The Xmelt entry level from Baumer hhs rounds off the bottom end of the company's highly successful family of Xmelt melters. The range of functions of the low-cost starter unit is comparable to that of the devices of leading competitors and totally sufficient for many standard applications. Apart from which, the individual components of the Xmelt entry level unit are characterised by the typical high quality and great reliability of Baumer hhs technology.
"Not every product and every application imposes the toughest demands on adhesive application and thus on the hot-melt melting technology. It was with that in mind that we developed the entry level unit, which now also makes us a top address as a hot-melt specialist for standard applications where customers could only exploit a part of the extensive functions and great flexibility of our standard Xmelt units, depending on the job", says Thomas Walther, Technical Manager at Baumer hhs in Krefeld, describing the market positioning of the new melter.
The Xmelt entry level unit is equipped with a 4 kg tank, which suffices for most carton closure applications. Up to four hot melt hoses and four HM-500 hot melt application heads can be connected to the unit. This type of application head is characterised by its very reliable mode of operation. The application heads are controlled either via a control unit from Baumer hhs or via a PLC.
Multi-zone principle retained
The multi-zone principle has also been retained on the tank of the entry level unit, guaranteeing gentle melting of the adhesive on all units of the Xmelt family. Optimum processing temperatures prevail near the bottom of the tank, while the adhesive in the top half of the tank is not exposed to high temperatures, thus preventing any carbonisation. Additional advantages of the multi-zone principle are a lower energy demand, a smaller connected load and time savings during the heating-up phase.
Above and beyond this, the tank is lined with a new innovative and durable coating, making it very easy to clean. Its 'non-return' filter cartridge reliably filters disruptive particles out of the adhesive. A ball closes off the bottom of the filter cartridge, thus preventing the escape of the particles filtered out. Being directly accessible from the outside, the filter can be replaced in next to no time.
The Xmelt entry level unit has a high-quality metal housing that is both robust and easy to clean.
High safety and time-proven operating concept
On the entry level unit, the pressure is released manually via the hot melt application heads. A pressure relief valve prevents the unexpected escape of hot liquid under high pressure in the event of operating errors on the control unit or the glue delivery system that could lead to excessive system pressure. In contrast, the standard Xmelt units offer the convenience of automatic pressure relief via a bypass that releases the pressure remaining in the system in a very short time when the delivery pump is switched off.
The time-proven operating concept familiar from the standard Xmelt models, featuring the output of plain-text status and error messages, has been transferred to the entry level unit. The fact that the operator prompting system is easy to learn and understand makes it a great benefit, particularly for jobs where the adhesive application system is not so critical, but simply has to work.
A fill level sensor has been dispensed with on the Xmelt entry level unit for reasons of cost. "Baumer hhs conducted lengthy series of trials to test commercially available fill level sensors for the Xmelt range. In view of the susceptibility of the commercial modules to faults, we developed our own fill level sensor that even works reliably in borderline areas. To maintain the standard of this fill level sensor on the entry level unit, we would have had to develop a sensor specifically for that unit. Given the cost of the necessary development work, and after talking to potential customers, we decided to dispense with it," says Walther, explaining the background. After all, the fill level also has to be regularly checked by the operator on competitor products.
A new Xmelt granule feeder in the form of an installation kit is available as an option for the entry level unit. It feeds the granules from a reservoir to the melting tank as and when needed, thus ensuring that the tank is sufficiently full at all times. In addition, only the necessary amount of adhesive is ever melted, this being more gentle on the adhesive and reducing carbonisation. To put it in a nutshell: both the multi-zone tank and demand-based glue delivery greatly enhance the stability of the production process.
Walther: "In recent years, Baumer hhs has increasingly established itself on the market as a specialist for complex hot-melt applications. From many customers' point of view, the main benefits of the Xmelt family of hot-melt products are the fast dot sequence, the precise adhesive application, the high availability and the long service life." This is also underlined by the successful market launch of the Flexicoat systems from Baumer hhs, which are used to provide folding cartons, gusseted wallets and cardboard boxes with suitable self-adhesive strips covered with silicone paper strips. Several customers have opted for this innovative system within a very short space of time, also including a number of new customers. "As part of their day-to-day business, our application consultants cooperate closely with our customers to weigh up which hot-melt systems are most suitable for which applications. With the entry level unit, they can now also cover applications that do not call for a high-end solution."