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 Glossary of Terms
       
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AC Motor
AC Motors may be operated at a constant speed, without variable speed control, or may be furnished with a variable frequency controller for variable speed control. Variable speed AC Motors generally provide a 10:1 drive turndown ratio, typically for powering a feeder.
A/D Converter
The A/D converter is an analog to digital converter board which takes the scale signal voltages and converts them to numbers.
Account Data
A feature on some scales which gives a summary listing describing weigher performance during your production run.
Accumulated Overweight
This package values page parameter is calculated by the control and is the total overweight which has been delivered to the current package during all previous discharges which have been sent to it. This value is used to adjust the target weight for the next discharge scan to prevent accumulation of overweight values in a multiple dumps per package application. This only applies to multiple dumps per package operation.
Accumulator Bucket
Usually on a combination scale, the upper bucket which is located above the weighing bucket and below the radial feed vibrator. The accumulator bucket receives product from the vibrator, groups it and then prepares it to drop quickly to the scale bucket as soon as the scale bucket has finished its discharge.
Accumulator Cut-off Bucket
The bucket-product guide chute which is located above the weighing bucket and below the bulk-precision feed vibrator. The accumulator bucket guides product from the vibrator and stops the flow when the bulk or fine cut-off gates close.
Adhesive
This is a characteristic of a dry solid material that causes it to adhere onto various surfaces. If not properly addressed, such a characteristic can be detrimental to a dry solids metering mechanism or the accuracy of the filler.
Adjusted Target Weight
This package values page parameter is calculated by the control and tells you what target weight will be used on the next scan for discharge to the current package. Adjusted target weight is your dump target weight less any accumulated overweight from earlier dumps to the current package.
Aerated
This is a condition whereby a dry solid material entraps air, frequently causing the material to act as a fluid in its behavior, often resulting in uncontrollable flushing through a metering mechanism and/or its supply hopper. Aeration is usually caused by product having been conveyed pneumatically, usually into a storage hopper, or the use of an air or gas purging system in the product containment zone.
Agglomerated
This is a characteristic of a dry solid material that results in the formation of lumps.
Agitator
Used on an Auger, an Agitator is a device designed to promote downward flow (discharge) of product and to assist in filling the metering auger of various metering mechanisms. Depending on the model of the metering mechanism, one or more Agitator(s) may operate completely independently of the metering auger, or may operate proportionally to the speed of the metering auger through a gear mechanism. Different Agitator types and designs are available, the selection of which is determined by the physical handling characteristics of the product or products involved.
Automatic Packaging Systems
Term applicable to any one of the several available packaging machine systems which can include open-mouth and valve bag packaging where bags are automatically applied to filler spout, filled, weighed, closed (if open), palletized, and shrink wrapped.
Average Drive
This calculated parameter on the vibrator controls page tells you what the current average drive value is for all of your radial dispersion vibrators. If this is larger than the target drive value that you entered, then the vibrator duration will be increased and vice versa.
Average Dumps per Minute
This account value is the average number of dumps per minute since account was last cleared.
Average Piece Weight
The average piece weight is the running average of the weight of your pieces of product as determined by the controller. This is updated after every dump with a slow moving average of the discharge weight divided by the apparent number of pieces in that discharge. This average is only calculated if Piece Count is enabled and turned on.
Average Weight System
If these feature is turned ON, product loads can be discharged which are below your target weight as long as the average weight of a group of discharges is at or above target weight.
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Bag
Term applied to flexible container made from paper, polyethylene, cellophane, polypropylene or other flexible material. The container is made by forming a tube from the flexible material. One or both ends are then closed, leaving an opening through which the material to be in the container is introduced.
Bag Clamps
Sometimes used on large bag machines, this is the mechanism that clamps the bag to a discharge chute during the filling of the bag.
Bag Magazine Holder
A hopper or magazine on a packaging machine for storing empty shipping sacks that are being staged for placement and filling by the packaging machine.
Bag Over Product
Amount of empty bag top after filling, typically measured in inches or centimeters.
Bag Pattern
The configuration of bags in one tier of a pallet stack.
Bag Ratio
The length of a bag divided by its width.
Bag Top
The end of the bag through which the material is normally introduced. The end to be referred to as the top may be predicated on the orientation of the printing.
Balance Interval
This adjustable values page parameter determines the number of product discharges that will occur until a scale is put through a tare cycle after discharge instead of being immediately refilled. A good initial value is 10.
Baler Bag
A large bag designed to carry a quantity of filled smaller bags.
Bin Discharger
A Bin Discharger is a device specifically designed to mount onto the bottom of a storage hopper to promote the reliable discharge of product from within by means of defined, mechanically induced, internal agitation. It is especially effective when used with dry solid products that are considered "very difficult" to handle. The housing of the Bin Discharger is designed without convergence (totally unlike conical, pyramidal or wedge type bin bottom designs), which often prove detrimental to product flow.
Bottom (Bag)
The factory closed end of sewn or pasted open-mouth bags (unprinted). Either end of a valve bag which has two closed ends or "bottoms" with valve located in one, sometimes referred to as the valve, the opposite end being "bottom". May have different connotation in relation to print copy.
Bound Over Tape
Plain or crepe paper tape used in closure of the end of multiwall bags.
