User Story


Think of the number of household items in daily use, whether it be food such as: jams, sauces, pickles, pastes and even baby-foods or drinks, especially fruit juices, which are supplied in containers that need screw-tops and you will get some idea of the enormous market represented by these everyday items. In 1999 the total market for these "closures", as these caps are more correctly known, exceeded 14.3 billion units in Western Europe alone.

CARNAUDMETALBOX is part of the Crown Cork and Seal Company, the largest "Packaging" company in the world. In Europe total net sales exceeded $155 million in 1999 from their 4 production sites in Poole, UK; Seesen, Germany; Seville, Spain; and Aprilia, Italy.

The impressive plant at Poole in Dorset is approximately 180km Southwest from London. Established in 1939, it is now 'home' for about 250 employees, 26 cap manufacturing lines, 6 coating/lacquering lines and 4 printing lines. It is capable of a daily cap production volume of between 5 and 7 million caps.

Inevitably with all this production machinery and equipment on site there are a large number of drawings that need to be taken care of and updated as this cap making machinery is modified and re-tooled.

Three years ago it was decided that the most economical way of keeping the 25,000 or so mainly mechanical drawings up to date and to manage them efficiently was to scan them all and create an electronic archive.

A local bureau undertook the scanning and the resulting files were supplied to CARNAUDMETALBOX as an archive on CD's.

All drawing modifications are now done electronically and CARNAUDMETALBOX are making full use of the Hybrid (Raster and Vector) capabilities of the GTXRaster CAD products that they have.

Initially the scanned drawing is image enhanced using the GTXRaster CAD crop, de-skew, resize and co-ordinate correction facilities. During this clean-up process the raster border and title block are normally removed and replaced by a standard CAD title block and border. Subsequent changes to the image are performed in raster or vector so that these hybrid electronic drawings are always completely up to date when they are being viewed on one of their networked Cyco viewing stations, or plotted out on their HP DesignJet 750 plotter.

As Martyn Corfield, the Project Engineering Manager at Poole, commented, "It is much quicker to electronically modify a drawing in GTXRaster CAD than redrafting manually." He went on to add that, "For our particular use we did not need to convert all our scanned images to vector. We quickly realised the advantages of working in a hybrid environment and the savings of not having to convert everything into vector, especially as this was not really necessary. GTXRaster CAD has all the features and functions that we need to enable us to efficiently amend and update our 'hybrid' scanned drawings."

Systems Manager Geoff Dixon added that, "We are now able to provide a much better level of service to our main "customers", both in the Tool-Room and the Spares and Parts Purchasing Departments. We will be enhancing and updating both the hardware and the software in the near future. The capability that the GTX products give us to keep our scanned drawings up to date and the fact that it is so well integrated with AutoCAD will ensure that GTXRaster CAD remains a fundamental part of our new systems.

The end products produced at the Poole plant are very much part of most peoples' everyday lives. However as with many things in life, to achieve this level of acceptance in use requires a great deal of inventiveness, effort, skill and efficiency in terms of production. This is reflected in the way that CARNAUDMETALBOX continue to make use of the latest computer based techniques to handle all their drawings, which in turn is a part of the overall production system at CARNAUDMETALBOX that helps them to maintain their impressive market dominance and leadership.

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Page last modified on August 31, 2001
Copyright 2001 by John Stark