Monterey Wine Company's New Mobile Bottling Trailer Near Completion
April 24, 2007
Eric Laumann, general manager for Monterey Wine Company in King City, California announced they are completing the final assembly of their new mobile bottling line.
With concerns about the county permitting process and overall construction costs for a traditional structure, they decided to build a mobile bottling trailer instead, but one that never leaves the winery. Referring to the line as a portable bottling "room," Laumann added "we will keep the trailer on property and busy with our many private labels, negociants and local wineries that are willing to bring the wine to us."
Beyond economics, the decision to build a trailer realizes added benefits. By not having to use valuable land-space to construct a building, they can simply move the custom built trailer to a designated on-site location, and then move it out of the way for storage. In addition is convenience. "We are a custom crush facility," said Laumann, "and needed to offer bottling. In the past we were dependant on outside mobile bottlers. We can now provide full service from the crush pad to case goods." Having worked with outside mobile lines in the past, they will now enjoy the luxury of in-house scheduling.
Performance Trailers, Inc., a custom fabricator in Madera, California, is completing the equipment installation. Over the years they have designed and built any number of unique trailers, for corporate exhibitions to auto racing teams. At 53 feet long it will be one of the largest mobile lines ever built. Unlike traditional trailers that use a U-shaped conveyor system in and out the back of the vehicle, this trailer will be able to open up an entire side, creating a substantial workspace. Bottles will enter and exit from this platform on the right side of the trailer.
In addition to its impressive dimensions, the bottling speed of 130 + BPM (bottles per minute) is likely to be the fastest mobile line in existence. In order to attain such bottling speed, the equipment is considerably larger than normally found in mobile trailers, resulting in limited work space around the machinery. With the ability to open the entire side of the trailer, it affords the crews the necessary platform to work around the oversized equipment.
The equipment is being supplied by Scott Laboratories in Petaluma, California. According to Steve Doherty at Scott, "the trailer will primarily featuring MBF technology. The monoblock will consist of a 20-head rinser/blower, a 30-valve filler, a six head rotary corker and screwcapper. It will also have a Nortan tunnel for heat shrink capsules, affording Monterey Wine the versatility needed to address any custom closure." Unlike most mobile lines, this trailer will also have an accumulation table in front of a two-station Impresstik labeler to accommodate the bottles during label change-outs. In that way the bottles will continue to be filled, the labeler is slowed, but the line never has to stop.