Dial-X Automated Equipment in Albion, IN has designed and delivered sophisticated machinery for pharmaceutical, food and beverage, automotive and consumer goods manufacturing applications since 1972. For more than a decade, Dial-X has chosen to integrate machine vision equipment from Banner Engineering to deliver lower costs, accurate results and simple system usability to its customer base.
Dial-X provides single-source machine building and integration services.
“We chose Banner originally because their equipment was low in cost and worked well for inspecting our customers' products,” says Curt Bonar, president of Dial-X.
“The camera software is easy to program and teach to maintenance personnel — you can talk them through the process over the phone,” adds Ryan Berkes, Dial-X project manager. “Even back when we began using Banner products, it was very simple for first-time users.”
Dial-X often selects Banner's PresencePLUS® Pro and P4 cameras, both of which feature a sophisticated toolset and advanced communications abilities. The Pro demonstrates great flexibility due to its enhanced software toolset and relatively small size, while the P4 delivers enhanced convenience by integrating the controller into the camera itself.
C&E Sales distributor Jeremy Nichols has sold Banner vision sensors to Dial-X and says the products have proven instrumental in improving companies' automation capabilities. “Banner's products deliver high performance for less money, and the support Banner provides is, in my opinion, a step above the competition,” he says.
Banner's vision sensors feature Ethernet connectivity, allowing inspection results to be communicated directly from the camera to a PLC. In addition, the sensors easily adjust to manufacturing line changes, minimizing production downtime.
“With the camera's remote TEACH capability, if a component changes in the middle of the assembly process — and the customer wants to keep the machine in operation until maintenance arrives — they can teach the sensor to adjust to the new part right away,” Nichols says.
Banner has also provided Dial-X with vision lighting accessories to ensure customer parts are correctly illuminated to deliver the optimal contrast for each application.
“Banner offers everything from spotlights to backlights and area lights,” Bonar says. “Plus, they send a stockpile of lights to our vendor, who will usually give us a few lights from their test kits. This way we can begin building our initial machines before we get our order from Banner, which doesn't take very long.”
In a machine Dial-X built for connector assembly, the company used 11 Banner PresencePLUS cameras, two spotlights, a backlight and an on-axis light. Each lighting type was selected for the machine depending on the connector part to be inspected.
From cameras to lighting to support, Banner's partnership with Dial-X and C&E Sales has resulted in robust automated equipment solutions for a broad range of industries, catered to customers' application-specific requirements.