Thursday, February 27, 2014

Supply Chain and Freight Consolidation Outfits May Appreciate Slideable Storage Systems

New Product Operates 'Like a Sliding Wardrobe' Maximising Space
Shipping News Feature

UK – One of the perennial bugbears of storing and locating smaller items is employing a system which facilitates easy location and satisfies safety guidelines whilst presenting a minimal footprint. Many supply chain and freight consolidation warehouses employ pallet racking systems which can hold hidden costs for the wrong type of cargo and now, BITO Storage Systems has come up with a solution which works on the same principle as a sliding wardrobe and is based on the company’s own boltless shelving system.

Smart Slide combines fixed shelving at the rear and a slideable shelving system at the front, allowing pickers to slide the bay to one side to gain access to the full width of each bay at the rear. The system can provide a 30% saving on floor space, offers a high number of flexible picking slots adjustable in size and location whilst combining a dense storage system for both slow and fast moving products.

Each sliding front bay is mounted on castors and comes complete with a roller mechanism that allows it to slide easily and smoothly to one side and stops on the shelves prevent them from impacting into each other. For added flexibility, the bay can be released from the roller track, which connects it to the fixed shelving at the rear, by pulling down a handle on the mechanism which allows the bays to be moved for replenishment purposes.

To ensure adherence to insurers’ requirements for fire regulations Smart Slide shelving includes BITO’s new perforated sprinkler shelf, together with mesh sides and backs. This means that in addition to being light in weight, the design conforms to required safety measures. Each shelf can support loads up to 100 kilogrammes and a single module of the shelving will accommodate four, standard 600 mm deep x 400 mm high x 300 mm wide containers. With four levels of shelves, the front bay can hold 16 containers. BITO can also provide an accompanying picking trolley, which has steps attached.

While the front modules are ideal for faster moving product picking, slower moving items, which require less frequent access, can be located in the fixed 600 mm deep shelving bays at the rear, which have smaller, ‘pigeon-hole’ locations that can be easily adjusted for size simply by adjusting the dividers. To full gain access to these locations, a picker slides the front bay to one side.

The shelves are height adjustable and the bottom shelf is placed at an angle, with a kicker at the back to bring boxes further forward, to make it easy to pick from. Full-length grab handles on the front bays to make it even easier to push and pull them when is fully loaded with product, no matter how tall the picker is, they also offer support for the picker when reaching down into bottom location. Edward Hutchison, Managing Director at BITO Storage Systems, said:

“You will not find a shelving system like Smart Slide anywhere else. Its design gives the density of storage needed by many picking operations today while also being insurer friendly. It also provides the flexibility companies demand because the picking locations can be configured to suit. This makes Smart Slide suitable for a range of applications, particularly ecommerce order picking, where stock profiles can change quickly and peaks can require a rapid scaling up of picking locations.”