A persistent lubrication problem in the printing section was disrupting production for Ball Corporation in Malmö, Sweden.
The production plant in Malmö is part of the U.S. multinational packaging and aerospace company Ball Corporation, the largest manufacturer of beverage cans in the world. The plant provides 33- and 50-centilitre aluminum cans to Nordic and Baltic countries and also to northern Germany.
Customers include international beverage companies such as Coca-Cola, Carlsberg and Tuborg. Some 2 billion cans are produced each year in the plant’s four production lines. It’s a 24/7 operation where avoiding unplanned stops is crucial.
I’m really happy that we opted for this solution.
Magnus Pettersson, Ball Corporation Malmö
One of the key points in the production lines is the printers, where the outer surface of the cans is painted according to the customer’s requirements, and it was here that frequent disruptions in lubrication were causing the production lines to stop.
“The problem was that some of the bearings in the printers did not get the appropriate amount of lubricant,” says Magnus Pettersson, who is responsible for the printers at Ball Corporation in Malmö.
“In some of the printers we had three different systems, which provided lubrication for a number of spots,” Pettersson explains. “This should not be a problem, but our feeling was that we were not in full control and could not be sure that the lubrication was working as it was supposed to, or that the correct amount of lubricant was being distributed. We made a calculation that showed that unplanned stops were costing us about 500,000 Swedish kronor [$60,000] per year.”