What has always made Lego so successful? The colourful bricks have studs on the top and anti-studs on the bottom. The studs fit exactly between the anti-studs, forming a perfect interface thanks to which any brick can be built on any other brick. This also applies to different-sized bricks. For example, various motors can also be easily attached, exchanged and combined with all the other Lego components – and we are now applying this principle to our shredders. Of course we don’t call our components bricks – they’re rotors, cutting tips, counter knives, screens and drives. These parts have to be selected and combined in an ideal manner in order to achieve a shredding process with high performance and results of excellent quality.
Why a modular system?
Why is a modular system so important? Like so many other machine builders, we are constantly faced with the challenge of meeting our customers’ requirements, which are often extremely specific – so we adapt cutting tips, rotors, counter knives and drives to match these requirements perfectly. Here’s an example – do you have to process particularly tough materials? We supply a system that is tailored to tackle materials like this. Do the electric motors used in the shredder have to meet specific standards in your region? This is no problem for Vecoplan, and meeting such standards has resulted in a large number of different solutions in our company. This complexity isn’t actually a problem, because it enables us to respond flexibly to market requirements, so you as the operator can remain competitive in the long term. A static product programme cannot make this happen. However, this increase in complexity also means more warehousing and design effort for the increasing number of new solutions. So how do we still manage to react flexibly to our customers’ requirements and deliver spare parts or the finished machine to you even faster?
A modified product architecture
Our task is to reduce the degree of complexity. To this end, we have changed the product architecture. We have put our shredders into different platform categories depending on their application and size, and we have clearly assigned the modules according to function. We have standardised our interfaces (in line with the Lego system) – but the platform of the machines remains unchanged. You can now configure your desired product very easily – it’s just like the configurator of a vehicle manufacturer, except that instead of choosing leather seats, a multi-functional steering wheel and a 210 hp engine, you select the perfect module for screen, rotor or drive. Each module is available in different versions and can be combined with other components as required.
The grid principle
For this purpose, we have packed cutting tips, counter knives, screens and rotors into a grid with uniform module sizes. This modular grid allows our shredders to be finely graduated in width from 800 mm to more than 3,200 mm. A wide range of tool sizes and types can be mapped within this grid, so we don’t have to change the designs of the adjoining components. We have also applied the basic idea of the grid to other components such as our drives.
Specific advantages for you
Thanks to this grid principle, we can design a completely individual solution for you within the spectrum – while maintaining a manageable degree of complexity at the same time. We don’t have to start from scratch with the design, and no time-consuming special solution is necessary. If you decide to purchase a new machine that’s perfectly adapted to your requirements, this approach means we can tailor your perfect shredder even faster. With the modular system we can produce immediately (configure to order) instead of waiting in the traditional manner for the customer’s drawing (design to order).You’ll also benefit from even faster parts availability thanks to our warehousing, which is now much more streamlined. The various modules can also be retrofitted, allowing you to adapt the functionality of your machine to changing requirements – and that’s remarkably similar to the Lego system too!
The perfect shredder for your application
Our first shredder based on this new, highly adaptable modular system was the VIZ platform, which we introduced at the Düsseldorf trade fair for the plastics and rubber industry in 2018. This principle is now being applied to our entire range of shredders. Besides presenting several platforms in the coming months, we will be introducing a number of additions at the module level. This will make Vecoplan shredders even more versatile. Our modular system will enable you to choose the perfect shredder your requirements.