Using Your PharmaCap Capsule Filler
Welcome to LFA’s video on how to use the PharmaCap manual capsule filler.
The PharmaCap is our desktop capsule filler which is perfect for small batch production and research and development, it accurately fills hard shell empty capsules for a wide range of industries. The Pharmacap is an inexpensive solution to small batch production before investing in a higher output capsule filling machine.
In this video, we’re going to show you the process of creating capsules with the PharmaCap. We’re going to be using size 00 tooling in this video.
Your PharmaCap will come with:
- PharmaCap Base
- A brush for cleaning
- A formulation scraper
- And a capsule tamping tool
The first step is to ensure the locking handle is in the unlocked position and the front knob is anti-clockwise.
Load your capsule tray with capsules, your PharmaCap will come with 3 capsule trays, this is to allow the machine to be in constant use. Whilst the capsules are being loaded and sealed, the other trays can be filled at the same time. It’s the most efficient way to use the PharmaCap.
Now tamp down the capsules in the capsule loading tray with the tamping tool.
Load the capsule loading tray into the PharmaCap main base, there are 4 holes which the loading tray will slot into, once placed, again tamp down the capsules.
Turn the front knob clockwise.
Pull the capsule locking arm towards you, this will grip the capsules.
Turn the front knob anti-clockwise.
Place one hand on the front to steady the machine, whilst using the lifting lever to lift the capsule tray out of the machine, this will have separated the caps from the capsule bodies, ensure you keep the pressure on the lifting lever to hold the capsule tray away from the base whilst you remove it.
Place the caps to one side and ensure you remember the direction of the capsule tray as it’s important the same capsule caps go onto their bases, the trays have a “front” marking on them to avoid this issue.
Undo the capsule locking lever, the bottom of the capsules will then drop into the PharmaCap base. Gently tamp down any additional capsules and ensure they’re flush with the base.
Place on the powder spill guard and then add your powder, once the powder is added take your scraper and run the powder across the top of the capsules filling them. Any excess powder can be scraped back up onto the powder spill guard to reduce mess.
Lower the tamping plate and lock it, when lowering ensure it doesn’t drop into the capsules to avoid damaging them. Once locked, adjust the tamping plate by turning the adjustment bar clockwise to lower it into the capsules, this will tamp the powder down inside the capsules to allowing you to add further formulation.
Knowing how much formulation to add will depend on the bulk density of your formulation, some formulations will be more compact and will require less tamping so it will depend on the density of the formulation on how many times you do this. Also, if you only require a small amount of your active you may want to consider smaller capsules which you’ll need different tooling for, take a look in the description below for videos on our capsule size guide and bulk density to find out more.
However, you should allow for at least one compression to obtain a uniform fill weight and to minimize weight variation. Without compression, there is a risk of air pockets forming within the capsule causing weight variations.
Now we can add the rest of our formulation after tamping once for our desired capsule weight, so we’ll add our powder spill guard back on and add more powder, scrape across the top of the capsules and again remove the excess formulation and then repeat the tamping process, our formulation didn’t need any further tamping after this.
Next, we take our capsule tray with the caps inside and place it back onto the PharmaCap base.
Bring down the capsule holding plate and lock it into place, now turn the front knob clockwise. Push the front lever downwards 2-3 times applying sufficient pressure to lock the capsules together.
Disengage the capsule holding plate and lift it back into its original position, turn the front knob anti-clockwise and then push the lifting lever down to lift the capsule tray out of the PharmaCap base.
The capsules then can be removed from the capsule tray, this process can then be repeated with your next pre-loaded tray whilst the tray just used is loaded with new empty capsules.