Conveyors can be installed almost anywhere, and are much safer than using a forklift or other heavy machines to move materials. They can move loads of all shapes, sizes and weights, which when done by human labor would be excessively strenuous and expensive. In addition to saving strain on employees, most conveyor systems also have advanced safety features to prevent accidents.
Many industries utilize conveyor systems, including packaging plants, food processing, pharmaceutical, automotive, chemical, print finishing, computer, electronic, aerospace, bottling and canning, and agricultural companies. While a wide selection of materials can be conveyed, some of the most common materials transported by conveyors include automotive components, pills and powders, food items, bottles and cans, wood and furniture, grain and animal feed, and scrap metal.
There are many important variants that factor into which conveyor system you choose for your processing plant or warehouse, including where materials will be transported; material size, weight and shape; and the type of transportation needed (i.e. accumulation, sorting, etc.). Some of the many different types of conveyors are listed below.
Roller conveyors are one of two main types of conveyor systems. Roller systems may be non-powered (gravity) or powered. Gravity systems are used mainly for accumulation of materials, whereas powered systems can be used for accumulation and merging/sorting. Roller Conveyors are sold in various roller centers. A roller center is the measure from the center of one roller to the center of the next. This is a very important figure as having too large of a roller center causes boxes to submarine. Transporting a flexible package (i.e. bags of materials with non-rigid bottoms) requires four rollers under the package while a rigid package requires only three rollers.
Gravity conveyors are non-powered systems that let gravity do the work of transporting items. They are most frequently used for accumulation of heavy materials. They require a slope (the size of the slope depends on how heavy the materials being transported are), and come in a wide variety of sizes to accommodate a wide variety of materials (heavy-duty gravity conveyors can handle up to 2,500 pounds per roller). Gravity rolling conveyors are ideal for any firm that needs to transport products or work in process from one to another work area.
If gravity is working against you, why not use electricity? Power conveyors allow users to move materials in an efficient manner that could not be done with only gravity sections and people power. Powered roller conveyors are belt or chain-driven and provide limited incline movement capabilities.
Conveyor belts are the second type of conveyor system, and are commonly used to convey items with irregular bottom surfaces, small items that would fall in between rollers or bags of product that would sag between rollers. Belt conveyors provide considerable control over the orientation and placement of a load, making them ideal for transporting light- and medium-weight loads between operations, departments, levels, and buildings.
By adding conveyors to your materials handling process you can significantly reduce the amount of man power being used to move product, and save an unbelievable amount of money in just one year. For example, one employee might spend one-third of their time moving product back and forth. If the addition of a conveyor system reduces this to one-tenth of their time, you have probably just saved over $10,000 per year – making it well worth the cost. Reduce employee strain, improve efficiency, and save money with a conveyor system for your plant, warehouse or company today.
A Plus Warehouse is an online business-to-business distributor of quality industrial equipment including many locker selections, plastic lockers, conveyors, plastic bins, work benches, mobile carts, industrial cabinets, storage cabinets, matting, warehouse racks, steel shelving, and dock equipment.