Contiform 3 Speed

Inspirational ideas

“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” This version of the saying “Less is more” was coined by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.

In “The Little Prince”, he showed us that you sometimes have to view things from a different perspective in order to obtain fresh insights. When developing the new Contiform Speed, the R&D people at Krones embraced a very similar approach.

The inspirational idea came to the team of development engineers headed by Florian Geltinger and Thomas Philipp in a discussion: with the present-day options in design and manufacture, it ought surely to be possible to develop a machine better suited for many applications by omitting some components. The perfect machine for 90 % of all applications.

Reduced energy consumption through downsized dead-space volume

Whereas in the case of conventional stretch blow-moulders, a “pressure pad” in the mould carrier keeps the two halves of the mould together during the stretch blow-moulding process (i.e. the final millimetre of the closing stroke), the Contiform 3 Speed has been designed so as to ensure that the two halves are closed and kept together purely by means of the revamped mould carrier locking mechanism.

The omission of the pressure pad, thanks to the reduction of the dead space volume, ensures a significantly reduced blow-moulding-air consumption – with small bottles this can mean savings of up to 15 per cent of high-pressure air in comparison to all other stretch blow-moulders currently available on the market.

More speed means fewer moulds

In terms of output, another beneficial side-effect with a major impact is achieved: not only has the size of the blow-moulding station – and concomitantly that of the machine as well – been reduced, but Krones has also made some additional kinematic optimisations. We have thus achieved a significant increase in output, namely from 2,500 with the Contiform 3 Pro to 2,750 containers per cavity/hour with the new system. With the maximum number of 30 cavities, this can thus produce up to 82,500 PET bottles per hour. In all, the Contiform 3 Speed covers machine sizes from eight to 30 cavities.

So for a specified system output, fewer blow-moulding stations are now needed, and thus fewer moulds too, than would have been necessary with the previous Contiform 3 Pro!

Less space required with bottle sizes of up to 2 litres!

The size of the blowing wheel here corresponds to that used in the small-cavity machines previously available. But instead of being able to make only bottles with a maximum size of 0.7 litres as hitherto, moulds can now be installed with which bottles with a volume of up to 2.0 litres can be produced. And this with a blow-moulding module that is on average 22 per cent smaller than the comparable blow-moulding module of the Contiform 3 Pro.

The mould concept – MTR (Manual / Toolless / Robot)

Another new feature is the modularised mould kit, which now – in our thrust for “customisation” – guarantees total freedom at format change-overs. Because with its three variants – classical manual mould change-over, toolless quick-change system, and the fully automatic variant MouldXpress Robot – the moulds can be individually customised to suit the user’s wishes. What’s particularly exciting for clients: this feature can even be retrofitted.

The Contifeed

With the introduction of the Contiform 3 Speed, Krones has also design-enhanced its existing Contifeed preform roller sorter. The latest generation scores highly in terms of simpler adjustment and change-over options, thus making for a higher level of overall equipment effectiveness (OEE).

The appropriate solution for each and every application

To sum up, the Contiform 3 Speed is the right solution for all beverage companies who

  • produce PET bottles within a range of 0.1 to 2.0 litres
  • attach high importance to very low energy consumption
  • want to use fewer moulds while at the same time achieving a higher output
  • have only limited space available.

But of course, Krones will continue to produce its field-proven classics: the portfolio will still include the Contiform 3 Pro, which makes bottles in sizes of up to 3.5 litres, and also covers all special processes in common use, and the Contiform 3 Pro H for producing hotfill containers.

Here you will find a video with the most important innovations and pluses of the new Contiform 3 Speed.