition of Ling Industries, as many as three outside converters supplied sheeted stock to the printing operation. To improve delivery schedules, in 1995 Ling Industries began converting on site with a Maxson sheeter previously used by a Rock Tenn mill.

As business grew, the printing department added more sheet fed presses. Although the sheeter was converting more than 80 tons of recycled board daily, it was unable to keep up with production demands. Company management found itself still relying on external suppliers for sheets. The lead times of the board was affecting Ling’s ability to quickly respond to its customers’ demands. As Giguère relates, “If a Customer called us with an emergency order on Friday night, we could start on the job that very night, so that the printing department can have the board Saturday morning. That’s not feasible when there are lead times of trucks to schedule, delivery of material to an off site location and having someone else’s sheeter up and running at a moment’s notice. So in order to give us more flexibility, we began promoting the idea of additional sheeting capacity.”

From the outset, plant management considered investing only in new equipment. Recalls Giguère, “We were looking for state of the art technology and automation to realize maximum productivity. We didn’t want to get a used piece of equipment and spend time bring it up to current standards.”

There were two significant factors that determined the parameters of Ling’s new sheeting equipment – the size of their printing presses and the trim of a supplier’s board machine.

sheeter-maximizes2Ling Industries has two 40”, three 55” and one 63” format sheet fed presses – so at a minimum the sheeter needed to handle “short grain” runs on the widest printing press. One of the recycled mills that supplied the folding carton plant had an 88” wide board machine. Intuitively, that seemed like a natural match for the width of a new sheeter. Explained Giguère, “When we looked at that, we realized it was very efficient because we could service two of our press sizes on a double width format. So in terms of throughput, every cut produced two sheets.” Thus the width of the sheeter was established.

Ling Industries specifications for the new sheeter addressed the latest in automation to insure quality and productivity. The sheeter would include a computerized high speed splicer to eliminate downtime associated with roll changes. A detector to monitor the level of metal content in the recycled board, diverting unacceptable sheets from the stacker was specified. Programmed web conditioning systems to automatically compensate for the amount of decurl to be applied to insure a flat sheet was requested. A dual knife rotary cutter was selected to provide a cleaner, quieter cut than the existing stationary bed knife sheeter. Finally, a count actuated quick pallet discharge system, capable of offloading full skids while the sheeter continued running without the loss of any acceptable sheets was identified as a useful option.

Using the sheeter’s “continuous run” feature and rapid pallet discharge system, Ling Industries maximizes production by removing a full skid and inserting an empty pallet while the operation continues, without the loss of any acceptable sheets

The selection committee considered three sheeter suppliers. Ultimately, they chose the DFK Sheeter from Maxson Automatic Machinery Company, (Westerly RI). “It made sense to buy from a supplier we already knew, one we already dealt with, and whose equipment already had proven it could do the job. Maxson was the best fit for us based on their reputation for service and value.” stated Giguère.

Within 3 weeks of delivering the first shipment of the equipment, useable sheets were being converted for the press room. Even training of the French speaking operators presented no problem because of the “hands on” approach of Maxson’s installation team and referencing controls in the local language.

The emphasis on automation has paid large dividends. Giguère identifies the non stop operation at both ends of the sheeter and the consistent, trouble free performance of the dual knife rotary cutter and rejection gate as reasons why the DFK Sheeter averages approximately 5 tons/hour while generating less than 1% of waste. As a result, the project’s two year pay back forecast is on schedule.

Larger sheet runs, (in excess of 60,000 sheets), are usually run on the DFK Sheeter. Typically, three size changes are made every 24 hours on the newer sheeter. Smaller production orders are run on the other Maxson sheeter. Despite averaging 12 size changes a day, the older Maxson still produces 3½ tons an hour while generating less than 1.25% waste.

Management’s commitment to service means keeping the printing presses running to meet tight delivery schedules. Ling Industries’ 40” presses run at speeds of up to 15,000 sheets per hour. But the older 65” sheeter produces 10,000 sheets an hour. So the sheeter needs to be a day ahead of the printing schedule. Still, service means responding to ever changing situations. The addition of the second sheeter has made choreographing even last minute press room schedule changes easier.

What’s on the horizon for Ling Industries? More of the same. Opportunities in expanding flexographic printing are being considered. Like the recent sheeter project, the questions of what equipment is to be put in, what machinery is to be replaced, and how is this going to be done are only asked after the question, “How can we best serve our Customers?” is answered.

Reprinted from Converting Today, May 2003

Sheeter Brings Converter a Perfect Balance of Benefits

Today’s highly competitive business climate makes it necessary for companies to keep quality levels a top priority. Since it was founded 50 years ago, Henley Paper Company, a former High Point, NC based printing paper and industrial packaging and equipment distributor now headquartered in Greensboro NC has put this priority at the heart of their business efforts.

Founded by A.B. Henley, Sr., Henley Paper began by supplying products such as threads, bobbins, and padding and packaging materials to the furniture industry and fine printing paper to commercial printers. After succeeding their father in the late 1970’s, A. Boyden Henley, Jr. and Nick Henley recognized that providing custom sheeting services for commercial printing applications represented an exciting niche for their quality based company. Not only would this new market give them more opportunities, they already had the advantage of being familiar with many aspects of the converting industry.

