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Thread: Canning line recommendations?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,745

    Canning line recommendations?

    We're looking to purchase a canning line in the near future, and I'd greatly appreciate any feedback I can get from the community. Mostly, experience in using various lines, and post-purchase customer support experiences.

    We're looking at machines capable of 30-50 cans/minute, CO2 purge or counter-pressure. Reliability is high on our list of needs, as is good tech support when it's needed.

    The machines we're currently looking at include:

    Three Monkeys Animas

    ABE LinCan 35

    CODI CCL-45

    Alpha Brewing BC 35

    It seems the Wild Goose canners have a very good reputation, so I'd appreciate any input regarding those, too.

    Any input appreciated, good, bad, or otherwise!

    Thanks--
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Palau
    Posts
    1,930

    One more machine to consider....

    I bought a MicroCanner last year. Very reliable and easy to use. Small footprint and easily adjusted. Spare parts off-the-shelf. Priced reasonable and short lead times. Comes with pre- and post-rinse as well as air knife to blow off rinse water. Lids go on the can very quickly after fill with lid under-gas. Fast to set up right from the crate. Easy to move/relocate. Impressive logic and easy to understand operations. Fairly easy to change can size with no extra parts. Consistent fills. Uses low power 115vac circuit. I'm not saying any of your other choices aren't great, but for me this was the way to go. Especially since we needed the machine fast. Quite happy with this machine and will buy another soon for new startup I'm involved with.
    Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,745
    Thanks, Phillip, I'll look into that machine!

    Mind me asking what kind of TPOs you're getting with that line? Which model you're using?
    Last edited by TGTimm; 12-14-2017 at 09:40 AM.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Biloxi, MS
    Posts
    5
    We have the American Beer Equipment LinCan15 and could not be more happy with it’s performance. One of the main reasons we bought this line was the expandability to 30cpm or 60cpm when we are ready for it. Also, when we decide to start doing 16oz cans for seasonal and special releases, we have everything we need, just a few minor adjustments and we are off and running. We have had very few issues with ours in the year that we have been running it, but nothing that a quick phone call or email did not resolve immediately.

    Could not be more happy with all the support we have received from ABE, and would highly recommend to anyone looking for canning lines, or brewhouses for that matter.

    Hope this helps.

    Mark
    Biloxi Brewing Company
    Last edited by MACowley; 12-15-2017 at 11:27 AM.
    Sláinte,

    Mark Cowley
    Biloxi Brewing Company, LLC
    186 Bohn St
    Biloxi, Ms. 39530
    Phone: 2282731638
    Email: markc@biloxibrewing.com
    Facebook: BiloxiBrewingCompany
    Twitter: @BiloxiBrewing

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    1

    ABE is an impressive company

    We have an ABE CraftCan 15 that we've been running for about 9 months. Overall, we couldn't be happier with ABE and their equipment. Here's what's made the difference for us:

    -Canning line is underrated, we easily get 18-20 cans/min and thats with 16oz. I believe they might even be working on an upgrade option to the CraftCan that can nearly double the throughput.
    -DO level that is achievable with monitoring and fine tuner is outstanding (30-50ppb TPO, that's with 15-25ppb in the brite)
    -ABE technical support is like none other. Immediate response, large engineering and technician team and they'll do whatever they can to get any problem solved. We've barely had any problems (sometimes our fault too) but ABE is there for us 100%.
    -ABE sales team is great about getting you the equipment you need and helping with options and customizations. We've never felt like they were trying to close a deal, they're in it for a long-term relationship.
    -The onsite technician that commissioned our canning line and helped us get it up and running was amazing. We got everything running and dialed in fast and where our entire team was comfortable.

    ABE is a great company with amazing people. Their equipment is some of the best in the industry but what sets them apart is their entire package of sale/consulting, engineering and technical support. We've now made ABE our sole supplier for all other equipment in our brewery.

    Mark
    Drekker Brewing Company

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,745
    Thanks, folks.

    That's some pretty high praise for ABE! You've both hit on some of my major concerns. I'll pass this on to the powers that be for serious consideration.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Moab, Utah
    Posts
    471

    Tour

    Quote Originally Posted by TGTimm View Post
    Thanks, folks.

