Whether the final shape is a long log or rounded roll, moulding for consistency at high speeds requires precision and control. Precision ensures that dough balls are delivered in the proper position for repeatable shaping. Controls maintain each piece’s shape and keep production speeding along.
“Ensuring a well-sheeted dough piece followed by precise centering under the moulder belt is critical to the final product shape,” said Bruce Campbell, executive product manager, AMF Bakery Systems. Dough piece spacing is everything. If the dough isn’t hitting the moulder in the same place every time, the final shape won’t be consistent or quality. AMF uses a dough ball spacer and extended bed moulder to provide precision in moulding and panning.
Manufactured by Gemini Bakery Equipment’s equity partner Werner & Pfleiderer, the BM Series Bread Sheeter Moulder’s infeed conveyor features a specially designed centering device that controls delivery of the dough balls to the sheeting head. With that in place, dough balls enter the moulder correctly and can be shaped the right way each time.
Dough positioning is key, but control of the various features on the moulder also have a large say in the final shape. For example, Gemini’s BM Bread Moulder has a high-speed curling conveyor that pre-forms dough pieces, leading to improved sheeting and moulding.
The BM Bread Moulder and the company’s Roll Line Sheeter Moulder both use variable-speed independently driven sheeting rollers. These allow operators to target the sheeting and moulding action, which leads to improved shapes and sheeting but also allows operators to adjust to product changes more easily.
Shaffer, a Bundy Baking Solution, uses independent direct-drive sheeting rollers to provide elongation control as well as adapt to any changes in production.
“The ratio between rollers can be varied for speed changes and weight changes,” said Kirk Lang, vice-president, Shaffer.
While the independent direct-drive rollers provide elongation control, Shaffer designed its pre-sheeting roller to be close to the primary sheeting roller, providing more elongation.
“The precision adjustment on the pressure board height and width allow for accurate setting and ensure the consistency of the dough,” Mr. Lang said.
Shaffer also offers product selection standard on its equipment that controls the speed of the primary sheeting roller, secondary roller, various belts, pan conveyor and all dusters. This ensures every batch is made to the same specifications without the opportunity for human error. Bakers can also decide to program the automatic set up of infeed guides; pre-sheeting, primary and secondary roller gap; cross-grain back-stop adjustment; pressure board height; dough and pan guide widths; and pan-stop sensor position.
Richard Breeswine, president and chief executive officer, Koenig Bakery Systems, said Koenig uses its Rex method to promote optimal rounding.
“It basically means that the dough is already pre-portioned for gentle dough handling and high weight accuracy,” he said.
Rotating star rollers in a pre-portioning hopper cut the dough into portions by weight. After being pushed through the dividing drum, these dough pieces are allowed to rest on an intermediate belt before moving to the moulder.
Dough pieces are rounded by an oscillating rounding drum. At this point, optimal moulding is due to Koenig’s electrically adjustable rounding eccentric and exchangeable rounding plates. The company’s latest dividing and rounding line, the T-Rex AW, uses specially designed rounding ledges to put out 72,000 pieces/hour in a 12-row operation and is the most efficient dough divider and rounder in the company.
“This machine is revolutionary,” Mr. Breeswine said. “It combines modularity and product variety with gentle dough processing and high performance.”
To keep dough moving through the moulder, Fritsch offers monitoring on its long moulding unit on infeed and exit sides. This helps operators avoid dough accumulation, which can get out of hand quickly at high outputs.
“The scraper on the calibrating roller of the long moulding unit is pneumatically adjusted when dough is on the line, which prevents heating and automatically cleans the roller,” said Anna-Marie Fritsch, president, Fritsch USA.
The company uses contrarily moving moulding belts and reaches high throughput, up to 130 rows per minute for specialty products. For high-speed round moulding, Fritsch offers multi-step tools and pneumatically adjustable cups that maintain quality shaping.
This article is an excerpt from the July 2019 issue of Baking & Snack. To read the entire feature on moulders, click here.