Understanding Coil Handling/Press Feeding Operations

A primer for non-technical personnel

In the past ten years or more, a major technological change has taken place in the feeding method of presses. For example, achieving higher processing speeds, flexibility, better quality, reliability, etc.
The press feed only moves the right amount of material into the tool, but it also is positioned correctly in the mold—from front to back, from side to side, and at right angles to the tool.

Basic Coil Handling Principles

  1. The feed settings must be flexible enough to adapt to the various applications on the production line.
  2. The feed must deliver the material into the tool with sufficient accuracy.
  3. The feed should deliver the material appropriately to keep up with the line speed.

Coil Feeder Types

The two basic feed types are roll feeds (press drive and servo drive), and gripper feeds.
The press can power roll feeds (usually considered older technology or for high-speed, dedicated press applications) or their own independent drive system (most applications today). And HE is mainly involved in the latter servo drive solution.

Press Drive Roll Feed

The roll feeds driven by the press, such as rack-and-pinion or cam, is always synchronized with the rotation of the press.
The disadvantage is that it is difficult to adjust the feed length. Most require replacing the gear set, roller, or mechanical connecting rod to adjust the feed length.
In addition, due to the lack of electrical control, the mechanical feed cannot receive setting information from or provide feedback to the printer control or automation system.

Press Drive Roll Feed

Servo Drive Roll Feed

The servo drive roll feed involves using a servo motor to control the indexing position of the feed roller. The servo feeder varies with the speed of the press.
Servo drive roll feeds have many of the same advantages press drive feeds to have, such as minimal space requirements, low maintenance, and high speeds.
Moreover, servo feeds also provide benefits that the press drive unit cannot because a microprocessor-based control gives them capabilities such as programmable move patterns, self-diagnosis, auto-correction, and the ability to communicate with automation.

Servo Drive Roll Feed

Gripper Feed

As a lower-cost option, the gripper feed uses linear motion rather than a rotary motion to move the strip. The gripper and retainer clamps can be a pneumatic or hydraulic cylinder or one-way roller mechanism.

For applications requiring low to moderate speeds and limited feed lengths, relatively inexpensive air-powered grip feeds generally are used with pull-through straighteners to provide a cost-effective alternative to roll feeds with powered straighteners.

servo gripper feeder

There are many ways to feed the press. To operate at maximum efficiency, it requires each component of the system must complement each other. Welcome to have an in-depth discussion with HE-machine on each detail to obtain the greatest advantage!