How It's Made (2001–…): Season 1, Episode 12 - Aluminium Screw Caps/Chocolate/Pills/Pasta - full transcript

Aluminum screw caps, chocolate, pills and pasta are some of the most common items around today. In this episode, find out how they are made.


CAPTIONS PAID FOR BY
DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS, INC.

Narrator:
TODAY ON "HOW IT'S MADE"...

ALUMINUM SCREW CAPS --

WE'LL POP THE TOP
OFF THIS MANUFACTURING SECRET.

CHOCOLATE --

THERE'S NOTHING LIKE
THE TASTE OF SWEET SUCCESS.

PILLS --

WATCH AS DIRECTED.

AND PASTA --

WE'LL VISIT A FACTORY THAT
CHURNS OUT OODLES OF NOODLES.

TWISTING OFF
AN ALUMINUM SCREW CAP

MAY LACK THE STYLE
AND SOPHISTICATION

OF UNCORKING
A FINE BOTTLE OF WINE.

BUT AS DEVICES GO,

THESE CAPS ARE ONE
OF THE EASIEST WAYS

TO PUT AN AIRTIGHT SEAL
ON A BOTTLE OR JAR,

AND THE ADDED BONUS IS THAT
THEY'RE ENTIRELY RECYCLABLE.

THERE ARE HUNDREDS OF EVERYDAY
OBJECTS THAT ARE CAPPED.

THIS PLANT MAKES 250 MILLION
METAL SCREW CAPS YEARLY

IN 12 DIFFERENT SIZES.

THE CAPS ARE MADE

FROM THESE 11-SQUARE-FOOT SHEETS
OF ALUMINUM

WEIGHING ONE POUND.

SOME 3,500 THIN ALUMINUM SHEETS
PASS THROUGH THIS FEEDER.

THEY BEGIN BY COLORING
THE ALUMINUM SHEET

WITH A COLORED VARNISH --
A LACQUER AND AN INK.

THEN 12 MINUTES OF DRYING
IS NEEDED.

THE COLORED SHEETS SET OFF
ON A CONVEYOR FOR DRYING.

THEN DESIGNS ARE PRODUCED.

THE COLORING IS APPLIED
BY THIS VARNISHER.

THE ALUMINUM SHEETS PASS THROUGH
THE VARNISHER ONE AT A TIME.

HERE WE SEE THE SHEET PRINTED.

ABOVE ARE THE COLORS USED.

THEY ARE HIGHLY COLORED INKS
THAT ADHERE WELL TO METAL.

SUCTION CUPS GRAB THE SHEETS

AND SEND THEM TOWARD
THE TRANSPORT SYSTEM

OF THE PUNCH PRESS.

THIS PRESS WILL GIVE THE CAPS
THE REQUIRED SHAPE.

BUT THE CAPS HAVE TO BE MACHINED
IN SUCCESSIVE STEPS BY MOLDS,

SUCH AS THIS ONE.

THE PUNCHES FIRST CUT THE CAPS.

OVER 500 CAPS A MINUTE
CAN BE PRODUCED.

THE BLADES OF THE PUNCHES
ARE MADE OF CARBIDE,

A VERY HARD METAL THAT CAN CUT
TENS OF MILLIONS OF CAPS.

AT THE EXIT POINT
OF THE PUNCH PRESS,

THE CAPS ARE FORMED, BUT DON'T
YET HAVE THE RIGHT DIMENSION.

THIS STRETCHING PRESS PERFORMS
THE LAST TWO COLD-FORMING STEPS

SO THAT THE TUBE WILL HAVE
THE REQUIRED LENGTH.

NOW FOR THE SECOND STRETCHING.

THIS ACHIEVES
THE DESIRED DIAMETER.

WHEN THE CAP EXITS THE PRESS,

IT WILL FINALLY HAVE
THE DESIRED DIMENSIONS.

AT THIS POINT, THE CAP NOW HAS
THE REQUIRED SHAPE.

THE CAPS NOW HAVE TO BE
DECORATED

TO THE CLIENT'S REQUIREMENTS.

