Nim-Cor produces lightweight roller shafts for paper producer

Nim-Cor has produced custom carbon fiber filament-wound shafts for a paper converting machinery company.

Where can an OEM of custom converting machinery go for lightweight air shafts that meet the challenges of handling extra-long, extra-heavy rolls? That's exactly the situation that led Premier Paper Converting Machinery (New Berlin, Wis.) to tap the custom carbon fiber winding capabilities of Nim-Cor, Inc. (Nashua, N.H.), a nationally known producer of both conventional and carbon fiber air shafts.

Premier makes machines that produce fiber and corrugated partitions – like the dividers inside cases of glass containers. The company's latest achievement is a custom machine for producing honeycomb panels used as protective packaging inside cartons of heavier products, like appliances.

Feeding this machine are four rolls, up to 98 inches long and weighing up to 5,300 lbs. The core shafts for these rolls had to be precisely 100 mm in diameter. Most important, the shafts had to be long, strong and lightweight enough for the customer to safely handle.

Nim-Cor's solution was a core shaft as custom as the machinery itself. Nim-Cor engineers calculated load and deflection specifications. Then, using in-house carbon fiber winding capabilities, Nim-Cor employed a special winding pattern using a high-strength fiber and resin to obtain the required tube strength, rigidity and weight. Hardened steel journals serve as bearing surfaces while also custom-machined to the OEM's brake system.

In the end, Nim-Cor's engineering and manufacturing delivered a carbon fiber core shaft that could properly support these huge rolls. The finished shafts weigh less than 140 lbs – light enough for two people to safety handle.