World Leading Chainsaw / Power tool brand –STIHL , recently appointed Conveyor Systems Ltd (CSL) to streamline their order picking operation, which is carried out over a two tier mezzanine floor area.
Previously, STIHL, who’s head office for Great Britain is located in Surrey, conducted the process manually using pallet gates in conjunction with a fork lift truck to deliver palletised picked goods to the ground floor. The process was then done in reverse to replenish stock to the relevant floors.
STIHL approached CSL with a brief to provide a semi-automated system to accommodate order picking and stock replenishment over two floors, requiring a fully reversible solution. The solution required the ability to stop product between floors for consolidation. The challenge was to deliver a system that was both space efficient and featured a bolt-on approach for future integration to the new WMS, which would include Bar code reading, to move to a fully automated system.
Due to the range of small items and spare parts being handled within this application, all goods are transported in conventional totes. This is a perfect fit for CSL’s range of standard tote conveyor systems and spiral elevator/lowerator solutions.
CSL took a unique approach to combine a space efficient product that required no additional guarding or complicated controls ethos and implemented two Ambaflex spirals, one stacked upon the other. In essence they are two machines, operating as one solution, providing an infeed and outfeed from the first floor and delivering to either the ground or second floor using the same common conveyors.
From the second floor the totes are loaded onto a conveyor and conveyed down the first floor via the top spiral lowerator. Upon landing at the second floor, a manual sort determines whether the tote requires removal for order consolidation or placing onto the next conveyor to take to ground. The second of the stacked spiral lowerators takes the product to ground, whereby another manual sort takes place. All finished orders are presented to a transit conveyor, which conveys the totes to end of line packing operation. Stock replenishment operates in reverse.
For more information on Ambaflex sprials click here