PL-221 Instructional Video

Watch this video to learn how to set up your PL-221 top and bottom labeler.



Intro [00:00:10] Hi, I'm Jonathan with Pack Leader USA. And today we'll be talking about the PL-221 top and bottom labeler with optional side belts. A brief overview on the machine. We'll be talking about the infeed conveyor and the exit conveyor. It is a split-belt system. Your top Label Head with optional Hot Stamp printer, the side belts, which are optional on this machine, your bottom Label Head, the HMI, which controls the machine. The control box, the electronics that are inside, as well as the frame and how to adjust it properly.


Adjusting Leveling Pads [00:00:48] When you put your PL-221in line, it's important to adjust your leveling pads so that everything on the machine is level. The next thing you'll want to do is raise it up to the proper line heights. To do that, you're going to loosen the four number six Allen bolts on each leg. Once those are loose, you can then lift the machine up, tighten those bolts down to ensure that everything is adjusted properly.


Supply Power to the Machine [00:01:15] One of most important things on your new Pack Leader machine is the power requirement. This machine is currently set up for 110. We do have an optional 220 voltage that we can set up. It's important that you've got a dedicated outlet to ensure optimal efficiency for your machine.


Control Box Overview [00:01:34] Alright, inside the PL-221 control box. We've got your power on, the e-stop the HMI, two VFDs, one to control the conveyors, and then one to control the side belts. You do have your stepper drives, one controls Label Head A, the other Label Head B. Your transformer, which takes 110 to 220 or you can bring 220 into the machine if we set it up that way. You've got a PLC, one for each head. You've got your fuzes your EMF filter. Two PCB boards, one for the top, one for the bottom, and then your power supply.


HMI Controls Overview [00:02:13] On your PL-221, you want to release the e-stop button to make sure that it's not on or engaged. Turn your power on. So the touch screen turns on with the optional ELF Hot Stamp Printer. This control box is what controls that. To turn it on and off, you're going to use this button here. If you want to operate it, this will start to heat up process and you can't change the temperature up or down from this control box. To go into your functions and your home screen. You've got a labeling mode, settings mode, memory, which can save memories of your products, guide mode, and troubleshooting mode. In labeling mode, link set is the length from the gap between your labels to where the label needs to stop on the end of the peel plate. The delay, the peel delay for the Label Head A is from one. The product sensor reads the product. It's going to wait that time and then dispense the label. So the higher the number, the father, the label will be back on the product. Same for Label Head B. Pre-count setting, if you want to run 900 products, then stop. You'll enter 900. Once the machines label 900 products, it will turn off and then you have a counter clear. So this will count up as you run more products throughout the day. You have conveyor on Label Head A on Label Head B on. You cannot label unless they conveyer's on and you can choose Label Head A or B to label both at the same time or independently. In settings mode, you've got your speed selections one through eight. Everything's fully synchronized, so as you change speeds, every component on this machine will change accordingly. We have missing label A and B if there's a label missing off of your on your liner and it's not there if this goes more than 10 millimeters or if you want to say more than 20 millimeters and it detects there's not a label that's going to turn the machine off. To turn them off, you can just click these buttons. The Hot Stamp printer, to turn it on, you're going to engage this button here. The dwell time point zero, point three five seconds is how long the print actually engages and prints on your label. If you want to increase that number, you can from this screen here. And then your memory mode, this allows you to store recipes, so if the first product that you set up is the cheese. You can say product number one is twelve ounce cheese. And then hit store. And then you can recall that at a later date.


Air Supply for Optional Printer [00:04:42] Your ELF Hot Stamp printer on the machine does require air. It has a regulator that we mount on the side. You'll want to supply dry air to the regulator. We're going to operate this between 40 and 60 PSI or at about four bars. Once you have that set, you want to lock it into position and you're ready to operate.


Top Label Head Threading [00:05:07] When threading your PL-221 Label Heads, you'll always want to reference the label wind chart. We have one on the top head and the bottom head. We'll start by taking off the outer plate, just kind of set that out of the way. We're going to place the labels on where they're secure. It's always best to go and put this plate back on and secure it. This is a spring-loaded ratchet that's on the side here. It's just a hand crank. Its toolless going to come across the dancer arm, which is your break, around this first roller. The second roller here is a fixed roller, does not spin. And you've got a felt pad which puts tension on, which we will discuss. Down through your label sensor and on the label sensor you've got to make sure that it is properly detecting the labels, which we'll also discuss. It's always easier to pull enough slack out so that you can feed it around the peel plate, otherwise you'll be having a difficult time trying to pull it around that peel play because there is tension there. So once you have that through, you're going to go around your polyurethane roller and your knurl roller. This is what actually pulls your label material through the machine. And you always want to make sure on the outside of the safety plate. Once you're on the outside, you can lock this down. Pull your J hook out, and you're gonna want to take up the slack.


Label Head Threading (Printer Option) [00:06:51] With this one, we do have the optional Hot Stamp Printer in place, which does change the wind a little bit. So instead of going directly to this roller, we're going to go up above where the hot stamp will actually imprint the label, where they're going to go down and around the third roller, through the label sensor, underneath the fourth roller. And then to go around the peel plate, I always like to pull extra slack out. Pull enough out to where then I can just tuck the material underneath the peel plate. Take this underneath the PU roller and between the Knurl roller. It is very important to make sure you always go above the safety plate that protects the Knurl roller and not underneath it. So we're going to go above once that's tight, will secure this and lock it into place. We'll then take your take up wind material, take the J-hook off, reinstall it, and then you're going to take up the slack.


