This patent-pending extrusion glue system is the world’s first fully automatic, recipe-driven hot melt applicator for roll-fed labeling. Compared to traditional glue wheel systems and spray glue systems, the new GES improves the accuracy of glue application and produces void-free glue patterns while eliminating vacuum drum re-padding. The B & H GES minimizes downtime, reduces glue waste, improves the quality of labeled containers and requires no operator adjustments during production.
The fully automatic PLC-driven GES applies a precisely extruded film of hot melt adhesive to preprogrammed locations on a label through a vertical pattern nozzle. Using proprietary algorithms developed by B & H for each adhesive, the system uses a controlled combination of pressure and temperature to accurately and consistently extrude and apply hot melt adhesive to labels regardless of fluctuations in production speed.
The B & H GES is comprised of four key components: extrusion tower assembly, dedicated PLC / HMI, all-metal GES vacuum drum, and melt-on-demand glue tank. It is available as an option on new Marathon® and BH8000 Series labelers, and is offered as an aftermarket upgrade for installed Marathon, BH8000S and BH8000U labelers. The GES can run at speeds up to 600 cpm.
The GES eliminates glue slinging, angel hair and glue build-up on the vacuum drum and glue wires, which maximize uptime by requiring fewer operator adjustments and labeler stoppages. Its closed system reduces glue recirculation by over 90 percent, which eliminates overcooking the glue and damaging its bonding properties. With no glue pan overflows, no draining of glue tanks full of overcooked or contaminated adhesive and no glue slinging, the GES reduces glue waste.
GES vacuum drums are high-precision, all-metal drums that eliminate the need for vacuum drum re-padding. The GES vacuum drum and extrusion tower assembly have a no-impact interface – the vacuum drum never contacts the pattern nozzle as it deposits glue on labels. This no-impact interface means the GES vacuum drums do not experience wear like conventional vacuum drums.
A dedicated PLC and HMI controls the glue application process. Recipes for every adhesive/container/label combination are entered and stored in the PLC where they are accessed via the HMI. The system’s recipe-driven repeatability minimizes operator intervention while maximizing system performance and the quality of labeled containers.
B & H’s PLC-controlled extrusion technology offers accurate control over the placement of the adhesive on a label, the size of the leading and trailing edge glue patterns and the amount of adhesive applied to the label. The B & H GES controls glue laydown weights within +/- 10 percent of the programmed target weight. It controls the glue pattern placement on the label within +/- 0.254 mm (0.01 inch) and the glue temperature within +/- 1° F (0.56° C). These tolerances are maintained independent of labeling speed and the selected adhesive.
The B & H GES effectively runs all hot melt adhesives currently used for roll-fed labeling as well as higher viscosity adhesives that will not run on glue wheel or spray glue systems. By opening the window for adhesive options, the GES makes it possible to run adhesives with different bonding characteristics, adhesives better suited to surviving seasonal temperature and humidity swings and even less expensive adhesives. B & H is working with customers and adhesive suppliers to test and qualify adhesives never before used for roll-fed labeling.