At Sonoco Consumer Products in Mechelen, Belgium, machines are hardly ever standing still, producing cardboard tubes for the food market non-stop. Time is of the essence, so every minute counts when it comes to machine maintenance and service.

A big part of the machine performance for spiral tube winding machines, which are used to produce paper cores, is the tube winding belt. This belt applies pressure in order to achieve the required level of adhesion between the individual webs of paper. The application poses unique challenges to belts, requiring strong tension, flexibility, high grip and high abrasion resistance.

For Sonoco in Mechelen also, the high stress put on the belt at high production speed means that belts had to be exchanged often, generating significant costs for maintenance.

High quality tubes for food applications made at Sonoco in Mechelen
High quality tubes for food applications made at Sonoco in Mechelen

Nitta Zeroseam was developed specifically with the needs of the tube winding application in mind – offering a strong cord tension layer which allows for high flexibility due to its seamless construction. With this more flexible material, pressure is applied evenly to the paper, so the tension level can be reduced, significantly increasing lifetime and decreasing energy consumption. Nitta’s rubber compound on the other hand combines a high coefficient of friction with strong resistance to abrasive material like paper, leading to high, long-time stable grip.

Determining that the reason for the high wear of the Polyamide-type belts is due to the rigidity of the belt material, the service teams of Nitta and Bogaert Transmission, partner company of Nitta in Belgium, recommended Zeroseam ZS-TWL-42H to improve the performance.

“Frankly, we were surprised.” says Mr. Luc Van Campenhout of Sonoco Consumer Products in Mechelen. “We were hoping to see a noticable improvement of the belt lifetime, but looking at the actual production numbers we could achieve with these new belts, it goes far beyond our expectations.” Compared to the previously used Polyamide belts, a lifetime of up to seven times could be reached, keeping production speed and the quality of the end product at the same high level. “After trying many different suppliers’ solutions before without seeing any significant changes, this is quite a pleasant surprise.” states Mr. Van Campenhout, pointing out the results of Zeroseam ZS-TWL-42H on several of his machines.

Nitta Zeroseam is currently available in three different configurations, width and length freely customizable. To learn more about Zeroseam, click here.

Sonoco Consumer Products in Mechelen, Belgium, is part of the Sonoco Group, the largest global producer of paper tubes and cores and supplier of a multitude of packaging solutions, employing 20,000 people in 33 countries.
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Our partner company in Belgium, Bogaert Transmission bvba, has more 35 years of experience in supplying transmission and conveying solutions with customized solutions and 24/7 hours service.
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