PACE completes hat-trick of installations for equestrian products manufacturer

PACE Mechanical Handling, a designer of automated and robotic packing and palletising solutions, has announced it has received its third six-figure order from a manufacturer of equestrian products.

The company will follow up on its two previous projects for Bedmax in the New Year when it starts installing a new packing line at the firm’s Newark factory.

Bedmax, which makes dust-free horse bedding from pine wood shavings, will use PACE’s machinery to pack Hotmax dust-wood logs, a by-product of the manufacturing process.

As a business that seeks to use everything that enters its factory, Bedmax’s production team realised they could use the dust extracted from the pine shaving to form fuel logs. The extracted dust is pre-dried, allowing it to be extruded under pressure into densely compacted wood heat logs bound together by the natural lignin inherent in the wood.

PACE’s end-of-line solution comprises an automatic sack presenter, complete bag control (CBC) and robotic stack and wrap. PACE received the order after installing similar lines at Bedmax’s factories in Northumberland and Andover.

“The end-of-line solution that we have developed for Bedmax is one of our most sophisticated yet,” said MD Nick Cesare. “We have developed a new way of receiving the logs and have modified how the bag clamp works so that it can heat seal the plastic bags with their gusset-out style and stitch the paper packs, which are gusset-in. We have learned a lot from installing the first two lines and will be making further enhancements to the third line, and once that has proven itself, we will retrofit the changes to the first two lines.”

Bedmax founder and MD Tim Smalley added, “We have an ethos of continuous improvement and refinement. We are always trying to improve the worst part of our process, and at the moment at Newark, that is how we pack our products.

“It is labour-intensive and difficult work. At our other sites, PACE’s end-of-line solution runs 24/7 and is reliable, accurate and easy to service and maintain. We want to have the same peace of mind at Newark.”

Each of the £150,000 lines have a smaller footprint than the coal packing machines they replace, making the factory tidier and easier to work in.