• Cost & Time Effeciencies gained with Positive Drive Solution

    Combined Design SolutionsTension problems sorted by Combined Design Solutions

    Established in 1908 Tags Ltd is the UK’s sole remaining manufacturer of high quality synthetic, paper, plain and printed tags.

    Brief: To identify the source of, and design a solution to solve, a long standing inconsistent tape feed issue limiting the speed of a machine that required constant monitoring and manual tensioning during a production run.
    Tensioning was also causing issues with the waste rewind which was being fed into a bin to prevent tension pull as the reel increased in size at the end of the process.

    Solution: This machine uses an index motion to punch through card and reinforcing tape before gumming the two together.  The main problem was that the machine was actually too sensitive and maladjusted itself according to small fluctuations in the tension of the feed reels.

    After working with the production team, we designed and installed a more positive drive feed solving both problems.  

    The machine now runs consistently at optimum speed and throughput and is less sensitive to both set up and changes in stock
    Manual intervention and adjustment is no longer required
    The waste rewind requires much less frequent skeleton reel changes
    100% operation from start up without waiting for it to settle down

    The client was so pleased with the cost and time efficiencies evidenced after installation, 3 more units were ordered.  Installation and commissioning was achieved in just 1 day to minimize downtime.

  • Double roller solution reduces downtime costs

    are leading designers and manufactures of high quality, high performance materials used in a wide variety of global brands including footwear, fashion accessories, leather goods, air freshening and industrial filtration.

    The UK plant produces non-woven and saturated felts and extruded filmic materials overprinted with brand logos. With one single roller printer servicing multiple lines the factory was not capable of running to capacity and a logo change incurred significant downtime and manpower; the printer itself was also coming to the end of its life.

    Brief: We were asked to design a new printer, addressing the shortcomings of the original unit.

    Solution: A unit with 2 rollers that can be pre-loaded with brand logos and switched easily by a single operative between print runs requiring minimum effort, manpower and downtime. Following the success of the new printer we were asked to refurbish the original unit using the same dual-roller design. The plant now has 2 fully functioning printers, 4 rollers instead of 1, and all lines can be run at the same time optimising plant capacity and reducing downtime and changeover costs dramatically.

  • Increased speed to market for NPD

    A brand leader historically using hand assembly in the NPD sample production of “skin plasters”.

    Brief: CDS were asked to design a machine to semi automate the NPD sample process to reduce costs and increase productivity.

    Solution: Using elements of pick and place technology combined with minimal operator and a pressure seal finish, CDS designed and manufactured a prototype machine significantly increasing NPD speed to market. The design reduced sample production time down from 20 to 5 seconds per unit, and incorporated precision alignment to decrease wastage and rejection.

  • Savings of £100K per year for PET Extrusion Plant

    The PET extrusion process used by this global leader caused a build up on mirror finished chrome rollers, which then had to be cleaned every 5 hours to prevent transfer back to the web. 

    Cleaning entailed shutting down the line, resulting in issues associated with PET extrusion process, before manual cleaning with rag and polish took place. This was costing £100K per year in lost production at a single plant.

    Brief: After a number of specialist companies had stated it could not be done, CDS were asked to design a unit that automates as much of the cleaning process as possible, reducing manpower and downtime.

    Solution: An AC motor driven unit with polishing mops on ball screw linear guided traverse. Operation is at the touch of a button, requiring minimal manual interaction and little or no slow down of the line allows continuation of production and delivers ongoing savings.

  • Replacement for 200 year old work-horse

    Bespoke Engineering Design & Solutions200 year old machine

    Established in 1908 Tags Ltd is the UK’s sole remaining manufacturer of high quality synthetic, paper, plain and printed tags.

    A key component of the manufacturing process was a 200-year-old cast iron slitting machine to cut the narrow stock required for tag production.  A move to new premises provided an opportunity to upgrade plant and machinery, but also presented Tags with a huge issue as the 200 year old manually tensioned and braked stalwart was clearly not going to survive the move.

    An exhaustive search for an off-the-shelf, twin rewind, narrow web, slitter proved useless and Tags were facing the prospect of significant increased material costs in the purchase of ready-cut narrow stock.

    Brief: CDS were asked to design an easy to load, automatically tensioned machine that would allow Tags to continue to produce narrow stock in house and provide a safer working environment for operatives.

    Solution: A non-cantilevered unwind and cantilevered rewind that allow Tags to continue to benefit from economies of scale associated with purchase of wide stock and also fully conforms to modern day health and safety legislation.