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Archive for the ‘General News’ Category

If your employees are manually unloading and reloading pallets…we can save you money!

Monday, September 21st, 2020

 

Applications for the
PalletPal Inverter
are turning up everywhere!
If your employees are manually unloading and reloading pallets…
we can save you money!
Just four simple steps…
Add replacement pallet or slip sheet to top
of load
Place loaded pallet into Rotator/Inverter
Use remote control to clamp and rotate load in about 15 seconds.
Entire cycle takes about a minute!
If your employees are spending hours….
  • Replacing broken pallets
  • Turning inventory for freshness
  • Transferring finished products to less expensive shipping skids
  • or slip sheets
  • Replacing damaged goods at the bottom of a load
  • Switching loads to in-house pallets
….then the PalletPal Inverter is what you need!
The ROI on this investment is incredible.

Carts, tuggers and casters: The unsung heroes of the warehouse

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020

Article By Modern Material Handling

Carts, tuggers and casters:

The unsung heroes of the warehouse

Here’s how manufacturers of carts, tuggers and casters are helping companies navigate the complexities of a labor shortage, a global pandemic and the ongoing e-commerce boom.

Ergonomic wheels and casters require minimal force to get moving and stay in motion. They also help reduce noise levels in the facility.

Bridget McCrea, Editor · September 11, 2020

Survey the modern warehouse or DC and you just might overlook the carts, tuggers and casters that literally keep the wheels turning in these expansive facilities. Sure, they may not always be the focal point in the push to automate, digitize and modernize these operations, but all three pieces of equipment continue to play a vital role in warehouse and DC operations worldwide.

The global pandemic expanded that role as facilities scrambled to accommodate new social distancing rules, implement “touchless” processes and protect workers from the outbreak. Through it all, most companies were also working with fewer human resources.

“A lot of companies are shorthanded right now and trying to do more with less,” says Creform’s vice president of sales Keith Soderlund. “As a result, our automatic guided vehicle (AGV) business has been pretty strong this year.”

Companies that were already adding AGVs and other automated tools to their warehouses and DCs ramped up those efforts when Covid-19 emerged. “It was coming anyway, but Covid reinforced it a bit,” Soderlund says. “It’s certainly one way to keep workers apart.”

Over the last year, Creform has developed several new AGVs (some of which are tuggers). The company also provides carts for customers who need them. Creform’s newest models include enhanced functionalities like more integrations to other equipment and Internet of Things ( IoT) connections to upper-level production systems.


Carts can help companies handle labor challenges.


“For a long time, AGVs operated as separate systems; they weren’t connected to anything else,” Soderlund explains. “That’s changing thanks to improved wireless communications.” Looking ahead, he says the company is exploring more “free navigation” AGVs, which currently navigate using magnetic tape strips. “The future is going to more mobile robot-type concepts.”

If they can dream it, we can make it

There was a time when customers picked their casters out of a catalog and understood that their choices were limited to what was on the page in front of them.

Fast-forward to 2020 and the same company has a much broader array of choices when it comes to the sophisticated mechanisms that allow carts, tuggers and other pieces of equipment to move about the warehouse.

“Pretty much whatever someone can imagine, we can build for them,” says Mark Lippert, vice president of marketing at Hamilton Caster, which recently began making wheels that have poly brushes attached to them. “Years ago, there were five or six common wheel choices. Today, there’s a lot more diversification and a much broader offering of both casters and wheels.”

That product diversification is going to continue. For example, Lippert says companies will be able to choose not only their wheels and casters, but also select which toe guards, brakes, ergonomic features, and safety add-ons that they want. “The market is in a place right now where companies can get whatever they want,” he explains, “at a reasonable cost.”

The aging American workforce, the need to reduce worker fatigue, and a desire to reduce workers’ compensation claims are all helping drive this trend. Safety managers are getting more involved with caster buying decisions, says Lippert, and recognizing that a cart that’s easier to push equates to fewer injuries in the long run.


When upgrading your carts, look for a supplier that can help you recycle or reuse the equipment that’s already in place.


Ergonomic wheels and casters, for instance, require minimal force to get moving and stay in motion. They also help reduce noise levels in the facility. “Casters can make a lot of noise as they’re being towed,” says Lippert. “Knowing this, more customers are asking for ‘quieter’ casters for their facilities.”

