Plastics manufacturer reduces liability and improves production with semi-auto palletizing
A-B-C’s customer, an injection molder of closures and small plastics, has developed an innovative stacking method for packing their products into shipping cases that allows up to 30% more product per case. This offers a major benefit for their customers in reduced costs (shipping more product in fewer boxes) and better utilization of warehouse space. However, as a the result, the company is palletizing large, heavy cases of product at the end of each packaging line.
Their palletizing lines run 4 cases per minute, so their needs can be easily managed by a manual palletizing crew. But the company’s management was concerned about employee safety and potential for injury when stacking the layers of bulky, heavy cases. They also wanted to palletize stacks that were 92-93” tall, as this would optimize their shipping truck capacity, but this was physically impossible with a manual operation.
With ten lines to automate, they were looking for an economical solution that would upgrade their line and eliminate the potential for employee injuries. As they began their search, it was immediately apparent that they would need heavy duty palletizers that could handle the weight of the layer loads and the bulky cases and provide dependable production for the long term. They also wanted the flexibility to further increase the height of their pallet stacks, run different sizes, or upgrade to fully automatic machines to accommodate future sales and expansion. A-B-C analyzed the company’s production lines and goals, and determined that the M72SA semi-automatic palletizer would be the best solution to address the customer’s needs both immediately and in the future. The proposed solution offered the following advantages:
- No more lifting cases and related liability
The attendant simply slides cases from the infeed conveyor into the pallet pattern. The accumulation table’s roller ball construction allows easy and efficient transfer of the heavy cases into the pallet patterns.
- Complete layer flexibility
As the pallet layers are arranged by the attendant, no downtime or changeover parts are needed to run different pallet configurations or even different products. When running a different case size, the palletizer automatically senses the new case height and places each layer in the correct position.
- Maximum height pallets are easily built
Layers are palletized automatically after the attendant arranges them in the pattern and activates layer stacking. The palletizer was designed for their current pallet height, however it can form taller palletloads if their needs change.
- Rugged workhorse machine construction
This palletizer is built for production with a heavy gauge steel frame that is welded and bolted for maximum strength. The elevator transfer table is counterweighted to minimize load stress, and designed with crossbar reinforcing beams to ensure maximum load support. It utilizes a soft start-soft stop motor drive to ensure smooth vertical load transport and motor drive longevity.
- Low cost solution
The palletizer’s floor level design and rugged construction are key to reducing the palletizer’s operating costs. The electric motor drive provides precise performance and efficient operation for long term production. The pushbutton operator panel offers simple and direct control of the machine operation without the expense of sophisticated electronics. For this customer, the palletizer was an economical solution to upgrading their packaging lines and reducing liability.