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The customer was using 10,000 units per year of a suction cup on a plastic bowl magazine unloader, feeding a high speed cereal filling machine. They were looking for a close drop-in replacement cup so they did not have to re-engineer too much on their machine. Machine uptime, and a replacement suction cup not costing too much more than their existing, were the needs of the customer. Their existing suction cup was made of a rubber material and was sourced from a producer in Ohio.
The F33 suction cup from Piab was chosen for its soft, pliable FDA approved silicone material. Matching up, dimension-wise, was a very close drop-in replacement with the whole size, height and outer diameter all within the customer's acceptable specifications.
This plant currently uses 10,000 a year of the rubber suction cup at a component cost of USD 1.08 (EUR 0,95) each, when ordered in quantities of 1,000. The average reported life is 22 hours (380,000 picks) on the plastic bowl feeder. The same cup is used in multiple other applications. At the time of reporting, the Piab F33 suction cup had 127 hours (2,200,000 picks) of failure free run time. 30 days have passed since that report and the same cups are still in service. The customer is still tweaking changes on the machine to improve uptime, but, reports the vacuum cup mis-feed and cup failure are no longer issues and has immediately increased machine uptime by 25%, translating to USD 30,000-50,000 (EUR 26,300-43,800) savings.