Flo-Cut™ - Sizer Halver
The Flo-Cut sizer halver is designed specifically for the potato processing industry. As the name of the machine indicates, the Flo-Cut Sizer Halver carries out two operations, namely grading (sizing) and cutting (halving). Potatoes enter the machine and all those under a pre-set diameter are graded out and allowed to pass straight through without being cut. All those above this diameter enter the cutting section of the machine where they are accurately sliced in half before being reintroduced into the flow of acceptable product and finally discharged.
The grading (sizing) operation is carried out by either a starwheel type (star finger grader) or screw roller type (Flo-Grade,M) grading unit. The Flo-Grade has been developed to be installed with the Flo-Cut sizer halver unit or on its own as a standalone potato tuber or grader. The Flo-Grade'u has a tapered screw design for gentle grading and transfer of potatoes.
The starwheel type grading unit comprises of a series of rotating shafts each of which is fitted with a number of rubber starwheels. The gap between the shafts is adjustable and the rotation of the shafts is synchronised such that all potatoes under the selected size fell down through the spaces between the starwheels and all those over this size are transported along the top of the starwheels. The gap between the shafts is adjusted by the turning of a single handle. This adjustment can be carried out while the machine is in operation therefore allowing for very precise tuning of the grading operation.
All potatoes which fall through the grader are gently lowered through a chute to a vibrating conveyor below and ultimately discharged at the far end of the machine. All oversize potatoes travel along the top of the grader and then enter the halving unit. The rotating shafts of the star finger grading unit are driven by a single fixed speed direct drive motor gearbox The Flo-Grade unit is installed with a variable speed drive unit.
Graded potatoes enter the cutting (halving) unit and are transported towards the blades at the far end by a set of rotating shafts, each of which is fitted with profiled plastic rollers. The rotation and design of these profiled rollers is such that the potatoes tend to settle into individual 'pockets' which exist between the rollers. As the potatoes travel between these pockets towards the cutting blades the centroid of each potato is precisely aligned with the cutting edge of the blade. There are a sufficient number of these rollers to ensure that each potato is very accurately aligned before it is driven into the rotating cutting blade.
Due to this precise alignment of the potatoes with the cutting blades they are always cut along their minor axis therefore giving maximum size reduction. Drive to the transport rollers is provided by a single fixed speed direct drive motor gearbox unit.
The cutting assembly consists of a number of circular blades mounted on a heavy duty shaft which is driven by a direct drive motor gearbox unit. The 4 lane sizer halver is equipped with a cutting assembly which has 4 blades and likewise the 6 lane model has 6 blades.
The machine is fitted with a single vibratory conveyor which is situated underneath the full length of both the grader and the cutting unit. The conveyor collects all acceptable sized product which falls through the grader and also picks up the discharge from the cutting unit. This design ensures that the final discharge from the machine is a consistent mix of cut and uncut product.
The capacity of Flo-Cut is expressed in terms of the number of potatoes entering the cutting section:-
- The 4 lane machine has a cutting capacity of approximately 10,500 tubers per hour.
- The 6 lane machine has a cutting capacity of approximately 16,000 tubers per hour.
To calculate the capacity in terms of kg/hour it is necessary to take into account the following factors:-
a) the average weight of each tuber
b) the percentage of the total throughput of product which requires cutting
As an example, if the average weight of each potato is 250g and 25% of the total throughput is above this average figure and requires cutting, then the maximum capacity of a 6 lane sizer halver machine would be approximately 16,000kg/hour. Higher capacity available on request.
- Flo-Cut,u can be tailored to suit customer product specifications (tuber size)
- Proven and refined design
- Grader adjustable during operation
- Precise cutting alignment for maximum size reduction
- High quality food grade materials throughout
- Consistent discharge of cut and uncut potatoes
- Easy clean design