Bulmor lancer Supports Traditional Values

M H Southern & Co Ltd, a fourth generation importer and sawmiller based in the northeast of England, recently invested in sideloaders from Bulmor Lancer.

This includes trucks fitted with the latest Perkins clean output 3B engines fitted with Diesel Particulate Filters (DPF) to benefit the ozone layer and the environment.

Bulmor Lancer’s specification includes innovative features such as the engine below the platform giving a lower centre of gravity and increased lift capacity.

In addition, there is a luxury cabin with all-round visibility for maximum operator output: 1350mm well width offering a compact short chassis and single speed hydrostatic Rexroth system.

"When I was carefully searching for the new trucks I was impressed by their team and the excellent value for money of the product," said James Southern, managing director of Southerns.

"The format meets our special needs such as the same footprint as our previous fleet and high manoeuvrability for tight lanes.

Formerly we relied on cranes and sheer physical strength to move the timber which is now totally the remit of the sideloader fleet and this has given us the comfort for any kind of job such as 60 feet lengths for a Thames causeway. The future is looking very positive".

Extensive facilities at its sites enables MHS to produce, stock and supply a wide range of machined timbers, including large sections and extra long lengths, and with the ability to handle unusual requirements at a very competitive price.

They stock certified timbers and have an extensive range of speciality species from across the world including: Douglas fir, pitch pine, greenheart, ekki/azobe, yellow pine, keruing, opepe, cedar and larch.

This policy allows for serving a diverse spread of customers including DIY outlets, joiners, builders and timber merchants, railway companies and even the Ministry of Defence.

A good home for a family of combilifts

The wide variety of multidirectional forklift models that have been developed over the years by Combilift enables customers with very diverse handling requirements to source their solutions from the one manufacturer.

The German family-owned Kerschbaum- Haus GmbH has done just this to ensure safe and efficient handling of its raw materials and end products around its extensive site in Bavaria.

The company was established over 120 years ago and manufactures a wide range of timber products such as prefabricated constructions for retail premises, stables and barns, as well as supplying over 200 roof trusses a year to a major house builder.

The varying sizes of product and the volume handled on a daily basis prompted the company to look for alternatives to the counterbalance trucks and sideloaders it had previously used.

It acquired its first Combilift 6t C6000XL model a few years ago for moving packs of timber, medium and large sized wall and roof elements and composite board.

Combilifts have continued to replace other forklift brands and five various models with customised features and specifications, with capacities ranging from 3 to 14 tonnes, are now in operation at Kerschbaum-Haus.

Two compact counterbalance Combi-CBs, with 3t and 4t capacities are used in the production area to handle both pallets of components as well as long loads in relatively tight confines, and the manoeuvrability of the 6t Combilift sideloader is advantageous in the 70m³ drying chamber.

The challenge of moving 35m x 5m roof trusses was met by specifying a purpose built 14t C14000, with a powerful John Deere engine, fitted with forks that can be extended to a length of 5m. This has replaced a 16t counterbalance forklift which struggled with the gradients and the less than ideal surfaces in the yard.

"In spite of its imposing size this truck is incredibly manoeuvrable and handling these potentially tricky loads is now much more straightforward," said Kerschbaum-Haus production manager Michael Piller.

"We needed very tough trucks to cope with the demanding conditions here and ideally we also wanted low maintenance and reliable machines to keep up with our relentless delivery schedule. The Combilifts fit the bill on all these counts."

Homeleigh boosts yard productivity with JungHeinrich Trucks

Independent builders merchants, Homeleigh Timber Supplies Ltd, has partnered with Jungenheinrich for its forklift requirements.

The company, servicing customers in Kent and East Sussex from its four depots, puts a high importance on maximising productivity in its yards. It cites Just-in-Time performance and a fast turnover of stock as critical to maintaining profits and retaining a competitive edge.

Since the 1970’s Homeleigh has always operated a mixed lift truck fleet across its depots from a variety of different manufacturers.

However, in 2014 it launched a strategic plan to rationalise fork truck procurement by sourcing from a single lift truck manufacturer.

After extensive research and many demonstrations, Homeleigh chose Jungheinrich as the brand for such a long-term partnership.

"When we looked at the product being demonstrated by Jungheinrich, the quality of the build vs trucks made out in the Far East, it gave us the confidence that they could easily cope with the rough-ground and punishing duties of the yard. These were tough trucks, built to German engineering standards," said said Homeleigh director Trevor Jenkins.

So far Homeleigh has taken delivery of two new hydrostatic counter balance forklift trucks from Jungheinrich, a 3.5 ton capacity DFG 435 diesel and a 2.5 ton DFG 425.

Being hydrostatic drives, both vehicles can accelerate smoothly and have variable speed control. Fine manoeuvring and tight turning capabilities also offer the potential for greater density of stacked materials in the yard, boosting on-site performance.

"The plan is to replace our fleet of 16 lift trucks, ranging from 1.5 to 5 tons, over the next four years, introducing a Jungheinrich model every few months," said Mr Jenkins.

"Having a carefully planned replacement policy will reduce repair costs and increase reliability and fleet uptime. What’s more, as the hydrostatic trucks are more fuel efficient, our experience already demonstrates that we’ll be saving 20% on fuel. Breakages have been significantly reduced through precision control and fine inching capabilities.

"But beyond these attributes, the core drivers for standardising on Jungheinrich products has been the robust nature of the product, its ability to perform in a harsh environment and the productivity gains that it can bring through its tight manoeuvrability and fast loading of vehicles

High quality boards moved carefully

For the semi-automatic order-picking of high quality chipboards Kronospan Schweiz AG is using Hubtex’s order-picking platform EZK 35, with Vacumat.

The solution at the Kronospan production centre in Meznau includes several bespoke additional functions by Hubtex and Rohrer- Marti AG.

A wide variety of decorative wood materials in thicknesses of between 8-50 mm are stored on 920 shelves. The boards with dimensions of 2800mm x 2070mm weigh between 30 and 278 kg. About 100 orders are picked per day here in a two-shift operation.

Every order received by 4pm is sent out on the next working day, and the customers can even order single boards. Some 21,000 order picks are carried out each year.

Individual order-picking presented a major challenge, particularly in view of the high quality surfaces. "Sliding the boards down from the stack is hardly possible without scratches and it is unreasonable to expect the employees to lift them manually", said Kronospan.

Moreover, the board stacks formed for each order must line up exactly so that when transported by truck or train no damage occurs. The fully automatic solution was soon excluded for reasons of cost, particularly as Kronospan wanted to retain the existing support arm frame.

Rohrer-Marti AG and Hubtex provided the solution with a vacuum lifting device using the order-picking platform EZK 35. The EZK 35 platform was expanded for Kronospan Schweiz and includes automatic shelf positioning and devices for centring and tying the boards to the truck.

Unlike previously, the entire process is now carried out by a single order-picker who no longer needs to leave the EZK 35.

"The collaboration with Hubtex and Rohrer- Marti went smoothly and was extremely constructive from the first project idea to the finished platform", says Kronospan project leader Michael Hofstetter.

Order-picking starts with the input of the four-digit storage position which is on the delivery note together with the quantity ordered. Each centimetre of a shelf aisle corresponds to a barcode which is recorded by the reading devices installed at chassis height during the run.

The Vacumat has eight bellows suction cups to move boards onto the order-picking platform. Then moving columns take over the centring process so stacks are placed precisely with a maximum 8mm tolerance.