soda ash, and limestone are weighed and mixed with other
raw materials and cullet to create the batch mixture.
furnace melts the raw materials together. Our furnaces vary
in size, and can process from 80 to 500 tons of molten glass
per day. Molten glass usually ranges in temperature between
2,300 and 2,800 ºF. A Furnace Control Room houses the
computer which monitors and controls furnace temperature.
Natural gas, oil and electricity provide the energy needed
for melting and to operate the plant.
Refiner distributes the molten glass to the forehearth. The glass
temperature is now below 2,300 ºF. The forehearth brings
the temperature of the molten glass to a uniform level. A Shearing
and Distribution System cuts molten glass from the forehearth
into uniform gobs and sends the gobs to the I.S. (Individual Section)
Forming Machine where compressed air or pressure forces the molten
gobs into the shape of the mold. The control system monitors and
adjusts the I.S. Forming Machine speed and timing. The glass temperature
drops further in the Forming Machine and is typically below 2,100
ºF. When formed glass containers leave the machine, they
cross a cooling plate where they are cooled rapidly to below 900ºF.
The glass has now passed from liquid to solid form.
formed containers are loaded into an Annealing Lehr where
their temperature is brought back up close to the melting
point, then reduced gradually to below 900ºF. This
reheating and slow cooling eliminates the stress in the
containers making them stronger and shock resistant.
Cold End sprays apply an exterior coating to strengthen
the containers and reduce abrasions. Their action reduces
the glass temperature further to between 225 and 275 ºF.
Fast Cooling Section then brings container temperatures
down to about 100ºF, cool enough to touch by hand.
manufactured containers then pass through a series of instruments
that physically and optically test the containers. Rejected containers
are recycled back into the furnace.
are then packed either by a Case Packer or a Bulk Palletizer.
The Case Packer can put 6, 15, 18, 24, or 48 containers in
corrugated cases for shipment. The cases are then sent to
the Case Palletizer where they are stacked in a prearranged
pattern. The pattern increases stability for shipment and
is often determined by the customer. Containers can also be
sent to a Bulk Palletizer which stacks individual containers
in 5 to 15 layers, depending on the size of the container.
A Strapper fits plastic bands around stacked boxes for added
stability and finally the Stretch Wrap Unit covers stacked
boxes with plastic wrap.