THE LATERAL IMPRINT IS MADE WITH
THIS SILK-SCREEN-TYPE DECORATOR

WHICH COLORS SOME 100 CAPS
IN 60 SECONDS.

THE DECORATOR USES AN INK

SPECIALLY FORMULATED TO ADHERE
TO METAL.

THE CAPS WILL THEN DRY
IN A WARM-AIR OVEN.

THE DRIED CAPS ARE EJECTED
AND FALL INTO A CONTAINER.

THIS OTHER FLEXOGRAPHIC TYPE
OF DECORATOR

PRINTS 155 CAPS A MINUTE.

WE CAN CLEARLY SEE
THE INK ROLLER,

WHICH IMPRINTS THE SIDE
OF THE CAPS

AS THEY ROTATE AGAINST IT
IN A STEADY STREAM.

ALL THAT'S REQUIRED NOW IS TO
FORM THE CAP AND MAKE THE CUT.

THE PROFILING AND JOINTING
MACHINE

MAKES THE CUTS AND RELIEFS
ON 200 CAPS PER MINUTE.

MACHINING THE CAP TAKES
BUT A FRACTION OF A SECOND.

THEY SOMETIMES HAVE TO ASSURE
THE WATERTIGHTNESS

OF A CONTAINER
SUCH AS A WINE BOTTLE.

FOR THIS, A POLYPROPYLENE LINER
IS INSERTED,

WHICH HERMETICALLY
SEALS THE CONTAINER.

A CHECK IS CARRIED OUT
UNDER A LIGHT

TO VERIFY WHETHER THE CUT
HAS BEEN PROPERLY MADE

AND THE RIDGES WELL-FORMED.

AT LAST, THE FINAL STEPS --

THIS SCREW-TIGHTENING MACHINE
HERMETICALLY SEALS THE CAPS

ONTO THE BOTTLES.

THE 250 MILLION SCREW CAPS
MADE HERE EACH YEAR

CALL FOR THE MACHINING
OF 1,000 TONS OF ALUMINUM.

Narrator: WORKING
IN A CHOCOLATE FACTORY --

TALK ABOUT
A CHILDHOOD FANTASY.

WELL, "HOW IT'S MADE"
IS ABOUT TO TAKE A BITE

OUT OF ONE OF THE ALL-TIME
GREAT DREAM JOBS.

JUST BEWARE
OF THE OCCUPATIONAL HAZARDS --

STOMACHACHE, WEIGHT GAIN,
AND CAVITIES.

THESE DELICIOUS CHOCOLATE
CONFECTIONS

ARE MADE FROM MELTED CHOCOLATE
FLOWING INTO MOLDS.

THE MASTER MOLDS
ARE FIRST MADE OF WOOD

OR PLASTER OF PARIS.

THEY ARE THEN REPRODUCED AS
COPIES IN AN EPOXY MATERIAL.

TO ALLOW THEM TO BECOME FLEXIBLE
AND GIVE THEM THE DESIRED SHAPE,

THE SHEETS OF EPOXY
ARE FIRST HEATED

TO 350 DEGREES.

THE EPOXY SHEET IS THEN PLACED
ONTO THE ORIGINAL MOLDS.

THE SHEET IS HEATED,
THEN LIFTED OFF.

SUCTION FROM A VACUUM SYSTEM

MAKES IT ADHERE PERFECTLY
TO THE SHAPES OF THE MOLDS.

HERE WE SEE THE EPOXY ADHERING
TO THE MASTER MOLDS.

STILL HOT AND MALLEABLE,
THE PLASTIC HAS TO BE COOLED.

A JET OF COMPRESSED AIR

EFFECTIVELY LOWERS
ITS TEMPERATURE.

THE MOLD UNDERGOES
A VISUAL INSPECTION

TO MAKE CERTAIN OF ITS QUALITY.

AND NOW WE MOVE ON
TO THE CHOCOLATE.

THIS MELTING UNIT, WHOSE SHELL
IS FED BY BOILING WATER,

IS LIKE A DOUBLE BOILER

AND MELTS 1 1/2 TONS
OF CHOCOLATE IN 12 HOURS

AT ABOUT 100 DEGREES.