The Maxson DFK Sheeter at Henley Paper uses composite cylinders to obtain a faster speed curve on shorter cutoffs. Its dual knife rotary design is said to provide better cut quality on heavier knife loads than with conventional stationary bed knife sheeters.

With this in mind, Henley Paper established their Greensboro converting operation, a facility that concentrates solely on first quality paperboard converting. The operation accepts orders through Henley’s five North Carolina branches and one South Carolina branch.

Most of Henley Paper’s sheeting business is for package printers and the occasional folding carton customer. These customers range from companies that produce small point-of-purchase display signs to large corporations with in-house printing capabilities.

The converting division runs paperboard calipers from .008 to .024 board. The majority of work is in small format sizes, with sheet range runs between 25 and 35 in. in length. Although 90% of their product mix is solid bleached sulfate (SBS) board, the company on occasion also runs clay coated, news back, and solid unbleached sulfate (SUS) for milk cartons. Henley’s primary board suppliers are Domtar, Potlatch, and Temple-Inland.

Many of Henley’s printing customers utilize the latest high speed printing presses, and demand sheeted stock of the highest quality. Sheets must be dust free and skids must be well jogged.

The Greensboro facility has been successful in meeting these demands, reports A. B. Henley III. “Quality has been Henley’s strong suit,” he says. “Our investment in the new sheeter sets us even farther apart from our competition.

Wanted: Room for Expansion

sheeter-balanceUntil recently, the company sheeted material on two older units. While this equipment had served the company well for a number of years, Henley Paper began to find that new business opportunities were being missed due to the limitations of this equipment.

Sheeting capacity was one clear problem. Though Henley was producing the necessary volume of sheeted stock, there was virtually no room for expansion. “We were able to keep up with our current customers’ orders but we couldn’t accept new work,” explains Wayne Deaton, VP of printing papers. “Our older equipment was tying our hands.” Lost business equals missed profits, and Henley needed to resolve this issue in order to continue to expand.

The company also realized that the need to guillotine trim after sheeting was costly. Because its older sheeters featured a stationary bed knife design, a skived edge was often created on heavy calipers, which was unacceptable to their customers, says Deaton. To correct this problem, the sheet had to be trimmed to a finished size, an additional step that was adding labor and waste to the production process.

Turnaround times were a concern as well. Working within a Just-In-Time inventory situation, the company would strive for at least a few days lead times. Increasingly though, a few days needed to be compressed into a few hours.

“Our business was growing, and, to take advantage of that growth we needed to provide quicker service,” notes Henley. “We were missing those opportunities because we weren’t prepared to turn the orders around fast enough.”

The company decided the most logical step toward solving these problems was to invest in a new sheeter. Of overall importance was that the new equipment keep product quality at the highest levels.

A Careful Purchase

Henley Paper purchased the sheeter after careful consideration. The company looked at a number of manufacturers during the evaluation process and finally chose a dual knife rotary (DFK) sheeter from Maxson Automatic Machinery.

“We chose Maxson for several reasons,” says Deaton, “but the most important consideration was its ability to deliver the speed we were looking for without sacrificing our quality requirements.”

A number of features on the DFK allowed it to meet Henley’s demands. The sheeter utilizes composite cylinders to obtain a faster speed curve on shorter cutoffs.

In Henley Paper’s case, this provides an important advantage. The DFK Sheeter runs at speeds of up to 1,300 fpm and has a cyclic velocity drive, which maintains a sheet length accuracy of ±0.015 inches regardless of cutoff length or line speed.

This ability to produce press-ready sheets quickly and accurately was of major importance to the company. The sheeter’s accuracy and ability to sheet without a skived edge have virtually eliminated the need to guillotine trim, says Deaton.

He adds, “The only time we do any trimming now is when someone requires a length shorter than the sheeter will take. Now we’re using the trimmer for what it is intended for, because the sheeter is doing its job.

A specially designed cross cutting knife system that features synchronized dual rotary knives reportedly eliminates the need for manual adjustments for squareness. “We’ve found that the dual rotary knife design provides better cut quality on heavier knife loads than with conventional stationary knife sheeters, : says Deaton. “For customers, this results in a straight, clean, square cut.”

Another feature designed to help Henley keep quality high is the PEN-MAM Dust Collector, which cleans the top and bottom of the packet being sheeted without contacting the sheets. With the dust collector in operation, the company has seen no dust problems at all. “The dust collector is a precaution rather than a need,” Deaton says. “Dust can cause a world of problems for the printer. If there is dust on the edge of the sheet, when it goes through the printing press, the ink will pull that dust in from the sides. The dust is then picked up by the rollers, creating hickeys. Obviously, printers don’t like that one bit!”

The sheeter’s automated tension control system also works to minimize sheet defects. A decurl unit reportedly ensures a flat sheet even on heavy calipers, and a dancer roll within the unit absorbs web fluctuations encountered when sheeting egg-shaped rolls. This maintains the proper web tension for an accurate cut. “Occasionally we would have a problem with out-of-shape rolls. The dancer roll takes care of that.” Deaton says.

