SJF's Material Handling Blog
Power Conveyor Guide
Power conveyor is an integral product in any conveyor system. Powered conveyor consists of both roller and belt type conveyors – each having a unique drive system and purpose. Most power conveyors consist of both drive sections as well as slave sections – the difference being that drive units can supply power to one or more slave units to create an entire run of conveyor. Combined with conveyor accessories and gravity conveyor, a power conveyor system can be run through an entire facility to transport finished or unfinished goods to workstatio0ns, docks or any other location needed.
Below are some sample images and cutaways of the different types of power conveyor as well as some of their common uses. If you have any questions about the best conveyor solution for your operation, please contact an SJF sales professional at 800-598-5532.
Accumulation conveyor is typically used in conjunction with other conveyor types in a complete conveyor system. Accumulation conveyor consists of pop-up sensor rollers located in ‘zones’ which use a pressurized air system to hold your product in a queue until it receives a signal to release it to the next stage of operations. This can include moving products one at a time onto a weigh station, case sealer, sort system, palletizer, or any other work station.
There are several types of common accumulation conveyor, however two are more common than the others. Zero pressure accumulation conveyor will eliminate package collisions on the conveyor line by leaving gaps between each individual box, while minimum pressure accumulation conveyor will place the individual boxes next to each other with little back pressure.
Accumulation conveyor is one of the most vital links in any large conveyor system. Without it, your sortation system, packaging machine, scale or other automated machines will quickly become overloaded and will not function properly.
Why use strapping at all?
Strapping is used to secure bundles of product typically for shipping and storage. Strapping your inventory not only extends the life of the product by keeping it safe and protected during shipping or storage, but will also free up space by keeping like materials together in neat bundles for easy location and retrieval. Strapping together bundles of material is also a safety precaution when the materials are stored in racks. If you don’t bundle your material, there is a chance that one or more pieces could fall from height and injure somebody.
How do I know what I need?
You can use the general guidelines below to assist you in choosing the right strapping for your application. Please note, these are only general recommendations – for additional assistance, please contact an SJF representative. [800-598-5532]
Rule of Thumb:
(Weight of Pallet x 1.5) / Number of Straps = Tensile Requirement of Strapping
Maximum pallet weight: 1100#
3 straps applied
(1100 X 1.5) / 3 = minimum 550# tensile strength required
**NOTE: The higher the pallet height and/or the heavier the pallet weight, the more important the need becomes for either a higher tensile strapping or more straps.
Steel Strapping available online from SJF comes in two tensile strengths: Regular Duty and High Tensile. Each has specific uses – listed below.
Regular Duty (RD): A low carbon steel strapping produced for low to medium duty applications, e.g., package reinforcement, unitizing, bundling palletizing and box closure.
High Tensile (HT): A high carbon steel strapping that is heat treated to produce a product which combines high strength and elongation (stretch) for shock resistance. Typical applications are unitizing compressed fiber bales, securing heavy steel coils and open top railcar and trailer loading. High Tensile strapping provides more footage per coil than heavy duty sizes of comparable break strength.
Polyester strapping is the strongest plastic strapping material of the two (polyester vs. polypropylene). The highest initial tension can be applied and retained over a longer period of time compared to other plastic strapping materials. Polyester is also available in machine grade and is very easy to recycle.
Polypropylene strapping is the most economical type of plastic strap and is adequate in many applications. It has a break strength up to 2000# and comes in many different colors. This is used in many different forms of package reinforcement and often in conjunction with cardboard boxes.
Comparing Strapping Performance & Characteristics
As you can see – each strapping has its strengths and weaknesses. The table below outlines a size for size* comparison of strapping properties ranked in order from lowest (1) to highest (4), e.g. column one indicates steel strap as having the highest cost, polypropylene as having the lowest. *Comparisons are based on equal cross sectional areas.
|Cost||Break Strength||Elongation||Tension Delay||Creep||Impact Resistance||Notch Sensitivity||Environment Resistance||Moisture Resistance|
Strapping Break Strength Chart
|1/2” X .020 RD, 1180# Break Strength, 2942’ per Roll|
|1/2” X .023 RD, 1250# Break Strength, 2558’ per Roll|
|5/8” X .020 RD, 1470# Break Strength, 2046’ per Roll|
|5/8” X .023 RD, 1690# Break Strength, 2046’ per Roll|
|3/4” X .020 RD, 1770# Break Strength, 1961’ per Roll|
|3/4” X.023 RD, 2030# Break Strength, 1705’ per Roll|
|1/2” X. 020 HT, 1485# Break Strength, 2492’ per Roll|
|1/2” X .020 HT, 1485# Break Strength, 2492’ per Roll|
|3/4” X .029 HT, 3305# Break Strength, 1300’ per Roll|
|1/2” X .020, 600# Break Strength, 7200’ per Roll|
|1/2” X .028, 750# Break Strength, 6500’ per Roll|
|5/8” X .028, 950# Break Strength, 5100’ per Roll|
|5/8” X .035, 1400# Break Strength, 3940’ per Roll|
|1/2” X .026, 500# Break Strength, 7200’ per Roll|
|1/2” X .031, 600# Break Strength, 7200’ per Roll|
For your convenience, we have put together some of our more popular strapping products into three easy to understand strapping kits. These kits come with everything you need to get you started with your strapping operations right out of the box.
