Without friction

The Lammsbräu Brewery in Neumarkt is the first brewery in Germany which produces its own beer and beverage specialities completely using inspected ecologically grown raw materials. According to this Bavarian family business it ranks first in the world in this field.

The company invested in the retrofitting of its equipment in order to remain in line with the latest technical developments and to do justice to its own high standards. Mr Lorenz Widmann, Production Manager of the Lammsbräu company, explained in a conversation with us the reasons for carrying out the changes, innovations and improvements to the filling line.

Mr Widmann said that the constantly increasing and varied range at the Neumarkt Lammsbräu Brewery, which not only includes different beer brands and beer mixes but also fruit juice variations and water, created the need for the filling line to be retrofitted. The starting-point for the order was a new labeller which could be changed over to the varied bottle shapes and sizes as simply and quickly as possible and which could cope with the different labelling technologies such as all-around labelling. The disadvantages of the previous labeller - such as the high glue consumption and the non-variable drive - were to be improved. At the same time a new control system was to be used for the existing section between the washing machine and the filler in order to ensure a reduction in noise and smooth bottle handling due to a pressureless combining process and to achieve a better line output.


In co-operation with the brewery HEUFT SYSTEMTECHNIK GMBH prepared a plan after detailed analysis which not only included the HEUFT TORNADO as the new labeller but also completely new conveyor control systems and conveyors with an additional bypass function.


The Production Manager reported that he was extremely satisfied with the speedy and competently carried out retrofit by the HEUFT company in two stages. The installation and commissioning of the control components between the washing machine and the filler took 4 days. Irregularities and interference can be discovered very quickly using the HEUFT PROFILER. Mr Widmann explained: "The HEUFT PROFILER works so accurately that we made surprising discoveries." A very precise error cause examination and complex analysis of the filling line show that the cause of a fault is often not where one would expect it.


The second phase - the installation of the new labelling machine and conveyors including assembly and commissioning took 5 days. The labeller is fully automatic with the exception of the label refilling process and the exchange of the respective parts for a brand change. "This means saving a workplace which was previously exclusively set aside for the labeller" remarked Mr Widmann. The installation of a bypass system after the closer is a further innovation. Multi-chain conveyors are used in a conventional arrangement to ensure that all the bottles which are in the filler can be closed in the case of a standstill. However this setup has different disadvantages e.g. it requires a great deal of space and there is a high noise development. The HEUFT project team used a different approach: the bottles waiting to be closed after a filler stoppage can be "parked" on a second conveyor running parallel to the single-lane conveyor. More information regarding this subject will be available next month on our Internet page.


Mr Widmann stated: "The filling line was able to run at full capacity again the week after the retrofitting work was completed due to the high proportion of modules manufactured in Burgbrohl beforehand and the exceptionally good communication between Lammsbräu and HEUFT SYSTEMTECHNIK GMBH." Working in two stages had the advantage that the complete retrofit could be carried out without bottlenecks in the stocks. The manpower needed for the retrofit was kept to a minimum and the employees were integrated during each phase of the retrofit.

The new equipment along the existing line increased efficiency and reduced noise considerably. "We are very satisfied with the HEUFT company´s exceptional achievement. We were not aware that a retrofit could proceed so smoothly" praised Mr Widmann in a conversation upon completion of the work carried out by HEUFT.