THE READY-TO-BE-FILLED
PLASTIC MOLDS

ARE PLACED ONTO A CONVEYOR.

FILLING IS DONE AUTOMATICALLY.

LIQUID CHOCOLATE RUNS DIRECTLY
INTO THE MOLDS.

THIS PARTICULAR MACHINE PRODUCES
400 HEARTS A MINUTE.

THE HEARTS ARE FILLED
WITH A CONCOCTION OF CHOCOLATE,

CREAM, AND COFFEE THAT HAS BEEN
BREWED FOR SEVERAL MINUTES.

IT TAKES 20 MINUTES
FOR THE CHOCOLATE TO SET

AS THE MOLDS MOVE ALONG
ON THIS 9-LEVEL CONVEYOR.

WELL-HARDENED, THE HEARTS ARRIVE
AT THE UNMOLDING POINT.

THE MOLDS ARE TURNED OVER,

AND A ROD LIGHTLY TAPS THEM
ON THE BOTTOM

TO ALLOW THE CHOCOLATES TO FALL
OUT WITHOUT BEING BROKEN.

THE CHOCOLATES FALL OUT
ONTO A SHEET.

AS SOON AS THEY'VE BEEN EMPTIED,

THE MOLDS RETURN TO THE STARTING
POINT ON THE LINE

TO BE NEWLY FILLED.

DURING THEIR TRANSPORT
ON THE LINE,

THE CHOCOLATES COMPLETE
THEIR COOLING AND HARDENING.

NOW THEY'RE GOING TO BE PREPARED
FOR PACKAGING.

PACKAGING DEPENDS
ON CUSTOMERS' PREFERENCES.

THE CHOCOLATES CAN BE SOLD
IN BULK OR PLACED IN BOXES.

HERE, 185 HEARTS
ARE PUT INTO EACH BOX.

LIKE THE PURE CHOCOLATE,

WHITE CHOCOLATE COMES IN
AS SLABS BEFORE MELTING.

MILK CHOCOLATE
IS OFTEN DELIVERED

IN THE FORM
OF ONE-INCH PASTILLES.

SOME CHOCOLATES ARE HOLLOW.

THEY HAVE TO BE MOLDED
IN TWO HALVES.

THESE CHOCOLATE BEARS
NEED SPECIAL DECORATIONS

APPLIED BY HAND BEFORE
THE POURING OF LIQUID CHOCOLATE.

THIS DECORATION IS MADE
OF WHITE CHOCOLATE

WITH AN ADDED COLORANT.

IN JUST ONE HOUR,
THEY WILL MAKE 1,200 BEARS.

THEY'RE MADE BY JOINING
TWO HOLLOW CHOCOLATE HALVES.

THE ASSEMBLY IS DONE USING
A REFRIGERATED ROTATING MACHINE.

THIS MACHINE TURNS THE MOLDS
A FULL 360 DEGREES ON TWO AXES

AND VIBRATES THE CHOCOLATES

TO PREVENT THE FORMATION
OF AIR BUBBLES.

THE CHOCOLATES ROTATE
FOR FIVE MINUTES

BEFORE BEING SENT
TO THE COOLING CONVEYOR,

WHERE THEY WILL REMAIN
FOR ANOTHER 20-MINUTE PERIOD.

AND NOW THEY'RE READY.

AT THIS POINT,
THE BEARS ARE UNMOLDED,

AND THEY HEAD OFF FOR PACKAGING.

EACH YEAR,

THIS COMPANY PROCESSES 550 TONS
OF PURE CHOCOLATE.

MANY THOUSANDS OF PRODUCTS
ARE MADE HERE

USING 400 DIFFERENT MOLDS
IN A VARIETY OF SIZES.

Narrator: NOW, HERE'S A TOPIC
THAT'S EASY TO SWALLOW --

HOW DRUG COMPANIES
MAKE THE PILLS WE TAKE.

IT'S A CAREFULLY-MONITORED
PROCESS

IN WHICH QUALITY CONTROL
IS PARAMOUNT.

