Prince Manufacturing Elevates Finishing with IntelliFinishing System

For more than five years, Prince Manufacturing – a maker of hydraulic cylinders, valves and pumps founded in 1941 and serving a wide variety of markets with four facilities across three states – has leveraged an IntelliFinishing fully automated liquid paint system to bring new efficiencies to its operation.

This system helps Prince uphold the quality, durability, craftsmanship and service it’s come to be known for around the globe.

The Challenge – A Liquid Paint System Bringing a Variety of Benefits

Prince needed a system that delivered consistent, high-quality results while applying liquid paint with minimal labor costs.

The primary focus of adding this system to the company’s operations was to enhance throughput without reducing quality and to ensure recipe flexibility, modularity, space savings, cost-effectiveness and reliability with little operational or maintenance cost.

The Solution – An IntelliFinishing Fully Automated Liquid Paint System

The system designed for Prince has a variety of unique benefits and capabilities.

Unique product loading functionality allows for the use of carts and a lift that is integrated to minimize labor. An operator can simply push a cart up to the load zone and hit a single button to engage the lift. The lift will then engage the detachable load bar resting on the cart and take it with a loaded set of products up to system height, where it begins moving off through the system automatically based on its recipe specifications for that carrier.

The load bar is unique in that each set of cylinders or valves are spun while in the wash to maximize wash impingement, during blow-off to help dry the parts, and, most importantly, during the robotic paint application. Wash stage duration can also be combined with the spin process to help especially dirty items achieve desired cleanliness.

Further, the robotic paint process is unique because the up/down reciprocating robotic paint gun system is integrated with information about each part presented, including the product's length, width and weight. This tells the gun program exactly how to paint each part with minimal overspray and very consistent finish quality. There are no manual spray operators required on this system.

The cure oven is also unique in that the conveyor track allows for carriers to move “on-bias,” shortening the oven size and the overall footprint of the system. After the final cure and cool down, the system allows for carriers of products to stop over a masking platform so that all final products are stickered with brand and product model information before unloading from the system and final assembly/packaging.

Finally, unloading is unique in that the carrier of finished products moves to the automatic load/unload lift right after a starting carrier (i.e., unfinished parts) has moved on. The lift brings the entire load of products down upon the waiting cart and automatically drops the removable load bar onto the cart's waiting cradle. As soon as this is secured, a mechanism pushes the cart about a foot away from the load zone to signify to the operator that the cart can now be rolled over to the final assembly and shipping area.

The Results – Incredible Throughput and Quality Prince Is Proud Of

The system was integrated with Prince’s desired process to spin the product on its vertical axis in the wash, during blow off and during the painting process, giving their long, vertical cylinders and boxy hydraulic valves a fantastic coat of paint.

Since their parts vary in size, part data integrates with their robotic paint gun system and the racking system to paint each part to exact specifications without any manual intervention. The system was able to fit inside the desired footprint by using deadhead turns, an on-bias conveyor in the oven and other means.

The system can process about 25 carriers of parts per hour. Typically, Prince starts their system at 7:30 a.m. and completes the finishing of all needed parts by 2:30 p.m. each day. Within those seven hours, their IntelliFinishing System can produce more finished parts than Prince was previously able to finish at all three of their other locations - operating 24/7 and using manual paint processes.

The system is leaner than traditional systems, modular to provide long-range flexibility to change the system or grow it as system demands or processes change, and saves Prince on costs, with high uptime levels and more, particularly when compared to inefficient, outdated chain-based conveyorized finishing systems.

As a bonus, the system is much safer than manually painting their parts, as their cylinders can be quite heavy – up to 100 pounds each or more. By pre-racking the parts on their custom-designed carts in fabrication, they have reduced part handling tremendously during the finishing process. 

Interested in an exceedingly flexible, less costly to operate automated finishing system with proven technology? 

Contact Us

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IntelliFinishing – "Providing the Customized System We Need"

Prince Manufacturing specializes in hydraulic cylinders and valves.

IntelliFinishing automated their painting process with a recipe based liquid coating system.

“We have confidence when a product is hung on the line that it will go through and get an excellent paint job.” Dan Gray, Manufacturing Engineering Manager, Prince Manufacturing Corporation

The IntelliFinishing paint system is recipe driven allowing every part to automatically get the required process time required per carrier.  

IntelliFinishing synchronized the paint system with Prince paint reciprocators providing an excellent paint job to every part. 

“IntelliFinishing helped us through it all. They worked with us from start to finish. The communication was great!” Kevin Kathol, Manufacturing Engineering Technician, Prince Manufacturing Corporation

“They allowed us to have the customized system we needed to paint our product well. We couldn’t have done it without IntelliFinishing.” Dan Gray, Manufacturing Engineering Technician, Prince Manufacturing Corporation

Interested in an exceedingly flexible, less costly to operate automated finishing system with proven technology? 

Contact Us

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Industry Partners

Kasa Controls and Automation Midwest Finishing Systems IntelliTrack