Coming off the drying drums, the towel now enters our straight-through stacker drive. Older machines use either a ramp with a carriage (Mk.3 and 4 machines), or a somewhat similar design that makes the towel take a 90-degree turn through the unit (Mk.5 and 6). The ramp/carriage units are heavy, and can cause injury if someone has their hand in the wrong place when a towel breaks. While safer, the later stacker assemblies are subject to significant jamming.
We have also simplified the towel path, eliminating the guillotine assembly found on the Mk. 5 and 6 units, as well as the special "tension roller" they used to provided sufficient tension to let the towel alignment assembly do its job effectively.
This newer unit eliminates the turn, which has reduced the incidents of stacker jamming almost completely. And, like the rinse section, there is a manual release for the pressure roller, so that tension is maintained when the machine is stopped.
As you can see in the picture on the left, the path through the stacker drive is open and simple. The hinged cover (with safety interlock, top left) allows quick access if there is a problem, as well as for initial threading of the machine.
A single cylinder, mounted below the rollers, provides even pressure. The cylinder, grooved rubber roller, bearings and associated linkage, are identical to those used in the Dry Feed Hopper and J-Box Fill section, so you do not need to keep as large a variety of parts on hand.
Another improvement that we've made in deference to the Visa towels is our new stainless steel accumulator trough, shown below. While more expensive than the fiberglass troughs used in the past, it is stronger and more static-resistant. Visa towels have proven to be prone to static, so eliminating that charge became a priority item in 1996.
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