powder coating

Why the Finishing Industry is Betting Big on Powder Coating

powder coating

Driven by technological advancements, external pressures, and opportunities to enter new markets, many producers are switching from liquid paint to powder coatings. Let’s take a look at why this switch is happening and what you should know about powder.

What is UV-Curable Powder Coating?

UV-curable powder coating is an alternative to liquid paint. Applied using an electrostatic spray gun and finished with high-powered UV light, powder is used in a wide range of industrial finishing applications, on products ranging from plastic car parts to wooden patio furniture.
Thanks to its low curing temperature, powder coating can be used on substrates that liquid paint cannot—just one of the many differences between the two.

powder coating

Powder vs. Paint

In terms of the performance and look of their final products, powder coating and liquid paint are comparable. Some newer powder formulations have even outperformed liquid in chemical- and weathering-resistance.

At the same time, there are some major differences between the two.

For one, powder coating can be applied to a variety of non-metallic substrates that liquid cannot. While liquid formulas often require extreme heat to cure, powder coating can cure at a relatively low temperature. Therefore, powder can be applied to materials that cannot withstand ultra-high temps, such as wood composites and plastic. Today, producers are using powder coatings in a variety of non-metallic substrates such as MDF, HDF, glass, gypsum fiber board, ceramics and plastic.

Another advantage of powder coating is the speed and efficiency of its curing process. While liquid paint often takes minutes to cure, powders can be cured in less than 10 seconds using UV light. Thanks to its quick curing, systems that use powder can move faster, produce more, and consume less energy along the way.

A Changing World

powder coat finish

In today’s climate, arguably the most important difference between powder and liquid paint is that powder is seen as a sustainable alternative. In general, powder coatings produce less waste and toxins. Meanwhile, producers are working towards making powder part of a “true circular economy” by reprocessing powder waste and formulating resins from recycled materials.
While not everyone agrees on the relative sustainability of powder vs. liquid formulations, what really matters is that many governments and corporations have reached the consensus that powder is more sustainable. As a result, shifting regulations and corporate commitments are pressuring producers to switch to powder, and those pressures will likely intensify in the years to come.

Recap: Should You Use Powder?

powder coating

While some producers will continue using liquid paint for the time being, many are switching to powder. That’s because powder is:

  • More flexible: Thanks to its low curing temp, powder coatings can be applied to a variety of wood composites and other non-metallic substrates. For those in the finishing business, using powder can open up entire new markets, such as plastic vehicle components and wooden home furniture.
  • More efficient: Powder coating’s low-temperature curing process takes less time and consumes less energy.
  • More sustainable: As governments and corporations pressure producers to use more sustainable processes, using liquid paint is increasingly costly and cumbersome. A system that uses powder coatings may have greater longevity.

Want to Bring Powder Coating to Your Production Line? We’ll Make It Happen.

Richards-Wilcox Conveyor has partnered with a wide range of producers to design, install and integrate finishing applications, including powder coating. From designing layouts to integrating robotic applicators, we leverage decades of experience and partnerships with the best in the business to create smarter, safer, more efficient solutions.

To get started, submit a contact form or call us at 800-253-5668.

For more technology that’s revolutionizing the finishing industry, read our blog How Automated Conveyors are Revolutionizing Industrial Paint Application or take a closer look at Richards-Wilcox’s Finishing Line Conveyors.

automated conveyors

How Automated Conveyors are Revolutionizing Industrial Paint Application

automated conveyors

When it comes to automation, the most traditionally labor-intensive processes are the ones that stand to gain the most.

So why has painting been so slow to catch up? What recent advancements are changing that? And how can automated conveyor systems make your production line more productive and efficient than ever?

The Painting Paradox

In the world of industrial production, painting has long been a paradox.

