Double Up!

Nonwovens Converting

When PFFC first interviewed Tufco Technologies in February 2003, it was at a period of significant growth and investment for the company. Time has not slowed progress at this enterprising Wisconsin-based converter.

As a leading provider of diversified contract manufacturing, specialty printing, and business imaging products, the ISO 9001:2000-certified company now employs nearly 350 operations and staff employees between its contract manufacturing plant in Green Bay, WI, and its business imaging facility in Newton, NC.

In response to its steadily growing wet and dry wipe production operation, Tufco invested in the Viper production line, custom designed and built by S & S Specialty Systems.

Commenting on this latest investment within its contract manufacturing facility, Louis LeCalsey III, Tufco’s president and CEO since 1996, explains, "We continue to make major capital commitments to fulfill significant new contracts, and we have more than doubled our wipes capacity."

Tufco also notes that supporting investments in microbiological and process quality capabilities have kept pace with capacity increases to assist contract customers in faster product development timelines.

"[The Viper] provides Tufco with a major boost in capacity for wet and dry wipes for consumer products companies marketing household, cleaning, institutional, and personal care products," describes Michele Corrigan, VP, sales and marketing. "This new equipment offers the flexibility to run both wet and dry wipe products with fast, efficient changeovers."

Flexible & Versatile
Recognizing its growth markets require versatile cut-off lengths along with the need for both wet and dry wipes, Tufco was confident S & S Specialty Systems could provide it with the flexibility and increased capacity the company required. Installed in June 2004, the Viper line offers all of Tufco’s needs in one production line.

"We have a proven track record of success with S & S through previous projects we have worked on together. They have a broad technical background with a variety of resources to assist in rebuilding equipment as well as new technology design," explains Corrigan. When Tufco approached the OEM’s in the marketplace, S & S offered a solution—one production line that could run both wet and dry wipes.

It was with this "one production line" concept that Tufco Technologies knew S & S Specialty Systems could deliver the type of equipment Tufco needed to meet its customers’ diverse requirements.

"Our engineering and manufacturing experts worked with S & S technical support to evaluate run criteria and operational issues such as line speeds, machine efficiencies, spare parts, maintenance, etc. After all technical criteria were defined, the decision to proceed was reached," says Corrigan.

The unique flexibility the Viper production line offers includes:

  • Production of wet or dry wipe products with variable sheet counts and sizes;
  • Numerous packaging options including cross-cut, inter-folded, flat folded, and other finished formats;
  • The ability to convert various fabric-like papers and nonwovens suited for skin contact or surface cleaning wipes; and
  • Allowance for the introduction of wet, dry, or coated materials to enhance cleansing and other product features.
S & S Systems engineered the turnkey Viper production line to offer several product design configurations with high efficiency performance, offering flexibility, which Corrigan contends "is critical to Tufco’s customer-partner success" and accommodates plans for future expansion.

Tufco Technologies
Box 23500
Green Bay, WI 54305

S & S Specialty Systems—

To read Nsenga Byrd Thompson’s February 2003 article on Tufco Technologies, click here.

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