Piab visited a producer and distributor of fresh, packaged salads. During the visit, they asked if Piab had a vacuum solution for vertical, form, fill and seal (VFFS) bagging machines for packaging various types of produce. They have 11 lines with Bosch VFFS machines and they regularly have to rebuild or replace the mechanical vacuum pumps on each line. The cost was production line down-time, replacement cost and spare parts inventory. The customer provided Piab an opportunity to fully evaluate the application, provide retrofit recommendations and they would commit to a free test and trial installation. The primary obstacle was compressed air consumption. If our recommendation consumed too much compressed air, they would not be able to retrofit all lines. The salesman scheduled a follow-up visit; collected application details and took critical photos of the VFFS machine belt components.
The initial visit provided Piab the opportunity to explain the multiple benefits of air-driven generators over rotary vane mechanical pumps and the efficiency advances Piab has made using COAX® technology. The product trial validated the recommendation that a piCLASSIC with x4 Xi40-3 cartridges provided enough flow to operate a tube (two belts).
By switching to a piCLASSIC, this solution consumed approximately 50% less compressed air than the previous installation. Total Cost of Operation savings equaled a combination of maintenance-free operation along with a 5-year warranty, that plus reduced down-time, savings of replacement costs of $2,500 for a new rotary vane pump and the spare parts inventory that goes with the mechanical pump made this a good win.