CDLR WITH HIGH LIFTS
CASE STUDY

ABSTRACT



Within tight space and a tight timeframe, we built upon tried and true designs to innovate and design a system capable of handling a difficult heavy loaded basket.



CHALLENGES



The customer requested an accumulating cell that provided inbound lanes on each side and an outbound lane in the middle, providing us with very little room to fit this system in. The existing system already had baskets in use which were difficult to handle, and their production outgrew the forklifts that were being used.

Our primary challenge was thus accommodating an existing and difficult to handle basket with special runners which prevents the basket from conveying on traditional rollers. The baskets were heavy loaded baskets with heat treat parts, weighing up to 3500 lbs per unit.

In addition to the challenging basket design, the conveyor requirements demanded a small footprint, as the system this conveyor would integrate into had very limited space to work with. The limited space proved to be especially difficult when designing the pack in pack out style conveyor for the basket.

There also needed to be a center lane of conveyor that required an air operated pop up chain transfer to cut through it (to provide an exit lane to transfer basket out when needed.) We also had to provide zero pressure accumulation coupled with various areas where lanes were merged at different elevations.

Lastly, our customer had a surge in business and had to have this system in place in a very short time frame.

A photo of one cell

OUR SOLUTION



Multi-Lane Inbound and Outbound Pack In/Pack Out

Our solution was to design a multi-lane inbound and outbound conveyor connected with an air operated pop up chain transfer within all three lanes. This combined two pack in/pack out cells and consolidated them into one multi-lane pack in/pack out with the center lane acting as the only exit lane. To keep the middle portion of the conveyed baskets elevated and above the top of the roller, slugs were welded onto the area of the rollers that conveyed the runners of the basket.

We also designed an air operated pop up chain transfer that cut through the existing chain driven live roller to accommodate multiple infeed and exit lanes.

A photo of belt conveyor

Modified Pop-Up Chain Transfer



We modified our existing design of a typical air operated pop up chain transfer that is integral to various types of roller conveyors – mostly chain driven live rollers. We created jack shaft assemblies below the chains and sprockets to allow sufficient real estate for the chain transfer to cut through the chain guard and travel high enough in its up position to clear the chain and sprockets and guards at the rollers.

In order to merge various elevations, we created chain transfers that elevate higher than our typical vertical travel for standard pop-up chain transfers.

As roller manufacturers, and designers of special rollers, we designed a specific oversized tube to be placed at the runners of the basket to allow the middle of the basket to “float” and not interfere with the rollers. This design was a cost cutting measure which allowed us to drive one side only while positively driving the complete width of the product.



Conveyors on truck

CONCLUSION



Our experienced designers and engineers were able to modify our reliable air operated chain transfers and chain driven live rollers to handle this challenging task in a timely manner. In the end, smart and modified designs of our standard components came together to create an extremely functional system. The success and innovation of this system became the foundation for other projects.

We were able to stay within the customer provided parameters for our floor space and provided the accumulation zones the customer requested. The end result smartly handles what seemed like a challenging part to convey. We did all of that while meeting the customer’s requested schedule by modifying existing technology and adding features to meet the requirements.

If you have any questions about this project, or would like to inquire about starting your own project like this one, please feel free to reach out to us anytime at info@lathrupindustries.com

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