On the one hand, it seems like a natural fit for automated conveyor systems, robotics and other Industry 4.0 technologies. Traditionally, painting is a labor-intensive process; in some facilities, employees must manually transport each product via forklift or wheel cart to a booth, then manually spray the product, drag it out of the booth to dry, and push it into a hot oven. All that manual labor makes the process slow and expensive—not to mention a potential safety liability, as employees must work in close contact with hot surfaces and machinery. Therefore, you would think these facilities would be eager to find solutions that would help them cut down on labor, right?

painting conveyors

Historically, that hasn’t always been the case. In fact, many businesses that paint products on an industrial scale have been slow to adopt the very technologies that would help them cut labor costs and achieve better production volumes.

Why? In many cases, it’s because painting is a delicate, exacting process that requires fine motor control and adaptive decision-making—capabilities that were, until fairly recently, beyond most automated technologies. And the equipment that could achieve this level of precision and flexibility was out of the price range of most operations.

Fortunately for these businesses, the technology has caught up to their needs, costs have dropped significantly, and a growing number of painting operations are now embracing automation. In fact, this technology is becoming so widely used that many businesses must adopt it simply to stay competitive.

More Than a “Fresh Coat”

painting conveyor

For painting applications, automated conveyor systems are more than just a “fresh coat” of tech. They transform nearly every step of the process.

Now, rather than a forklift or manual wheel cart, conveyor systems can transport products across a facility, freeing floorspace and reducing the need for labor. Meanwhile, robotic arms equipped with servomotors integrated into conveyor systems offer the precision and flexibility that was once only possible with human labor, and Richards-Wilcox’s innovative Conveyor Rotation system allows parts to be indexed on a rotating axis, helping facilities further automate their painting processes.

Businesses that paint products on an industrial scale have a lot to gain from automating their production line with conveyor systems. When implemented properly, these technologies can make your operation:

  • More efficient, allowing you to cut labor costs, reduce waste, and increase your available floor space.
  • More productive, increasing your production speed and volume, while reducing the probability of human error.
  • Safer, reducing the need for employees to be in close contact with hot surfaces and potentially dangerous machinery.

Transforming Omega’s Painting Process

robotic conveyor

One of our clients is now seeing the benefits of these technologies in action.

Omega Tool Corp, a global company that paints plastic vehicle components in their Canadian production facility, recently partnered with Richards-Wilcox Conveyor to help automate their painting process. Using simulations and in-depth knowledge of their workflow, our team designed and installed a highly adaptive solution. Thanks to sensors and robotics integrated into their conveyor, the system not only transports and paints products automatically, but adapts to different sizes and shapes of components as they come down the line.

For Omega, the payoff of integrating this technology has been huge—they have less waste, greater flexibility, and better production volume than they could achieve manually.

Their facility is real-world proof that automation can revolutionize the industrial painting process. Businesses just need the right partner to bring it to life.

How Richards-Wilcox Can Help Transform Your Industrial Painting Process

When it comes to painting applications, most facilities are just scratching the surface of what automation, robotics and advancements in conveyor systems can help them achieve. At Richards-Wilcox Conveyor, we help you integrate these principles and technologies in a way that makes sense for your facility, your workflow and your output goals.

From designing conveyor solutions for new facilities to integrating Industry 4.0 technology into existing lines, Richards-Wilcox helps you create a smarter, faster, safer and more efficient operation—one that’s ready to compete today and evolve for the rapidly changing world of tomorrow.

Learn more about our legacy of innovation or get in touch with Richards-Wilcox to learn what we can do for you.

conveyors for finishing systems

Power & Free Conveyors for Finishing Systems

Power and free conveyor systems, also typically referred to as asynchronous conveyor systems, are built on a two-track system where one track is powered and the other is not. This offers several advantages. Possibly the biggest advantage is that it allows loads to travel at different speeds and loads can be started or stopped independently of each other.

This provides enhanced flexibility in finishing systems and can make production processes more efficient and improve product quality. In this post, we’ll look at Richards-Wilcox Conveyor’s range of power and free conveyor systems in more detail.

conveyors for finishing systems

The Richards-Wilcox Range of Power and Free Conveyor Systems

The range of power and free conveyor systems provide unparalleled flexibility for a variety of parts and processes. Let’s look at our range in more detail.