And since the tension control system is automated and can be monitored from either the rear of the machine or the front, Deaton says operators are able to handle their jobs and take greater care in examining the web rolls without having to move around the machine so much”, explains sheeter operator D. H. Morrison.

In order to increase productivity, the sheeter features two shaftless roll stands that give the ability to sheet two webs side-by-side or superimposed. This effectively decreases downtime and optimizes efficiency during roll changes by eliminating the need for an overhead hoist when loading rolls, Deaton explains.

Instead, the operator simply moves the roll into place, with the roll stand completing the loading by cradling the roll, chucking it, and lifting it into position. “It used to take us about 20 minutes to change a set of rolls,” says Morrison. “Now, we’re looking at 3 to 4 minutes.”

The sheeter is also equipped with an airfoil overlap system and an extending grid and shuttle system. The airfoil overlap is designed to allow higher speeds when running lighter caliper material, says Deaton. And as the sheeted material moves into the stacking station, the extending grid and shuttle system allow the machine to keep running while skids are off loaded.

“When a skid reaches full capacity, the extending grid is utilized to temporarily hold the sheets to provide continuous stacking”, explains sheeter operator Ernest Phelps. “The shuttle then automatically moves the full skid out of the stacking area and to the side so that we can unload it. All that’s left to do is drop an empty pallet into place and reset the extending grid to continue stacking.”

Ready for Takeoff

What all of the features have meant to Henley Paper is an increase in sheeting capacity and a decrease in turnaround times while still focusing on the ever important issue of quality.

According to Morrison and Phelps: “This machine is twice as fast as the two older machines put together. Not only have we been able to drastically improve turnaround times for our current customers, but we’ve been able to pick up new business that previously, because of turnaround times, we would have to decline.

The addition of the grid and shuttle system has minimized downtime, allowing greater production off the machine and the occasional hourly service. “I’ve had customers call in desperate need, and we’ve gotten a job out to them within an hour,” reports Deaton. “Before, that same job could have taken us all day, and, essentially we would have lost the work to someone who was faster.

Now that production has increased and waste has been reduced, Henley Paper is on track to increase their customer base. In addition to providing its current customers with the same superior product in less time, the company hopes to move into other markets, both in its home state of North Carolina and beyond.

Henley sums it all up by saying, “For superior quality and quick turnaround, this sheeter has significantly raised the bar for our competition.”

Reprinted from Paper Film Foil Converter, August 1997

Sheeter Adds Accuracy and Speeds Production

For Williams Paper, a St. Louis trade converter, the addition of a Maxson Model DFK 350 high-speed, dual rotary knife sheeter is part of a plan to fill the need for quality, precision sheeting within its geographical area. The family-owned business has secured a niche for itself by going the extra mile to provide small orders and special sizes of fine paper and industrial-grade board stock.

By investing in a sheeter with the latest technology, Williams Paper secured more high quality, value-added business. “Many of our customer are package printers who specialize in fine work,” says president Dick Williams. “They must follow strict guidelines for food packaging. This means the sheeted stock must be accurate, as well as free from dust or fiber.

Two Maxson Pivot Arm Roll Stands on the Model DFK/350 Sheeter allow Williams Paper to sheet narrow width rolls side by side or two rolls superimposed.

“We needed a sheeter that would satisfy our customers’ requirements for cut quality, accuracy, and pile quality. At the same time, we wanted to increase sheeter productivity by reducing set-up time and increasing operating speeds,” Williams adds.

The sheeter has, in fact, done that, he reports. “We get comments (from our customers) about the cleaner board off the dual rotary knife sheeter.”

The sheeter’s cutting section has two revolving knives that create a scissors-like cutting action. Its cyclic velocity drive provides an accuracy of +/- 0.015 in. (+/- 0.381 mm) regardless of sheet length, line speed, or caliper. Sheet length settings are keyed in via a computer station and can be completed in less than two minutes. “On our older sheeter, we had to switch out gears when changing the sheet length. The new sheeter speeds things along tremendously,” says Williams.

To optimize efficiency during roll changes, Williams Paper selected two shaftless, self-loading roll stands. “Having a second roll stand loaded and ready reduces downtime during a roll change. It also gives us the flexibility to sheet narrow-width rolls side by side, so that we can get full use of the sheeter’s width,” he says. The company can also sheet two rolls of lighter-caliper material superimposed to boost production without sacrificing cut quality.

The DFK has a PEN MAM dust collector that cleans the top and bottom of the sheet. An extending grid allows for continuous operation while off-loading material at the stack. According to Williams, “The grid system provides additional efficiencies that make frequent size changes and small order sizes more economically feasible.”

Williams says that, due to the sheeter’s high-speed precision, he is able to turn orders around in three days. While production off the sheeter varies depending on caliper and cutoff (the maximum is 1,200 fpm), on average the Maxson DFK sheets a truckload of material during an eight-hour shift. “Our best production figure to date is 23 tons sheeted during an eight-hour period,” notes Williams.

At Williams Paper, the Maxson DFK handles board calipers ranging from 0.008 in. to 0.032 in. The unit handles rolls up to
57 in. (1,448 mm) wide and offers a sheet-length range of
18 to 65 in. (457 to 1,651 mm).

