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Conveyor System Accessories: Gappers

Conveyor System Accessories: Gappers

September 27, 2021

Gapper conveyors are commonly seen in sortation conveyor systems. Also known as gapping belt induction conveyors, these conveyors utilize gappers or metering belts to create spaces between products on a line in order to improve throughput and accuracy during sortation. Gapper conveyors utilize slider beds for extra product control and slippage reduction. It creates gaps by running at a different speed from the conveyor adjacent to it.

These spaces, or gaps, between products, serve a number of key purposes, including:

  • Creating enough room for products to turn or change directions during merging and combining
  • Allowing extra time to print and apply labels
  • Allowing extra time for cameras to read barcodes
  • Allowing extra time to weigh packages
  • Creating enough space for the sorter to operate

There are two types of gappers that can be used in any conveyor system: blow-through gappers and gap optimization gappers.

1. Blow Through Gappers

Blow through gapping is ideal for systems that handle products of similar sizes. Because they run at fixed speeds, blow-through gapping creates product gaps based on product length, which is why the products have to be the same size. In addition, the speed change between the belts is also an important consideration. This is a comparatively simpler and less costly method of creating gaps in your conveyor system as you can maintain a constant conveyor speed.

2. Gap Optimization Gappers

Unlike blow-through gappers, this gapper can and should be used in conveyor systems that work with packages of different sizes. Using this gapping method on different-sized packages will not lower throughput unlike in the case of blow-through gappers. Sensors are integrated into the conveyor system to help the gappers factor in the different sizes of packages while still creating gaps that are consistent in length. These gappers have an optimizer that can speed up or slow down automatically in order to close a gap or increase a gap. Due to its sophistication, this kind of gapper poses a larger initial investment.

If you run any kind of conveyor system that is heavy on sortation operations, you will need to acquire high-quality gappers to help you get the job done efficiently and accurately. At Norpak Handling, we supply quality conveyor accessories to help you maximize productivity, sourced from the top conveyor systems manufacturers in the world. To learn more about our products and the kind of services we offer, check out our website!

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