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Sugden has developed a system that can flip pancakes with a high degree of efficiency, accuracy and repeatability. The system incorporates the DLS3 driven linear system with an AC-geared motor from Hepcomotion.

Sugden is a designer and manufacturer of hotplate plant for the production of bakery products such as pancakes, muffins, crumpets and soda bread.

Two DLS linear transmission and positioning systems, linked with a beam, form the basis of the pancake-flipping mechanism. The beam carries a row of spatulas that lift the product and turn it over.

Double-row cap-sealed bearings ensure high load capacity, constant lubrication and low maintenance. A steel-reinforced polyurethane belt reduces stretch to a minimum and allows the system to work accurately, reliably and consistently at high speed.

Key benefits of product application

  • The DLS is a complete, off-the-shelf modular guide and drive system that saves OEMs design and specification time.
  • It is belt driven and can be specified with a range of different-sized motor and gearbox packages.
  • Barry Mulholland, managing director at Sugden, said that the DLS has enabled the company to achieve high speed, high accuracy and reliability in both rotary and longitudinal movements.
  • Although the DLS can work well in hostile environments, in this application the machine design also protects it from contamination.
  • Mulholland said Sugden has continued to receive good technical back-up and prompt service from Hepcomotion.
  • Mulholland added that one of Sugden’s hotplate machines with integral flipping mechanism has been installed for making pancakes at Allied Bakeries in Belfast and that the customer is highly satisfied with its performance.

Designing a unique engineering principle and making it a commercial success is quite an accomplishment.  Developing that concept and embracing complementary technologies to the point where the business becomes a world leader in its field takes that achievement into a different league.  HepcoMotion has achieved both and in 2009 celebrates 40th year of trading.   

Today HepcoMotion is one of the world’s foremost innovators and manufacturers of linear motion technology.  And this can be attributed to the important tenet – continued investment in its people processes and products.  This has allowed the company to grow even at times of economical difficulty.  

Although its range of individual, linear motion products remains an important part of its business the growth area for HepcoMotion in recent years is in specials and assemblies.  Almost one fifth of its shop floor space is devoted to assembly and the company has invested heavily in flexible manufacturing to ensure that even last minute changes can be accommodated to customer specification.  

Constantly re-assessing its strengths against changing market demands continues to provide HepcoMotion with the momentum for business growth.  The culture of ongoing investment has certainly worked well throughout its first 40 years and will continue to underpin its business in the decades to come.

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