Williams Paper has plans in the development stage to move to a larger facility, and the company has set a goal to double its business within the next 12 months. The Maxson DFK sheeter will obviously play an important role in those plans.

Reprinted from Converting, April 1995

On Demand Paper is the Name of the Game

It sounds cliché, but ‘Let us find a way to get your job done,’ is not just a Mission Statement gathering dust on a wall in the customer service department. It is truly the credo by which each RIS Paper employee lives. And a Maxson DFK Sheeter is making it a reality.

The MAXSON DFK dual knife rotary sheeter can precision sheet a wide range of coated papers and board grades at speeds up to 1300 fpm.

RIS Paper is a $600 million, privately owned distributor of fine paper, industrial and communication products with 28 locations dotting the map from Texas to the East Coast. Twenty-five percent of the company is employee owned, demonstrating the employees’ drive, serious intentions for company success, and attention to detail in the areas of their responsibility.

The creation of a converting division is a logical step to the paper merchant committed to growth. Expanding into converting provides improved service to customers. In addition to delivery of roll stock, this service includes just-in-time delivery of sheeted material in standard and special sheet sizes.

The first of these converting facilities opened its doors in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in January 1999. The central location of this brand-new facility enables the company to express ship products by 5:30 p.m., that will reach its customer’s plant by the next day.

According to Vice President Charlie Watson, rather than competing with the mills, the mills and RIS Paper blend their strengths to bring value to the market. “Our forte, is flexibility of scheduling and our ability to accept short runs. No order is too small! We will never bump a small job to take on a longer run.”
“We can provide the same advantages to a printer as though they were sheeting in-house. Once again, a blend of strengths for the benefit of the customer.”

Lofty goals: Flexibility and Quick Delivery
RIS Paper sheets board, but its main emphasis is coated, private label papers. Roll stock is provided by domestic and foreign sources.

Of critical importance in allowing RIS to realize its lofty goals of flexibility and quick delivery, is ease of set up. Despite the size and versatility of the Maxson DFK Sheeter, it is still only a two-man operation. Four shaftless, self-loading roll stands have a ‘pivot arm’ design that allows a single operator to load rolls up to 10,000 lbs. Each roll change takes less than five minutes. “Webbing up the machine 3 or 4 times a shift for job changes has to be made as simple as possible,” remarked Beverlin, “and we change rolls even more often than that.”

A four-station web-conditioning unit serves all four roll stands regardless of the assortment of materials being run. A collection of varying size de-curl bars and rolls is mounted on turret-type mechanisms. The bar-of-choice can then be locked into position to handle whatever stock type or material thickness that is to be sheeted. Watson deduced, “Without this kind of equipment, you can’t do the job. You lose control. You lose the business.”

Maxson’s web conditioning unit serves all four roll stands at RIS Paper regardless of the type of material being run.

“Precision cutting is critical,” Watson said. “All the machine components are important in maintaining accuracy of cut. There is no latitude in the tolerances when we talk accuracy with a customer. We cannot offer a sheet out of specification,” Watson summarized. The DFK Sheeter’s crosscutting knives decrease dust creation and eliminate skived edges. “Perfection in cut quality is always the main focus and because the Maxson DFK provides it, you will not even find a guillotine trimmer in the building,” asserted Watson. “Our cutoffs have been as short as 16″ and as long as 65.”

Features that maximize performance during operation of the DFK Sheeter are found in the machine’s overlap delivery system. A reject gate can divert sheets out of the tape section during startup of a new job with a size change or when splices occur during the run. The patented Airfoil Overlap System is crucial in transporting jam-free sheets through the tape system and into the stacker at higher speeds. The removal of any dust particles takes place in this section with the aid of the PEN MAM Dust Collector System. Controlled air simultaneously vacuums the top and bottom of the cut packet as it passes through. As length changes are made at the tape sections overlap carriage the adjustment is automatically made in the stacker by way of a connecting frame. The rugged stacker has a chain lifted load table with 8,000 lb. capacity and can receive two piles up to 61″ high. To enhance higher productivity, the sheeter is equipped with a continuous operation system that accumulates the beginning of a new pile as each completed pile is removed. Once removal is achieved, the accumulator positions the short pile on the new skid without interrupting the sheeting operation.

RIS Converting is building an inventory of roll stock and sheeted material. They are guaranteeing rapid delivery to customers and acting as a warehousing facility for the entire company. “Often, we’ll intentionally overbuy lots for customers,” said Watson. “Recently we had two rolls left over from a completed job. A customer called needing a shipment of that material. To get the customer started on his job, we set up and ran those two rolls and shipped immediately. It may not have been convenient, but we want to service our customers in any way necessary.”

Reprinted from Converting Magazine, September 1999

New Sheeters Support Expansion for Atlantic Packaging Corporation

Atlantic Packaging Corporation, like other growing and successful companies, has blazed a winding path to its present incarnation as a trade merchant of converted materials to the packaging industry. Getting here speaks volumes of management with a vision of the future and the will to respond quickly to market change and growth opportunity.

atlantic-packaging1Privately owned Atlantic Packaging began fifty years ago as the Tabor City Tribune, a newspaper in Tabor City, North Carolina. The Tribune expanded into printing, became Atlantic Publishing in 1942, and then slowly added paper converting over the years. A recent decision to become more centrally located, precipitated the acquisition of a 150,000 sq. foot facility in Charlotte. “This was a strategy to place us in the middle of our customer marketplace and helps us to be extraordinarily responsive to their time constraints. It also puts us in a solid position to maximize our efficiencies and provide instant customer service,” said Russell Carter, President of Atlantic Corporation.