    That's some pretty high praise for ABE! You've both hit on some of my major concerns. I'll pass this on to the powers that be for serious consideration.
    Its good to go see the machine in action if at all possible. This will give you a better window into what kind of issues come up and how often.
    I am taking note of the new machines being advertized by Angelus on the forum.
    I can give you details on the Cask ACS5 if that one is on your list...

    Its advisable to get an Optical Seam Analysis system. Check out Quality by Vision. If you start out with one of these when your system is new you will thank yourself and it will help the learning curve on keeping the seamer in tune. While they also have a system to log and gauge the setup on the seamer, last I checked its quite expensive for smaller production Breweries to consider.
    The Seam Analysis gear is also pricey but definitely worth the investment.

    Star
    Warren Turner
    Industrial Engineering Technician
    HVACR-Electrical Systems Specialist
    Moab Brewery
    " No Cell Phone Zone."

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,745
    Warren--Which QBV product are you recommending? I'm looking at the SEAMetal LT right now.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    119

    Rinse system

    Quote Originally Posted by gitchegumee View Post
    I bought a MicroCanner last year. Very reliable and easy to use. Small footprint and easily adjusted. Spare parts off-the-shelf. Priced reasonable and short lead times. Comes with pre- and post-rinse as well as air knife to blow off rinse water. Lids go on the can very quickly after fill with lid under-gas. Fast to set up right from the crate. Easy to move/relocate. Impressive logic and easy to understand operations. Fairly easy to change can size with no extra parts. Consistent fills. Uses low power 115vac circuit. I'm not saying any of your other choices aren't great, but for me this was the way to go. Especially since we needed the machine fast. Quite happy with this machine and will buy another soon for new startup I'm involved with.
    Phillip,

    I'm also looking at buying a new Microcanner. What is your opinion of the flip rinse on the 202? Any opinion on how a twist rinse feed mechanism may be better or worse? Also wondering if you've considered an air blast instead of a wet rinse.

    Thanks,
    Scott
    Scott Swygert
    Founder - Honky Tonk Brewing Co.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Oklahoma City, OK
    Posts
    136
    We've been running a Wild Goose for several years, can't say enough good things about the line and the people at WG. Be happy to give any further detail you want, but you won't go wrong if you choose a goose.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Lincoln, Nebraska
    Posts
    513

    Alpha Brewing Operations - canning lines that weigh each can

    Weedy Weidenthal, Brewmaster Tombstone Brewing Company

    I can happily recommend the Alpha line. I'm the Brewmaster at Tombstone Brewing Company and have used the Alpha line since August. Our's is set up for sixteen-ounce cans and we run 32 CPM with a typical carbonation volume of 2.8 volumes and DO levels in the mid-teens. The highest DO we've seen was 34 ppb and that was on one can right at start up. The rest of the time, we are between 13-17 ppb and have seen as low as 9 ppb on a few cans. We have successfully canned at 2.9 volumes of co2, although Alpha does not recommend going above 2.7... We had no issues with those beers at the elevated levels. We typically run 375 cases on a canning day with only a couple cans being problematic out of that total. Last canning run, I did 127 cases of pils and had one can that was pulled aside due to a seaming issue that I believe was on a misshapen can to begin with. We never see missed lids unless there is an operator error. After the first ten minutes of running, it is pretty much hands off for the operator and results in an incredibly laid-back day. It took us maybe 5 batches before I felt really comfortable with everything and was able to get those performance numbers. Before that, we saw about 2 cases of waste for every 120 cases of good fills. Alpha has incredible customer service and any time I need something, I can get someone on the phone. Inline weighing is a nice feature, but we never have low fills even on the first cases since we just manually overflow the first four cans. Once the beer is below forty degrees at the filler I stop the overflow, press run, and it goes off without a hitch. I then spend about ten minutes monitoring my pressures, testing DO, and adjusting the fill levels to be capping on foam and not filling higher than our target weight. From that point on, it's just a matter of changing out the lid magazine as needed. We found the price point and Alpha's flexibility to work with us to be amazing. Feel free to call me if you have specific questions and want to ask a customer rather than a rep. My number is 256-479-7610

    Weedy Weidenthal, Brewmaster Tombstone Brewing Company
    World Brewing Academy, Class of 2014
    Jon Marco
    Vice President
    Alpha Brewing Operations
    O: 402-467-1210
    P: 844-BREW-OPS
    E: Jon@AlphaBrewOps.com
    W: www.AlphaBrewOps.com

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,745
    Update: We've ordered an ABE Lincan 35.

