One of the most common questions posed in the storage equipment industry is 'What loading will my racking take?' One of the most common answers to this question is 'It depends.' Which is true. The capacity of your racking depends on a range of factors, which makes it impossible to give a ‘standard’ answer.
Most pallet racking systems are designed bespoke to the requirements of the user. Therefore the components of the system will vary significantly, meaning that no two systems are the same and that giving a definitive answer that covers Dexion racking systems, or any other manufacturer for that matter, can’t be done.
What is the distance (in millimetres) between the insides of each upright – this must be measured from the front face of the rack i.e right to left along the width, NOT the depth.
In other words, is it an open beam or a box beam? The box beam is a heavier duty beam than the open beam, so this is crucial to the strength of the entire racking system and the loading it can take.
To measure the beam depth measure the distance from the top to the bottom of the front face in millimetres.
The depth of the beam face is also an important dimension when calculating the loading of your system. Whereas the beam depth is commonly 50mm, the beam face depth can vary significantly from 80 or 90mm to as much as 150mm. The deeper the beam face the heavier duty the beam and the more load it is likely to take.
It is important to know the dimensions of your racking frames. The measurement required is the Height (H) (mm) x Width (W) (mm) of the frames. For example, a the end frames may be 6000mm high x 900mm Wide. The width (or depth) of the frame can be measured as the front to back dimension of the rack.
The height of each storage level, measured from the floor to the top side of each beam. Beam pitches for Dexion pallet racking are 76.2mm (3 inches) for MK3 Speedlock or 50mm for Dexion P90, therefore beams can only be located at these intervals.
E.g. if you have 3 beam levels we need to know the exact heights of each beam. If the number of beam levels varies across your racking system, then the load criteria will also vary so please bear this in mind.
The frame section indicates the duty of the upright. Different upright duties offer different strengths, therefore it is important to be clear on the load that your rack uprights can take before loading the racking to capacity. For Dexion P90 or Dexion MK3 the duty is stamped onto the steel all the way up each upright. This makes it easy to identify. For example, a heavy duty Dexion upright will have a ‘H’ stamped onto it, or a standard duty upright will have an ‘S’.
Other manufacturers may use the same method, or they may stamp the side profile of the upright.
In order to provide you with the most accurate loading calculation it is recommended that you provide the following information:
Fully Loaded Pallet Details:
Type of Racking:
It is recommended that each rack is fitted with a load notice that clearly indicates the maximum loading of your Dexion racking.
Bristol Storage Equipment was called to a site in Portishead belonging to E-Vapor, a company that sells and supplies electronic cigarettes, e-liquids and other associated equipment.
The objective was to create a functional warehouse with an office for staff and additional space for storage, whilst still allowing frequent deliveries and collections to take place uninterrupted.
BSE implemented a range of products in their warehouse including energy efficient LED lighting, a mezzanine flooring system with 1 hour fire protection, air conditioning and steel partitioning system with vinyl flooring.
Mezzanine Flooring with 1 hour fire protection – The 1 tier mezzanine flooring system used in this project was designed and fitted to create a functional office space for staff to work in, with the space underneath system creating further storage and work space through the use of a partitioning system.
The mezzanine supplied had a 1 hour fire rating in order to comply with Building and Fire Regulations giving the company peace of mind that stock would be safe for some time in the event of a fire.
Steel Partitioning – On the ground floor, a single skin ground level partitioning system was installed to seal off the mezzanine, making up the storage space. On the top tier, a clean room partitioning system was installed to create a four sided enclosure which would act as the workspace for employees – creating a clean environment free from contamination and allowing them to work without constant distractions from outside noise.
Vinyl Flooring – Vinyl flooring was an essential part of this project as the staff at E-Vapor are constantly handling e-liquids and associated ingredients. These substances are sticky and will stain on most types of flooring if spilt. The vinyl flooring supplied is hygienic and easy to clean as well as being durable enough to withstand the daily volume of staff.
Warehouse Lighting – The traditional highbay lighting previously in place at E-Vapor was replaced with efficient LED lighting – not only is this type of lighting brighter, but it has a longer lifespan - reducing energy costs and the companies impact on the environment.
