RT Engineering Corporation strives to help manufacturers develop products competitively through the use of automated, innovative and technological solutions.
With advancements in technology, today’s manufacturing industry means our customers are contending with a global workforce. To put it simply, companies are challenged to do more with less. This is where RT comes in.
RT Engineering was approached by a manufacturer who produced millions of aluminum downspout brackets and bands each year. Each of these parts needed a UPC label affixed to it in order to be sold in a retail environment.
An excessive amount of manual labor was dedicated to tediously labeling each part by hand. Because of this, the company approached RT in hopes of automating the process and thereby reduce labor costs, improve throughput and utilize their workforce more efficiently for other tasks.
RT designed and built three separate machines with the ability to apply the labels precisely, with minimal labor and improved throughput.
Each machine consisted of an item Extruded Aluminum or welded steel frame, and an on-board Allen Bradley control system. The machines’ features included the following:
- Infeed / outfeed chutes for loading and unloading
- A custom conveyor system sized to accommodate the specific dimensions of each part
- Edge guiding to keep the part in line for exact label placement
- Label applicators, complete with part counters
- Part sensors were strategically located to ensure that each label was affixed correctly. If a reject occurs it is directed into a reject bin without having to slow down or stop the machine.
Floor space and operator safety are key concerns of every plant manager. With this in mind, RT Engineering designed the labeling machines to create as minimal of a footprint as possible. Additionally, two of the machines were developed with portability functions, so they could be easily moved around the plant or placed into storage when not in use.
The third machine integrated seamlessly into the company’s existing press machine, so it did not require any additional floor space. Each machine was meticulously guarded to meet OSHA standards and comes complete with an integrated safety shutdown circuit.
From mechanical and electrical design to programming, production, and testing—all stages of design, development and deployment were covered by RT Engineering. The customer greatly valued that RT could provide every service required for a successful automation system, start to finish.
Upon project completion, an RT Engineer traveled to the customer’s facility to assist in a successful startup for each machine and to also train the operators. The machines met the customer’s high expectations by dramatically improving throughput and reducing labor costs.