Two services under one roof OEM realizes time and cost savings with converting and packaging services from Evans EVCO
The CLIENT OEM seeks cable repair kits made from lead foil tape
An OEM of oil exploration machinery needed a manufacturer to produce and package cable repair kits for its customers.
These kits would provide hand-held rolls of lead foil tape, so workers could easily patch up minor ruptures to the cable sleeving. This line of pressure-sensitive tape was specifically engineered by 3M for this company to withstand the extremely challenging conditions the cable was exposed to during underground exploration, including high temperatures, sparks, oil and more.
Challenge Protecting a highly malleable material against machining and shipping
Converting hand-held tape rolls from a master roll calls for a straightforward slitting and rewinding process. However, lead tape can be easily damaged when using standard machining, packaging and shipping.
Lead foil tape is incredibly pliable, so it can easily warp, bend and develop wrinkles even when subjected to slight pressure.
- Machining: Standard tooling in a slitting machine would exert excessive force on delicate lead foil, causing the edges of the newly cut tape to emerge warped.
- Packaging and shipping: Proper protection of lead tape is essential for shipping. Humidity exposure during transit or storage can cause the foil to corrode. Also, any impact inflicted on the product in transit would result in dented, useless rolls of tape.
- Sourcing: Lead foil tape comes in 150-pound master rolls that are not only expensive and require materials handling equipment, but they also demand longer lead time to source compared to other tapes.
Winning this OEM’s ongoing business would require Evans EVCO to overcome these issues and execute an efficient production line of repair kits, while maintaining an exceptional level of quality.
Solution Collecting data for precision in planning
Given the high potential for damage that lead foil tape could sustain at every stage of production and shipping, Evans EVCO immediately recognized that precision in planning was key to a successful outcome.
Achieving perfect straight edges with each cut
Before we cut into the first roll of lead foil tape, we collected as much data as possible so we could implement our plan with a high level of confidence. First, we went directly to the manufacturer, 3M, on
best handling practices for the lead foil tape. Over the course of our analysis, we determined that the standard tooling in the slitting machinery would likely damage the edges of the lead foil tape. We commissioned a custom blade for the slitting machine, designed specifically to achieve straight precise edging in lead foil tape.
Perfect packaging that protects against movement and moisture
Evans EVCO drew on its decades of experience to pack for just about any scenario. We procured anti-corrosive bags and desiccant materials to protect the rolls against exposure to humidity during transit and storage, and boxes that would protect and contain the rolls against impact. We easily integrated the kit assembly into our production line for efficient packing.
Our manufacturing process is designed for continuous improvement. Each subsequent production run is calibrated to elevate quality and efficiency of the final output. With each subsequent order, we aim to raise our value through achieving greater efficiency. The longer clients work with Evans EVCO, the more efficient we become.
RESULTS INTEGRATED SERVICES FOR SEAMLESS PROCUREMENT
Thanks to Evans EVCO, the OEM receives the dual benefit of accessing two services under one roof: Converting a specialty tape into an easy-to-use format that’s expertly kitted and packaged to safeguard quality during the rigors of international shipment. Thanks to our efficient solution, the OEM can now replenish its inventory of cable repair kits through our integrated services with zero hassle, zero markup.
At a Glance
- Identifying a machining process that wouldn’t mar the edges of highly malleable lead foil tape
- Cost-effective packaging and kitting that holds rolls in place during transit and international shipping, to preserve the edges
- Keeping product waste to an absolute minimum during prototyping and production to keep pace with the expense and long lead times for sourcing the master material
- Developing a scalable production plan that improves efficiency and performance over time
- Minimized product waste through precision planning and material analysis
- Commissioned and procured custom blade designed for achieving straight edging in lead foil tape
- Sourced protective packaging materials for shipping and storage and integrated assembly into production
- Fewer vendors for services
- Enhanced quality
- Protection against damage during transit and timelines
- Streamlined shipping and timelines
- Easy to restock
- 3M lead foil tape
- Spooling cores specified for the OEM
- Custom tooling
- Anticorrosive film
- Moisture-neutralizing desiccant
- Boxes with the right dimensions to hold kits without allowing the contents to jostle in transit
- Slitting and rewinding
- Custom die made specifically for slitting lead foil tape
- Material handling equipment to transport and hoist the 150-pound master rolls.