When a fire destroyed Paragon Laundry’s facility in Bridgewater, Somerset, in early August, the company had to switch production to its Ross-on-Wye site as quickly as possible. The purchase and speedy delivery of an AS95 sleeve wrapper and HST95 shrink Wraps UK enabled the company to double its output at Ross-on-Wye to cope with customer demand, without loss of capacity.
Richard Langhorn, Paragon’s projects and safety director, explains: "The fire came at one of our busiest times of year when we were working flat out and the Bridgewater site produces more than 200,000 items each week. So we had to act very fast to increase capacity at Ross-on-Wye."
"A key element in our decision was Wraps’ ability to deliver the machine within four weeks when order to installation normally takes 9-12 weeks. Wraps’ AS95/HST95 gave us the ability to increase our speed of production very rapidly, while providing the extra quality required for our 5 star laundry service and event linen".
According to Wraps UK the machine is designed to integrate easily with existing production lines and is able to produce fully enclosed bundles of freshly laundered towels, blankets, sheets and other garments at speeds up to 30 bundles/minute using 17 micron PE film.
The sleeve wrapper and shrink tunnel combination can work with a random feed of different bundle sizes. An automatic, height sensing, sealing head enables a minimum cycle time to facilitate maximum throughput. Bundle sizes range from a few millimetres to up to half a metre high.
The use of a mechanical tamping system means that whatever the size of the product being wrapped, the bundle is neat, tidy and fully enclosed. The 360° air cooling system ensures the bundles are tightly wrapped and cool to the touch as they come off the line from the tunnel.
The AS95 can handle a film width of 900mm. If additional width is required the model AS135 is capable of using film up to 1,300mm wide.
"Previously we used manual wrapping systems for much of our output. But the Wraps equipment has shown us the benefits of automating some of the process and we are considering introducing this across all of our five factories," concluded Mr Langhorn
Paragon is one of the biggest independent commercial laundry businesses in the UK, founded in 1918. It currently employs around 500 people across five sites, providing services for hotels, restaurants, garages and a whole range of manufacturing facilities.