Reel Splitting

reel splitting machineHighlander International Recycling Introduction to Reel Splitting Services

Highlander International have acquired a modern fully refurbished paper reel splitter to assist us in efficiently and safely cutting large paper reels. The machine is capable of cutting reels of size 2.7m long and 2.2m diametre, at a rate of one reel every 2 minutes. I am delighted to provide some details and illustrations as below:

Purchase and Installation - the story:

The reel splitting machine is a BOA HRSM 25/40T fully automatic, fully refurbished entity. It comes with all safety measures, including guards, emergency stops and a proximity warning system. The cutting blade length is 2700mm and the cutting blade height is 150mm.

The machine was purchased second hand and required quite a lot of tender loving care before it was able to be operated! During the process, it was a case of all hands on deck, weekend working, late nights, cleaning, painting, grinding and handling before it was ready to be hooked up to the electricity and then bolted to the ground.

The machine was dismantled into 3 parts and transported on a 40 foot flat bed trailer before being brought to East Kilbride. Before re-assembling and positioning in our purpose built warehouse, Highlander staff had to clean the machine down and paint it in the company colours - this took Highlander warehouse staff, Lewis and Angus, and both Directors, Stephen and Brian, 6 hours on a Saturday morning, plenty of cloths, de-greasing liquid, brushes, scrapers and even some fairy liquid!

Once cleaned, the machine was left to dry over the remainder of the weekend of 7th and 8th April 2013 and thankfully the weather held up over these two days (a miracle in itself) which allowed us to start painting the machine the following week.

Once painted and dried (again the weather held up for us - another miracle) the machine was ready to be positioned and re-assembled on Wednesday 10th April, which took 2 days. On Friday 12th April 2013 the electrical contractors hooked the control panel up to the 3 phase - power supply and after testing, power had successfully been connected to the machine.

On Saturday 13th April 2013 after another team effort from the Highlander boys and the installation engineer, we got the machine in its final position, bolted to the ground and tested with the first test reel. As predicted, the blade that cuts the paper reels was a little blunt which caused the cut on the first test reel to be a little ragged, however all the other controls were in working order and from this stage onwards we had a fully automatic, fully operating reel cutting machine, meaning we can potentially cut a 2 ton reel in less than 3 minutes!

Depending on the type of reel material you supply us with, the following process is performed to ensure all reel material received is handled, swiftly, efficiently and safely.

Receiving Material:

When a supplier of material in reels agrees an order, it is important that we follow a set procedure so the reels are handled, recycled and administered in a professional, diligent manner. Once terms are agreed with one of our commercial team, we will send relevant paperwork which confirms the terms, the logistics utilised, the process used for the reels in question (general splitting and recycling or security destruction), the nature of the reels, et al. We will also issue a waste transfer note which will cover all legislative requirements involved in the transport of the material in question.

A set day for collection or delivery is agreed and this is advised to all parties involved including the supplier, hauler, our operations staff and our admin team.

On arrival at our depot, the vehicle will be weighed using our fully calibrated weigh-bridge and will be escorted to our unloading area. We utilise telescopic reel clamp trucks so we can load and unload from one side of the trailer, saving time, reducing vehicle movements and improving the overall safety experience.

reels received

All reels received are numbered, catalogued and samples taken for future reference and audit trail purposes. General reels are stored in the main storage shed for destruction at the appropriate time. Sensitive or security reels have their own quarantine area and are labelled with a red destruction sticker, so our highly trained operatives know exactly the status of such material and so they know that these reels are be destroyed as priority over all other materials.

We guarantee that all security / sensitive reels are split, shredded and destroyed within 48 hours of receipt at our facility and a destruction certificate issued the next day, signed by a director as final assurance of total reel destruction.

Security fence

Reel splitting - Loading the machine and cutting the reel:

Reels are loaded using a fully automatic lifting mechanism, which is designed to lift reels onto the feed conveyor, in a quick and safe manner.

Once the reel has been carefully lifted onto the feed conveyor, it is carried to the cutting position, directly underneath the reel cutting blade. Once in position, the operator presses the "knife down" buttons and the cutting blade is lowered towards the reel to be cut, using 50 tons of hydraulic power and a razor sharp, especially made cutting blade.

Once the blade reaches the reel, it simply cuts the paper, which falls away as each layer is penetrated by the cutting blade. The blade position can be controlled to cut the reel as deep as you require - all the way down past the core if required. If the cores are steel, aluminium or any material that means the core is to be returned and re-used to the material supplier, the operator will carefully control the blade cut, so the integrity of the re-usable core is maintained, ready to be returned to the supplier at a later date.

Reel Splitting

Reel splitting - Cutting options:

To make the material easier to bale at the next stage of the process, the reel splitter operator can cut the material in several smaller pieces, by simply moving the conveyor forward and back then bringing down the blade accordingly. This makes the material easier to handle, move and bale before being sent for final recycling at one of Highlander's nominated paper mill partners.

Reel splitting - after the cut:

Once the reels have been adequately cut, the conveyor is moved forward and the material falls alongside our automatic baler for further processing.

Reel Splitting

Reel splitting - making the material ready for recycling:

The final stage of the process is making the material ready for recycling. This involves baling the material into bales of approximate weight of 750kg. We do this through our fully automatic, "Lindemann Bigro" baling press which has a pressing force of 120 tons pressure. For general reel splitting, the material is simply baled and stored until we have circa 25 tons, at which time we arrange recycling at a nominated paper mill which can either be within the UK or can be exported to Europe.

For material that is of a sensitive / security nature, such as reels with a company specific watermark or printed reels with sensitive information attached, we make sure the material is shredded, before being baled and ready for final recycling. The shredding process is carried out using our in-house Hammermill shredder, capable of shredding up to 7 tons per hour. This process is performed under the guise of remotely accessible CCTV and all operatives are vetted by disclosure Scotland for convictions and the shredding is performed to EN15713 standards for confidential waste shredding . The security area is fully fenced off and enclosed, accessible only by the management of the company. This security destruction process ensures beyond any doubt, that reels of a sensitive nature are fully destroyed to the highest, most diligent standard. As a matter of procedure, a destruction certificate is issued to all security reel suppliers within 48 hours of receipt of the material.

Reel Splitting

Reel splitting - recycling the processed material:

The established outlet for recovered paper is to send the material for recycling at a paper mill. Paper mills in the UK can process circa 4 million tons of recovered paper every year. As the UK produces around 8 million tons per year of paper for recycling, it is inevitable that a large percentage is exported for consumption in other countries such as China, Indonesia, India and closer to home such as France, Germany and Holland.

The types of products made by such mills can vary from writing paper, tissue products, packaging papers / boards, publishing papers and so on. The mills we supply with recovered paper will depend on the nature of the paper and the type of product made by the different mills concerned. Typical mill production can vary from as little as 10,000 tons per year for very specialised papers, to up to 1,000,000 tons per year behemoth machines that make high volume consumer papers such as newsprint or packaging papers.

Reel Splitting