SO STAND BY --

WE'RE GOING TO GIVE YOU A TASTE
OF YOUR OWN MEDICINE,

OR AT LEAST
WHAT GOES INTO MAKING IT.

MEDICATIONS ARE ESSENTIAL
IN THE TREATMENT OF ILLNESSES.

IT BEGINS BY A GRINDING PROCESS

WHERE THE ACTIVE INGREDIENT
IN A TABLET OR PILL

IS GROUND AND MIXED
WITH A BINDING AGENT.

THE QUANTITY OF THE INGREDIENT
NEEDED TO BE GROUND

IS TRANSPORTED TO THE DRYER
IN THIS CONTAINER.

LIKE ALL THE OTHER EQUIPMENT,

THIS CONTAINER IS MADE
OF STAINLESS STEEL

SO AS NOT TO CONTAMINATE
THE PRODUCT.

THE TEMPERATURE OF THE DRYER

AND THE AIRFLOW ARE PROGRAMMED
WITH THIS INTERFACE.

THE GRANULATION HAS TO BE DRIED
AT AROUND 100 OR 120 DEGREES

BEFORE BEING SHAPED
INTO THE DESIRED TABLET FORM.

MOLDING OF THE PILLS
IS DONE BY THIS PRESS,

WHICH CRUSHES THE POWDER.

THE PRESS EXERTS A PRESSURE

VARYING BETWEEN
TWO AND FIVE TONS.

HERE'S HOW THE MOLDING
IS DONE --

THE PRESS MAGAZINE DISTRIBUTES
THE POWDER

IN MOLDS MADE OF STEEL DISKS.

TWO STAMPERS, ONE ABOVE
AND THE OTHER BELOW,

CRUSH THE POWDER
AND FORM THE PILL.

HERE THE PRESS OPERATES
AT FULL CAPACITY.

IT CAN PRODUCE 5,000 PILLS
PER MINUTE.

QUALITY TESTING IS CARRIED OUT
ON 5 PILLS EVERY 15 MINUTES.

THEIR HARDNESS IS VERIFIED
WITH THIS APPARATUS

IN WHICH JAWS CRUSH IT
WITH A FORCE

VARYING BETWEEN .3 AND 3 PSI,
OR POUNDS PER SQUARE INCH.

THE PILLS MUST NOW BE COATED
SO THAT THEY WON'T CRUMBLE.

A COATING SOLUTION MADE OF WATER
AND COLORING PIGMENTS IS USED.

THIS IS THE COATING UNIT.

IT CAN HOLD 350 POUNDS OF PILLS.

THREE PLASTIC TUBES,
STRATEGICALLY POSITIONED,

WILL SPRAY THE SOLUTION
ONTO THE PILLS IN MOTION.

THE QUANTITY OF DRY PILLS TO BE
COATED IS PUT INTO THE UNIT.

THEN THE DOOR OF THE COATING
UNIT IS CAREFULLY CLOSED.

A DRUM TURNS INSIDE THE UNIT,
TUMBLING THE PILLS.

THEN NOZZLES SPRAY THE SOLUTION
IN THE FORM OF A MIST

THAT QUICKLY DRIES,

PREVENTING THE PILLS FROM
STICKING TO ONE ANOTHER.

THIS SPRAYING OPERATION
LASTS 40 MINUTES.

HERE WE CAN COMPARE PILLS.

ON THE LEFT ARE THOSE MADE
ONLY OF POWDER,

WHILE ON THE RIGHT
ARE THE SPRAY-COATED ONES.

THE FINISHED PILLS MOVE DOWN
A CHUTE TO ENTER A COUNTER

PRIOR TO FILLING BOTTLES.

THEY ARE LINED UP IN GROOVES
TO MAKE FILLING EASIER.

THE QUANTITY OF PILLS
TO BE PLACED INTO BOTTLES

IS CONTROLLED BY THIS AUTOMATED
UNIT CONNECTED TO THE COUNTER.

IN THIS INSTANCE, 500 PILLS
ARE POURED INTO EACH BOTTLE.

THIS PLANT ALSO MAKES CAPSULES

WHERE THE INGREDIENT
IS NOT CRUSHED,

BUT ENCAPSULATED
IN A GELATIN CASING.

