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Automatic Pressure Casting, Fettling and Cutting of Cup Handles

In tableware production, the handles are still the most expensive part to make. Their labour-intensive fettling and cutting are the main cost drivers. Now, consequently, LIPPERT/DE has engineered an automatic production process for handles.

The process is based on high-pressure casting, but the real innovation is how the pieces are handled and fettled. As soon as they come out of the pressure-casting machine, each (open or block) handle is predried, fettled, cut and placed in a damp box by a robot. Thanks to the damp box, handles can be made in advance and attached to the cups as needed. In other words, the damp box makes handle production independent of cup production. This is particularly advantageous in view of today’s increasingly small lot sizes and, hence, more frequent retooling, since the appropriate type of handle is always ready and waiting in the damp box. The handles are attached to the cups mainly by hand – which makes sense, considering the likelihood of multiple daily changeovers – or by a robot. LIPPERT’s product array naturally also includes this chained approach to handle production and automatic, robotised attachment. The plant’s maximum output is 350 handles/h with one fettling unit and 700 handles/h with two fettling units, depending on the slip in use and the size of the handle. The first such plant is already up and running at a German customer’s factory.

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