Cugher Glass has delivered more than 670 glass printing lines worldwide, including advanced installations that track the movement of glass throughout the production process. As well as high end printing machines, the company supplies dryers and a full range of associated handling equipment. In this way, it is able to provide complete solutions for flat glass production plants, supplying customers with full lines, where necessary overcoming integration problems between equipment from different suppliers. Marino Bonetti explains. 

Shape and size are parameters that can identify the characteristics of a printing line. Typically, for example, automotive glasses are shaped, with outline complexities that can vary significantly according to glass type (windscreens, sidelites, backlites, vents and sunroofs etc), where dimensions rarely exceed 2600mm. In comparison, architectural glasses are generally symmetrical. Facades and balconies are quite common applications and their dimensions can easily be above 3000mm. Conversely, home appliances glasses, used in such white goods as refrigerators, cooker tops, microwave ovens etc are typically symmetrical but can be very small and with big holes.

Tilting bridges allow forklifts to cross the line.

Each of these glass categories needs to be handled with specific solutions to grant the necessary care during their transportation from one process to the next, without generating scratches and other damage, as well as protecting glass surfaces from dust. The increasing use of coated glasses for several applications requires a thorough understanding of the characteristics of such glasses, to identify adequate solutions and avoid damaging their delicate surfaces. No matter which glass is running on the line, however, Cugher always has the correct handling solution. Its equipment is designed to take the customer’s needs into consideration in terms of flexibility, reliability and safety. In addition, all elements of a Cugher line are perfectly synchronised, ensuring total control of the process, as well as high productivity levels. Within the wide range of handling equipment available are tilt loading and unloading conveyors, flat and vertical inspection stations, rotating tables, roller and belt conveyors, tilting bridge conveyors, flip-over and lift conveyors plus stackers and booking stations.

Flexibility 

Thanks to the experiences developed over more than 50 years and the wide range of handling solutions in the Cugher portfolio, glass shape is never a problem. The company is able to select or develop the correct solution according to the characteristics of the customer’s glass to be processed. The engineering team is available to study, together with the customer’s production managers, the best solution to apply to the specific application. Every glass production plant is different. It is almost impossible to find identical printing lines, even within plants operated by the same customer. Thanks to the series of possibilities provided by Cugher handling machinery, the glass route inside the plant always satisfies process needs. The expertise of Cugher engineers ensures optimum flexibility, together with all possible features to avoid every kind of production shutdown. The target for each project is to meet customer needs, keeping a continuously high production level. It is common for co-operation between the Cugher engineering team and customer to result in the creation of innovative equipment and machines, able to maximise the customer’s process requirements.

Reliability 

For the production of its equipment and machinery, Cugher always refers to the best suppliers in the market in terms of mechanical, electrical and software solutions. Equipment is produced using the necessary number of components and this grants maximum reliability. After sales requests are reduced to a minimum and when this occurs, the company’s response is always very fast thanks to the positive relationship maintained with selected suppliers, to the accurate purchasing process and spare parts forecast system. Engineering activities are focused on the provision of simplified maintenance. It is easy to replace spare parts on Cugher machines and customers are provided with clear instructions and effective tools to perform printing line repairs. To make the identification of necessary spare parts even easier, the company has developed dedicated software called SpareView that is able to show in 3D every mechanical details (up to the last bolt) of every equipment element installed. Once selected with a simple click, the software shows its part number and on request, can automatically insert it into the chart to create the spare part order.

Safety 

‘Safety first!’ is the Cugher mantra. Starting with equipment design, the application for all possible safety devices is considered. Long-term relationships with reliable partners allow Cugher to use the latest generation of safety technologies and components that respond with the greatest efficiency and reliability. In emergency situations, therefore, its equipment can perform all safety procedures, avoiding the eventuality of damage as much as possible. The engineering of every element is performed together with a detailed risk analysis, which allows a major reduction of the residual risk. Moreover, Cugher provides a wide range of additional safety devices, such as fences, guards, light barriers, radar scanners and remote controls, with dedicated software to manage safety procedures in the most efficient way. Using Cugher solutions, operators can work in safe conditions and according to the latest safety standards.

Cugher provides a wide range of handling and transportation systems.