Air Conditioning – Finally, a new Daikin air conditioning heat pump inverter system was implemented to give staff control over the temperature of the office and storage space – this was also an essential due to the liquids and other stock held on site.
If you have any questions regarding any of the products used during this build – or are looking for a reliable storage expert to help you with your next project – give one of our expert team a call on 0117 955 5211.
Warehouse fires have been a hot topic of conversation recently, with a large fire devastating a warehouse on White Hart Lane and residents being evacuated in North West London following a huge blaze in the same month.
Fortunately, in both cases, the blazes were controlled (by a total of 190 firefighters!) without any injuries.Warehouse fires are devastating for business, not only destroying stock and causing long downtime but also putting employees at risk. To help ensure fire is not a risk in your warehouse, take a look at our 5 step fire safety checklist.
Not only can overloaded pallet racking cause damage to your system, it can also pose a serious fire hazard. With more stock to burn through in a condensed space, overloaded pallet racking can be the difference between controlling a fire and letting it spread to the rest of your warehouse.
Ensure that you stick to racking weight limits and don’t overload – instead, find ways to maximise space in your warehouse, invest in racking that is designed to make the most of your space and consider a mezzanine flooring system to create extra storage space.
Proper training of staff is key to making sure procedure works. Staff need to be aware of fire risks and how to control them, consider these steps to ensuring this:
In both warehouse fire incidents during September, gas cylinders were on site. Whilst it is not noted where these were stored – the chances of them catching would have been significantly reduced if they were stored off-site in a gas cylinder cage.
Assessing your inventory will not only help you reduce the risk of fire, but also assist firefighters should there be one. Take note of any high-risk areas where flammable material is stored in abundance; it’s worth having a special fire prevention procedure and additional safeguards (sprinkler system, fire extinguishers and sensitive alarms) for these areas.
In addition to your inventory, ensuring your machinery is properly maintained is essential for staying compliant and preventing fires. For any moving machinery, a mesh machine guard or cage can prevent physical injuries as well as offering protection against welding flare.
In 2016, a bin fire caused over $200,000 of damage to a warehouse in Toronto, how easy would this have been to prevent?
Having an abundance of rubbish stored in bins outside your site can make you a target for arsonists and vandals, follow these steps to ensuring rubbish doesn’t become a fire risk:
Before you lock up for the night, carry out an end of day inspection to ensure there is nothing that could cause a fire in the night – ask yourself these questions:
If your warehouse operates on a 24-hour basis, you may choose to carry out the end of day inspection between shift patterns.
What other measures do you have in place to prevent fires in your warehouse? We’d love to hear them. Don’t let it be a lack of space become a risk in your warehouse, give us a call on 0117 955 5211 to talk to one of our experts about space saving racking solutions and mezzanine flooring.
At Bristol storage, we are proud to be a member of the Dexion distributor network in the UK, allowing us to supply, install and maintain high-quality Dexion racking for our clients.
We are very happy to announce that Dexion has recently been assessed and certified as meeting the requirements for the new updated version of both ISO 9001 and ISO 14001.
Find out more about the ISO standards and what Dexion’s adherence to this standard means for us and our customers.
ISO 9001 is the most recent version of the standard that sets out the requirements for a quality management system (QMS) that an organisation can use to consistently meet the requirements of its customers.
The standard is constructed around seven quality management principles: customer focus, leadership, engagement of people, process approach, improvement, evidence-based decision making and relationship management. Adhering to ISO 9001 can help businesses and organisations to:
ISO 14001 is a standard that sets out the requirements for an environmental management system (EMS) that an organisation can use to improve its environmental performance. Adhering to ISO 14001 can help business and organisation to:
As one of our most trusted suppliers, Dexion adhering to these standards gives our customers the assurance that the Dexion products they receive from us are of a high standard and produced with their satisfaction in mind.
Additionally, their commitment to ISO 14001 means that they have processes in place to ensure that their products have a minimal impact on the environment.
We have a range of quality Dexion racking systems available here at Bristol Storage; discover our range of Dexion products and their uses:
Adjustable pallet racking systems – Adjustable pallet racking is the right solution for almost any warehouse layout, owing to its versatility, dependability and simplicity.
