At Fette Compacting, we are the world’s leading provider of integrated industrial tablet production solutions. In addition to designing and manufacturing tablet press units, we offer comprehensive support services to help keep equipment running effectively and efficiently, so our customers save time and money. In the following article, our experts highlight four tips to help you optimize your equipment’s performance to reduce manufacturing costs.
1. Invest in Preventive Maintenance
Preventive maintenance refers to maintenance performed on a regular basis, regardless of whether the unit actually needs it. It ensures the equipment remains in proper working order and addresses potential issues before they have the chance to compromise your systems, which can spare you from costly shutdowns and downtime. Some of the press components that should be regularly inspected and maintained include cams, compression rolls, Fill-O-Matics, gearboxes, and turret assemblies.
- Signs that your press may need a scheduled maintenance include:
- Inconsistent or poor weight control
- Poor product yields
- Compression station chatter
- Erratic compression forces
- Excessive vibrations
- Main drive component produces strange noises
- Excessive wear for parts that normally last longer
- Traces of product appearing in undesired locations
2. Consider Refurbishing/Rebuilding Equipment
While maintenance can fix many tablet press issues, it cannot resolve all of them. In these cases, purchasing a completely new machine is an option. However, it can be more cost-effective to refurbish or rebuild the existing one. Indicators that a unit may benefit from refurbishment or rebuilding are similar to the signs indicating it needs maintenance (e.g., poor yields, erratic compression forces, unusual drive component, etc.)
- Beyond machine performance, some of the questions you should ask yourself when evaluating whether refurbishing/rebuilding is right for your needs include:
- Does the machine have a solid foundation on which to base all additional work?
- Would refurbishing/rebuilding render the existing equipment warranty null and void?
- Does the equipment’s condition justify the costs of refurbishment?
- Is the equipment old enough to warrant a replacement?
If you decide that refurbishment/rebuilding services are warranted, the process generally proceeds as follows:
- Assessment and evaluation. The first step of the process entails an OEM representative performing a physical inspection of the equipment and individual parts to determine if refurbishment or rebuilding is feasible.
- Customer expectation identification. After the physical inspection, the project manager discusses expectations for the refurbishment and rebuilding services with the customer, which helps develop the plan of action. This includes a detailed proposal for parts to be replaced including services to perform the necessary upgrades.
- Execution of work. Based on the customer’s feedback and contract, Fette Compacting America’s Service Engineers perform the necessary services.
A wide variety of parts may be targeted when refurbishing or rebuilding equipment. Examples include cams and cam tracks, compression rolls, load cells, chutes and ejection assemblies, main drives, and gearboxes.
3. Use OEM Spare Parts
If your equipment needs a replacement part, it is best to use OEM spare parts. There are many advantages to utilizing OEM components over non-OEM components. For example:
- It eliminates the risk of the parts not being made from properly validated materials, which can put your tableting operations at risk.
- It facilitates the part selection process; you can ask the original manufacturer for help choosing the right part for your unit.
- It provides peace of mind that your component will perform as expected.
- It opens up access to OEM-approved preventative maintenance and technical support.
For all of yourOEM spare part needs, turn to the experts at Fette Compacting. Benefits of working with us include:
- Our US-based inventory, which ensures quick delivery to US, PR, and CAN customers
- Our full-time staff, who are available to set up PM programs, assist with inventory, and help with other spare parts needs
- Our exclusive ability to tie spare parts directly to aService Level Agreement
- Our access to OEM manuals and drawings
4. Train Press Operators
Properly operating a press requires more than pushing the start/stop button. If you want to ensure the production of high-quality tablets, minimize project downtime, and/or maximize ROI, you need to train your operators on how to use and maintain the equipment. That’s why we provide a comprehensive level-based certification training program. We require all participants to achieve a 100% score on both practical and written assessments, which are administered at five levels. Full certification is awarded if individuals successfully complete all five levels, which takes around three weeks.
Learn More About Reducing Tablet Manufacturing Costs From the Fette Compacting Experts
There are many ways you can reduce the cost of your tablet manufacturing operations, including investing in preventative maintenance, refurbishing/rebuilding existing equipment, using OEM spare parts, and training press operators. Want more cost-saving tips? Ask the tablet press experts at Fette Compacting.
If you’re looking for a partner that provides preventative maintenance, refurbishing/rebuilding, OEM spare parts, and/or training services, Fette Compacting is here to help. Check out our services page for more information about our tablet press support capabilities.