A major automotive powertrain component supplier was looking to improve handling of its precision components and to maintain its lean manufacturing and 5S initiatives. Enter Creform.
After analyzing the situation, and reviewing the manufacturer’s initial prototype design, Creform Corporation, Greer, SC, developed a new push cart specifically designed for handling the manufacturers’ production parts to assure material handling consistency, efficiency and protection. The mobile cart is built with the Creform® System, a series of plastic coated steel pipes, joints and accessories, making them flexible and easy to customize. The cart is lightweight yet strong and offers exceptional maneuverability and can easily be modified when needs change.
Each cart contains two shelves with four openings per level. Each of the slots is open at either end for easy and efficient load/unload. Each opening features a ½ in. plastic shelf that opens in the center. The production parts are supported on both the right and left-hand sides and hang down through the center to ensure that parts are protected and slide easily into position. The open design of the cart makes all shelves visible which enhances visual inventory management and safety when the cart is moved from one station to another.
The cart shown is 36”L x 36”W x 50”H and is designed to handle up to 350 lb. weight. It comes with four 4” diameter locking swivel casters for easy rolling and positioning. Higher weight capacity, cart sizes and cart configurations are possible with the Creform® System. Although the powertrain manufacturer chose blue and red, various colors are also available which aids in identifying carts by department, personnel or for specific uses.
Parts are handled directly on the cart eliminating the need for boxes or totes. This is an important factor that reduces waste and makes production associates’ efforts more efficient.
To further reinforce the flexibility of the cart, Creform engineers provided half of the initial cart order to the manufacturer assembled while half were provided as a kit for assembly at a later date.
As with all Creform System-built structures, the ease of integrating design modifications and the simplistic construction methods allows the ‘standard’ specifications of its carts to be customized, including width and length to accommodate varying sizes of packing material rolls, and for larger trays and shelves to hold wide assortment of tools and additional supplies.
The Creform System is used to create an array of material handling and efficiency enhancing devices and is a proven component in continuous improvement and Lean Manufacturing programs. The company partners with customers in developing and implementing these programs.