Bridging/Rat-Holing
This is a condition whereby a dry solid material arches or bridges across a storage hopper resulting in sporadic flow or a complete cessation of flow from the hopper. A dry solids storage hopper must be properly designed to ensure adequate discharge of material at all times.
Bulk Cut-off
This is the weight in grams in a weighing bucket at or above which the bulk cut-off closes and bulk feed will end. The vibrator amplitude is reduced at this point to slow the fine feed product flow rate.
Bulk Density
Weight per unit volume usually stated in weight per cubic foot of material.
Bulk Feed
Bulk feed (or fill) is the first part of the filling cycle immediately following dump for a weighing bucket during which the vibrator is running at its highest speed and product is being introduced rapidly.
Bulk Flow
Course measurement of product into scale. Normally first fill stage.
Bulk-Precision Vibrator
This is the final vibrator through which the product passes while traveling to the weigh bucket.
Butt First
Refers to the preferred orientation of a bag being fed to a palletizer. This allows a bag to get the maximum benefit of upstream conveyors.
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C.R.T. (Cathode-Ray Tube)
An electronic screen that the operator can view various machine performances and settings on. Sometimes this is offered as an option.
Calendar and Clock
These values are kept in a clock and calendar integrated circuit and provide a time and date stamp for your ACCOUNT information.
Calibrate Interval
This adjustable values page parameter determines the number of tare cycles that will occur before the next scale enters a tare cycle and it will also undergo a calibration cycle.
Calibration
Means by which a scale is set to a known standard weight. Calibration or gain setting is a way to automatically adjust the signal that the scale is supplying so that weights read from the scale will be correct. A small weight (usually 200 or 550 grams) is mounted inside the scale and during a GAIN cycle a TARE value is first recorded then the weight is lowered, the scale is allowed to settle and then the indicated value of the reference weight is adjusted to make sure that product weights read during operation are correct.
Calibration Value
This adjustable parameter is the declared value of the calibration weight. While the weight is a very accurate 200 or 550 grams, this parameter may be slightly different to adjust the weight readings from a given weigh bucket because of mechanical off-set effects between the calibration weight position inside the scale and the effect of a test weight placed inside the weigh bucket.
Central Feed Cone
This round cone is located in the middle of a combination scale just above the radial dispersion vibrators. The cone causes product to flow into the rear of each vibrator.
Clamp Delay and Duration
These adjustable values page parameters determine when the dump confirmation signal is sent to the packaging machine. The delay starts running when the weight bucket opens to dump.
Clean Out Switch
This switch will dump product from all weigh buckets in a scale.
Closure
The means or method used to close filled bags in preparation for shipment.
Combination Search
This refers to the process of scanning the weights in each settled scale, adding them up in various combinations and finding the group of scales that is closest to or just above the Target Weight. This is for combination scales only.
Combination Weigher
A weighing system in which the total load to be discharged is normally made up of loads from more than one individual scale bucket. A combination search (see above) is chosen by the controller and is dumped. This is the most accurate (and usually most expensive) method of weighing.
Compacted
This is a characteristic of a dry solid material that has compressed and/or hardened, usually due to head-load or another type of pressure. Generally, pressure sensitive or cohesive materials will compact. Also, very fine materials often exhibit this characteristic.
Conditioning Auger/Agitator
Certain models of feeders for dry solids include double or triple Conditioning Auger/Agitator metering mechanisms. In all cases, these mechanisms have been specifically designed for optimum dry solids metering/handling performance. Conditioning Augers "condition" the dry solid material being handled by first ensuring that the metering auger is completely and effectively "filled" with product of constant density and secondly, to simultaneously agitate the product within and surrounding the Conditioning Agitator(s) to additionally ensure proper flow of material into the metering auger.
In operation, the Conditioning Auger produces a bi-directional, opposing sliding movement of product within the confines of the Double Concentric Augers. This opposing movement is produced by the speed differential between the Intromitter and the slower rotating metering auger. This movement gently conditions the material to a very consistent density while simultaneously filling the smaller, centrally located metering auger from a full 360 degrees.
Conditioning Chamber
The Conditioning Chamber houses the feeder's metering mechanism. An integral supply hopper typically attaches directly to the top flange of the Conditioning Chamber. The Conditioning Chamber is also called a feed chamber and is constructed of steel.
Cone Eyes
This set of photo-electric scanners shine across the in-feed cone and signal either the in-feed vibrator or the customer supplied in-feed device to feed product onto the cone in the center of the combination weigher.
Cone Vibrator
The cone, top center portion of a combination weigher, is sometimes equipped with either an air vibrator or an electromagnetic vibrator to vibrate the cone and cause product to move off the cone and into the radial feed or dispersion vibrators.
Cycle Duration
This parameter determines the interval between weigh bucket selection and discharge.
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DC Motor
A DC Motor is a direct current motor, selected as the standard drive motor for feeders because of its wide range variable speed characteristics, and ability to provide very precise and reliable speed control/regulation.
Diagnostics
Information gained from a control device that advises of a fault or condition.
Direct Mounted Loadcell
A weigh cell that the weigh bucket is directly mounted to without the use of flex links.
