Intralox invests in plastic conveyor technology

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Related tags: Plastic, Conveyor belt, Manufacturing

More and more food manufacturers are turning to plastic conveyor
belts, if two new products from Intralox are anything to go by.

Intralox claims that its new 7.5" Sideflexing Flat Top belt should allow manufacturers to carry out retrofits of high-maintenance steel chains and fragile plastics chains on curved conveyors much more easily.

Developed specifically for the bakery industry, the company claims that a single Intralox Sideflexing belt can be installed in tough conveying applications such as bakery pan handling lines to significantly reduce belt downtime, maintenance and belt replacement costs.

The belt is available in the 7.5" industry standard width, and features a tabbed hold-down system. Each belt has a different hold-down tab width to ensure that Intralox's new solution fits a variety of standard conveyor tracks.

The plastic surface is designed to eliminate pan wear, which should significantly reduce pan replacement costs. There is also no chance of metal contamination.

No lubrication is necessary, and Intralox​ claims that the belt creates less noise than metal chains.

Another advantage of plastic belts is that that they are less likely to stick on the new plastic belt compared to traditional steel belt systems. This is especially important when manufacturers are dealing with frozen products.

"When you process frozen products you often get this clinging effect on metal,"​ said Intralox www.intralox.com​European spiral team leader Stephen Hubbard. "Our belts eliminate the black specks, or metal wear debris, and the product sticking that eventually results in product waste."

To this end, Intralox has also launched the new Series 2600 Spiralox belt, which the company claims results in 75 per cent less maintenance than traditional metal belts. The modular designs make repairs and changeovers simple and markes it easier for manufacturers to maximise their production time.

The belts operate at very low tension, which prevents premature belt wear and greatly reduces belt replacement costs.

Another major selling point of the machine is its energy efficiency. "There is a lot of talk in the industry at the moment about energy consumption,"​ said Hubbard. "Light plastic materials and the modular load sharing ability of the new machine enables it to carry more product and thereby increase throughput. You can run more product through for the same amount of power."

Intralox also claims that its belts are easier and faster to clean than metal and other plastic spiral belts, so plants spend less time on sanitation and more time producing. In addition, Intralox's plastic surfaces allow easy product release, which prevents marking.

"The 2600 is easily cleaned,"​ said Hubbard. "It is well designed so that there are no nooks or crannies."

Related topics: Processing & Packaging