Clutch Adjustment to Reduce Driver Insert Wear

One of the main contributing factors to insert wear is improper clutch adjustment.  Each Swan-Matic capper has an adjustable clutch above the driver shell.  Proper clutch torque adjustment is essential for an insert’s proper wear time.  Another contributing factor that shortens insert life is dirt, oil or any liquids.  Wipe out the insert occasionally with isopropyl alcohol and a clean cloth. Many solvents in the products will attack the rubber insert also, causing it to swell and then break off when used for tightening. In some cases, this can be overcome with the use of a metallic serrated driver shell instead of rubber inserts. For a quotation, send 12 sample caps and two bottles to the Swan-Matic Division at our Fairview address.
  1. Loosen the clutch lock nut (C032) two turns.
  2. Standing in front of the machine with a wrench in each hand. Place your right hand wrench on the wrench flat at the top of C019 and left right hand wrench on the wrench flats at the bottom on of C041. Bring the two wrenches together to decrease torque and push them apart to increase torque on your cap. (See fig. 3.2)
  3. To increase the applied torque, tighten either wrench. To decrease the torque, loosen each wrench. (Clutch cap, body and lock nut have right-hand threads.)
  4. After each adjustment, hand tighten the clutch lock nut.
  5. To adjust the height of the capping head to allow for different sized containers, stop the spindle at its lowest point and lower the machine head until the insert touches a hand-tightened cap.
  6. Tighten the column clamp (Page 1 Fig. 1.3) to hold the head in position.
  7. Raise the spindle (C021) and the insert by turning on the machine, and then remove the container and cap.
  8. Lower the machine head about 1/8 inch and retighten it.
  9. Cycle the capper to tighten a cap onto a container. The shell and insert will stop rotating when the cap is tight.
  10. If the clutch does not stop rotating at the bottom of the stroke and the cap is tight, the insert will wear rapidly. If this happens, loosen the clutch slightly.  If you cannot see the shell stop, draw vertical lines on it with a marker to help you see when the shell stops turning.


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  • Greg Szuba