Discharge Chute
The discharge chute receives the selected product load from the scale bucket and moves it inward into the discharge funnel.
Discharge Cylinder
The Discharge Cylinder is the discharge spout of a dry solids metering mechanism, within which the metering auger rotates, and through which the metering auger discharges product.
Discharge Funnel
The discharge funnel receives the selected product loads from each of the weigh buckets and delivers it to the timing bucket, packaging machine or operator.
Dispersion Vibrator
These vibrators receive product from the cone and deliver it into accumulator buckets.
Dissimilar Speed Gearbox
Dissimilar Speed Gearboxes house the dual or triple auger/agitator gearing mechanisms that provide the desired ratio of speed differential between the smaller metering auger and the larger agitator or conditioning auger (the Intromitter), or between the smaller metering auger and the larger conditioning auger(s)/agitator(s).
Drain State
This sequence state indicates the scale is in the drain process and is being emptied of product.
Drain Switch
Some models have this switch that should normally be "OFF". In the "ON" position the scale bucket doors will open one at a time to drain product out of the scales. If you also have the Feed Switch on, then the cutoff gates will also open one at a time and all the product will drain or feed out of the vibrators.
Dribble Flow
A controlled measurement of product flow into the weigh bucket. Normally the second fill stage after the bulk fill has ended.
Drive Motor
The Drive motor powers the feeder's metering mechanism. The Drive Motor is normally DC (direct current) and variable speed. An AC drive motor is sometimes available as an option and may also be variable speed.
Dump Delay
This adjustable values page parameter determines the delay from the receipt of the dump start signal until the weigh buckets open and discharge product.
Dump Duration
This sets the length of time the scale buckets remain open during a normal discharge. If the amount of product present exceeds 50% of your target weight the amount of time will be extended automatically to ensure that all the product leaves the scale bucket.
Dump Reject Weight
This is the maximum weight in grams at which a weigh bucket will be selected on a combination scale. If any individual scale bucket contains product in excess of this weight, the operator will be warned that this product must be emptied. If a separate reject chute is available, this scale will be automatically discharged to that chute. Only on combination scales.
Dump Spread
This parameter determines the total time interval between product discharge from the first and last selected scales. Dump spread or stagger discharge is used to avoid product jams in a narrow discharge funnel or to permit blending between base and particulate products.
Dump Switch
Some units have a Dump On/Off Switch. Normal operating position is ON. With switch in OFF position scales will fill, but will not dump. On scale units mounted over bag machines, this switch is on the bag machine control panel.
Dump Target Weight
The target weight for a combination weigher is the minimum weight that will be selected by the controller for discharge. All combinations of available (i.e. filled and settled to an accurate weight reading) scales will be searched for the best combination at or above the target weight.
Dump
This refers to the physical process of opening the weigher, accumulator or timing bucket doors to discharge the contents of the bucket.
Dumps per Fill (or Feed Cycle)
Usually on combination scales, this parameter determines whether all scales can potentially be used on each dump (set the value equal to "1") or whether a scale must wait a cycle to have adequate settling time (set the value equal to "2"). All scales can be used at speeds up to 50 to 60 per minute.
Dumps per Package
Usually on combination scales this parameter determines the number of dumps that are to be delivered to each package. This is normally 1 but if set to a larger number, that number of dumps will be delivered prior to signaling the bag maker to form the finished bag.
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Empty-Out Switch
The normal operating position is off. In the ON position the in-feed level controls are ignored and combinations will be made even if the cone is not receiving product. This can be used to override the normal dump inhibition that occurs if the cone is not receiving product.
End Bearing Support
This is an optional support arrangement for the metering auger installed on the end of the discharge cylinder.
External Feed Rate Input Setting
This is a means for remotely setting the feed rate of a metering mechanism from an external source (usually a voltage, current or digital signal).
Extruding
This is a characteristic whereby product discharging out of a feeder's discharge cylinder is compressed, typically discharging in the form of a plugged stream of material.
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Feed Chamber
The Feed Chamber of a dry solids metering mechanism houses various single or multiple auger/agitator metering mechanisms (also called a feed trough).
Feed Chamber Vibration
Vibration is applied to the feed chamber of certain models of metering mechanisms for the purpose of ensuring that the metering auger is efficiently and effectively "filled" with product.
Feed Cone
This round cone is located in the middle of a combination scale just above the radial dispersion vibrators. The cone causes product to flow into the rear of each vibrator.
Feed Conveyor
The conveyor that feeds the scales hopper. It can be vibratory, bucket, flights, inclined, screwed or many other variations.
Feed Count
This is the number of times the feed count eyes must have pieces fall through before the vibrator feed stops.
Feed Count Eyes
Feed count eyes are eyes located near the top of each accumulator bucket that permit pieces to be counted as they fall off the radial feed vibrator.
Feeder (or Feed) Trough
A Feeder Trough is basically synonymous to a feed chamber, although a trough is usually shaped more like a "V," whereas most feed chambers are shaped like a "U." "V" shaped feed troughs usually house a single metering auger at its bottom.
Feeder Hopper
This is a dry solids supply hopper (or storage hopper), for product supply that is mounted above the feeder's metering mechanism. The Feeder Hopper may be coupled with the metering mechanism, bolted to it, or flexibly connected to it.