THE DISTRIBUTOR PLACES THE TWO
HALVES OF THE CAPSULES

IN THE PROPER POSITION
FOR FILLING,

WITH THE WIDER HALF
SITUATED ABOVE.

THE TOP AND THE BOTTOM PORTIONS
OF THE CAPSULE ARE SEPARATED.

THE LOWER HALF IS THEN FILLED
WITH POWDER.

WHEN WELL-FILLED,

THE TWO HALVES OF THE CAPSULE
ARE JOINED TOGETHER.

THE COMPLETED CAPSULES ARE THEN
EJECTED FROM THE FILLING UNIT.

THEN, VIA CENTRIFUGAL FORCE,

THEY ARE POSITIONED
FOR THE PACKAGING PROCESS.

THE WEIGHT OF EACH CAPSULE
IS VERIFIED BY THIS COUNTER.

EACH CAPSULE MUST HAVE
THE PRECISE WEIGHT.

THE FINAL STEP IS PACKAGING.

A SHEET OF TRANSPARENT PVC
IS HEAT-EMBOSSED,

FORMING AN IMPRESSION
TO RECEIVE CAPSULES.

THEN A PREGLUED
ALUMINUM FOIL SHEET

IS ADHERED TO THE BACK SIDE,
SEALING EVERYTHING IN.

THIS PLANT TURNS OUT MILLIONS OF
PILLS AND CAPSULES EVERY YEAR.

Narrator:
EVER SINCE MARCO POLO BROUGHT
THE NOODLE BACK FROM CHINA

SOME 700 YEARS AGO,

PASTA HAS EARNED ITS PLACE
ON TABLES AROUND THE WORLD.

PASTA COMES IN AN ARRAY
OF SHAPES AND SIZES,

LIKE THE DIEHARD PASTA LOVERS

WHO JUST CAN'T SEEM
TO GET ENOUGH.

PASTA IS ACTUALLY CHINESE
IN ORIGIN.

WHEN MARCO POLO RETURNED
TO VENICE IN 1295

AFTER SPENDING 24 YEARS
IN THE FAR EAST,

HE BROUGHT BACK WITH HIM
CHINESE PASTA NOODLES.

PASTA BECAME POPULAR SO QUICKLY
THAT BY THE 15th CENTURY,

IT OCCUPIED A PRIME POSITION
IN ITALIAN COOKING.

IN THIS SAME ERA, COMMERCIAL
PRODUCTION BEGAN IN NAPLES.

ITALIANS TODAY FAVOR MACARONIS
AND RAVIOLIS

WITH GARLIC AND CHEESE.

PASTAS ARE GENERALLY MADE
FROM SEMOLINA AND WATER.

THESE SILOS CONTAIN
MORE THAN 33 TONS OF SEMOLINA,

DERIVED FROM DURUM WHEAT.

THE SEMOLINA HEADS TOWARD
THE HIGH-SPEED PREMIXER,

WHERE IT WILL BE VIGOROUSLY
MIXED WITH WATER

FOR 5 TO 10 SECONDS.

THIS MACHINE CAN TREAT

BETWEEN ONE AND TWO TONS
OF SEMOLINA PER HOUR.

THE DOUGH IS EXTRACTED
FROM THE PREMIXER

AND FALLS INTO A FIRST-BLADE
MIXER OPEN TO THE AIR.

THEN THE DOUGH GOES
INTO THIS VACUUM-BLADE MIXER.

THE MIX IS NOW READY TO GO
THROUGH THE BRASS MOLDS.

HERE'S A SPAGHETTI MOLD
AND A MOLD FOR MAFALDA --

VERY NARROW LASAGNA.

HERE ARE MOLDS USED TO MAKE
LINED SHELLS...

AND STARS FOR SOUPS...

AS WELL AS CRESTO DI GALLO.

THE DOUGH IS INJECTED
INTO THE MOLD UNDER PRESSURE.

THIS ROTATING BLADE MACHINE CUTS
SOME 12,000 ROTINIS PER MINUTE.

THAT'S 720,000 PER HOUR.

