Swedish packaging specialist aPak has made a significant investment in Kongsberg digital finishing solutions to automate its production and provide the speed and flexibility demanded by its customers.
The designer, printer and manufacturer of bespoke packaging, which has more than a century of specialist experience, recently installed a new Kongsberg C64 cutting table complete with an automated feeder and stacker at its facility in Mölndal, near Gothenburg. “We create the best results for our customers by offering customized packaging solutions, effective warehousing, and automation,” said Jan Vesterberg, packaging designer at aPak. “We had experienced a growing demand for fast deliveries, particularly on small volume batches, and with material shortages during the pandemic we found that larger volume articles were becoming increasingly difficult to produce.
“We were already looking to upgrade an older CAM-solution and wanted a faster, better, and more versatile machine,” said Jan. “Kongsberg’s impressive automation solution seemed the natural choice to take our capabilities one step further. Not only can we now produce samples at higher speeds and with better precision, but we can also create smaller product series on site, which is very beneficial for our customers.
“All in all, this investment means we have a digital finishing solution that increases the value for our customers while also creating new business opportunities,” said Jan. “The tools delivered with our system ensure that we always have the best possible equipment for each job. We’ve already enjoyed the benefits of being able to offer a quicker turnaround on samples and delivering small volume batches, and we are now accepting jobs that we previously couldn’t. In the future this will enable us to tap into markets where we haven’t been before,” he said. “We now have the capability to create unique boxes, tailor-made for just about anything, without the need for additional expensive tooling.”
Melanie Fox, territory sales manager with Kongsberg precision cutting systems, said that the Kongsberg C64 delivers the highest levels of performance. “With its state-of-the-art engineering and technology, it combines an aluminum composite tabletop, rack and pinion drive system and dynamic table mapping to deliver the greatest cutting accuracy and consistency,” she said.
“The new table is served by the Kongsberg feeder and stacker, which enables aPak to significantly increase its productivity. With its stack height and quick automatic load cycles, it is the optimal solution for short run production on a wide variety of materials. The underside camera takes away the manual processes of checking each sheet and calculating registration marks. It scans each sheet from below, on the print side, and automatically locates the registration marks, barcodes and the corner of the sheet,” added Melanie. “This saves anything up to thirty minutes on each job set up, boosting productivity even further.”
Jan said that the combination of speedy turnaround and flexibility to quickly adapt to current packaging trends for much smaller segments of the market now gives aPak even more standout in the market. “We can now provide an even better service for our customers,” he said. “Even if a customer might already be working with someone else, when they see what we can do, we become the first name they think of when they think ‘packaging’.”