The term ‘racking’ describes a fixed or adjustable skeletal framework, designed to support loads generally without the use of shelves. Racking is usually qualified based on its application i.e. pallet, tyre, drum etc.
It is widely used in warehouses due to the advantages it brings over floor storage and it provides easy access and retrieval of goods. There are many different types of racking systems. The most common are listed below:
A system of upright frames connected by horizontal beams in order to create pallet storage levels. These storage levels can be adjusted vertically and each pallet position is accessible individually.
This form of racking is mounted on a movable base with the steel frames running on rails. Mobile racking can be power operated, manually operated or mechanically assisted.
Racking that incorporates cantilever arms. Arms can be fixed into position or adjustable.
A live storage system provides a block of storage that uses a rear ‘loading’ face and a front ‘picking’ face. Goods are transferred from the loading face to the picking face either by gravity on an inclined surface such as rollers, or by horizontal powered conveyor. This means that two aisles are required to service one block of storage, as access is required from both sides. Live storage racking ensures a first-in-first-out (FIFO) operation and is highly suitable for pallets, boxes and containers etc.
Push back is similar to Live Storage as described above, where both ‘loading’ and ‘picking’ of goods is carried out from the front face of the rack i.e. from the same aisle. Goods are conveyed to and from the storage position by gravity using an inclined surface or track or by horizontal power conveyor such that only one aisle is necessary to service each storage block. Push back racking ensures a first-in-last-out (FILO) storage system and is only suitable for pallets.
These racking systems provide blocks of static storage where pallets are stored two or more deep. By driving into each storage lane, access is gained to pallets that are supported along their sides on beam rails. With a Drive-in racking system the forklift truck drives into a lane and reverses back out. Drive-through racking is similar to drive-in, but it also allows trucks to drive through from one aisle to another.
Visit www.bristol-storage.co.uk for more info on the different types of warehouse racking.