Adjust Keep Rings [00:07:56] After you've threaded the top Label Head. You'll then want to take the keeper rings and slide those in just to where they're almost touching the label material. This will make sure that the labels track properly and they don't move back and forth as the machines operating.


Adjust Felt Pad [00:08:13] To adjust your felt pad. You'll want to loosen the thumbscrew, turn the spring-loaded shaft counterclockwise, then tighten the thumbscrew. This will keep tension on your label material so that your label sensor can detect the gaps properly.


Calibrate Label Sensors [00:08:30] Alright, to calibrate your label sensor and setup your length set. You're gonna go hit enter, go into labeling mode and then link set A is what we're gonna set up, which is for the top head. We're gonna peel a label off of the liner. We're going to hold down link set to advance it to where only the backing paper is in, the label sensor. We're gonna hold down the normal button to teach it, and then once the sensors properly calibrated, we're going to hold down link set. And we're gonna advance it to where the label is right at the peel plate or just beyond it slightly. And then for link set B, which is the bottom head, we're gonna follow the same routine. To calibrate the label sensor on the bottom head. It's going to be the same as the top. We took a label off of the liner and hold down the normal button. It's going to flash and go solid. So it's now calibrated. Then you'll follow the same link set as we did on the top head.


Calibrate 90 Degree Product Sensor [00:09:30] Alright with the PL-221, we have two different product sensors available. The retro-reflective and then the 90 degree. In this case, with the side belts in place, if your product is shorter than the side belts, we use a 90 degree sensor that reads down on a product. To adjust this properly, we're gonna put the product in place and you want to rotate this clockwise to where both the green and the red LED lights come on. You want to remove the product and then take it back in to ensure that it sees it properly. There's two different modes on this sensor, a dark mode and a light mode. It's currently in light. Light means when this product goes in front of that sensor, both LED will come on. It'll send the signal to dispense the label to go to dark mode. We're gonna change that depth switch, now only the green lights on. When you remove the product, the red light goes on. What that means is, when it sees the product, it does not label immediately. It labels once the product passes by that sensor and the sensor no longer sees the product.


Retro-Reflective Product Sensor [00:10:35] Alright, the retro-reflective sensor on the PL-221, which will read products that stand taller than the optional side belts. To calibrate that you've got a reflector on the opposite side. And what you want to do is gently touch, and press this button here. And it auto calibrates to make sure that it's detected properly. You may want to put the product in front of it or hold something to make sure the lights go off and then back on.


Adjust Sidebelts [00:11:05] Alright, to adjust your belt to liners, you have a vertical adjustment and a horizontal in and out adjustment. To adjust the in and out, you can move this here. There's also a crank on the other side that moves together in sync. And then you've got two independent vertical adjustments here and here. To move this up, you will crank that knob up or down. If you go down, make sure you're just above the conveyor so that the belts won't interfere with the bottom belt converter. And then you will move the side belts in to where they just grip the product. You want to make sure it's secure. Once that's in place, you can then move your guide rails in and you want those guide rails to be in far enough to where it allows that product to gently go through the side belts without any interruption. You can then also adjust these exit guide rails as well. All right, now we'll on the products through to make sure there's no hesitation.


Horizontal and Vertical Label Head Adjustments [00:12:12] To adjust your top Label Head down, you're going to rotate it towards about a millimeter or two above your product. And you want it just close enough to where it's almost touching, but not quite. And then to center it, you want to rotate the crank over to where it's just centered over your product.


Adjust Brushes [00:12:34] Alright, the standard set up on the PL-221 top head is three brushes across because we're doing a narrow label and the hugger belts get squeezed in tighter. We're only doing two brushes. There are the longer brushes. Once those are in place, we're gonna rotate this down so that it can wipe the label down effectively.


Adjust Bottom Label Head [00:12:54] Alright, we flipped the machine around so you could see the adjustment on the bottom head. This does not have an up or down adjustment, just horizontal. So what we're gonna do is move the crank until we have it centered directly underneath the product.


Adjust Optional Hot Stamp Printer [00:13:11] Alright, with your optional ELF Hot Stamp Printer, you can rotate this to do a horizontal or vertical print to do that. We're going to loosen this top screw and then we can actually rotate this entire unit and then lock it back down. There are four Allen bolts right here that will actually level this. So you want to make sure that it's decent proximity to your print pad and that everything is tight and level. You will want to move the printer itself to make sure that the location is where you want it. You can use this hand crank to move it this way. And then there's a hand crank back here that moves it this direction so you can get the print, the proper location. There is a red test print button on the sides and you can press that to make sure that it's going down properly. You will notice that as you press it and it comes back, that ribbon is going to rotate. You have a new fresh ribbon there to print your message on the label.


Test Label the Product [00:14:07] Alright, once you've got your printer set up to print in the proper location, you can take a product through to test out the print.


Contact Us [00:14:21] To learn more about the PL-221 top and bottom labeler, visit