Feeder Motor
This is the same as a drive motor; it powers the metering mechanism of a feeder. Usually, the Feeder Motor is part of a variable speed DC drive system.
Feeder Pan
This is the vibrating section(s) of a net weigher between the hopper and the weigh bucket. Many different factors must be considered when designing the feeder pan, such as product type, flow ability, speed, etc.
Feed Range Capability
This is the output feed range capable of being produced by the selected metering mechanism in conjunction with the size of its metering auger.
Feeder Section
The means by which the product is fed to the weigh bucket. See Feeder pan.
Feed Switch
In the "OFF" position this switch will turn off all vibrators and prevent the accumulator buckets from delivering product to the weigh buckets. Normal operating position is "ON".
Film
Plastic wrap used by some automatic baggers to make bags. Film comes in many different types, colors, and thickness. Usually film comes on a roll (web) and is less expensive than pre-made bags.
Fine Cut-off Target
This value determines the comparison point for the weight achieved on each weigh cycle on high-end sealer systems. If the weight is above this value, the fine cut-off point will be lowered and vice versa.
Fine Cut-off
This is the weight in grams in a weigh bucket at or above which the fine cut-off closes and fine feed will end.
Fine Drive
This is the vibrator amplitude during the fine feed portion of the weighing cycle. It will rise during the weighing cycle if feed is taking too long.
Fine Feed Duration Target
This is a parameter that instructs the controller as to how long the fine feed portion of the fill cycle should continue after bulk feed stops on each weigh bucket. It is typically 0.5 to 1.0 seconds and needs to be long enough for the scale to slow down from the rapid bulk feed rate and begin responding to the lower fine feed rate. The control adjusts the bulk cut-off point to a smaller weight if this time is too short and vice versa.
Fine Feed
Fine feed (or fill) is the portion of the bucket filling cycle immediately following bulk fill during which the bulk cut-off has closed, the vibrator drive is reduced and product is fed slowly.
Fine Fill
See Fine Feed.
First Bulk Weight
This is the first of the weight in the weigh bucket after the recovery delay time has finished.
Flat Tube Bag
A bag that is manufactured without gussets. May be sewn or pasted.
Flex Links
Linkage points that mount the weigh bucket to the weighing mechanism. During the fill cycle these flex and after dumping, they return to their pre-flex position.
Flow
The movement of product from one position to another.
Flushes (or Flushing)
Typically, this is a condition whereby a dry solid material behaves as a "fluid," usually because the material is aerated. Such a condition may cause the material to pass uncontrollably through a metering mechanism and/or its supply hopper.
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Gain
Gain or calibrate is a way to automatically adjust the signal that the scale is supplying so that weights read from the scale will be correct. A small weight (usually 200 or 550 grams) is mounted inside the scale and during a GAIN cycle a TARE value is first recorded, then the weight is lowered, the scale is allowed to settle and then the indicated value of the reference weight is adjusted to make sure that product weights read during operation are correct.
Gate Delay and Duration
This sets the delay and duration of the timing gate-opening signal. The delay begins with the start of weigh bucket dump.
Gear-reducer
This is the mechanism that reduces the motor speed to the desired speed for driving the metering mechanism. The Gear-reducer is available with one of several ratios, determined by product characteristics and application parameters, thereby establishing the maximum speed of the metering auger and its maximum feed rate output capacity. The feeders drive motor flange-attaches directly to the Gear-reducer, and the Gear-reducer flange-attaches directly to the feeder's gearbox or seal housing.
Gross Weigh
Process by which a product is weighed as it is being placed in it's shipping container (weight consists of both the product and the bag combined).
Gummed Tape
Kraft paper tape, treated with an adhesive, used in the closure of multiwall bags.
Gussets
The reverse folds in the edges of bags; also referred to as tucks or bellows.
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Heat Seal
Means of closing or manufacturing bags, incorporating heat-sealable material in the construction. Material must be thermo plastic.
Heat Sealer
The machine that seals heat sealable bags using heat, time and pressure.
Hermetic Seal
Usually referred to as an "air tight" seal. However you must remember that all seals will leak if enough pressure is applied.
Histogram
This refers to a bar graph type display of a parameter such as dump weights of a group of product discharges. This provides a quick visual overview of weighing performance.
Hopper Eyes
These opposed photoelectric sensor eyes are mounted to look across an in-feed hopper and are monitored by the controller to generate a product request signal. This will usually activate the feed conveyor.
Hopper Vibration
The vibration of the hopper to induce reliable flow of material into the feed chamber (or feed trough) of the metering mechanism.
Hygroscopic
Readily absorbing and retaining atmospheric moisture. This causes caking or hardening of many products.
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In-feed Cone
The cone which is on top of the combination weigher that receives product from the in-feed vibrator, belt or funnel and disperses it outward to the radial feed vibrators.
In-feed Funnel
A vertical funnel above the in-feed cone that receives, stores and then delivers product onto the in-feed cone.
In-Feed Hopper
The hopper that receives and stores product from the process area and then delivers it into the linear vibrators.
In-feed Vibrator
The in-feed vibrator receives product from the in-feed hopper and then delivers it onto the in-feed cone. The vibrator operates when the cone eyes call for product.
