A case that needed to be solved urgently
In Autumn 2014 a solution had to be found fast. Ongoing and increasing problems were causing the Sicking laundry headaches: The failing press had to be replaced after less than six years. Laundry was damaged, bursting and tearing did not coincide with the quality promise the Sicking laundry makes to its customers. Its very good and long-standing relations with its customers prevented the worst, but the costs for substitute services and many unsuccessful attempts at repair were still huge. It was time to act.
When least expected...
No investments were planned since the existing press was expected to last much longer. When the phone rang at JENSEN in October 2014, it was Alexander Wildschütz asking for and receiving fast help, as his brother Moritz Wildschütz confirms: "We couldn't be happier, JENSEN's advice and service were very, very good. The machines won us over when we visited reference sites."
Sometimes everything falls into place. At the time, JENSEN was planning a tunnel washer with a new load size in combination with a smaller drum diameter for laundries with high output in limited space. The new Senking Universal P60 was ideal for the local conditions at the Sicking laundry in Münster. The Wildschütz brothers were entering into the last phase of development, and the service was rounded out by close contact that included test washes at the JENSEN plant in Harsum prior to delivery.
Hunting for clues
"The operator sometimes does not even realize that the tunnel washer is stopped", reported an amazed Alexander Wildschütz. EcoTune, the new tuning concept for the tunnel washer, optimizes synchronization of the drive motor and the frequency converter, thus ensuring much quieter operation. This is why one hardly hears when the tunnel washer is stopped.
The more precise adjustment options provided by the speed sensor allow for lower water and energy consumption, another feature that CEO Moritz Wildschütz in particular welcomes: "We are seeing it with our own eyes, we are using less water and getting better wash results". The new tunnel washer Senking Universal P60 uses only between 3.5 – 4.5 l/kg (.42 - .54 g/lb), depending on load type and program.
Founded as a family business in 1923, the brothers Moritz and Alexander Wildschütz now employ a staff of 55. Since last year the laundry is again training apprentices, one of whom is learning the trade of textile cleaner, a profession particularly close to Alexander Wildschütz's heart, himself a trained textile cleaner. Eight tons of rented and borrowed laundry are washed per day, Monday to Friday, in single-shift operation. This is almost full capacity. Moritz Wildschütz provides a bit of background: "We added on in 2008, but wanted healthy growth. We are currently expanding the production hall and machinery".
The Sicking laundry boasts quality, reliability and flexibility, and thanks to its own vehicle fleet can swiftly handle expedited requests for large customers, as well as taking special trips in and around Münster. It is precisely this flexibility in processing laundry, as well as in quick delivery, that have proven advantageous, as Alexander Wildschütz explains: "We offer individual solutions tailored to the customer, even when specialized laundry or time pressure raises issues".
The laundry's main clients include upper-class hotels, rest and nursing homes, as well as working clothes from large industries and small crafts enterprises. Peak time is from the end of summer to Christmas.
A glance at their new image brochure shows that tradition and modernity have merged at Sicking, as highlighted by Alexander Wildschütz: "We compete with the big dogs and provide top quality". The two centerpieces of the laundry – the tunnel washer and finishing line from JENSEN – fit right in.
Every centimeter is utilized
The machines at the Sicking laundry form a perfect symbiosis, although this also presents a challenge when it comes to installing new machinery, especially a tunnel washer with draining press. Yet the good preparation of all involved ensured a smooth delivery and installation - the machines were brought in on Friday morning, and washing was done on Sunday afternoon. "We had planned in an extra day for fine tuning, but this concern turned out to be unfounded", gushed Alexander Wildschütz. Normal operations restarted on Monday morning.
The case is solved
The solution combining the Senking Universal P60 with the new draining press SEP 60 emerged as a knight in shining armor: Thanks to the higher drop height, the press cake has become more symmetrical, so the loss ratio was immediately lowered to zero - an enormous increase in capacity and without downtimes. Moritz Wildschütz enthusiastically praised JENSEN's excellent software engineering support. The new draining press has definitively made press damage a thing of the past.
Better and safer
Occupational safety and processes as well as ergonomics lie close to the brothers' hearts. Especially on stressful workdays and within limited space, safe working conditions are essential and help shine a flattering light on the profession of textile cleaning. This information is provided in interviews because recruitment is often difficult; there is practically zero unemployment in Münster and the potential new blood is not familiar with our industry.
Both Sicking and JENSEN emphasize safety, in the operation of the machines as well as in visualization of work processes. Visualization is an indispensable tool for Alexander Wildschütz, since it helps calculate prices and shows operator use and performance. A second monitor in the office provides an overview, and touch screens at work stations help new employees get settled and oriented. This saves time and money because machines that stress ergonomics and safety reduce down time and increase workplace appeal.
Washing, drying and placing
High quality finishing - JENSEN can help here, too. The Wildschütz brothers are extremely pleased with the finishing line delivered in 2011 and have special praise for the air blade used by the Jenfold Universal folding machine, which allows for much more accurate and faster folding and is precisely the distinguishing feature of a high-quality finishing line.
Much higher performance is achieved with the Viking separator: If 300 kilograms of bed linen per hour were previously on the order of the day, it is now 550 kilograms per hour. Capacity has almost doubled! "We have had a staggering increase in performance via a much more continuous and pre-separated supply of laundry by employees and with the Viking as automation solution", Alexander Wildschütz enthused and Moritz Wildschütz confirmed: "Folding is simply better, it has to be said. Our long-standing customers have been spoiled by hand-folding and manual treatment – we didn't want the automation to disappoint them, it had to deliver at least the same quality at higher output. We have managed to do this with the JENSEN folding machine".
Time and again the Wildschütz brothers emphasize the smooth and honest communication with JENSEN: "If there's a fire, JENSEN is there with the extinguisher".