Narrow aisle pallet racking – Narrow aisle pallet racking is a space saving solution characterised by its increased working height and reduced aisle width. If space is at a premium in your warehouse, check out our latest post on how to maximise space in your warehouse.
Mobile Racking – Based on a motorised mobile base, mobile pallet racking ensures that any extra space in your warehouse can be fully utilised. Our choice for mobile racking is Dexion’s Mobile MOVO racking; you can see it in action in the video below.
Drive-in Pallet Racking – Drive-in pallet racking utilises the first in, last out principle, with pallets accessible from a single aisle. This is a great solution for bulk storage of a single product. At Bristol Storage, we recommend Dexion’s Deepstor drive-in pallet racking.
Push Back Pallet Racking – Alike drive in pallet racking, push back racking utilises the first in, last out system to increase available space. This racking system is ideal for storage of various items in product specific lanes.
Once again, congratulations to Dexion for their continued commitment to providing quality products to customers. If you want to know more about any of our racking solutions, or need advice on saving space in your warehouse - give one of our expert team a call on 0117 955 5211.
Zero waste has become an increasingly popular objective for businesses, with companies finding that minimising their waste improves their image with customers and even saves them money in rising waste disposal costs.
Minimising your warehouse's impact on the environment doesn’t have to be a huge challenge, and just a few simple changes to your waste procedure can make a noticeable difference.
To help you, we’ve come up with 4 easy and cost effective steps towards producing zero waste.
This doesn’t mean you have to go rummaging through your bins! But getting an idea of where the most waste is generated in your warehouse will provide you with enough information to start planning to reduce it. Take a look at general high waste areas including:
Once your waste audit is complete it would make sense to put a long term strategy in place to tackle the areas that are regularly producing the most waste.
As well as being much more efficient and saving you money, switching to warehouse LED Lighting will reduce your carbon footprint. An LED can last upto 50,000 hours before needing to be replaced, massively outperforming the life spans of traditional Halogen (3,000 hrs) and CFL (6,000 – 15,000hrs) lighting meaning that fewer bulbs go to waste.
Additionally, our LED lighting can be fitted with dimming controls and occupancy detection to ensure maximum power savings – check out the video below to see it in action, or give us a call on 0117 955 5211 to arrange a product demonstration.
At Bristol Storage, we receive hundreds of packaged products from numerous suppliers every year, whilst most of this comes in recyclable cardboard – some materials inevitably end up in the bin. Reviewing your suppliers enables you to flag the ones using the most packaging that is not recyclable.
Once you’ve highlighted these suppliers, write to them and encourage them to switch to 100% recyclable packaging – not only would this reduce your waste, but the waste of all their other customers too!
Employee awareness and engagement is the most important and effective way of reducing waste in your warehouse, without them on board – your efforts may be in vain. Here are a few easy ways to get your employees onboard with your waste reduction scheme:
We hope you found inspiration from this zero waste post, do let us know if you adopt any of these strategies in your workplace. If you’re looking to make the switch to energy efficient LED lighting, or are interested in any of our other services, give one of our expert team a call on 0117 955 5211 and we’ll be happy to help.
Products: Dexion Mobile Shelving and Dexion Racking with Pull Out Units
Bristol Storage Equipment Ltd were invited in to this site in Essex by an existing customer after completing succesful projects at numerous sites across the UK. With a limited area for small parts storage, a mobile shelving system was chosen as the optimum solution.
Dexion P90+ Pallet Racking was also installed for storage of heavy motors. The racking was fitted with heavy duty steel decking panels to enable storage of motors that vary in weight and size. To improve ergonomc performance and a great health and safety feature is the introduction of Dexion Pull Out Units that enable low level pallets to be pulled out and picked from safely.
Dexion Hi80 Shelving on Mobile Base - Full Height Dividers used to create pigeon holes
Dexion P90+ Pallet Racking - Steel Shelf Panels to store heavy duty motors
Dexion Pull Out Units - Saving time and money with ergonomic picking
It’s been a busy few weeks for the team at Bristol Storage, with our most recent SEMA Audit taking place earlier in the month. It’s not easy to get SEMA accreditation or retain it, and we were put through a rigorous investigation of our whole process to ensure every aspect of our operation was up to standard.