Instantaneous Bag Rate
The maximum number of bags a machine can run in one minute.
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Kraft Paper
Term used to designate a strong brown paper made from kraft pulp. The pulp is made from soft wood by the sulfate process.
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L.V.D.T. (Load Variable Density Transformer)
An electronic sensing device that passes electrical current through a variable coil to measure deflection and allow accurate measurement of weight.
Load Cell
The strain gauge is a series of etched resistors on a plastic strip that is mounted on a metal beam. The beam is attached to the scale bucket. As the product enters the scale bucket the position of the beam moves slightly and the resulting change in strain on these resistors changes their value slightly. The change in resistance is measured and converted to a weight reading in grams.
Load Height
The height of a stack of layers plus the pallet. This is also referred to as the pass height.
Lower Limit
This parameter (used only in piece count operation) is calculated by the controller when you enter the nominal piece weight of the product. The average piece is compared after every discharge to the lower weight. If the average piece weight falls below the lower limit a warning message is generated. This cautions you that the average piece weight is different from the nominal piece weight value that you had specified.
Lower Stop
This parameter (used only in piece count operation) is calculated by the controller when you enter the nominal piece weight of the product. The average piece weight is compared after discharge to the lower stop weight. If the average piece weight falls below the lower stop weight, weighing operation will automatically stop. This cautions you that the average piece weight is significantly different from the nominal piece weight value that you had specified. To restart the weighing operation, you must enter a new nominal piece weight value.
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Main Vibrator Pan
This pan is located ahead of the bulk-precision pan and delivers product to that pan.
Maximum Weight
A parameter (for particulate scales only), which indicates what the largest weight of particulate products that will be allowed to dump. If the particulate scale exceeds this weight after a fill cycle, then it will be discharged to the reject chute (if provided) or the operator will be notified that the scale must be emptied manually.
Mechanical Drive
This is a variable speed drive (mechanically operated) used to power the feeder's metering mechanism (i.e., in lieu of a variable speed SCR controlled DC drive which is electronic).
Metering Auger
A Metering Auger is a spiral type-conveying device, centrally situated inside the feed chamber or feed trough of the dry solids metering mechanism, to volumetrically displace product out of the feeder through the discharge cylinder. Various sizes, types and designs are available, the selection of which is determined by the feed rate and the physical characteristics of the product. Rotation of the metering auger produces a specific volume of product discharge through the discharge cylinder for each revolution.
Metering Mechanism
A Metering Mechanism is a device specifically designed to meter a dry solid ingredient. Various designs are available, the selection of which is determined by the feed rate requirements and product handling characteristics.
Microprocessor
A small, solid-state device used to process incoming electronic information and convert this into response output and information.
Mil
.001 INCH. Usually refers to the thickness of a bag (or film).
Minimum Cycle Time
This adjustable values parameter sets the scale time if weigher paced operation has been selected. For example, to make 60 bags/minute set this to 1.00 seconds.
Minimum Dump Weight
A parameter indicating the lowest bucket weight that will be allowed to be dumped. If a weigh bucket fails to achieve at least this weight after the end of the filling cycle, the bulk-precision vibrator will provide short additional feed bursts (refills) until this weight is achieved.
Minimum Weight
A parameter stating the smallest particulate weight that will be allowed to be dumped. If a particulate scale fails to achieve at least this weight after the end of the filling cycle, the particulate vibrator will provide short additional feed burst (refills) until this weight is achieved.
Moisture Content
This is the amount of a liquid (i.e., water, oil, solvent, etc.) that is contained within a dry solid material, usually expressed in percent.
Multi-wall Paper Shipping Sack
A flexible container made from three to six plies of kraft paper, meeting designated specifications. The walls or plies may be made up of 40, 50, 60 or 70 pound paper. One or more may be a moisture barrier sheet. The particular construction of the sack is predicated on the material and the type of transportation to be employed.
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Negative Weight
Any reading of the weigh bucket which is "negative" is produced by some problem such as door interference, product stuck between weigh bucket and discharge chute, or a large piece of product falling off the weight bucket which had been previously adjusted for on a tare cycle.
Net Weigh
Process by which a product is pre-weighed prior the placement in a shipping container.
Net Weigh System
Usually refers to a scale system. In this machine the product is weighed (the net weigh) prior to discharging into the bag.
Nominal Target Piece Weight
This parameter is the average piece weight of your product. The easiest method is to count and weigh 10 "typical" pieces and divide by 10 to determine the average and enter the value for this parameter.
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Open Mouth
An open mouth, multi-wall bag is one where a tube is closed at one end leaving the opposite end open for filling.
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Pallet
A flat, raised base or platform on which units are placed for shipment. Unfilled or filled bags are unitized in this manner to facilitate handling and shipping. A means of collecting smaller units together, placing them on a platform, locking in place by an adhesive or strapping so a large load can be handled at one time.
Palletizer
A machine that automatically stacks bags, cases, or bales in a specific bag pattern onto a pallet.
Particle Size
Particle size refers to the size of the individual particles that comprise a dry solid material, usually expressed in "mesh" sizes, sieve analysis or in some other dimensional form.
