Bag Handling – Vacuum Tube with Support Structure

A Plastics Material and Resin Manufacturing company had been searching to find a lifting solution to help workers who were manually dumping product into a process machine. The manual lifting and dumping was identified as an ergonomic concern for worker injury. The handling happened in a work cell located on a second floor mezzanine above a process machine, a very tight area with little room to handle the product from pallet to hopper.

The small congested work area restricted the size and/or placement of lifting equipment. Additionally, the work cell was located in a hazardous environment that required all installed equipment to have spark resistant features. The company had been looking for suitable material handling equipment for several years. A renewed focus on Health & Safety caused them to approach ELS for help.

In consultation with ELS Technical Sales Staff, consideration was given to a floor mounted jib crane mounted onto the floor of the mezzanine. However it was ruled out because the column location would not have been in a good position for the boom to reach the pick and place locations for the handling operation.

Also considered were two existing monorails above the mezzanine that might serve as a mount for a vacuum tube lifter. However, similar to the jib crane, neither of the monorails were in the correct overhead location for a tube lifter to be positioned for picking and placing product from pallet to hopper.

When ELS Technical Sales Staff suggested a non-standard solution, the company was interested. ELS proposed a custom mounted Gorbel Pivot Pro with an articulating arm that would well serve the repetitive high cycling material handing in the work cell. The Pivot Pro’s design is compatible with common brands of vacuum lifters and the company could reassign their existing vacuum lifter to be used on the new Pivot Pro. The proposal met all of the requirements and was a creative solution to their challenging work place application.

ELS engineered a support structure that clamped to the existing two monorails above the mezzanine and served as a base mount for a 5 foot column to reach down into the work cell. The Pivot Pro with 150 lbs capacity rating was mounted onto the column. The primary arm has a 200 degree rotation and 300 degrees on the secondary arm and together they provided 16 ft of radial reach.