What is the difference between a steel, polyester, and polypropylene strapping kit?
The differences lie in price, how much they can hold, and how long they can hold the strapped product. (See below for help in determining what strapping you need). Also, the steel has a separate cutter, whereas both the polys have the cutter built into the tensioner. Operationally they are all very similar.
How do I know which is the best kit for me?
Things to take into consideration when trying to determine what type of strapping you need are
- Type of product being strapped
- Weight of that product
- How much the product will be moved around while strapped
- How long the product will remain in strapping.
The following guidelines should help you with your selection.
When to Use Steel Strapping
- Extreme pallet weights – 4000# or more.
- Sharp edges (safety).
- Non-compressible loads, such as anything steel or metal.
- The strap is the package (security).
When to Use Polyester Strapping
- Up to 3000# pallet weights.
- Non-compressible or moderate settling loads.
- When polypropylene fails to do the job, i.e., loads shifting, straps breaking, etc.
When to use Polypropylene Strapping
- Up to 2000# pallet weights.
- Moderate settling loads.
- Light weight bundling.
- All forms of package reinforcement.
- Most palletizing of corrugated boxes.
What is the most economical strapping solution available?
Polypropylene is the most economical type of plastic strap and is adequate in many applications with a weight threshold of 2000#.
What is included in each strapping kit?
Steel Strapping Kit
1 roll of steel strapping
Box of 1000 seals
Premium Strapping Cart
Economy Sealer Tool
Economy Tensioner Tool
Steel Strapping Cutter
Polyester Strapping Kit
Polyester Strapping Kit
1 roll of Polyester strapping
Box of 1000 Serrated Seals (1/2” or 5/8”)
Premium Strapping Cart
(no additional cutter needed)
Polypropylene Strapping Kit
1 roll of Polypropylene strapping
Box of 1000 Seals
Premium Strapping Cart
Economy Sealer Tool
Economy Tensioner Tool
(no additional cutter needed)
When I re-order – What do I need to replace?
Unless something has broken, the only thing you will order again is the strapping & the seals.
Pallet Rack Accessory Guide
Pallet Racks by themselves are very useful – however there are several common add-ons that give them even more utility.
Wire decks are a handy solution for improving both safety and visibility in your pallet rack systems.
While not specifically designed for point loading, wire decking can support up to 2500# of an evenly distributed load – however, most loads should still typically be supported by the front and rear pallet rack beams.
Wire decks come in several different configurations, however the two most common are universal/flared and step style.
The main difference between a universal style wire deck and a step style wire deck is the support channels under the wire mesh. With a universal style, the channel is flared out allowing it to fit almost any style of pallet rack beam – box or step style. The step style wire decks can only fit on a step style beam.
Wire decking provides a safe deck material that meets all OSHA standards. Many cities and municipal area require that rack decking be permeable by water or fire suppressants from overhead sprinkler systems. Wire decks allow water to drip through to the lower levels of racking while still keeping persons below safe from falling objects.
Selective Pallet Rack Guide
While this guide is meant to assist you in choosing your rack, it is still beneficial to consult with one of our professional solutions specialists. They have been working with this material every day for years and are aware of ALL the tips and tricks concerning pallet racks.
Please feel free to call us at 800-598-5532 to discuss your planned layout.
Pallet Racks Overview
Selective Pallet racking is by far the most common type of warehouse storage rack and is the product typically thought of when the need arises for industrial type storage racking. All selective rack is made from component pieces that are usually priced & purchased seperately.
Pallet Rack Uprights
Uprights (also called Frames, or less commonly, legs) are the support columns that hold up individual shelves in a section of rack. Pallet Rack uprights form the ends of what are commonly known as ‘bays’ of pallet racking. Each pallet rack bay must have at least two uprights, however if multiple bays will be placed in a row they may share uprights (see figure 1).
Pallet Rack Beams
Beams are used to create the actual ‘shelf levels’ that support loads and are held up by pallet rack uprights. Pairs of beams form each individual shelf level (see figure 1). Shelf capacity is determined by the height of the beam, length of the beam and the number of shelves per bay. Most modern beams feature end clips that attach directly to the upright without the use of specialized hardware, however there are many different brands available that feature unique designs (see section below on selective rack brands.)