Particulate Product
A particulate product typically compromises a smaller percentage of the package target weight than the base product. It is typically weighed in a single scale bucket weigh to cut-off filling operation and then combined with the appropriate amount of base product.
Particulate Vibrator
The particulate vibrators deliver product from an in-feed hopper to the particulate scale bucket.
Particulate Weigher
A particulate weigher is the general designation for a feeder and scale bucket which functions as a weigh to cut-off filler. This operates in conjunction with a normal combination weigher to produce a combination of a base product and one or more particulate products.
P.B.O.M.
Pinch bottom open mouth - It is a style of bag.
Piece Count
Piece count operation combines nominal weight based combination with a simultaneous count determination. The count is determined by division of the weight in each scale bucket by the average piece weight. The combination search is then done looking for combinations of scale buckets, which satisfies both the target weight and the target count criteria. If the target weight is not achieved with any of the possible target count combinations then extra pieces will be included to reach the target weight.
Pinhole Perforations
Small holes (usually in large kraft bags) made by mechanical means that allow air to escape. Can also be placed directly below the valve or overall for venting.
P.L.C.
Programmable Logic Controller - The electronic brains of the machine. It consists of I/O (inputs & outputs) that control and time each machine function. There is a program that it follows that usually requires software to modify.
Ply
Term used to describe any of the walls of a multi-wall bag.
Poly-Lok (Film Lok)
Trade names for a paper supported film valve insert (pasted valve).
Pounds / Cubic Feet
The general measurement used in reference to bulk density. It designates how many pounds are in a one cubic foot container.
Precision Feed
Fine feed (or fill) is the portion of the bucket filling cycle immediately following bulk fill during which the bulk cut-off has closed, the vibrator drive is reduced and product is fed slowly.
Product Bulk Density
Bulk Density is the weight of a dry solid material, typically expressed in pounds per cubic foot.
Product In Suspension
This is the amount of product that is flowing between the feeder section and the weigh bucket when the feeder section is shut off. This product is calculated during set-up so when it is in the weigh bucket the target is obtained.
Product Retainer
The product retainer is a series of vertical flaps that are mounted above the vibrators and are used to hold back product in the vibrator pans. The flaps may be made of polyurethane or of stainless steel chain in some cases. The function of the retainer is to level the product in the vibrator and help control over-feeding or flooding.
Product Skirt
The product retainer skirt is a piece of plastic which is attached under the in-feed cone and partly out into the radial vibratory feeders to prevent product from leaking out the rear end of the vibrators and into the area under the in-feed cone.
Proposed Dump Weight
When piece count is in operation, the proposed dump weight equals the nominal target piece weight multiplied by the target piece count.
Proximity Switch
Proximity switches are often used for level control or sensing in place of photoelectric scanners. Proximity switches operate based on capacitance of the product or in some cases by reflection of ultrasonic sound waves.
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Radial Vibratory Feeders
These vibrators receive product from the cone and deliver it into accumulator buckets.
Raw Weight
This value is the reading from the analog to digital converter board for the scale signal. To convert this to an actual weight value, the tare value must be subtracted and the gain value must be applied to the difference.
Ready Time Target
This parameter (used on particulate scales) determines the target amount of time that a fill cycle should be concluded prior to the expected dump request. If the packaging machine is going to request a specific particulate scale to discharge every 4 seconds then a setting of 0.4 seconds instructs the controller to adjust the vibrator feed rates to achieve an average dump and refill of the particulate scale in 3.6 seconds. Individual cycles may vary of course. A setting of 0.25 to 0.4 makes it unlikely that the particulate scale will not be ready but also gives the particulate scale the maximum time so as to achieve the most accurate fill possible.
Recovery Delay
This parameter sets the length of time after discharge of a particulate scale for the door bounce to subside. Delivery of particulate product will begin right after the door closes but no decisions to stop particulate feed will be made until after this time has gone by.
Refill Device
A refill device is the mechanism used to refill the supply hopper of a "weight-loss" weigh feeder. In most dry solids metering applications, the refill device is a storage hopper equipped with a quick acting, automatically operated slide gate; however, it can be other mechanisms as well, provided such mechanisms meet all of the criteria necessary for proper weigh feeder operation.
Refill Duration
This sets the length of the refill feed operation. This should be kept as short as possible while reliably delivering a small amount of product.
Refill Weight
This miscellaneous values page parameter indicates the weight of product required in a base product scale. It is calculated by the control based on your target weight entry. If a scale contains less than this weight and it is not included in the next discharge group, then it will receive an additional fill of the accumulator bucket.
Refill
This refers to a short second feed cycle after the conclusion of the normal bulk and fine feeding cycle. This occurs only if the weight of product in the weigh bucket fails to reach the minimum weight.
Reject Weight
This is the maximum weight in grams at which a combination will be selected. If any individual scale bucket contains product in excess of this weight, the operator will be warned that this product must be emptied.
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Scale Bucket
The scale (weigh) bucket is the bucket where the product is actually weighed. It receives product from the vibrator (or accumulator bucket on a combination scale) and discharges product to the discharge chute when the scale is selected.
Scale Gain
This refers to the process of first taking a tare value for the bucket, and then lowering the gain weight inside the scale and determining what gain or multiplier value must be applied to the weight signal to accurately read the known value of the gain weight. This gain value is recorded and applied to all subsequent product weight readings.
