One of the most important machineries that make up a rubber manufacturing unit is the batch off cooling machine. The main purpose ofa batch off cooling unit is to cool and then stack rubber strip fed into it from either roller die sheeter or two-roll millonto a palette. There are five major processes associated with passing a rubber strip through a batch-off cooling machine, namely dip, cool, dry, stack and cut.
Before the introduction of batch-off cooling machines, labor force was deployed to manually dip the hot rubber strips with temperatures as high as 160°C into cooling tanks and then stack up the rubber sheets once cooled. Use of manual labor to cool and stack the sheets made the process both unsafe and inefficient. Batch-off cooling machines take care of the entire process of cooling these rubber strips to manageable temperatures and then stacking them up in an orderly fashion in a very short span of time and without any manual intervention whatsoever. Shorter cycle time means higher productivity and greater efficiencies of scale and most importantly, less exposure of labor to manufacturing hazards.
The process works as follows; rubber sheets are fed into the soaking bath placed at the entry of the batch-off and separated using a separation solution. The rubber strips then enter a cooling tunnel where they are cooled to appropriate temperatures depending on the purpose of usage. The cooled strips are then caught by gripping units and placed onto a feeding conveyor belt which moves the sheets through cutting machine onto a stacking palette where the cooled rubber sheets are neatly stacked up till they reach an earmarked height or weight. Once the stacked sheets have reached the specified size, the stacked palette is replaced with an empty palette and the same process is repeated.
Batch-off cooling machines are typically of two kinds Tunnel batch off machines where rubber strips move through a tunnel for cooling and cantilever batch off machines with rubber strips passing through one side of the machine only. Modern batch-off cooling machines come equipped with a host of new features which include recycling water used for cooling to save wastage and electricity, adaptive conveyor speeds to take care of different cooling and stacking requirements as well as ability to cool lamination strips as well as rubber strips to make them more useful as multifunctional machines.