Warehouses of the future: APC Storage Solution SA turnkey solutions
Aiming to introduce an enhanced management and handling efficiency of their inventory prior to national distribution, WCF Wholesale Cabinet Fittings contracted APC Storage Solutions SA to provide an automated, total turnkey solution for the palleted storage of decorative hardware, fittings, accessories and legs for furniture and kitchen cabinets.
The resulting warehouse – a self-supporting Rack Clad, 1 826 m2 facility in Whitfields, Boksburg – utilises a double-mast stacker crane to achieve a fully-automated storage and retrieval operation for the 6 696 Euro-pallets of 1 200 mm x 800 mm that comprise WCF Wholsesale Cabinet Fittings’ central distribution operation.
The scale of this automation, besides introducing massive improvements to the rate of pallet handling, has streamlined the facility’s labour requirements to a staff of just five.
The racking solution consists of six rows of 69.11 m each, presenting three aisles for the operation of the stacker crane. The rows are arranged in back-to-back formation – for which the double mast stacker crane, which can access the double deep bays through its telescopic fork, was required. Each row consists of seven levels, producing a height of 13.5 m. Each pallet load weighs approximately one tonne.
The pallets will be automatically picked from the warehouse during the evening, to be ready for loading onto trucks during the day for transportation to WCF Wholesale Cabinet Fittings’ retail stores. About 80 loaded pallets are transported from the warehouse each day.
Because the storage and retrieval operation is fully-automated via the programmed stacker crane, the lighting requirements of manual stowing and picking are eliminated, necessitating only maintenance lighting, drastically reducing energy requirements to further lower the per-pallet cost of storage.
APC Storage Solutions SA will carry out monthly inspections of motors, cabling, PLCs, etc., and bi-annual preventative maintenance and critical parts replacements to ensure the storage system continually operates at its specified performance ratings.
In addition, the system integrity is monitored remotely by APC Storage Solutions SA, enabling a rapid response time in the event of system abnormalities. APC Storage Solutions SA offers a critical response dispatch within four hours, with non-critical issues being serviced within 24 hours.
About APC Storage Solutions SA
APC Storage Solutions SA is the South African market leader with the Spanish Mecalux as technology partner. A supplier of world-class products and integrated logistical storage solutions and services, APC Storage Solutions SA is focused on the core values Quality, Experience, Safety, and Technology – QUEST. APC Storage Solutions SA has FEM (European Federation of Material Handling Equipment), SEMA UK (Storage Equipment Manufacturing Association) and RMI (Rack Manufacturers Institute of America) accreditation, along with accreditation from 14 other federations and associations. www.apcstoragesolutions.co.za