High Density Storage Racking Guide
While this guide is meant to assist you in choosing your rack, it is still beneficial to consult with one of our professional solutions specialists. They have been working with this material every day for years and are aware of ALL the tips and tricks concerning drive-in, drive-thru and push back racks. Please feel free to call us at 800-598-5532 to discuss your planned layout.
Drive-In & Drive-Through Rack
Traditional pallet rack is a great solution for many warehouses, but if you have a lot of inventory that shifts on a regular basis, drive in rack or drive through rack is a storage solution you may want to consider. While traditional static rack storage allows for many rows of pallet racking with aisles between the individual rows, drive in and drive thru racking allows for a much denser arrangement of your stored product. Both drive-in and drive through rack systems allow more efficient use of available space than traditional multi-aisle selective racks systems. In fact, when compared to a conventional selective rack system, the same amount of storage can be achieved with a high density drive in or drive thru system in 80% less space.
High density storage racks work by utilizing standard pallet rack uprights in conjunction with rail beams or more simply, rails to store the pallet loads in a very dense configuration. The key difference between these racks and selective pallet racks is that the forklift truck operates inside of the rack itself and there are no specified lanes between the rows. The forklifts enter into the individual bays of the rack and the bays themselves can be as long or as short as needed.
Drive in rack and Drive through rack systems decrease storage and retrieval time while increasing efficiency and productivity among workers. Not only do they benefit your operations, they can also decrease your bottom line by giving you more storage room per dollar spent on racking. Because these racks create a more uniform load in a confined storage area, your forklift operators working in the system become more skillful drivers. In addition to these benefits, consider this – drive-in & drive-thru systems are very energy efficient. Since the product is so densly loaded in this type of system, there is less air to be heated or cooled between your pallets and your forklifts don’t need to drive as far to pick or place loads thereby using less fuel.
Advanced Guide to Carton Flow Racking
While this guide is meant to assist you in choosing your rack, it is still beneficial to consult with one of our professional solutions specialists. They have been working with this material every day for years and are aware of ALL the tips and tricks concerning carton flow racks. Please feel free to call us at 800-598-5532 to discuss your planned layout.
Carton Flow Racking
Put simply, the main advantage of carton flow rack is that merchandise remains better organized and easier to find/pick. With carton flow rack, the product is automatically rotated on a first in first out basis. The concept is simple and effective. Merchandise is stocked in the rear of the carton flow rack and moves toward the picking station in front on an inclined shelf equipped with specially designed roller track. When a carton is removed from the picking station, the next one in line rolls to the front. Carton flow is a great system that always keeps items within reach. Inventory is easier to monitor and control since products are fully visible at all times.
Restocking and picking typically offer the greatest opportunity for improving efficiency. With carton flow rack systems labor savings of up to 75% can be realized almost immediately. Because items are picked from the front and stocked from the rear, both functions can be performed without interference and with minimized travel.
In a static storage system such as standard shelving, the stockers and pickers are often doing a lot of unnecessary work, leading to decreased productivity. Although the static storage systems may be less expensive in the short term, in the long run they can cost you more than they initially save, especially compared with a flow rack system.
Advanced Guide to Cantilever Rack
While this guide is meant to assist you in choosing your rack, it is still beneficial to consult with one of our professional solutions specialists. They have been working with this material every day for years and are aware of ALL the tips and tricks concerning cantilever racks. Please feel free to call us at 800-598-5532 to discuss your planned layout.
Cantilever Rack, also known as furniture or pipe rack is a great solution for storage of long, bulky materials such as lumber and PVC or metal pipes. Furniture rack is a style of cantilever racking that can be decked to provide static storage similar to pallet racking, with the advantage that it provides easier storage and retrieval of bulky or oddly sized material than traditional pallet rack. Cantilever rack is a very efficient means of storing material. The storage density with cantilever rack can be very high if you plan out how you will use it efficiently, but generally cantilever rack’s flexibility makes it a very popular storage solution with near immediate return on investment.
Cantilever Rack Uprights
Like pallet rack, cantilever has specific components that work together to create larger bays and rows of storage. Uprights are the main structural components in any cantilever rack installation. Uprights work with bases (when referring to uprights below, we are speaking about complete upright/base combinations) to create the ‘backbone’ of the rack. Uprights are available in single, or double sided configurations – with the only difference between the two being that with double sided uprights, you can store material on both sides of the rack. Like pallet rack, there are many different makes and brands that do not all work together. You must match the same make arm and base to build a complete unit.
We recently received a batch of wall clicks from our scale supplier. These are very nice looking clocks, and from what we can tell – they keep excellent time too! Here’s your opportunity to get a great deal on a brand new counting scale while also getting a free wall clock.
During the month of September, all of our counting scales are on sale. If you are one of the first 7 people to purchase a counting scale*, you’ll receive a free wall clock as well.
We only have 7 of these clocks to give away!
Choose from either our Economy Counting Scale or the High-Accuracy Counting Scale.
See scale and offer details Below.