    Thank you all for the recommendations. There are a lot of good choices out there. We based our decision on what similar size breweries in our area are using.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    St-hyacinthe
    Posts
    6

    Any feedback on you ABE lincan?

    Quote Originally Posted by TGTimm View Post
    Update: We've ordered an ABE Lincan 35.

    Thank you all for the recommendations. There are a lot of good choices out there. We based our decision on what similar size breweries in our area are using.
    Hey, did you get a chance to can on your new buy yet? If so how is it? Any idea on the TPO and DO?
    That would be great infos.
    Cheers!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Moab, Utah
    Posts
    471

    Seamer and Filler

    Quote Originally Posted by Lidman View Post
    The most important piece of any canning line is the can seamer component. The PSAngelus CB-50 is the best built on the market and the filler has low DO's and uses flow meter technology. Also, the filler needs no adjustment between 12 and 16 oz cans.
    While I would agree the Seamer is the most critical, the Filler is on even keel with it.
    These are the 2 weakest points on the ACS5 model that we have. The New Generation Seamers are reported to be better.
    I am not informed about any changes to the filler.
    The problems with this type of filler are as follows:
    Highly Unstable with respect to the Bright Beer infeed pressure and temp. Wastes a lot of product that I am guessing rotary types do not.
    The fill level sensor technology is problematic and requires too much attention and fiddling.
    Solenoid actuated shuttle system in the filler head cannot tolerate the slightest speck of foreign material getting in or it will stick open on that line. Foreign material " will " happen.
    Screening CIP side has been one route to moderating this problem, but it can happen through the beer hose as well.
    Solenoid coils are weak and intolerant of moisture or being overheated. The panel relays that operate this subsystem are under rated and fail more often than expected. The coils can develop partial short and ground faults that will affect adjacent coils, so troubleshooting is not linear or logical until you have mastered the quirkiness of this setup.
    Problems with one line on the filler will stop the run and require its dealt with. This is generally a minimum of 30-45 min due to the difficulty of gaining access to the critical components.

    Even with an added lid masher, foam dynamics can cause can lids to rise back up before entering the seamer and cause crushes and instability. Again this is due to the nature of the fill and the time lag to getting into the seamer.

    The Electronics are pretty good.

    Final rinse is inadequate even with added rinse arms. Beer carryover from the conveyor down the line is " heavy."
    The dryer system is pneumatic and duty cycle on that coil is heavy.

    SC
    Warren Turner
    Industrial Engineering Technician
    HVACR-Electrical Systems Specialist
    Moab Brewery
    " No Cell Phone Zone."

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Enterprise, Oregon
    Posts
    1,745
    We're on our first day canning with the ABE Lincan 35 line.

    The tech/field engineer--Justin Nieman--that ABE sent out has been great. He knows his stuff in depth, and is an excellent and patient teacher. Not only did he go over all the numerous adjustments needed, but he fiddled with them and made each operator re-set all of them. Much better than I'm used to in a field tech! The manual provided by ABE is also excellent, and much better than I've come to expect with new equipment. Some of the charts and tables are printed too small, but other than that, I'm very impressed.

    ABE set the machine up with the wrong dies on the seamer. On being notified of this, they overnighted the right set out at no cost to us, with no argument whatsoever.

    I'll update this as we get more experience using the line. We'll be running it for the rest of the week, so we'll have some experience soon.

    So far, the biggest mistake we've made was not buying a depal for the cans. ABE provided a half-twist manual-load rinser, and keeping up with a 35 cpm machine by picking up cans, inverting them, and loading into the chute is impossible.

    Be aware that this machine requires a large, higher pressure compressor and air dryer. The minimum input air pressure is 110 psi, which is higher than most compressors like to run for a start pressure. It also uses up to 25 cfm of air, which is more than a 5hp compressor can keep up with at this pressure. The biggest draw on the air is the can dryer, so if you can tolerate a little water on the cans, you can save some air here.
    Last edited by TGTimm; 04-19-2018 at 09:43 AM.
    Timm Turrentine

    Brewerywright,
    Terminal Gravity Brewing,
    Enterprise. Oregon.

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