Scale Tare
This refers to the process of discharging the product load in the bucket, and delaying the introduction of a new load while the tare or empty bucket reading is recorded. Tare recording permits compensation for product build-up on the bucket.
SCR Controller
An SCR Controller is a variable speed electronic device that precisely regulates the speed of a DC motor to a selected speed setting. Normally, SCR Controllers provide either a 30:1 or 50:1 turndown ratio depending upon the selected model controller.
Seal
This is usually the closure medium of a bag. Different bags have different seal types i.e.: pinch bottom, heat, sewing, twist-tie, etc. It can also mean what is used to prohibit material from escaping from around rotating shafts either entering or exiting the metering mechanism of a dry solids feeder.
Self-Sealing Valve
Valves on all multi-wall bags close automatically when bags are dropped from the packer. Usually with the aid of a valve insert.
Settling Time
This refers to the amount of time required by a scale to close its bucket doors, receive the new load of product, and achieve a stable weight indication. It can also mean the time it takes a product to stop moving (settle) into a bag after it has been filled.
Sewn Closures
Method of closing a bag by sewing.
Sigma
A measurement of standard deviation, in this case, predicting the variance for filled weights of bags.
Sleeves (Valve)
A separately applied piece of paper in the valve opening to prevent sifting.
Solid Flight (Metering) Auger
A solid flight auger is a closed section type spiral, normally constructed of a flat metal winding with a center shaft, for the purpose of conveying dry solid ingredients out of a dry solids feeder. Various configurations and designs are available to satisfy the requirements of specific applications.
S.O.M.
Sewn open mouth bag.
Special Reject Count
This account value is the total number of times that a class 3 or 5 particulate scale was found above the particulate reject value and was discharged to the reject chute.
Stagger Discharge
This parameter determines the total time interval between product discharge from the first and last selected scales. Dump spread or stagger discharge is used to avoid product jams in a narrow discharge funnel or to permit blending between base and particulate products.
Stopper Delay and Duration
These parameters set the delay from discharge of the weigh buckets until the intermediate product stop in the funnel is first opened and then determines the length of time that it will remain open.
Strain Gauge
The strain gauge is a series of etched resistors on a plastic strip that is mounted on a metal beam. The beam is attached to the scale bucket. As the product enters the scale bucket the position of the beam moves slightly and the resulting change in strain on these resistors changes their value slightly. The change in resistance is measured and converted to a weight reading in grams.
Stretch Wrapper A machine that wraps a plastic film around a palletized load.
Supply Hopper
A Supply Hopper is the container used to store a dry solid material typically for use by a dry solids feeder. A Supply Hopper may be mounted integral to a metering mechanism (feeder), bolted to it, or may be mounted separately.
Surface Finish and/or Coating
Metering mechanisms, or components thereof, may be furnished with various types of finishes or coatings to aid in resisting product adhesion, component wear and/or corrosion. In particular, a number of specialty coatings (and laminations) are used to reduce or eliminate product adhesion onto critical components.
Sustained Bag Rate
The minimum number of bags a machine can run in one hour without shutting down the bag filling equipment.
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Tachometer
A digital Tachometer provides very precise speed sensing to assist in producing the highest possible degree of DC motor speed regulation, linearity and repeatability. SCR controllers that provide a 50:1 drive turndown ratio, or those used in conjunction with weigh feeders, utilize a Tachometer for speed feedback data. The Tachometer is either directly connected to the output shaft of the DC motor through a specially designed gear-reducer, or senses the speed of the motor by means of a magnetic sensor.
Tape Over Sewing
Tape applied after the bag has been sewn closed to cover the stitch line. This is usually done to prevent product from leaking though the holes produced by the sewing of the bag. (Cold adhesive, hot melt, heat-sealed thermoplastic-coated tape).
Tare
Tare is a way to adjust the scales empty weight reading to eliminate the effect of dust and product buildup on the scales. This is done by occasionally holding off the refilling of a scale that has just emptied and waiting for one cycle, reading the empty bucket weight and then recording this TARE VALUE. Once this is done normal fill starts again
Tare Shift
This error counter page value lists the number of times the change in tare for a given weigh bucket has exceeded a predetermined limit which is typically 1 to 2 grams. If this value for one weigh bucket is much larger than all others, that weigh cell may have a problem.
Target Number of Scales
This setting found on a combination scale, sets the preferred number of scales to be combined. If you were running a 100g load with a target number of 4 scales, the Vibrator Control System will attempt to fill 25g into each scale on every cycle. A target number of 4 does not mean 4 will always be picked. 3 scales or 5 scales may often be a better combination than any possible group of 4, and will be picked. The best values for target number of scales are 3 or 4. If you set for 1 or 2, weight accuracy declines dramatically. If you set for 5 or more, you may lose production because more scales are being filled.
Target Piece Count
This parameter sets the target number of pieces to be selected when the combination weigher is running in its piece count operating mode.
Target Weight
This is the final weight the customer requires in their container (bag). The target weight for a combination weigher is the minimum weight that will be selected by the controller for discharge. All combinations of available (i.e. filled and settled to an accurate weight reading) scales will be searched for the best combination at or above the target weight.
