Automation Case Study | Septimatech

Unison® Automation

Unison® Automation provides manufacturers with the ultimate adjustable guide rail system. It combines the benefits of full, one-touch automation with the standard product handling and design benefits of the modular Unison® adjustable guide rail system. The result is significantly faster, repeatable, and safer changeovers with the most precise container control available.

Changeover times are reduced from hours to minutes compared to non-adjustable guide rail systems and from minutes to seconds over the mechanically adjusted Unison® system. Variations in set up created by different operators are eliminated, ensuring optimum performance with each change. Adjustments are repeatable and accurate to +/- 1mm or 2mm, delivering precise product handling every time. Guiderail changeover is confined to a single point, eliminating unnecessary operator activity and creating a safer packaging environment.

Changeover adjustments are fully automated through a programmable Human Machine Interface (HMI). Septimatech’s system allows users to automatically adjust all guide rails by simply selecting the desired container shape and size on a single, touchscreen HMI. Once the container is selected and changeover started, the system alerts operators to movement of the guide rails. As adjustments are made, the system provides feedback on the status and notification that changeover is accurate and complete.

Unison Automation includes precision engineered mechanical components and perfectly matched motors and controls to deliver precise adjustments and long, reliable service.

Customer Challenge

Customer with non-adjustable guide rail system wanted to fully automate changeover of its guide rails to reduce downtime, eliminate set up variables created by different operators, and improve safety. Customer also wanted to improve throughput and eliminate container scuffling, shingling, and tipping which slowed production and caused product damage.

About the Customer

The customer is a large multi-national consumer goods manufacturer, which uses a wide variety of container shapes and sizes on the same line. The packaging line is complex with multiple crossovers, bends, and straight sections. It operates at high speeds around the clock. The wide variety of containers requires precise control to eliminate shingling, tipping and product damage. Production space is tight creating safety challenges and the need to eliminate unnecessary movement around the line.


Septimatech installed a fully automated Unison® adjustable, beaded guide rail system across the entire line, including all mechanical and electronic components, motors, and control system. A single, touch screen HMI was installed and programmed for the customer. Training and follow up support was also provided.

Customer Results

  • Guide rail changeover time was reduced from 5 hours to 2 minutes. Mechanically assisted Unison guide rail system on a comparable line would take 18 minutes to changeover.
  • All adjustments initiated by selection of container size and shape on a single, touchscreen HMI.
  • Adjustments occurred immediately and simultaneously.
  • Adjustments are now repeatable, precise, and accurate to +/- 1mm or 2mm.
  • Operator variables were eliminated.
  • Precise adjustments and beaded guide rail reduced friction, ?scuffing, tipping, and container ?damage.
  • Overall production increased.
  • Overall costs were reduced.
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