"The demand for cutting machines for halving and quartering potatoes remains undiminished within the market. This development requires extra attention and therefore, based on current machine data and wishes/needs of our customers, our R&D engineers have rolled out several updates for the Start/Stop dividing machine," Marcelissen reports. The revamped machine will be presented to the general public at Interpom in Kortrijk at the end of this month, but in this article we summarise the main improvement points for now.
Increasing capacity is often accompanied by high costs for a larger machine. Especially in the current economic climate, such an investment is far from desirable. The dividing machine has therefore been developed in such a way that potatoes are now cut not over two, but three rows per lane. This provides a huge capacity increase while the size of the machine remains the same.
Of course, the current features, such as the modular number of lanes (available in 2, 4 and 6 lanes), remain. In addition, the blades can be individually adjusted to two-part or four-part. This makes it possible, for example, on a four lane machine, to simultaneously halve on two lanes and quarter on the other two.
Better positioning of potatoes
The positioning of the potatoes plays an important role for the final cutting result. The specially developed diabolo rolls are already specifically made taking into account the size and type of potatoes (unpeeled and peeled).
Added to this is an improved drive control that makes acceleration and deceleration even better controlled. This ensures that, without additional fingers or other mechanical additions, the potatoes lie better in the cups during transport to the cutting system, which in turn improves the cutting result. Also, the blade guidance system has been adjusted during cutting for a smoother cut.
After some time, stretching occurs in the chain, which can cause the blades and rollers to no longer align perfectly with each other. By adding a sensor to monitor the chain stretch, damages to the rollers during cutting are a thing of the past by sending a warning in time. This therefore results in lower maintenance costs.
Not only do the rollers have a longer life, but the chain and bearings are also spared by the improved control. The coiler cutting motion puts less resistance on the parts and results in an overall longer tool life. In short, a completely improved machine in (almost) the same jacket," says the machine builder.