Customer, Challenge & Risks
Our customer was a global tire manufacturer. He was facing the familiar risk of the tire sticking to the bladder during the curing process, but what made this case unique was the space constraints that forced the plant to put the green tire spray machines in the same areas as the tire build machines. This proximity posed severe contamination risk of mold release getting between the rubber layers, so spray containment was critical.
Another challenge was the variation of tires through the spray system. To minimize Work-in-Process, the tires would no longer be produced in batches stored on tire carts but enter the system completely randomly via a conveyor system.
Thankfully, our customer had been introduced to Pioneer Industrial Systems at a recent trade show. They reached out, and within a week, a sales engineer was on-site to further understand the challenges, constraints, and requirements of the system. Even though this plant built both passenger and truck tires, this system would be dedicated to truck tires. Therefore, the RTS2000i model was the best choice.
Our engineers have been working with the tire industry since the late 1980s, so we understood the importance of keeping the mold release away from the build machines and what a mess the overspray could make.
Since the plant had several old Dial Index Tire Spray machines, that was the direction of the original RFQ. Due to the complete containment required, a DTS machine was not a feasible option. But Pioneer had experience incorporating robotics into the tire industry, and this application was ideal for a material handling robot in combination with our PFDS.
A project that we had completed about four years prior had involved a fully enclosed spray booth that included many other benefits.
Pioneer had completed several successful tire spraying machines and white wall spraying machines that operated in a dual-mode, with both recipe and adaptive intelligence. This dual-mode and PFDS resulted in a precise spray and maintained consistent uptime, with tires entering the system entirely at random.
After providing the customer with a proposal that included a 3D Concept and Simulation, the customer was able to effortlessly sell the robotic system to leadership over the originally requested dial machine. It was approved within the budget and a PO was issued for two machines.
Pioneer started its defined Machine Building Process. After the customer runoff, the machine was disassembled, shipped, and Pioneer’s assembly crew went on-site to install the equipment. The programming engineer was on-site the following week to connect our system to the plant conveyors and higher-level server. After a few days of commissioning, several days of training followed.
The customer was given support documents and was well taken care of after the startup was completed.
Outcomes of Success
Overall, the project was very successful. The system was installed on schedule. The spray was contained with minimal to no overspray getting outside of the spray booth.
Cycle times were better than initially anticipated.
The plant engineer was involved throughout the project, so he was always aware of status, any obstacles and felt comfortable throughout the entire process.
Mold release consumption was considerably lower than comparable machines due to our Precision Fluid Delivery System, which was a substantial cost savings.
The machine performed so well that the plant returned and ordered 10 more robotic spray systems.
Robotic Tire Handling and Spray Advantages
- Material savings
- System reacts to each specific tire
- Modular pre-engineered skid design
- Simple with minimal maintenance
- Increased production
- Eliminate racking ergonomics
- Utilize standard in/exit conveyors
- Able to place on rack or AGV
- Expandable increase tire capacity
- Precision spray improves quality
- Minimized overspray
- Uniform coverage
- Adjustable fluid, fan, atomizing air
- Spray gun position relative to tire
- Optional bar code reading/masking
- Optional outside spray available
- More uptime with robotics
- Easy installation
- Authorized FANUC Integrator
- FANUC Strategic Market Specialist
- Global support/service/training
|Model “RTS2000i” Specifications|
|Bead Diameter||12″ – 28″||305 – 710mm|
|Max Bead to Bead Width||45″||1150mm|
|Max Tire OD Diameter||50″||1270mm|
|Max Tire Weight||340lbs||155kg|
|Inside Tire Spray||360 degrees or programmable|
|Outside Tire Spray||optional|
|Cycle Time (tph)||240|
|Cycle Time (tpd)||5,760|
|Robot Controller||Fanuc R30iB|
|Tire Measurement||Light arrays (IrVision optional)|
|Bar Code Reader||Optional|
|Fluid Holding Tank||15gal Hi/Lo Level Ind.|
|Spray Gun||Quick change manifold|
|Spray Gun Pattern||Variable fan control|
|Fluid Delivery||Precision servo metering pump|
|Tire lube||Water based system|
|Automatic Purge||Water flush prog. # cycles|
|Chuck Cleaning||Fixed brush prog. # cycles|
|Electrical Service Req’d||480v/3ph/30amp or 380V|
|Air Service Req’d||80psi @ 3/4″inlet|
|Water Service Req’d||20psi @ 3/8″inlet|
|Machine footprint||18′ x 16′|
|Exhaust Fan||3hp 18”Dia|
|Dual Filters||(2) Bag Filters|
|Downdraft booth||Powder Coated HRS (Stainless Steel – optional)|