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A Silencer Attached to CTM’s Inline Cutter

A Silencer Attached to CTM’s Inline Cutter

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Matrix Removal Systems

L&NW (Label & Narrow Web), May/June 2009CTM Systems Inc., Nazareth, PA, USA, designs and manufactures matrix and edge trim removal systems for the label and narrow web industry. The company offers both Venturi systems (sometimes called inductors or eductors) and cutter systems (sometimes called choppers), depending upon customer’s requirements and needs.


Larry Bush, president of CTM, says there are pros and cons to each type of system. “Since we supply both types, we have lengthy discussions with our customers to come up with the best possible solution to meet their needs,” he says.


The greatest advantage of a Venturi system, Bush says, is that it is virtually maintenance free, while a disadvantage is that it has a higher electricity usage than a cutter system. “Venturi systems use fans or blowers to induce air flow at the pickup area by blowing air through the Venturi at a high velocity. The system then pneumatically conveys the matrix or edge trim in a continuous stream to a discharge point. Depending on the application, some type of air separation is implemented to separate the matrix or edge trim from the air stream. This can be as simple as a mesh bag, a perforated steel elbow, knockout box or a slant screen air separator. Another disadvantage of venturi systems is that one Venturi is needed for each press or slitter. Mixing matrix or edge trim from two or more locations will cause clogging problems because of the different speeds of the presses or slitters,” Bush says.

A cutter system has a much lower electrical requirement than a Venturi system. However, there are some maintenance issues such as the sharpening or replacement of knives, and over time, new bearings. CTM has recently developed systems that address these issues. “Our new cutter design significantly reduces the required maintenance time. No special tools are needed, and access to the knives is made simple,” Bush explains. “Cutter systems chop the matrix or edge trim into small pieces that can be easily conveyed in a relatively small diameter pipe. Contrary to Venturi systems, multiple machines running at different speeds can be combined in a cutter system. The cut material then goes through a material handling fan and then into some type of air separator, usually a cyclone or slant screen air separator.”


Bush emphasizes that no matter which type of system is used, the use of non-stick coatings is essential to proper performance. “Non-stick coatings can be Teflon or a plasma- type coating. Oil mist systems are also offered to assist with very aggressive adhesive applications. Most of our customers who have purchased our Venturi systems do not use any oil mist. Cutter systems, however, most often require an oil mist system to keep the internal areas of the cutter lubricated to prevent chopped up matrix from accumulating.”


Bush points out the many areas where cost savings can be found by utilizing CTM’s matrix removal systems. He says the systems remove the labor and eliminate the press stoppages required to remove wound up matrix, as well as the labor to remove waste from the production area. Also eliminated is the cost of cores to wind up matrix and when used with a butt splicer, the press can run indefinitely, so there’s no down time for roll changing.


“CTM Systems prides itself in the fact that we offer high quality matrix removal systems at competitive pricing. Even more important is our commitment to best-in-class ongoing service and support after the sale,” Bush says. “We understand the implications of downtime and we work with our customers to provide the best solution to their specific needs.”


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