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D&M Packaging purchases a Universal X8 automatic slitter to support further growth

Packaging Solutions


D&M Packaging has selected Universal Converting Equipment to supply a new high speed automatic slitting machine.


Crewe based D&M Packaging has grown rapidly over the last three years and is commencing a new investment phase to meet current and future demands. After an extensive process, D&M has invested in the Universal X8 automatic slitting machine. The automation benefits of the X8 ensure a very fast turnaround time when changing jobs, as well as automation to minimise the time the machine is stopped between sets of rolls. The machine has also been designed to allow the addition of automatic weighing, labelling, bagging and palletising in the future. Universal Converting Equipment has invested heavily over the last five years to develop the Universal X8 slitting machine. The technology has been adopted by several major global organisations.

The two key aspects of the machine are its high productivity and safety. Although Universal manufactures turret machines, when it has explored machine performance with customers, there is always disappointment that the promised output numbers are not achieved with turret machines and that safety systems must be compromised to run them effectively. For years, it has been accepted that for duplex slitting machines to be safe, there needs to be a safety zone in front of the rewind shafts to prevent access while the machine is running. The same applies to turret rewind systems, meaning that to operate them with a minimum stopped time, you need to automatically unload the rolls and automatically reload the cores and position them. Without the automation, this must be completed with the machine stopped due to the safety regulations. The Universal X8 offers automatic end of roll cut off and automatic roll closure, allowing automatic unloading of the finished rolls as soon as the machine stops. Automatic core loading, core positioning and attachment of the slit tails to the cores means that in around 40 seconds from stopping, the machine is running again. Without adding the extra set of rewind shafts, access for the operator is simpler than with a turret, reducing setup times and operating delays. Mark Peplinski, managing director of D&M Packaging, commented: ‘As one of the best independently owned flexible packaging producers, we want to be pushing at the forefront of technology. The Universal X8 is a highly automated machine that can add additional handling systems in the future. Universal’s approach to operator safety was refreshing. It showed us its detailed risk assessments and safety analysis reports to convince us that as well as being the most productive slitting machine, it would also be the safest. The company backed this up with trials on its Universal X8 in its new technology centre. We have worked with Universal over many years and appreciate the ongoing service it provides once machines are installed.’ Alan Jones, director of Universal Converting Equipment, added: ‘Productivity and safety are not just for multinational companies. At a time when skilled labour is scarce, maximising the output per machine operator has enormous benefits. The Universal X8 automation system enables automatic set up and operation of the machine and can be linked to additional roll handling automation such as roll weighing, labelling, bagging and palletising. Universal can provide a completely automated slitting machine from loading the parent roll through to the complete pallet of finished rolls.’


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