In response, Hamilton Caster developed a new line of ergonomic wheels and casters, and also publishes the “start and maintain” forces for each of its products on its website. “Safety managers and ergonomists are looking for that type of data,” says Lippert. “We’re testing our products from their lower capacities and all the way to the maximum load of those particular wheels.”

Managing labor constraints

In 2019, Ed Brown had a single customer interested in a Topper Industrial automatic transfer cart. This year, he’s already sold two of these carts and has at least 10 more customers interested. The uptick in demand could be due to Covid-related workplace shifts, and the need for more automation both to handle repetitive tasks and keep workers 6 feet from one another.

Pulled by an AGV, the cart is equipped with a power motor and computer. Working hand-in-hand with the AGV, the cart picks up and drops off pallets, containers or other items. “We’ve been building these carts for three or four years, but all of a sudden they’ve taken on a life of their own,” says Brown, who is the company’s president. Demand is so high for the automatic transfer carts that he expects them to represent 25% of Topper’s business in 2020. “That’s a big number for us.”

Brown says the sudden interest in its automatic transfer carts caught Topper off guard, although he thinks he knows why it happened. “It could be that companies are looking to offset their labor challenges. Even here, one of our biggest headaches right now is finding employees,” says Brown, who adds that he recently heard from one 900-person manufacturing plant where 25% of the workforce was absent on any given day. “It’s a tough time for a lot of companies.”

From Topper, customers in the automotive and agricultural sectors are also asking for carts that can be safely elevated 40 to 50 feet in the air (using a forklift) and used for order picking and putaway. “We started making these for the automotive industry, then the agricultural sector got very interested in them as well,” says Brown. One large agricultural equipment manufacturer, for example, is implementing the carts across six different plants.

Diving in headfirst

Kevin Kuhn, president at Kinetic Technologies, is also seeing more demand for automated carts and tuggers right now. “With all of the uncertainty around labor and health right now,” he points out, “companies are looking for automated solutions across every aspect of materials handling.”

Those companies are also dealing with higher demand for e-commerce orders (due to more people shopping from home), the need to close last-mile delivery gaps, and supply chain disruptions. Add labor challenges to the mix, and it’s clear why Covid-19 accelerated an automation trend that was already underway prior to the pandemic.

“We were already moving toward more automation in the warehouse,” says Kuhn, “but I think we’re going to skip a phase of it as companies continue to just ‘dive in’ as the opportunity arises.”

For carts, tuggers and casters makers, automation mostly involves the use of AGVs to help reduce reliance on labor; designing touchless devices (like conveyor systems) that move product through the facility; and interfacing with other, automated devices to create a holistic fulfillment platform. “With more connected systems being put into DCs,” says Kuhn, “we’re making products that comprise one aspect of those larger systems.”

Come up with a plan of action

To companies that are investing in carts, tuggers and casters this year, Kuhn says the best approach is to check out everything that’s available on the market and talk to people who are already using that equipment in settings that are similar to yours.

“Do your homework,” says Kuhn. “Look for a vendor that has experience in the market versus working with a company that doesn’t really have their full arsenal geared up and ready to go.”

Once you’ve identified a vendor (or vendors) to work with, create a plan of action for your entire facility versus attacking it piecemeal. The latter may be tempting during these uncertain economic times, where belt-tightening has become an imperative for many organizations, but Kuhn cautions against it.

“Coming up with a large-scale, overarching plan first will help you in the long-term,” Kuhn says. “We’re all desperate to reduce labor and operational costs, but it’s better to think it through and execute your complete long-term and short-term plans, rather than just saying, ‘I have to fix this now, and that’s all I’m worried about.’”

Soderlund says to look for a supplier that can help you recycle or reuse the equipment that’s already in place. This means less to dispose of, less materials needed to build the new equipment, and better environmental sustainability. For example, he says Creform helps its customers recycle the piping joint components that they already have on site.

“In some cases, companies have a surplus of those items and/or structures that they don’t need anymore,” he points out. “We help design new carts that meet today’s needs while also providing a degree of ‘built-in recyclability.’”

Companies mentioned in this article:


About the Author

Bridget McCrea, Editor

Bridget McCrea is a Contributing Editor for Logistics Management based in Clearwater, Fla. She has covered the transportation and supply chain space since 1996 and has covered all aspects of the industry for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. She can be reached at bridgetmc@earthlink.net, or on Twitter @BridgetMcCrea

Designing selective rack based on pallet size

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020

Designing selective rack based on pallet size

What came first; the pallet or the pallet rack?