Target Weight-Particulate Scales
This parameter for particulate scales sets the final aim weight for the fill to cut-off weighing operation. If the particulate weight being delivered is on average less than this weight then the fine cut-off will increase to put more product into the particulate scale and vice versa.
Timing Bucket
A timing bucket is used to collect product loads below the discharge funnel, gather them and prepare them for a quick release.
Top-Up Operation
When no combination is available at or below reject weight, then a specific scale will be selected, the accumulator bucket will open and more product will be fed into that particular scale. Once the product is in the scale bucket, the combinations of the other buckets with this new weight will be tested to see if an acceptable weight is now available.
Torque Limiter Coupling
This is a device mounted between the feeder's gear-reducer and input shaft to provide adjustable overload protection of the drive components.
Total Giveaway
This account value is the total weight of product that was discharged in excess of the minimum dump weight since the account was last cleared.
Total Packed Weight
This account value is the total weight of product discharged since account was last cleared.
Tuck-In Sleeve
A special cut piece of paper pasted to the valve extension in a sewn valve bag through the valve opening. After filling, the sleeve or paper extension is folded and tucked into the valve opening to prevent sifting. Same is applied on a pasted valve bag.
Turn-Post
A device consisting of a vertical post used to orient a bag being fed down a conveyor or into a palletizer.
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Upper Bucket
Usually on a combination scale, the upper bucket that is located above the weighing bucket and below the radial feed vibrator. The accumulator bucket receives product from the vibrator, groups it and then prepares it to drop quickly to the scale bucket as soon as the scale bucket has finished its discharge.
Upper Drop Duration
This parameter sets the length of time the upper doors remain open to drop product down to the weigh buckets.
Upper Limit
This parameter is calculated by the controller when you enter the nominal piece weight of the product. The average piece weight is compared after every discharge to the upper limit weight. If the average piece weight rises above the upper limit a warning message is generated. This cautions you that the average piece weight is different from the nominal piece weight value that you had specified.
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Valve Bags
A gusseted or flat bag with both top and bottom sewn or pasted closed in the bag factory. One corner is left open, forming a valve or opening through which the bag is filled.
Valve
The opening through which a bag is filled.
Variable Frequency (AC) Controller
A variable frequency controller is an electronic device that varies the speed of an AC motor to a selected speed setting. An AC Variable Frequency Controller normally provides a 10:1 turndown ratio.
Variable Speed Controller
This is a controller specifically designed to precisely regulate the speed of the feeder's drive motor to a selected speed setting. Normally, Variable Speed Controllers may be either AC or DC and provide either a 10:1, 30:1 or 50:1 turndown ratio depending upon the type and model controller.
Vibrator The vibrator is the electromagnetic drive device located beneath the vibrator pan. The vibrator moves the vibrator pan, which will cause product to move through the pan.
Vibrator Amplitude
This refers to the value of the drive parameter being applied to the vibrator. A value of 250 will cause maximum vibration. The minimum practical value is about 60. A phase controlled solid-state relay converts the drive parameter into the actual signal to the vibrator motor.
Vibrator Amplitude Reduction
This parameter is used to reduce the drive value during the fine feed part of the cycle from the value used during the bulk feed portion of the fill cycle. By reducing the rate of product introduction, more accurate final weights can be achieved.
Vibrator Anticipation
This parameter sets the amount of time before the accumulator bucket closes during which the vibrator may begin to deliver product. This anticipation is possible because of drop time from the vibrator pan to the accumulator bucket.
Vibrator Controller
The Vibrator Controller is a device used to control the intensity of force produced by a variable speed (or variable frequency) vibrator.
Vibrator Duration
This is the length of time the vibrator will shake and cause product delivery. The vibrator servo system adjusts this time automatically if duration adjustment is enabled. Automatic duration adjustment requires very uniform product flow and should be left off if the duration oscillates.
Vibrator Pan
A sheet metal device used to convey product that is generally rectangular with bent up sides.
Vibratory Feeder Adjustment
This refers to the adjustment of both vibrator duration and amplitude by the controller.
Volumetric Feeder
A Volumetric Feeder is a device specifically designed to accurately meter dry solid materials by volume. A true volumetric feeder must include a means to measure by volume, such as a rotating auger.
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Weigh Bucket
The container that holds the product that is being weighed. With gross weighing, this means the bag, drum, etc.
Weigh Cell
The weigh cell is the actual load-sensing device. It may detect weight with either a strain gauge or an L.V.D.T.
Weigh Feeder
A Weigh Feeder is a device specifically designed to meter various products by weight control. A scale is an integral component of a weigh feeder.
Weigh to Cut-off
This refers to product weighing into a single scale bucket. Weight in the bucket is monitored during the feeding process and stopped when the bulk and fine feed cut-offs are reached.
Weigher Capability
This account value is the theoretical maximum number of dumps that could have been made if there were no external impediments to dumping such as dump switch off, lack of product, or prevent input asserted.
Wicketted Bags
This term refers to bags that are supplied on metal prongs. The prongs (usually attached at the open end of the bag) keep the bags positioned so that equipment can automatically work with them or for easy handling by operators.
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