a factory with a large machine in the middle of it


Up-Ender & Un-Coiler

Each can gets its start from a pre-coated aluminum sheet that comes in the form of a coil. The Up-Ender turns the coil to position and transfer it to the Un-Coiler.  The Un-Coiler is responsible for unrolling the coil and feeding the aluminum sheet into the cupping press.

  • Coil thickness is 2.5 sheets of copy paper thick
  • 1 coil will produce approximately 430,000 cans (just over two truckloads)
  • It takes 14 minutes for a can to travel from the Un-coiler to the palletizer
a large machine in a factory with lots of machinery

#2. stolle standun cupper

Cupping Press

As the sheet is unrolled, it is fed through the cupping press, that will press out round ‘cup’ pieces to be formed into cans. Performing two operations, this machine punches out a disc and then draws it into a cup.

The webbing, or remainder of the cut-out material, is cut into pieces and sent through a vacuum system to be compacted with other scrap material into a cube which is then sent to our local Austin recycling plant to be reused to make future cans.

  • 8 cups are punched per stroke at up to 130 strokes per minute, producing 1,040 cups per minute
  • Disc has a diameter of 5.6 inches
  • Cups are about 3.6 inches in diameter by 1.4 inches tall with a constant thickness
  • Aluminum is infinitely recyclable
a large machine in a factory with a yellow bench

#3. Stolle Standun Body makers

Body Makers

From there, the cups are conveyed to the body makers via air and mechanical conveyance. These machines draw out and iron the cup into the body of the can. The coating on the aluminum sheet acts as a lubricant during this process, negating the need for lubricants, that would then need further processing to be cleaned off as seen in other traditional drawn & ironed (D&I) can manufacturing processes.

  • 3 body makers
  • Each can is 5.2” in height leaving the body maker
  • Each Body maker runs at 300 strokes per minute
  • Aluminum is infinitely recyclable


When can bodies exit the body maker, they have an imperfect edge and taller walls than required. This machine trims off the excess material, leaving the cans the exact right height with a perfectly straight edge. These trimmings are sent to through same scrapping system as the webbing from the cupping press to be recycled.

a conveyor belt filled with yellow cans of beer


Heat Set Oven

The trimmed, straight-wall cans are then conveyed to the Heat Set Oven, which relieves the stress that is induced in the aluminum coating caused by the forming and ironing processes. This process ensures that the integrity of the liner is upheld.

a machine that is inside of a building

#5. Stolle Concord


The cans are now prepared to be printed using a dry-offset process. The decorator includes printing plate cylinders, blankets, and inkers. Up to 6 colors are used per design, which are hand-mixed and loaded into individual inkers. The inkers apply the ink to a printing plate cylinder that then transfers each color onto a blanket until the entire design is picked up. The blanket then acts as a stamp, transferring the design onto the can in a single pass. To complete the decoration, a layer of over-varnish is applied to protect the ink and give the can the desired glossy or matte finish.

  • The process repeats 1000 times per minute
  • Runs up to 1800 cans per minute
  • 8 inkers allow for up to 6 color cans, as some colors require double application for proper color density
  • Over-varnish unit can be loaded with Matte or Glossy
a conveyor belt filled with yellow cans of beer


Can Transfer System (CTS) & Outside Bake Oven (OBO)

The CTS transfers cans from the decorator to the OBO keeping wet cans from touching one another smearing designs and sticking together prior to ink curing. This also ensures perfectly even spacing for complete and even heating. The oven then cures the ink and varnish on the exterior of the cans, for a complete can, ready for final stages of production.

  • 400°F
  • 3 minutes to pass though the oven
a row of machines sitting inside of a factory

#7. Stolle E-nckr


The Necker forms the neck of the can, taking it from a straight wall cylinder to a completed can. This is done gradually across 12 necking stages to maintain the integrity of the aluminum throughout the process. The final forming step in the process will form a curved edge ‘flange’ so a can end is able to be seamed once the can has been filled.

A series of quality checks are performed at this stage as well. A Light Tester stage checks for pinholes in the cans, and an Metal Exposure Tester (MET) detects exposed metal or liner defects on each can, ensuring only quality cans with full-coverage liner continue to be palletized. Next a vision system inspects four different regions of the cans for physical defects such as dents or pleating, automatically rejecting any defective cans.

  • 900-1200 CPM
  • 12 gradual necking stages + 1 flange state
a large building with a bunch of yellow stairs



Cans are formed into a layer pattern of 389 cans per layer and swept onto a pallet 1 layer at a time until the desired number of layers are accumulated. Once complete, the machine places a top frame on the pallet and bands it tightly to be shipped to our customers to be filled with tasty beverages for everyone to enjoy!