Also consistent with Atlantic Packaging’s plans for expansion was the acquisition of well-established Henley Paper, in High Point, North Carolina in 1999. In addition to the obvious benefit of assuming the extensive distribution of industrial products, a planned area of expansion, Atlantic also acquired additional converting equipment, including a state-of-the-art Maxson dual rotary knife sheeter. Determined to serve as the downstream bridge between paper manufacturers and high-technology commercial printers or folding carton manufacturers, Atlantic used these developments to expand to eight locations in North and South Carolina, and expand to 350 employees.

“We knew there was more business on the horizon but we needed more converting capacity to secure it,” says Geoff Searcy, Vice President of Converting Sales. “We see enormous potential within a 300 mile radius. We made the decision to buy two more Maxson DFK dual rotary knife sheeters and located them in our Charlotte facility. Atlantic has owned Maxson single knife equipment since the early 80’s and is very familiar with its performance. We can’t say enough good things about these workhorse sheeters.”

atlantic-packaging2The Maxson DFK sheeters are fast and efficient; capable of speeds up to 1300 fpm. Dave Robinson, Plant Manager of the Charlotte facility remarked, “Once the DFK sheeters were installed, we relocated some of our operators from the Wilmington plant and they got exceptionally good product right off-the-bat. We are converting mostly SBS, with cutoffs ranging from 76 inches to 80 inches. We’re also running foils at speeds in excess of 1,000 fpm at a 90% overlap with no marring.”

Atlantic opted for a variable Airfoil Overlap System that enables shortening or lengthening overlap depending on material. With the touch of a button, this system can enhance speed by as much as 300 fpm. “Essentially, the DFKs are single operator machines with an additional individual occasionally utilized to make-ready a roll at the roll stand, offload finished piles from the stacker, or shrink wrap a finished skid. This is possible because the operator control station utilizes a touch-screen panel and computerized entries dictate the function of the machine.
On an average nine hour day, each DFK sheeter is producing 50,000 to 60,000 lbs., and that includes roll changes and size changes. “That’s with one shift, but we’re adding a second shift shortly and expect to double production,” added Robinson. There is some good spirited competition between the operators of the sheeters with the winner-to-date completing a roll change in 3 minutes, a cutoff change in 10 minutes, and a cutoff and width change in 20 minutes.

Expeditious roll changes are made possible by features of the pivot arm roll stand that moves out of line on rails when a roll is exhausted. Rolls up to 10,000 lbs. with a maximum roll width of 110 inches can be placed between two self-loading armatures that, with the aid of hydraulic motors, chucks the roll and lifts it into place. Safety is promoted since the need for overhead hoists is eliminated.
Both cutters are equipped with easily accessible, yet safely guarded Class III air-loaded slitters providing two-pile service. Low inertia composite knife revolvers and cyclic drive system ensure cut accuracy of ±0.015 inches. Robinson said, “Our emphasis is on cut quality, and we consider the DFKs to be ‘super’.”

atlantic-packaging3The Maxson DFKs are equipped with a continuous run feature that accumulates sheeted material in the tape section just before the stacker. This permits the stacker table to be lowered, finished piles to be offloaded, empty skids to be placed and table raised into position before the accumulated material is moved to the fresh skid with zero sheet lose. “With the exception of just a few sizes, we don’t even ramp down the machine speed for this. This is non-stop production,” remarked Robinson.

Each DFK Sheeter is outfitted with stackers that can accommodate a 61” pile height, however, one stacker is a Maxson 600 stacker that can handle the longer 80 inch sheet lengths and weights up to 8,000 lbs.

The two new DFK Sheeters give Atlantic a total of eight Maxson sheeters throughout the Atlantic Packaging network.

Reprinted from Pulp & Paper, October 2001

Northwestern Converter Gains Competitive Edge with MAXSON DFK Sheeter

Today’s marketplace, quality and fast turnaround are vital in providing a company with a competitive edge. Richard Gunderson recognized the need for such a sheeting operation with those qualities to service the Pacific Northwest area and in 1994 he founded Pacific Sheeting Resources (PSR). Based in Tacoma, Washington, PER has a customer base that spans the Northwest, Canada and California. In addition, PSR has collaborated with Potlatch to fill overseas orders in Hong Kong.

