A manufacturer of roofing materials was realigning their assembly lines to better utilize floor space, upgrading their production area and improving their processes. One process involved rolls of roofing paper (various sizes, lengths, with weighting up to 75 LB) to be manipulated from a core vertical position to a core horizontal position and then placed onto a conveyor.
The Problem: Before the facility upgrading, this process was done manually by a worker, however ergonomic demands were pressing the company toward finding a better solution. Their first attempt towards a solution involved a homemade core gripper that allowed for vertical to vertical transfer of a roll then manually tipping over onto the conveyor. This proved to be slow and it did not meet all of the application needs. Also considered was a scissor lift table and a floor mounted manipulator however both used valuable floor space.
The Solution: The company chose part of to improve upon a previously supplied workstation crane system by Engineered Lifting Systems & Equipment Inc. (ELS). This crane was re-sized for the work area with the remaining portion of the crane utilized at a different location in the facility. With regard to the roll handling application, ELS recommended the company purchase a new Gorbel work station jib crane with a custom built lift assist for the roll handling. This recommendation was accepted and ELS developed a pneumatic lift assist with manual pitching designed to grasp rolls of various diameters and multiple lengths.
As a result the application has a floor efficient work area where a single operator can grasp 100’s of rolls per day without fear of lower back injuries or repetitive strain injuries.