Guest Column | August 18, 2015

Good Alignment And Torque
Are Key To Capping Success

By John Henry, www.changeover.com

John Henry

Capping a bottle isn't difficult, we do it every day. Capping hundreds of bottles each minute, without scuffing, over or under tightening or misalignment isn't that hard — provided that the cap, bottle, and machine are properly matched.

Capping is about tightness. The cap needs to be tight enough to seal, but not so tight that the customer can't open it. Removal, or off-torque, is what we mostly care about controlling, but the capping machine can only control application or on-torque. This is generally not a 1:1 relationship. Producing 10 inch-pounds of on-torque may result in 5 or 15 inch-pounds of off torque depending on bottle, cap, and product. Fortunately the relationship is usually fairly stable. This makes the capping machine as the most critical variable.

There are two basic types of capper. In many applications, both would work well. However, there are other applications where only one type will work. In all applications, each method has advantages and disadvantages. Knowing these will help in matching machine to application.

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