WITH THE DOUGH BEING STILL QUITE
FRESH, THE ROTINIS ARE SOFT.

THEY WILL DRY SOMEWHAT
ON THIS PLATE.

NOW WE MOVE TO THE LASAGNAS.

THE DOUGH GOES
THROUGH THIS BRASS MOLD,

AND THE STRIPS OF FRESH DOUGH,
42 INCHES LONG,

ARE PLACED ON THESE STICKS
TO DRY AT 150 DEGREES.

THEY DRY VERTICALLY SO AS TO
RETAIN THEIR NICE, FLAT SHAPE.

AFTER DRYING FOR 15 HOURS,

THE STRIPS ARE THEN CUT
IN FOUR --

THUS MAKING FOUR STRIPS
MEASURING ABOUT 10 INCHES EACH.

TO MINIMIZE LOSSES AND MAKE
CUTTING THE DRY LASAGNA EASIER,

SCISSORS TRIM THE DOUGH PIECES

INTO EQUAL LENGTHS
ON THE STICKS.

THE LONG LASAGNA-DRYING PROCESS
BEGINS.

ONCE DRY, THE LENGTHS
OF LASAGNAS ARE FINALLY CUT.

THEY'RE NOW READY FOR PACKAGING.

TO MAKE SOME
OF THE OTHER PASTAS,

THE MIX HAS TO BE WORKED
A BIT MORE

IN ORDER FOR IT TO HAVE
THE REQUIRED SHAPE.

THE DOUGH GOES THROUGH
THIS ROLLER,

WHICH GIVES IT
THE DESIRED THICKNESS.

AND NOW BUTTERFLIES ARE FORMED.

THIS MOLD CUTS 7,500 OF THEM
A MINUTE

FOR A TOTAL OF 450,000 AN HOUR.

THE SHEET OF DOUGH
IS TWO FEET WIDE.

IT IS PRODUCED
IN A STEADY STREAM

AND GOES RIGHT
TO THE CUTTING MOLD.

THE BUTTERFLIES FALL ONTO
THIS CONVEYOR TO DRY SOMEWHAT.

THEN THEY HEAD TOWARD
THE NEXT PRODUCTION STEP.

CERTAIN SHORT PASTAS,

SUCH AS THESE BUTTERFLIES
AND FUSILLIS,

HAVE TO BE DRIED, SO THEY'RE
THEN PUT INTO THIS FULL DRYER.

COMING OUT OF THE DRYER,

THE PASTAS ARE HARD
AND READY FOR PACKAGING.

HERE WE SEE THE EVER-POPULAR
SPAGHETTIS BEING MADE.

AS WITH LASAGNAS, SPAGHETTIS ARE
ALSO DRIED VERTICALLY.

NOW THIS AUTOMATED MACHINE
PLACES THE SPAGHETTIS

ONTO A CUTTING TABLE AND BREAKS
THEM TO THE PROPER LENGTH.

THE SPAGHETTIS ARE NOW READY
FOR PACKAGING.

EXACT QUANTITIES TO BE BAGGED
ARE DETERMINED BY COMPUTER.

THEN THE SPAGHETTIS GO GENTLY
DOWN THE CHUTE.

THE AMOUNT OF SPAGHETTI
GOING INTO EACH BAG

IS TRANSPORTED AND EMPTIED OUT
BY THIS MOVING CONTAINER.

TO MAKE FILLING EASIER,

THE SPAGHETTIS ARE PROPERLY
POSITIONED BY THIS CHUTE.

IN JUST ONE MINUTE, THIS MACHINE
CAN PACKAGE 10 8.8-POUND BAGS.

WHENEVER NEEDED, IT CAN HANDLE
UP TO 60 BAGS A MINUTE.

PASTAS ARE A FAVORITE MEAL
THE WORLD OVER.

THIS PLANT MAKES
OVER 100 DIFFERENT PRODUCTS

AND EVERY DAY USES BETWEEN
60 AND 360 TONS,

OR BETWEEN 2 AND 12 TRUCKLOADS
OF SEMOLINA

MADE FROM HARD WHEAT.

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