The Breadwinner: Habasit`s Spiral success in Indonesia:
On a roll in the right direction

Habasit Far East`s (HFE) biggest success in the spiral market is in Indonesia where bread is a popular and essential feature of the local diet. While each city has its own bread factory, the largest manufacturer is an Indonesian-Japanese Corporation. An average manufacturing plant produces between 10,000 and 40,000 breads per hour. The most common variety are white and sweet breads so there are normally two general production lines in every factory. After baking, the cooling of the breads is done by spirals. A production plant will typically have four single and two double spirals.

PR620 SPS belt with Curved Top rows

In Indonesia, HabasitLINK® plastic modular belts have been the ideal choice for spirals for more than 14 years. Habasit`s first local success was in 2008, when we came into contact with an OEM who was eager to try HabasitLINK® plastic modular belts (PMB) for improved performance of his plant.

In close cooperation with our local distributor, as well as technical support from Habasit Far East, we were able to equip over 20 single and eight double spirals in local bread manufacturing plants at a progressive and competitive price. These efforts made Habasit the most successful PMB spiral belt supplier in Indonesia.

Rising to the occasion one loaf at a time

Every customized success comes with its own unique challenges, and this case was no exception. Since Indonesian bread is light and oily, even the slight vibration on the surface of the belt caused the breads to move. It was essential to find a way to keep the loaves aligned even as they were exiting the cooling spirals.

Additionally the spirals are tall with a small drum diameter which creates a steep incline and decline. The inner collapsed modules move forward and backwards as they run over drum cage bars. This, combined with the steep angle, was causing the bread to slide, resulting in a rotated position at the exit.

Bread disorientation on one of the first spiral installations (using M2540)

Keeping in mind the most cost-effective approach, we worked in close collaboration with the OEM to better match the spiral drum. This helped to prevent movement between the collapsed inner modules. We also utilized special cage bar caps to reduce the distance between the bars.

Next we decided to further minimize the gaps between the inner collapsed modules by using HabasitLINK® plastic modular belts, which have a unique and patented feature: radius plugs. The belt collapsing could be adjusted by these plugs to exactly match the drum diameter.

Since one important factor of calculating a belt collapse is safety, we decided to make pre-emptive tests. Our engineers assembled a sample of the belt that covered a 180 degree angle and used plugs that perfectly fit the drum diameter without any remaining gaps between the modules.

When the important day of the final spiral commissioning came, we were very curious as we watched the first breads enter the double spiral. After 70 minutes the breads finally reached the outfeed. We were delighted to see that the breads were in exactly the same position as they had entered.

Several days later we received confirmation from the plant manager that our belt had been officially approved and was accepted as the standard choice for all future plants.

We now had the chance to retrofit the existing spirals and to replace the competitor belts (all of which were problematic for bread alignment) with HabasitLINK®.

While other suppliers were unable to offer the necessary radius plugs, Habasit`s unique solution made it possible to adjust the belt to any drum size. Through in-depth and accurate analysis combined with efficient support from our global team, as well as local engineers in Indonesia, we demonstrated that Habasit lives up to its reputation as the worldwide lead solution provider.

The secret ingredient of the upper crust

Habasit is not just about one-time solutions, and that is why follow-up is essential to our success. A year later, we were contacted again by the bread maker, who was bewildered by the return of the same bread orientation problem. After visiting the plant, we soon found the reason. The belt had worn down under the constant tension of production and the gaps between the inner modules had increased.

We solved this by using Curved Top modules, another unique and patented product. The curved smooth surface is elevate by only a few millimetres, so the slight arch does not damage the bread. Fortunately our main spiral belt PR620 SPS also has a Curved Top design. We introduce a Curved Top module every few rows so that the bread would be stopped from sliding.

We had the opportunity to test a belt section of the HabasitLINK® plastic modular belt with the Curved Top modules. Under critical supervision by Habasit engineers, as well as the bread maker himself, the belt ran successfully through the spiral. The OEM was so enthusiastic about the results of the test that he asked us to replace all the spiral belts in the plant with the new solution.

We were happily back in the bread spiral business.

Long term success is hard earned but worth every discovery along the way. Habasit never gives up, never stops innovating, and that is the recipe to every upper crust solution.

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