While PSR sheets a wide range of materials, they primarily sheet stock for consumer packaging such as milk cartons, juice and candy boxes, toy boxes, and CD boxes. These materials include kraft, news back, clay coated, SBS board, SUS board, acrylic, polyurethane and nylon coated materials with calipers ranging from 8 point to 40 point. PSR runs sheet lengths as short as 18 inches (457 mm) up to 90 inches (2286 mm).

case-study-northwestern1According to Gregg Brown, Operations Manager, PSR started out with a Moore & White stationary bed knife sheeter. While this sheeter performed adequately at first, it was apparent that the Moore & White wasn’t versatile enough to keep pace with demand nor did it produce the high-quality that PSR required. Running at a maximum speed of 300 fpm (91 mpm), the older model sheeter simply could not accommodate the turn around times required by existing business let alone facilitate growth. Brown noted another limitation with the Moore & White was that cut quality was adequate on lightweight board up to 18-20 point, but the quality decreased when sheeting heavier board. It was time to purchase a new sheeter.

After evaluating various models of equipment, PSR purchased a dual knife rotary sheeter from Maxson Automatic Machinery Company in Westerly, Rhode Island. The MAXSON DFK Sheeter allowed the company to dramatically increase sheeting capacity and decrease turnaround times without compromising the paramount issue of quality. Several distinguishing features allow this American-made sheeter to meet the high standards at PSR.
The rugged cutting section of the MAXSON DFK sheeter utilizes synchronized dual rotary knives which provide the quietest, cleanest cutting action possible. The solid steel knife revolvers are coupled together by anti backlash gearing on both sides.

Unlike the mechanical drive on the Moore & White, the MAXSON DFK sheeter is equipped with state-of-the-art computer technology to maintain precise accuracy and squareness. The DFK runs at speeds up to 1,300 fpm (396 mpm) and has a cyclic velocity drive that maintains a sheet length accuracy of ±.015 inches (± .381 mm) regardless of line speed or cut-off length. Since knife speed matches web speed at time of cut, no squareness adjustment is required. The energy conserving drive consumes less than 30 amps, making it the most energy-efficient dual knife rotary sheeter in the Industry today.

To further increase productivity, PSR selected two MAXSON shaftless roll stands. This allows a single operator to simply move the roll into place, and the roll stand completes the loading process by cradling the roll, chucking it, and lifting it into position. Roll changes require less than 3 minutes. One roll stand can be running while the other is being loaded. This minimizes down time and optimizes the sheeter’s efficiency. At PSR, they have also run material from both roll stands at the same time. Brown says, “We’ve run 4 point on top of 4 point with all the same tolerances.”

case-study-northwestern2The MAXSON DFK Sheeter’s web conditioning system is designed to minimize sheet defects. The decurl unit ensures a flat sheet even on thick board grades without damaging the material’s surface. A dancer roll unit absorbs web fluctuations encountered when sheeting egg-shaped rolls. This maintains the proper web tension to ensure accurate sheet length.

The delivery system is outfitted with features PSR selected to insure quality and optimize production. Another feature designed to help PSR maintain high quality is the PEN-MAM Dust Collector, which cleans the top and bottom of the material being sheeted without contacting the sheets thus eliminating the possibility of marring even the most sensitive stock. In addition, the PEN-MAM Dust Collector reduces static build-up by ionizing the air at the point of vacuum. The Airfoil Overlap System feature affords positive jam-free performance at the overlap section permitting higher speeds through the tape system, particularly on single web and lightweight stocks. In addition, the system reduces static build-up at the overlap point.

The design of the overlap carriage is an example of the operator friendliness of the DFK Sheeter. A frame connects the overlap carriage to the front stops of the stacker when changing the length in the delivery system, the operator automatically sets the jog box in the stacker. To generate even greater production, the MAXSON DFK sheeter is outfitted with a continuous running feature. While a skid is being removed and an empty pallet is being brought into place, the sheeter can continue to run as sheets are collected in the slow speed tape system using an extended grid.

The MAXSON DFK Sheeter’s stacker uses a low profile, ergonomic design. Equipped with an automatic feed down unit and a reliable, easy to set jogging system, the stacker is able to provide press ready piles up to 61″ (1549 mm) high.

Brown indicated that PSR pushes the MAXSON DFK Sheeter beyond what he considers standard operation. “We’ve asked it to do extra and it has,” he said. Pacific Sheeting Resources has been able to expand its customer base due to the increased quality and production provided by the MAXSON DFK Sheeter. “We are now able to turn around orders in as little as four hours,” says Brown. With the MAXSON DFK Sheeter, PSR has earned a well-deserved reputation for quality products with fast, efficient service.

Cut-to-Register Sheeting Trims Time and Labor Cost

At Unifoil Corporation, Passaic Park, NJ improved product quality and faster turnaround are the results of a $1.5 million capital investment in optically registered sheeting, steam sheeting and embossing equipment.

The company’s recent purchase includes a DFK Sheeter from Maxson Automatic Machinery Company, the Steam-Foil System from Thermo Web Systems and an embosser/calendar from Verduin Machinery.

Unifoil says the Maxson dual rotary knife sheeter is equipped with a web conditioning unit that utilizes web steering to keep the web perfectly positioned to enter the cutting section, producing a square sheet.

Once a part of Anaconda Aluminum Corporation, their experience with foil lamination goes back nearly thirty years. Today Unifoil is a $ 40 million global company and a leading innovator in laminating, coating and metallizing technology, producing eye-catching foils, films and now brilliant holographic materials as well. The company supplies the worldwide instant lottery industry and provides the packaging industry with a variety of well-recognized, award-winning product containers we use every day.

