Mosconi update their splitting machine16 May 2003
Specialist Italian machinery manufacturers Mosconi SpA have updated their Super Zenit splitting machine. The thickness of the cross-section of a typical hide varies in that the belly areas tend to be thinner and looser than the butt and neck areas that are closer to the backbone of the animal. The Super Zenit has been designed to curve slightly upwards from the centre (backbone) to the edges of the hide (the belly). However, this can leave a gap in the middle of each side between the backbone and the belly and cause uneven splitting. To compensate for the gaps, Mosconi have added a manually adjustable system that allows the gap between the feed rollers and the hide to be altered during the splitting operation. The result is a more uniform thickness and even splitting across the whole cross-section of the hide. Given the company's advantageous location close to Arzignano, any new developments or systems that are added to the company's machines are first tested in a tannery in Arzignano for 1-2 years and the results are constantly monitored. Only when the results are completely satisfactory is the new technology incorporated into the manufacturing process. 'It is very hard to find technicians these days to replace spare parts, so we aim to try and keep our machine design as simple as possible, so that if repairs are necessary, then it isn't a big drama. As the majority of our machines are exported, it certainly helps our customers in China, for example, if our machines are easy to use and our manuals are easy to understand', says Diego Frigo, sales manager. And if all else fails, there are six Mosconi technicians who travel around the world and can attend to any problem within 24 hours. Mosconi pride themselves on the quality of the machinery they produce, and the selective range of machines they manufacture. The company only produce three types of machines (fleshing, splitting and shaving) and manufacture around six or seven machines a month. 'Some companies produce light, medium and heavy versions of the same machine and sell them for a lesser price but often the machines do not last. We sell just one model of each machine and it will do everything and every size.' Around 70% of the company's production is shipped abroad, with Asia claiming around 18% of the company's annual turnover. When asked how Mosconi compete with companies producing cheaper machinery in Asia, Frigo replied: 'Our customers in Asia know better than to buy cheaper machinery. They know that an investment in a top-quality splitting machine, for example, will give them excellent returns, and vice versa. If shaving is carried out by an inexpensive machine, then money is simply thrown on the floor.' Frigo remains fairly optimistic about the state of business and believes that the company will increase their turnover by 5-6% this year. 'However, the weakening US dollar is a problem', he explains. 'The value has dropped around 25% since APLF 2002, so when we are forced to increase the price of our machines so that we can recoup our exchange rate losses, it's very difficult for our customers to understand this increase in price.'