03.09.2019 / Stefan Kocher

Control Update: Plan Ahead to Avoid Long Downtimes

As spare parts for the control system are no longer available for some older machines, it is advisable to replace them in good time. The timely replacement of the control system – and, if necessary, the control terminal and frequency converter – reduces the downtime to a predictable one to three days.

After losing some of its relevance some years ago, saddle stitching has recently experienced a genuine comeback (see also the following blog). This was also experienced by Rotolito in Pioltello, Italy.

A new plant (Cernusco II) was even recently put into operation there, focusing exclusively on the production of saddle-stitched weekly and monthly magazines. In Pioltello, Rotolito produces over 2,000 titles with an annual total run of over 250 million products, including Italy’s most popular crossword magazine, which has a weekly circulation of a whopping one million (!) copies.

And it does this on three Muller Martini saddle stitchers: a Prima, a PrimaPlus Tandem and a BravoPlus. The BravoPlus came to Pioltello from another company and was extensively overhauled by Muller Martini specialists before being commissioned, with the key element being replacement of the entire control system and the control terminal. The new B&R X20 control became a necessity for Rotolito's BravoPlus – which has four flat pile feeders, a cover folder feeder, stream feeders, a Perfetto compensating stacker, and a Pluton palletizer – that was built in 2006, because no more spare parts can be supplied for the existing B&R 2005 control.

Since we can’t afford a saddle stitcher failure due to the high run sizes and short turnaround times, the control system retrofit was without question. After all, we want to produce the BravoPlus for many years to come
says Sales & Marketing Director Emanuele Bandecchi.

A timely planned replacement of the control – and, if necessary, the control terminal and the frequency converter – offer two main advantages.
  • It reduces the downtime of the machine to a predictable one to three days.
  • After replacing the control, the machine can continue to be operated at high production reliability.

Reactive replacement of the control due to a malfunction, on the other hand, may result in several weeks' downtime because of the complexity of the provision.

In addition to the Bravo, Bravo S, BravoPlus, Prima, Prima S and PrimaPlus saddle stitcher models, the control can also be exchanged in the Corona. In the case of older high-performance Muller Martini perfect binders, the ICP5000 control panel from B&R, a conventional foil key display, should be replaced by a PPC 2100 with the latest touch screen function, also developed by B&R. The initial project to do this was successfully completed a few weeks ago at Vogel Druck in Höchberg near Würzburg, which specializes in catalog and magazine production.

The corresponding computers for the Ventura book sewing machines built between 2000 and 2007 (IPC5000) and between 2008 and 2011 (APC620) are no longer available on the market. They should therefore be replaced in good time by a new PPC2100 panel with touch-screen function, in which the control module is already installed as a replacement for the old computer.

Do you have any further questions about replacing the controls for your machine? Your local Muller Martini contact person will be happy to help you!

Stefan Kocher
Product and Sales Manager Service Program
Müller Martini AG