Product innovations are UniLustreâ, Holographic UniLustreâ and Registered Holographic UniLustreâ, proprietary, non-laminated, brilliant metallized papers and boards. Warner Lambert’s new Max Air brand of sugarless chewing gum and Estee Lauder’s holiday set up boxes, made with Holographic UniLustre, earned top honors from AIMCAL in 2000. Cadbury Schweppes Ltd.’s The Milk Tray, made with Double Rainbow Holographic UniLustre, took AIMCAL’s Y2K prestigious Peter Rigney Award. Current manufacturing activity includes high tech bus passes read by a scanning device for a major U.S. metropolitan city.

“Marketers use UniLustre for its high visual impact which increases sales. Graphic and package designers love its beauty and versatility. And printers and converters appreciate its manufacturability and printability,” says Joe Funicelli, President/CEO. Funicelli notes that UniLustre surface properties readily accept offset, flexo, gravure and UV inks. Lighter weights of UniLustre do not flake or crack, which makes it especially desirable to envelope, confection wrap and set up box manufacturers.

To support the development of its “cutting edge” product innovations, Unifoil utilizes “cutting edge” technology – literally. “Only converting materials of exceptional cut quality are acceptable to printers and end users like Warner Lambert, Gillette, Cadbury, Estee Lauder and Scholastic,” says Funicelli. Unifoil long ago entered a relationship with Maxson Automatic Machinery Company of Westerly, RI to ensure that quality sheeted stock was delivered. It is a relationship that has been strengthened with subsequent sheeters purchased.

Unifoil recently installed an electronic dual motor drive retrofit package to increase its speed and cutoff accuracy. The growth of the UniLustre business dictated more production capacity and a decision was made to purchase a Maxson dual rotary knife sheeter “to fulfill that need and guarantee the quality that the industry requires,” explains Funicelli. “We have a relationship of trust that goes back many years. We have a high level of confidence in Maxson equipment, personnel and their responsiveness,” he says. However, the company did research and consider several sheeter manufacturers before deciding the Maxson DFK sheeter was what it needed to accomplish its goals. Funicelli notes that once the dual rotary sheeter was installed, Unifoil “immediately saw a 25-30% increase in productivity.”

The Maxson DFK is equipped with a pivot arm shaftless roll stand of self-loading design with the capacity to lift 72” diameter rolls weighing 10,000 lbs. The roll stand has automatic tension control and emergency stop braking with a 6-inch skew adjustment. A roll of stock is positioned between the two lifting arms that pick up the roll with the aid of a 5 HP hydraulic motor. “We have decided that ordering an additional roll stand will give us the ability to make-ready a roll and, with the incorporation of an automatic splicing component, change rolls on-the-fly giving us the ability to run continuously,” reports Funicelli. At the present time, the first one or two sheets of a new roll are diverted to a reject gate. When the auto-splicing feature is engaged, the spliced sheet will be rejected.

“With so much automation on the DFK, we consider this sheeter nearly a single operator function,” says Dwight Pennell, Plant Manager. “In fact, we found the DFK sheeter just as easy to set up and operate as the stationary bed sheeter which is designed for short runs and frequent web changes.” Job parameters are easily entered on a touch-screen microprocessor controller that also makes continual accuracy calculations and logs pertinent data. A web-conditioning unit is equipped with web steering that keeps the web perfectly positioned to enter the cutting section producing a sheet with a squareness accuracy of ± 0.020 inches. Additionally, the cutting section redesign allows the operator easy access to the slitter rig to make fine adjustments.

“A clean, precisely cut sheet is what we must have to send on to the printer, and that is what we’re getting,” continues Pennell. “We cut-to-register to within tolerances of ±0.015 inches with a cut so clean that, even without the aid of dust collection equipment, we send an acceptable product directly to the printer.”

The modular slitter rig design on the sheeter provides open access for the easy fine adjustments while maintaining high level safety standards.

There’s no room for registration error on the holographic bus passes read by a scanning device Unifoil produces. “Cut perfection is critical for this product,” asserts Pennell. He adds that Unifoil has also gained cost and waste savings on this project. “The accuracy and precision cutting have reduced waste by over 2 % – a significant sum of product, and money, considering our volume,” he explains.

Unifoil is pumping through the tonnage. Just one holographic product, a party plate, required converting 600 tons last year. At any given time, the company maintains “a significant amount of tonnage of roll stock” for converting. “This allows extremely quick response and rapid turn-around for our customers,” explains Pennell. “When so much product is running through the DFK, we appreciate the design of the machine. It is ergonomically friendly. For example, some other sheeters have very wide tapes through the tape section. Because of more narrow tapes, the Maxson DFK’s tape section allows excellent visibility and we find easy access throughout.”

The continuous offload feature permits no interruption in production. The machine simply ramps down in speed and collects sheeted material in the tape section while the finished skids are offloaded from the stacker in crisp, perfect 61 inch ice blocks.

“Our reputation is established, our talents and abilities have made us partners with our customers. Our graphic designers and theirs are teamed to explore the evolution of these products as they continue to mature. New applications are being developed all the time and we’re ahead of the curve on innovation. We know what’s new, different and of benefit,” summarized Funicelli. “Unifoil has always committed to investing in machinery that ensures perfect product. The Maxson DFK has demonstrated a continuation of that principal.”

