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The problem occurs time and time again with material feed: press operators have to take the trouble to remove the sheet metal at the end of the coil between the feed and the die, and dispose of it as scrap. Schuler Automation in Heßdorf has now developed a solution that is being used successfully at Mühlhoff Umformtechnik GmbH in Uedem, close to the Dutch border: a magnetic transport belt that transports the strip as close as possible to the first die station in order to improve material utilization and make manual removal of the left-over strip as efficient as possible. 

"The solution from Schuler has revealed itself to be outstanding for us in productive use," reports Christian Pennekamp, the Head of Production in the press shop at Mühlhoff. "We are now using the magnetic transport belt with 98 percent of all the production processes that take place on our machine, and this applies not only to thick strip but also thin materials." "For our customer, this means increased safety at work as well as a gain in time and material with every coil that is processed," adds Stephan Mergner, CEO of Schuler Automation. 

The Mühlhoff machine is a blanking and forming press that is additionally equipped with feed and unloading transport for unprocessed and finished parts. The experts from Schuler have filled the gap between the outfeed from the roll feed unit and the die with a height-adjustable magnetic belt. It consists of a centrally mounted, telescoping magnetic belt and roller bars on the sides which can be hooked in or unhooked manually depending on the strip width. 

Successful use with Mühlhoff Umformtechnik

The magnetic transport belt is operated in production with a highly dynamic servo drive; it runs at a stroke rate that is synchronously adapted to the roll feed unit. These synchronized feed mechanisms ensure reliable strip transport over the relatively long distance. In particular when thin strip material is involved, undulations are prevented and the accuracy of the feed system is retained at its highest resolution. 

The separate automatic infeed height adjustment of the magnetic transport belt is electrically linked to the height adjustment of the feed. The height adjustment is configured as a setup axis in order to reduce the die change time. When strip lifters are used, it is possible to activate a dynamic lowering stroke irrespective of this by means of the separate height adjustment. The magnetic transport belt is available with all Compact Line and Power Line coil feed lines, and Schuler offers it together with the Power Feed roll feed unit.

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