We are over the moon to report we scored 94%, giving us highly commended status and putting us in the top bracket of SEMA distributors in the UK.
Find out more about the SEMA accreditation, the rigorous audit we are put through to retain our status and what it means for our customers.
The SDC qualification indicates that a company has shown a high level of commitment to safety standards, works within industry codes of practice and has been regulated with a regular, random audit. There are currently 31 recognised SEMA Distributor Companies operating in the UK, find out more about the initiative and the standards accredited members must adhere to in the video below:
Companies will need to have been operating for at least 2 years and hold a distributorship from a recognised manufacturer of storage equipment before being able to apply for their first audit.
After being accredited, companies wishing to retain their qualification will be subject to a regular, random inspection – this inspection consists of an independent on-site assessment undertaken by QCS International. The assessment is split into two core areas:
Administration and Document Control – This side of the audit ensures that any policies, record-keeping and legal compliance documents are all up to standard.
Process Control – In this section of the audit, the auditors will look at aspects of the company’s process including project management control procedures, the way work instructions are issued, the quality of RAMs, the capture and verification of the customers’ specific requirements and the technical design that underwrites storage installation.
Following the inspection, the audits are scored and awarded as follows:
Being a SEMA approved distributor company allows our customers to work with us in the knowledge that we are adhering to the high standards set out by the organisation, and that our products and services have been professionally and independently audit to ensure they are also up to standard.
“Retaining our SEMA accreditation gives our clients peace of mind when we are undertaking work for them. Whilst we have always operated to the highest standards possible, retaining this accreditation is our ‘seal of approval’ for all past, present and future clients.”
Dennis Ives – Managing Director
We are delighted with our score from our most recent SEMA audit and hope to perform even better when our next random audit is undertaken.
As part of our commitment to providing the best possible service to our customers, in addition to being SEMA accredited distributor, we are safecontractor approved, CHAS accredited and carry certification to undertake SEMA approved racking inspections across the UK.
If you require any more information about our recent SEMA audit, SEMA racking inspections or any of the other services or products we offer, just give us a call 0117 955 5211 or fill out a contact form and we will get back to you.
If you read our blog regularly, you’ll know that we are crazy about the rise of AI and robotics designed to make warehouse workers jobs easier and more efficient; so when the team at the Australian Centre For Robotic Vision were crowned winners of the 2017 Amazon Robotics Challenge – we had to get in touch.
During the 4 day event, 16 teams from around the world were put through various challenges to test their abilities, despite being in 5th place before the final round – the team’s robot, Cartman aced the last challenge to become the victor, walking away with a cool £60,000 cash prize for the team (enough to build 3 more Cartmans!)
The team and Cartman have received national coverage since their victory at the challenge held in Japan, so we were thrilled when we were given the chance to talk to Juxi Leitner - leader of the robotics vision team, to get the lowdown on their winning robot and the future of AI in the warehouse.
Personally, I think the biggest challenge was to get the undergraduate students up to speed on computer vision, robotics and machine learning. For the hardware side, you have to iterate often and quickly, trying to really come up with something better every week.
For me, with a computer science background, one of the biggest fears was that somehow the robot would be damaged during transport and not work in Japan (We had a funny incident with that last year in Germany...)
Mechanically, we were the only team with a Cartesian (linear) robot solution. This helped us move complexity from algorithms into mechanical systems (motion planning for arms is hard). We were also able to leverage the fact that we built both the hardware and software stack from scratch with integration - that is real Robotic Vision, not just computer vision on a robot.
Team-wise, we had a lot of fun, had chats with everyone and generally seemed like we enjoyed ourselves. Some of the other teams were very... focused.
Blood and sweat :) No, seriously it takes a good team to iterate and build things quickly. A specific solution, will be more cost efficient than a generic arm in a lot of situations.
The most expensive parts were the motors; the rest was aluminium extrusions, 3d printed parts and such. Why did we keep it so low? We didn't have more money from the universities ;)
Well, that's a bit of a loaded question. But I think tying in with what I said above, thinking of solving specific problems with a specific solution allows us to be efficient and really get into the details of the problems.
