Home > Manufacturing > Understanding Metering Roll Gap Control And Other Issues

metering roll gap controlThere are many issues for you to consider as a business owner, some minute and others far-reaching. All too easily, you could end up ruining an entire product delivery simply because, for example, a machine’s metering roll gap control is off. Therefore, it’s important that you understand not only the equipment you’re dealing with, but whether it’s worth it for you to invest in the equipment itself, or a third party that could manufacture products for you.

Manufacturing isn’t as simple as investing in a certain machine and moving forward. There are many moving parts to consider, literally and figuratively. With that being said, let’s explore some of those moving parts in action, and how you can best address these issues as a responsible business owner.

What is a Metering Roll?

So you’re looking for a metering roll. It’s important that you know exactly what you seek when making this kind of purchase, as it’s certainly not a small one. A metering roll is essentially used to distribute material from an applicator to a surface—specifically, in this case, a substrate. Though the thickness of the applied material itself can vary, it’s further affected by the measures of the metering roll itself.

A metering roll may be metal. In some cases, you’ll see a metering roll transfer ink onto a printing plate. Generally speaking, the effectiveness of a metering roll can directly impact the final product of a coated product. This means that it’s important for a metering roll to be not only correctly assembled, but correctly used. What can play into this is metering roll gap control.

What Does Metering Roll Gap Control Refer To?

If you’re not sure about what “metering roll gap control” refers to—don’t worry. We’re here to help! Gap control, when it comes to metering rolls, refers to the gap between two rollers. The gap between rollers can affect the thickness of a material. Depending on how thick or thin you want a metering roll to be, you’ll adjust the roller accordingly.

If we fail to properly maintain gap control, this can result in an uneven or otherwise unsightly product. This, of course, is just one issue that you can run into while utilizing a metering roll—among other types of equipment used during the manufacturing process. The question is… what can you as a business owner do to avoid it?

What’s The Problem with Manufacturing in House?

In theory, you could manufacture products in house. As a small business owner, you understandably want to be hands-on as much as possible, and doesn’t manufacturing products in house allow you to do that? In theory, perhaps—but the reality is much more complicated. Fortunately, manufacturing through a third party doesn’t mean giving up your control and oversight.

There are several issues that come up when you manufacture in-house, among them:

  • Quality control.

This is the main issue that occurs when you manufacture in-house. Even if you have the best of intentions, you may not have employees trained and ready to handle certain types of equipment (like metering rolls) correctly. It’s important that you either hire employees ready to use this equipment, or train your existing employees to do so. However, this can take a significant amount of time. Which leads us to our next point…

  • Efficiency.

Because acquiring qualified employees take a significant amount of time (and those less experienced may take longer to carry out manufacturing processes) you’ll likely create product more slowly.

  • Affordability.

As previously mentioned, when you work in manufacturing, you’ll need not only qualified employees but the necessary equipment as well. Quite often, business owners either rent or buy equipment and facilities. However, there’s never certainty that you’ll need them for the long term. Therefore, it’s much more cost efficient (and financially wise) to work with a third party manufacturer. Manufacturers like CTI have equipment and facilities on hand already, and in the long term this is the more affordable option for most small business owners.

  • Convenience.

Here’s the thing—when you own manufacturing equipment (like for example a roll coating machine) you’ll always need to maintain that machine. This will take not only effort but time, and your production schedule could easily become disturbed by a broken metering roll, for example. A third party manufacturer is more prepared for these scenarios, and you won’t have to worry about a delivery failing to meet your timeline or expectations.

How Do I Find A Responsible Third Party Manufacturer?

Finding a responsible third party manufacturer that you can trust with everything from adhesive coating to metering roll gap control may seem intimidating at first. However, the right company will walk you through each step of the process and answer your questions openly. With that in mind, it’s easier to recognize a good company than you might realize.

At CTI, it’s important to us that you feel comfortable from the start. That’s why we go through an initial consultation process, during which we can get to know one another. Not only does this process ensure that you feel comfortable with us—it also ensures that we meet your needs through our services. We’ll always be honest with you.

Additionally, after the consultation you’ll be able to inspect initial prototypes, as well as a pilot run. The point is that you’re involved in the process. Recognizing that you can’t handle all of your manufacturing needs in house doesn’t mean that you’re giving up involvement and control—it just means that you’re collaborating with a company that can help you. Contact CTI at 419-924-5566 or here; let’s discuss this further!