You’re probably thinking “what a silly question – we all know pallet came first.” With this fact in mind, it’s important to remember to always base selective rack measurements off of pallet dimensions. 

Check out this helpful chart, based on the 10 most commonly used pallet sizes in the U.S.

 

How To Determine Sprinkler Guard Size

Friday, September 11th, 2020

To Learn More Or Receive A Quote, Contact Courtney Material Handling, Inc. Today!

Keep Safety Messages Positive with New Slogan Mats

Tuesday, September 1st, 2020

Boost Employee Morale With Positive Slogan Mats

Keep Safety Messages Positive with New Slogan Mats 195 from NoTrax®

Face masks, social distancing, hand washing – our current pandemic conditions have dictated that many organizations operate in new and often uncomfortable ways. With teams forced to adhere to new rules and processes that are unfamiliar, maintaining a positive attitude can be hard.
Our new Slogan Mats help spread positive messages of hope and inspiration while keeping your facilities clean and safe.  With multiple options to choose from these pre-printed message mats offer a fun way to remind employees to “keep smiling” and “don’t give up.”

In addition to spreading positive messaging, the 195 is still a fully functional solution to keeping dirt and debris away from entrances and other sensitive areas of operation, and can help prevent slips and falls in lobbies, foyers, hallways, and more.

 

Contact Courtney Material Handling, Inc. To Learn More!

Introducing the New Temp-Sani Stand!

Monday, August 31st, 2020

 

 

Click Below To View Brochure:

2020-08-25-new-temp-sani-stand

 

PPE for Manufacturing and Warehouse Operations

Monday, August 31st, 2020

PPE for Manufacturing and Warehouse Operations

 

Click Below To View Brochure:

ppe-for-manufacturing-warehouse-operations-brochure

 

 

 

 

 

Click Below To View Brochure:

2020-08-25-new-temp-sani-stand

 

Let’s take a tour

Wednesday, August 26th, 2020

 

 

Let’s take a tour
Check Out Our Famous Industrial Curtains & Noise Reduction Enclosures

Warehouse Dividers & Manufacturer Facilities

Warehouse Dividers & Manufacturer Facilities

Noise Enclosures

Noise Enclosures

Contact Courtney Material Handling, Inc. Now For Your Pricing!

Keep Your Employees Safe At Work!

Tuesday, August 25th, 2020

Keep Your Employees Safe At Work!

Employees with Safety Barrier Partitions

Ensure your employees feel safe at work with Goff’s Portable Personal Safety Partitions. Designed to separate areas of close contact between individuals to eliminate the exchange of airborne contaminants, our moveable safety solution can be positioned in any unique application to create safe separation. It’s minimally intrusive, clear PVC design allows full visibility through the partition and makes it easy to sanitize. When 6 foot social distancing isn’t an option, install our partitions to instantly create that necessary separation. Check out our shop page below to learn more and view our different model & size options to fit your needs.

 

Contact Courtney Material Handing, Inc. Today To Learn More About These and Other Safety Related Solutions!

 

 

Introducing – New Drum Tie Downas

Monday, August 24th, 2020

 

 

 

Courtney Material Handling, Inc. Presents…
The latest in Vestil products!
Their new…
Drum Tie Down
Model: DTD-24-2P
A great asset for both work and home!
Standard Features:
  • 24″ diameter creates a snug fit on 55 gallon drums.
  • Two attachment points can be utilized to help secure the drum with the use of straps or cables. (not included)
  • Low profile, compact design for simple storage.
  • Tough baked-in powder coated yellow finish.
  • Durable steel construction.
  • Made in the U.S.A.
Our new…
Stainless Steel Drum Lifter
Model: DL-1000-SS
Helps reduce damage to drums when lifting!
Standard Features:
  • Works with 30 and 55 gallon steel or plastic drums.
  • Designed with a 3-point drum contact with stabilizing arms.
  • Quick and easy one person operation.
  • 304 grade full stainless steel construction.
And our new…
Stainless Steel Vertical
Drum Lifter
Model: VDL-1000-SS
Makes transportation of drums easy!
Standard Features:
  • Works with 30 and 55 gallon steel or plastic drums.
  • Designed with a 2-point drum contact.
  • Quick and easy one person operation.
  • 304 grade full stainless steel construction.
See below for more drum handling options!
Overhead Drum Lifter
Model: DRUM-LUG
Contact CMH Today To Learn More!
Mobile Drum Dollies

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