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There are many types of filling and sealing machines used to package the variety of products in

today's marketplace including liquids, pastes, chunky products, powders, granules,

tablets, capsules, etc. Most filling machines are available from semi-automatic tabletop

versions all the way up to high speed production line machines, including rotary fillers.

Even within categories of filling machines there are often many choices available, so we

always encourage you to call or email us to make sure you are buying the exactly correct

machine for your application(s). This article mainly introduces the types of liquid filling

machines.

    There are usually different filling types according to different filling standards.

    According to the degree of automation, the types of filling machines are: manual

filling machines, semi-automatic filling machines, and fully

automatic filling machines.

    Manual Filling Machines

    These are manually operated and will need no power or electrical source. They are

generally used for packing highly viscous liquids like creams, gels, and shampoos but will

also suffice for medium viscosity liquids. Manual filling machines are ideal for small

scale productions or laboratories where they will provide a higher output speed and

increased accuracy than when the liquids are poured by hand. They are ideally used for

filling vial and bottles with about 600ml capacities and have a production speed of 15-900

bottles/hour. This type of machine is not produced by NPACK.
    Semi-Automatic Filling Machines
    These will be faster compared to manual machines and will suit medium and small scale

production processes during a high-volume season. Semi-automatic machines are designed with

nozzle, syringe and piston parts which guarantee they maintain a zero-drip operation. They

can be used to package all types of liquids and those containing small food articles and

even adhesives. Semi-automatic machines have filling ranges of 5-100ml and production

speeds of 800 fills/hour.
    Fully Automated Filling Machines
    These are used for large-scale operations and in companies with high production needs.

Automated filling machines are generally used with variable speed conveyor systems and for

packaging, liquids with all levels of viscosity and those with suspended particles. Some

manufacturers also configure their automated machines based on the type and volume of the

filling container you are using for your product. You can also add filling heads on the

machines to boost your company’s production rates. Automated

cup filling and sealing machines can fill 5-10ml of a product and generate

6000 bottles/hour. We mainly produce this type of machine.

    According to the filling principle, All liquid filling systems fall into either of two

categories: volumetric or liquid level filling machines.

    Volumetric Filling Machine vs. Liquid-Level Filling Equipment

    There are very few bottles that don't have some small differences in volume.

Considering that fact is very important in deciding the type of filling system you are

going to use for your packaging. You've probably noticed at the supermarket or auto

store that when you look at fill level, some of the bottles seem to look like they are

short fills compared to others. Chances are they were filled with volumetric filling

machinery. The volume inside the bottle is correct, but because of the small volumetric

difference between the bottles it appears to be short.

    With a liquid level filling machine all of the bottles will "appear" to have

the same volume because the fill level will be the same, but in actuality there will be

slight differences in fill volume, no short fills, but some slight overfills.

    And so this is the decision you have to make beforehand: Volumetric or Liquid Level?

For the vast majority of products the answer will be liquid level filling since it is

cheaper and faster than volumetric filling, plus consumers of the product will not feel

cheated when the bottles "appear" to be evenly filled. However volumetric filling

is the best solution if the product has to have an exact dosage for it's use or if the

product is very expensive per ounce and the little bit of giveaway could cost you dearly,

especially in a high production environment.

    Liquid Level Filling Machines

    Siphon Filling Machinery

    The simplest and probably one of the oldest technologies devised by man was the siphon

principle. In this case we are talking about the siphon filling machinewith

tray sealer

. Gravity flow into the tank to a valve that keeps the liquid level even, put some

gooseneck valves up and over the tank side and back below the liquid level of the tank,

start a siphon and voila, you've got a siphon filler. Add to that a little extra

framing, and an adjustable bottle rest so you can set the fill level to the level of the

tank and we now have a complete filling system that will never overfill a bottle, with no

need for pumps etc. Our siphon filler comes with 5 heads (size is selectable) and can

produce quite a bit more than many think possible.

    Overflow Filling Equipment

    In order to speed up the process of filling we have the pressure filling machine.

Pressure fillers have a tank on the back of the machine with a valve to keep the tank full

either by a simple float valve or by switching a pump on and off. The tank flood feeds a

pump which then feeds to a manifold where a number of special overflow filling heads lower

down into the bottle as the pump switches on forcing liquid into the bottles at a speedy

rate. As the bottle fills to the top, and excess liquid goes back up a second port within

the filling head and overflows back into the tank. At that point the pump switches off and

any remaining excess liquid and pressure is relieved. Heads come up, bottles index out and

repeat the process. Pressure filling machinery can be configured for semi-automatic,

automatic in-line filling systems or as rotary pressure fillers for higher speeds.

    Volumetric Filling Machines

    Check Valve Piston Filler

    Check valve piston filling machines use a check valve system that opens and closes on

the infeed stroke and discharge stroke. A great feature of this type of filling equipment

with can seamer is that it can self

prime to draw product directly from a drum or pail and then discharge into your container.

