Product machinery manufacturers gear up for ICON-Xchange, bauma

The National Concrete Masonry Association’s ICON-Xchange and B2B activities, February 24-26 in Orlando, plus 2016 bauma, April 11-17 in Munich, will feature new models and upgrades from block & paver machinery and component manufacturers. Concrete Products samples offerings from key ICON and bauma participants.

34 Columbia 400Columbia Machine

The CPM+ Concrete Products Machine design builds upon the success of the previous generation CPM series. The original CPM has been reliably operating in plants worldwide since 1995. Over the years, Columbia Machine has responded to changes affecting the industries served, especially those putting increased demands upon production plants. The CPM+ is designed and engineered accordingly.

With its automatic mold change system, product switches can be achieved in less than four minutes and are as simple as the push of a single button. Columbia Vibration Technology ensures consistent finished product height and density across the entire production pallet—adjustment free and regardless of pallet thickness. Operator-friendly controls make the CPM+ safe and efficient to set up and run, with all adjustments made from a new easy to navigate HMI. —



35 Pathfinder 300The Model S (shown) and Model PS-100-HD are among the company’s Tiger Machine series offerings. The former is designed as a direct replacement for many types of currently installed block machines. The focus of its design is on utilizing customers’ existing mold inventory, pallet dimensions and machine footprint while enabling operators to take advantage of a fully controllable hydraulic machine. The Model S is also equipped to ensure quality and performance, plus a cycle time exceeding that of companion machines on the market. It is available in three-, four- and six-at-a-time, plus deep pallet configurations. 

The model PS-1000HD culminates the evolution of the signature Tiger Model PS-100. With upgraded controls and user interface, “smart” pallet monitoring and automatic cycle adjustments, product engineers note, the machine is the pinnacle of existing technology in the market. —


Producers are bringing new life to cam-driven Besser block machines with Advanced Servo Vibration (ASV) and Servo Main Drive. The upgrades improve machine operation, extend machine and mold part service life, and net improved product quality. Block producers have used the upgrades on Vibrapac, Dynapac, Ultrapac and Superpac machines. Whether producing standard gray units, architectural block or hardscape products, ASV and Main Drive impart improved aesthetics and strength in finished products.

“Having increased vertical vibration at the start of the cycle aids in compaction of material in the mold. By maintaining consistent material flow into the mold cavities and more steady vibration, producers can more easily manufacture units historically difficult to produce,” explains Besser Director of Engineering Tim Farley, noting that both ASV vibrators attain set speed (rpm) in less than a ¼ of a second. “The ability to decrease the machine speed when stripping product out of the mold is another attractive feature since this reduces the number of culls and makes it simpler to manufacture more fragile units, such as thin walled products. Providing a dual vibration mode for hard to fill molds reduces ragged top edges caused by material rolling back into the mold cavity.”

Both upgrades improve plant productivity and reduce operating costs, he affirms. Servo motors smooth out and speed up the machine’s cycle rate by reducing feed and finish times. Since the machine operator can precisely control the bull gear acceleration and deceleration—thereby reducing the force to the machine components—equipment life is maximized. Synchronizing vibration, by accurately controlling the movement of the vibrator shafts, increases mold part life by 30 percent or more. 

The Main Drive Servo utilizes electronic components in place of the traditional mechanical components. The electronic components provide control of the machine cycle so operation can be tailored to the specific concrete units being produced, increasing overall cycle speed. Up to six different speed settings per machine cycle are possible. Since electronic components replace the clutch and brake, related wear and tear on those parts is eliminated. —

36 Masaiv 400

The product management software allows the control of the block making plant with product recipes. All data is stored according to plant layout. All information to produce a block or paving stone type, including mix designs, machine settings and finger car drive the data for both individual units or unit classes.
36 Masaii 400

The mix design management feature’s intuitive operating interface allows for quicker generation of target mixes. FAST is programmed with special functions to compare existing and previous mix designs or gauge automatic product mold changes—highlighted in red.
36 Masaiii 400

Company has developed Factory Automation System Tools (FAST) plant software to support its block & paver machinery offerings. Programmers cite FAST’s intuitive to learn characteristics, clear illustration, easy input and operation, enhanced diagnostics, and multiple data output choices. The software offers an integrated, uniform and standard operating system for the entire concrete block or paver plant; transparent databases, accessible for all system components; scalable PC system; platform for future adaptable technology (using the latest Microsoft innovations); “one visualization” basis, where customer-defined information parameters are presented in a single view; consistency with language switching; and, customized multilevel parameter management, easing operation with assured internal control.

FAST software suits Masa equipment including Large Version and Extra Large Block Machines. The former, L 6.1–L 9.1, have mediumsized production pallets of 1,400 x 600-900 mm (L 6.1) or 1,400 x 950-1,150 mm (L 9.1); compact dimensions; and, high-grade mechanical, hydraulic, pneumatic and electronic components. The Extra Large series, XL 9.1–XL 9.2, is equipped for highly accurate output of all common concrete masonry units, short cycle times, and high production volume. — MASA USA, 920/497-0390;

36 Masai 600

The visualization software enables control of unit masonry machinery via a PC. The use of 3D plant pictures allows fast navigation.

37 Machine 400

37 Mixer 400

TopWerk’s SM Mixer offers unique mechanical operating components that deliver mixing performance achieving variation coefficient of less than 1 percent, short intervals, and minimal maintenance requirements.
37 Hammer 400

The TopWerk SR Schindler division offers a complete line of surface refinements for pavers, tiles, and wall stone, including shotblasting, bushhammering, curling, coating and grinding. Also specializes in fully automatic or semi-automatic wet cast production lines.
TopWerk America

Block & paver machine series feature advanced technology that leading manufacturers have adopted in recent years. M-series models are equipped with operating features that provide these company-cited advantages:

  • CNC unit that operates a hydraulic system for precise control of all axes movement. Overlapping movements and harmonic motions guarantee optimum cycle times and low-wearing machine operations.
  • Filler Box Planing Roller, a patented device that allows a wetter face mix application and distinct color-blend surfacing. Efficient cycle times are possible while assuring high-grade finish, greater output volume, lower unit costs, and market differentiation.
  • Hess oil-bath vibration features permanent lubrication for increased bearing service life. Proprietary table vibration system has full electronic controls for extreme accuracy and adjustable settings that can maximize results during the mold filling and main compaction phases, yielding efficient cycle time and high product density. — TopWerk America, 877/578-4377;