Powder Fillers - Powder Filling Equipment
Powder fillers come in three main types:
Auger Fillers and
Cup Fillers. All three have
particular characteristics with advantages and disadvantages
for various products including powders, granules, and even
for parts counting. The fact that we call these machines powder
fillers is something generic to the packaging industry and not
a limitation to the many applications that can be run. When
deciding on the type of Powder filling equipment that is best
suited to your application we have a number of factors to
consider including speed requirements, compressibility of the
product, flow characteristics, stickiness, cost of the
product, irregularity of the size and shape of the product,
and the range of filling needs from smallest to largest. While
there is a large area of overlap between these three types of
powder fillers, there are also certain products that can only
be run on one type of machine. Please read on and we will
refine these differences for you.
Net Weight Fillers
Net weight filling machines are distinct from auger fillers
and cup fillers (both are volumetric filling machines) in that
it is the only type of machine that actually weighs the
product before dispensing into your container. This fact alone
may help mitigate the need for a checkweigher down the line. A
net weight filler moves product from a hopper via vibratory
trays or belts depending on the type of product. The product
streams directly into a bucket mounted onto a load cell. As
the weight in the bucket nears the target weight the feed
system slows to a "dribble" feed rate. Oftentimes a second
tray or belt is added that is dedicated for the dribble feed
when great accuracy is required. When the final weight is
reached the dribble feed is also turned off. Now the
filler is on standby to dump its contents via a trap door,
down a funnel and into the container or bag.
Advantages of Net Weight Fillers:
- Very Accurate Fill Weights
- Gentle Product Handling Capability - Little
- Many combinations of vibratory trays and dribble feed
gates are available
- Handles Irregular Shapes, Sizes and Weights
- Can be ganged together for more accurate weights on
irregular product sizes and weights to compare between any
2 heads for better overage control.
- Can be adapted for counting consitent products such as
hardware, tablets, and other piece count applications.
Disadvantages of Net Weight Fillers:
- Relatively Slow Compared to augers and cup fillers
although that gap has been narrowed with the introduction
of the IQ series
- Running very fine powders such as
talcs, flour, and powdered milk can get a little messy.
Auger fillers are the machine of choice for all fine
powders or any product that has consistent size particulates
such as talcum powders, flour, cake mixes and more.
Auger filling equipment consists of a main hopper, stirring
bar to keep the auger fed (even on powders that are not free
flowing), and an auger that fits in a closeley fit cylinder.
So long as the auger flights can be consistently fed, these
machines can be extremely accurate. Since auger fillers are
volumetric they do not actually weigh the product, except in
cases where mated directly to a scale, but depend on accurate
revolution counts of the auger. In some applications
auger fillers can be used as depositors for fillings such as
for eggrolls or other light extrudable types of products.
Advantages of Auger Fillers
- Fast, oftentimes usually at least 2-3 times faster
than a single head net weight filler
- Relatively dust free, even on very fine powders that
tend to get airborne easily. This is because auger fillers
can be made so they are virtually closed off from the
atmosphere, even during the dispense cycle.
- Can run free flowing powders as well as many less than
free flowing products, so long as the product is
- Easy to integrate into a wide variety of packaging
applications such as form and fill machines or
applications for cans, bottles or boxes.
- Large range of filling capacity without need for
- Very cost effective solution
Disadvantages of Auger Fillers
- Not reliably accurate for products with irregular
shapes or densities
- Can damage products that cannot withstand compression
- Not particularly soft handling of product.
Fillers (Also known as Pocket Fillers)
Cup fillers are also volumetric fillers that work in a
different way than an auger filler. If you imagine a measuring
cup where you level off the cup with a straight blade, you
have an understanding of how a cup filler works.
work well with any free flowing product such as nuts,
granules, and course powders and can be found in reciprocating
and rotary styles. Cup fillers are also the machine of choice
for canning operations of peas, corn, beans and many other
similar products. A hopper sits above the top of the cup and
gravity feeds product in. Wipers remove excess product
so that the cup is leveled. When the cup reaches the
discharge chute it falls out of the bottom of the cup and into
the container or bag. Cup fillers can be made for very high
production rates compared to auger and net weight fillers.
Advantages of Cup Fillers - Pocket Fillers
- Can run virtually any free flowing product (not
recommended for fine powders)
- Fast - Capable of speeds into the hundreds of fills
- Simple design - very little downtime for mechanical
- Relatively inexpensive to other filling systems.
Disadvantage of Cup Fillers
- Very limited fill range without change parts (less
- Cannot run products that are not very free flowing
- Does not run irregular shapes or densities
Call Busch Machinery today and let our sales engineers help
find the right powder filling equipment for your application.
More than just a powder filler!
Net Weight Fillers can also fill cut
Dual Lane Net Weight Filling of
By replacing standard buckets with special wiper trays
a wide variety of cut fruit filling applications are
Auger Filling Machine Precision Doser 25mg-10g
Animation of Reciprocating Cup Filler