Reprinted from Paper Film and Foil Converter, June 2001

A. J. Schrafel Cuts to the Chase

In order to succeed in today’s converting industry, a company must develop an edge over its competition. A. J. Schrafel Paper Corporation has identified their competitive edge as providing the highest quality paperboard in a timely manner. For 56 years, dedication to this basic mission has given this New York-based business a reputation as a quality source for paperboard of all grades and quantities.

The company was the brain child of Alfred J. Schrafel, who started out in the paper business as a broker for a New York paper company. In 1941, he decided to branch out on his own and established A. J. Schrafel Paper Corporation in the Manhattan area. In spite of the uncertain basis of the country’s wartime economy, the company did well and eventually grew into a multi-faceted business. Today Alfred Schrafel, Jr. and Edward Case run the company, both of whom boast more than 70 years of combined experience between them.

case-study-schrafelIn the mid-1970’s, A. J. Schrafel honed its competitive edge by expanding its services to Customers through a close working relationship with Accurate Paperboard Converters. This union allowed Schrafel to convert its orders in a timely manner. The company’s converting arm now serves box makers, printers, and mills located in the Northeastern area, with some customers as far as California and the Caribbean.

Schrafel Paper’s typical order size ranges from one to five tons. They also run specialty work which can vary in size from very small to moderate. Focusing on these order sizes offers the company the opportunity to fill their customers’ needs very quickly. Most importantly, Schrafel Paper’s customers can depend on receiving quality work on demand.

The bulk of the company’s converting lays in boxboard grades, and they deal in first quality SBS and recycled grades in thicknesses ranging from .008 inches to .034 inches. “Our boxboard customers require high quality work, as they produce items such as boxes for games, cosmetics, or pharmaceuticals,” Schrafel notes, “The printers we service have upgraded their equipment and thus require a squarely cut, dust-free sheet.”

Sharpening the Edge

In 1996, Schrafel Paper Converting Corporation (SPC) was formed by the third generation of Schrafels, Richard, Robert, and Thomas. They saw that in order to better serve their customers, it was time for changes to be made in the areas of order turnaround time and increased quality. These changes involved relocating the converting facility from Beacon Falls, Connecticut to West Haven, Connecticut and updating the converting equipment.

SPC’s facility in West Haven added convenience and additional warehouse space. Situated close by Interstate 95 with convenient rail service, the company is now in a position to offer easier access to and from their facility. “This is a very convenient location for many of our customers,” notes Schrafel, “Our New York and Boston shipments are easier, and we have trucks going to New York and New Jersey every day.” Customers also benefit from the 74,000 square foot facility. This added space has eliminated the company’s need for outside warehousing of inventory, and 200,000 square feet of adjacent warehouse facilities provide an overflow option. The company maintains an inventory of 10 – 24 point SBS on hand for immediate conversion, and proudly notes that they are able to extend a helping hand to mills needing supplemental roll inventory in a pinch.

SPC also took cost, sheet quality, and customer service issues into consideration during their restructure. These issues became important when they began the process of updating their equipment needs. Their purchase of the Maxson DFK Sheeter and the upgrading of one of their two existing Maxson sheeters with a dual motor drive retrofit was the answer. “We needed to make changes that would allow us to keep up with technology and production rates,” Richard Schrafel comments.

Reportedly, the Maxson DFK Sheeter can accommodate sheet lengths of 17 inches to 65 inches and can run at speeds up to 1,300 fpm. According to the manufacturer, sheet length accuracy is +/- 0.015 on all cutoffs at all speeds. The DFK has a specially-designed cross cutting knife system that accepts webs up to 60 inches wide. Because of the synchronous speed of the knives and web at the moment of cut, reportedly no adjustment for sheet squareness is required. The two pivot arm shaftless roll stands accept rolls up to 84″ in diameter. This reportedly provides the company with the flexibility to sheet oversized rolls, run two smaller rolls side by side, or sheet two superimposed webs. “With lighter calipers, we’ve seen substantially increased productivity. Maxson worked with us to design elements of the machine to suit our needs.” Schrafel comments. The web carrier roll, dual double direction decurler for heavy caliper board grades, reject gate, and extending grid also increase productivity and provide a faster turnaround time. Another upgrade was Maxson’s installation of a dual motor drive retrofit on Schrafel Paper’s existing 65″ Maxson MSH Sheeter.

Committing to Quality

Currently, this family-run company is hard at work utilizing all three sheeters to keep up with production schedules. Orders are now more readily expedited, and quality is job one. The Schrafel family has been able to enhance their well-established position within the paper industry, as well as their many long-standing business relationships.

As Schrafel Paper looks ahead, they see future growth in converting specialty grades of paper and paperboard such as foil laminate and pasted board. The Schrafels believe that their basic mission, providing the best possible paperboard in a timely manner, is what will set them ahead of their competition. If its past success is any indication, it looks as if these core values will indeed carry Schrafel’s accomplishments into the 21st century.

Reprinted from Boxboard Containers, September 1997


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