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Shifting consumer habits and labor shortages are forcing a lot of companies to change how they operate from manufacturing space to facing new logistic challenges. As supply chains change you have to adapt in order to adjust to the new economy. Part of these challenges include rearranging warehouse space to accommodate new work flows, newer material handling vehicles, or flat out increasing capacity.

Here are a few things you may want to consider but you can also bring in an ELT Systems Specialist to assist with any concerns.

Adding a Tunnel to a Rack System

So maybe you added new manufacturing or packaging areas and you want to be able to bring material handling equipment directly to it instead of taking more round-about routes. Here are some things you will need to think about.

  1. Sometimes you can’t just take out beam levels without considering the initial design. Some uprights are designed with lower beam levels as a structural element.
  2. Make sure you have enough room for the turn radius of your trucks as well as two way traffic. By adding intersections, you may be creating additional traffic.
  3. Add in frame protectors or end of aisle guards. These uprights are now exposed to potentially more vehicle strikes.

Get a Rack Inspection First

The majority of the time you’re not moving new rack around if you are re-designing your warehouse space. Make sure to get all the materials inspected before you move them. There could potentially be some unsafe situations reusing old racking materials.

  1. Re-using damage rack could potentially cause the new structure to fail. Damaged beams or uprights in a new design could potentially come under different stresses that will cause them to fail faster than in their previous configuration.
  2. Recognize that damaged or deflected beams may potentially cause failure if they are being used in different weight capacities.

Update the Design to Align with your Current Material Handling Equipment

You probably had completely different material handing equipment when you installed your old rack. When changing your layout you may want to consider a few different specifications before completely duplicating it.

  1. Check to make sure your aisle widths are correct. You may have newer equipment that doesn’t need as wide an aisle and saving space may get you additional capacity.
  2. Make sure your top beams levels can be accessed by your equipment, especially if you’re getting new equipment soon.

There are many other considerations to take in to account. There may be newer fork truck designs that allow you to bring in your aisle widths from 11 feet to 8 feet. There may be new layouts that allow you to bury building columns in the flue space rather than burying them in a bay creating more pallet positions. In order to make sure your move is optimized for your operation, your material flows etc., contact an ELT Systems Group Specialist to help consult with your move.

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