Kadant Solutions Division recently organized a dedicated tissue team for the North American market. The new tissue-focused team consists of five professionals with more than 100 years of combined tissue mill experience. To learn more about the new approach, I interviewed Jerry Vandoros, Director of Tissue Market Sales.
V: Describe your journey with Kadant and how the development of a tissue team evolved.
J: I began my career with Kadant in the late 1990’s holding positions ranging from applications to outside sales, and marketing to product management. One consistency throughout my tenure has been a focus on the tissue market and the pulp and paper industry. Kadant appreciates the importance of the tissue market and understands that it requires specialized expertise. We wanted to develop a team with dedicated resources to service the industry. After assessing the market and seeing a need for such a group, we looked internally to put together a knowledge group.
V: What is the objective of the new team?
J: We have a long history and huge market share of equipment and consumables being used in tissue making. We appreciate the application and process knowledge that needs to go along with tissue equipment. One objective is to provide experts solely focused on this area to offer guidance for optimal Yankee performance. The Yankee Safe™ program, launched last year, includes products and services that improve the operation of the Yankee doctors while keeping the Yankee safe throughout its life cycle. Therefore, a second objective of the team is to utilize the Yankee Safe program to help our customers run more effectively. This takes a holistic approach to look at the entire process and make recommendations that will improve runnability, make better product, save money and keep the Yankee safe.
V: Discuss the unique benefits of having a dedicated tissue team.
J: I like to think of our group as a team of physicians from various specialties collaborating to create an individualized treatment plan for a patient. Each member of our tissue team has a different background with specialty knowledge. When we join together, we can develop an action plan most appropriate for that mill. These plans can only come together when you consider the whole process and how it can affect the final product. Having this dedicated team allows these folks to put the time in at the mill. The team is knowledgeable on our complete product portfolio including blades, doctors, fabric cleaning equipment, showers, filtration and rotary steam joints.
V: What is the top problem your team sees inside a tissue mill?
J: Chatter and Yankee damage is an ongoing concern. We have learned that a series of conditions lead to chatter and Yankee damage. It’s not just one cause, so all variables must be addressed. The issues need to be addressed as a system to get to the root of the problem, and no one part of the process can be overlooked.
For example, when it comes to doctors, in too many cases we see that a machine is using the right kind of blades but they are being used in a doctor system that is not suitably designed for the application, causing issues and raising the risk of Yankee damage. In some cases, the blade type and configuration is correct and the doctor is suitably designed but its alignment and profile are incorrect which is exposing the Yankee to possible damage. You can’t ignore one part of this system. This rule applies to all the Yankee doctors not just the creping doctor.
V: What trends have you seen in the tissue industry over the last five years?
J: It’s becoming more challenging for sure, but that keeps things interesting. These new machines and processes can make a good tissue product, but the envelope is being pushed on the variables that are important for our products such as speed, load, and duty requirement of the doctor and blades. That’s where we can help the tissue maker. The other trend which I believe will continue to be important is the move beyond providing just mechanical equipment and to make this equipment smart and connected that can provide the tissue maker with real time feedback about their process. Smart connected products are everywhere and this technology needs to be incorporated into Yankee doctors to help reveal when something is wrong and help prevent potentially negative impacts.
To contact the tissue team at Kadant Solutions Division, email email@example.com.