Every packaging process is unique, as not all packaging machines are alike and the characteristics of the packaging materials and the sizes of the rolls on which the films are being wound are also different. It is therefore important to determine the correct hoist for the rolls in advance.

When you store long reels wrapped with stretch film on a pallet so that you can process or install them horizontally, lifting the heavy reel works as follows: The long roll is moved onto a special platform (WAVE), which will then transport the roll to its destined location. Subsequently, WAVE also helps you to mount the roll on a packaging machine in the same horizontal position.

For short rolls of stretch film which are stored on pallets in a vertical angle and need to be installed accordingly on the machine’s mandrel, a Reel Handler can facilitate the process immensely. This device grabs the heavy reel from above and below to lift it up from the pallet. You may then transport the reel to the machine and install it on the mandrel while retaining its vertical position.

Big, bulky reels standing on a pallet with their core pointing upwards require a different handling: Before lifting and transporting such heavy rolls, you should grab them at their core. If you need to turn the reel around before mounting it on the machine, a mobile manipulator will promptly complete both steps.

Reel handler from HovmandReel handler from Hovmand

To lift short, light-weighted reels lying on the pallet, you may also use a combination of boom and V-block. In this case, the reel is moved from the pallet onto the V-block by hand and subsequently transported to the machine. After centring the reel in front of the machine’s roller axis, you can again use your own hands to push the reel onto the axis.

Alternatively, shorter and less heavy reels can also be handled with a lifting device installed on the BOOM. Since the mandrel is placed at the roll’s core, you can pick up and transport the roll with ease. Once you have elevated the reel on the mandrel to the desired height, you transfer it into the machine’s axis.

If reels carry so much weight or take up so much space that manual handling of any kind becomes impossible, just utilize an electrical gripping tool to manipulate their position or push them onto the machine’s axis. With the help of an automated reel manipulator, you can grab an upright roll at the core and tilt it horizontally before mounting the roll on the packaging machine’s axis:

Reel handler in action from HovmandReel handler in action from Hovmand

Electrical gripping equipment can also lift big, heavy reels by taking hold of the exterior. Depending on whether you need to turn or tilt a roll throughout the process, this device offers different features for rotating or tilting movements.

Get an overview of lifting equipment for rolls here.