Typical accuracy on a piston filler is plus or minus one-half percent. However check valve

piston fillers do have certain limitations in that they cannot run viscous products or

products with particulates as both can foul the valves. But if your products are free

flowing (meaning they pour relatively easily) this is a great machine for startups and

large producers as well.
    Rotary Valve Piston Filling Machine

    Rotary valve piston fillers are distinguished by the rotary valve which has a large

throat opening to allow thick products and products with large particulates (up to

1/2" diameter) from the supply hopper to flow through unimpeded. Great as a tabletop

model or can be ganged for higher production requirements. Fill pastes, peanut butter, gear

oil, potato salads, Italian dressing and much more on this type of piston filler with

accuracy of plus or minus one-half percent. Fills accurately at a ten to one ratio of the

cylinder set.
    Pump Filling Machines

    Pump fillers are another method of filling products ranging from liquids to thick

pastes, even those with solid particulates (although generally much smaller than on a

Rotary Valve Piston Filler). Available as tabletop models through multi-head ganged

automatic machines. Another advantage of using positive displacement pump filling equipment

is that the range of fill volumes is much greater than on a piston filler, albeit that the

fill times increase significantly the larger the fill volume required. Other great features

of a pump filling machine include easy fill adjustment by entering the amount needed, and a

self priming feature similar to a check valve piston filler's ability to draw product

directly from a drum or other container. For thicker products a supply hopper can be added

similar to a rotary valve piston filler so that product flood feeds directly into the pump.

Fill volumes are determined by counting revolutions (and partial revolutions) of the pump.

There is also manual can

seamer
to use.
    Peristaltic Pump Filling Machinery

    Peristaltic pump filling machines are very popular in the pharmaceutical and hazardous

chemical industries because product does not have any external environment exposure since

the hose goes directly from the product supply, through the pump (as opposed to into the

pump), and to the dispense point. When the product run is complete the hose can be disposed

of, or treated for reuse. Furthermore with some pumps extreme accuracy is possible down to

the 1 ul (microliter) level.

    Timed Fill Gravity Systems

    Timed flow fillers are another type of filling equipment on the market. This type of

filler works on the principle of a tank mounted above filling heads that have solenoid

valves to open and close for the flow, or in some cases pinching of the hose to close. Fill

volume is determined by timers that open and close the valves or pinch the tubes. Single

head models can work pretty well for a variety of products. Even multi-head models can work

pretty well once the system is balanced if only one formulation is run or the flow

characteristics are identical. However the big disadvantage of timed fill systems is when

the user wishes to fill a variety of products with different flow characteristics. In this

case the system needs to be rebalanced which is not an easy task as every adjustment of for

one head's flow affects all of the others. Busch Machinery does not offer timed fill

systems for this reason, as other machinery that we offer can offer the same or better

accuracy, at about the same cost, and without the hassle associated with timed fill

systems.
    Net weight filling machines
    Net weight filling machines use a weigh scale platform to monitor the weight of product

as it is filling into a bottle or container. Net weight fillers are well suited for large

container filling applications. This machine is used for weighing and filling 5-30kg

liquid. Use photoelectric sensing, proximity switch and other sensing elements, so that it

can be fully automated production. Using the submersible filling, filling valve diameter,

fast feeding, valve mouth built-in plug, no drip leakage. Can do bottle filling, no bottle

not filling. Stable operation, safe and hygienic.

    Servo Driven Pump Fillers:

    With the cost of servo drive controls coming way down over the last 10 years more and

more uses for filling have come into play. Gear pump fillers is one type of application

that has become very popular, although you must be sure that the pumps are sanitary pumps

if you do foods, cosmetics or pharmaceuticals. The advantage of the gear pump is that you

can fill almost any size product without need for change parts (although this still has

limitations). At NPACK we still think the jury is out on this, as piston fillers can still

fill with as good or better accuracy, although with not quite as large a range..

    Pressure Fillers:

    Pressure filling machines, or automatic can sealing machine, have their tanks

below the bottom of the bottle. The tank flood feeds a pump (generally a centrifugal pump

but also positive displacement pumps for thicker liquids) which then flows directly into

the bottle until it reaches the fill level at which point excess product flow directly back

into the tank. When filling plastic bottles the pump must be turned off (always for

positive displacement pumps) before removing the filling tubes to allow the bottles to

return to normal size (they swell under pressure) and drain off excess liquid. The big

advantage of pressure fillers is that bottles fill more quickly so fewer heads (and space)

are required and higher viscosity products can be filled. The disadvantage is that foamy

products must be filled at slower pump speeds than normal, and this will work only if the

foam settles out fairly quickly.

    Counter Pressure Fillers:

    These are liquid filling machines with labeling machine, or label sticking machine, unique to the carbonated

beverage industry which includes beer, soda and any sparkling beverage or wine. NPACK does

not sell counter pressure fillers, but we will still explain this complicated type of

filler. The heads for this type of filling consist of 3 parts: Vent, CO2 pressurizer and

fill tube. The head seals and the Vent and CO2 pressure valves are opened. The air in the

bottle is forced out of the bottle and is replaced with the heavier CO2. The vent is then

stoppered down and product from very specialized heads forces the chilled carbonated liquid

down the sides of the container in a sort of swirl pattern to minimize foaming. Once the

fill height is reached the vent completely closes at the same time the product is cutoff.

Many people mistakenly think that the CO2 counter pressure is the carbonating process, but

carbonizing is a bit more complicated than that. The purpose of the CO2 is to keep the

already existing carbonized beverage in solution and to minimize foaming.


   

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