We are certainly talking to people in the industry and seeing where we can create tangible outcomes. I wouldn't be surprised if you saw variants of Cartman solving some tasks in warehouse/logistics applications in the near future. (Interest seems to be there, funding needs to be clarified).
On the other hand, there is more research that needs to be done, both on the robotics and the AI side, if you watch some of the videos of the run there is very limited "intelligence" in Cartman.
Don't get me wrong, it’s state of the art classification but there is very limited reasoning. Further research on more general robots is also required, if used the right way, these do make sense for tasks - in the long run that is.
One of the hardest challenges Amazon have encountered in their fulfilment centres is developing a robot that can do the job of ‘picking’, this involves identifying objects that have been ordered and loading them into a container or similar to be shipped off.
The reason this is no easy feat is due to the complex mix of object recognition, grasp and motion planning to avoid damage to stock, task execution and error detection and recovery should a mistake be made.
Despite this fantastic victory, Cartman is just the start of robotic pickers and is still a long way off being able to replace a human doing the same job.
Once again, we’d like to thank Juxi for talking to us and wish the team and Cartman huge congratulations and every success in the future from all the team at Bristol Storage!
Running out of space is one of the most common problems warehouse managers run into when they are in the process of expanding. The first thought many have is to buy more space – but this isn’t always necessary.
Running out of space can encourage bad practices in storing stock – leading to damaged inventory, missed orders and potential injuries.
In this post, we’ll run through a couple of procedures you can put in place and products you can implement to maximise space in your warehouse without the need for expensive extensions.
Most warehouses are not configured with much thought to future expansion, which can lead to chaos when the time comes. If you feel like you may run out of space soon or are already pushing against the walls of your warehouse, put some time aside to consider a new layout for your warehouse – this will take expert planning and may cause some down time so it's best done when you are experiencing a quieter period.
When was the last time you carried out a full audit of your inventory? Carrying too much stock or keeping stock that you no longer sell takes up valuable space. Conduct a full inventory audit and determine what stock you have in comparison to what you need, then move any surplus into storage.
Almost all problems a warehouse manager encounters can be solved in some respect by properly training staff. If you have worked hard to maximise the space in your warehouse but your staff are unaware of racking weight limits and thus under loading them – your efforts will be wasted.
Training your staff to be more aware of the space available to them in racking and the warehouse, in general, will ensure that they are working with you and not against you to save space. Additionally, keeping your warehouse staff happy and motivated is a great way to encourage a good work ethos to ensure no space is wasted.
Instead of building out, build up! There are a number of solutions available to save you money by taking advantage of the unused vertical space in your warehouse:
Narrow Aisle Racking – Narrow aisle racking is taller and a lot narrower than conventional racking, it is a great way to get the most out of your space when used in conjunction with specialist narrow aisle forklift trucks.
Mezzanine Flooring – Mezzanine flooring gives you the space you need at a fraction of the cost of expansion with prices starting from just £55 per square metre. Mezzanine flooring is commonly used to create office space and extra storage.
Temporary solutions such as shipping containers are a low-cost space solution; they can be particularly useful to store any surplus inventory you may have ordered in when preparing for a busy period such as Christmas.
If you are looking for a more permanent solution, a temporary warehouse or storage marquee is a lower cost alternative to expansion and perfect for dealing with excess stock during busy periods.
How much space is being wasted by under loaded or poorly loaded pallet racking? Ensuring that your pallet racking is loaded properly allows you to save space and load as much stock as safely possible. Be sure not to overload you racking, this can lead to racking damage and potential collapse.
Be sure that both you and your staff are aware of the maximum load your pallet racking can safely take by displaying weight load notices where appropriate.
As you can see, there are several measures you can put in place to maximise the space you have available without having to invest in a costly expansion.
If you need any help reconfiguring your warehouse layout or want to find out more about the space saving products available give one of our expert team a call on 0117 955 5211 and we’ll be happy to help.
Sulzer Ltd. is a Swiss industrial engineering and manufacturing firm, founded by Salomon Sulzer-Bernet in 1775 and established as Sulzer Brothers Ltd.
1 no. Single Entry Rack comprising 1 Bay as above.
1 no. Rivet Workbench with MFC Worktop