Twin-Trak Side-by-Side Conveyor

The Twin-Trak Side-by-Side conveyor system is the ideal solution if you have limited overhead space and need to free up space for other power and free equipment. It features weight capacities that allow you to carry loads of 10 to 1,000 lbs, and, with the system, you can switch into and out of the main line of travel more frequently. In addition, you’re able to build the system from existing Richards-Wilcox systems, which, in turn, brings about a cost saving.

With its features, the Twin-Trak system can help you increase throughput by eliminating typical wait time and optimize production by ensuring the right parts arrive at the correct operations in a continuous flow. This ensures that you improve your efficiency while, at the same time, maintaining product quality.

Over-Way Heavy Duty Over and Under Conveyor

With a carriage capacity of up to 2,000 lbs in a tandem configuration, the Over-Way Heavy Duty Over and Under conveyor system combines power and flexibility with a heavy-duty over under conveyor configuration. This is a result of its rugged design and the fact that it’s constructed of high-quality components. For example, its enclosed track ensures that no contaminants enter the system and protects the chain from dirt, abrasion, and solvents.

These features, combined with its state-of-the-art control systems, allow you to optimize production and ensure that the right parts arrive at the right operations at the right time. It also eliminates unnecessary production rehandling and manual transporting and maintains a full log of production information. This results in the ability to increase efficiency and maintain production quality.

Over-Way Inverted Floor-Mounted Conveyor

The Over-Way Inverted Floor-Mounted conveyor is the ideal medium-capacity solution in robotic finishing systems, and combines power and capability with the flexibility of floor-mounted systems. The system is available as modular components that are pre-welded at the factory and, as such, is easy to install, maintain, and change.

Despite its ease of installation, the system’s self-supporting structure is designed with an additional guide track that provides enhanced stability where position accuracy is critical, and it offers weight capacities ranging from 10 to 1,000 lbs.

The system is also designed to keep products clean and provides optimal ergonomics in that the work surfaces can be adjusted. Ultimately, by integrating processes typically serviced by multiple types of conveying equipment, it’s able to optimize production while reducing energy expenditure.

The Bottom Line

Hopefully, you’ve now learned more about our range of power and free conveyor systems and how they can help you make your finishing processes more efficient. To learn more about these systems, get in touch.

With extensive experience, our expert staff can help you engineer a finishing system based on your unique needs, requirements, and budget that will improve your production quality, make your operations more efficient, and help deliver higher quality products.

conveyor productivity

Tips to Improve Conveyor Productivity

If you’re looking to improve the productivity of your conveyor system, there are a few key things you can do to make a big difference. These tips will help you get the most out of your conveyor from integrating robotics to increasing speed and adding accumulation.

conveyor productivity

1. Robotics Integration

One of the best ways to improve conveyor productivity is to integrate robotics into the system. Robotics can automate many of the tasks associated with running a conveyor, from sorting and loading to unloading and packing. This can free up your employees to focus on other tasks, and it can also help to improve accuracy and efficiency.

What is more, integrating robotics into your conveyor system can help to improve safety as well. By removing the need for employees to be in close proximity to moving parts, you can reduce the risk of accidents and injuries.

Robotics integration may sound like it takes away jobs, but oftentimes, adding the assistance of robotics can help to create new positions that wouldn’t have existed before. For example, positions may be created to manage and oversee the robotic system itself.

2. Consider Increasing Speed

Increasing the speed of your conveyor can also help to improve productivity. Obviously, the faster your conveyor moves, the more product it can handle in a given period of time.

Of course, you don’t want to sacrifice safety in the name of speed, so it’s important to make sure that your conveyor is able to operate at the increased speed without putting employees at risk.

3. Add Accumulation

If your conveyor system doesn’t already have accumulation, adding it can be a great way to improve productivity. Accumulation allows your conveyor to stop and start as needed, without losing product.

This can be a huge help when you need to make sure that each product is properly sorted or positioned before it continues down the line. It can also help to reduce the risk of product damage, as the product is less likely to be jostled when it’s not moving.

4. Try an RFID Reader System

Adding an RFID reader system to your conveyor can also help to improve productivity. RFID stands for “radio frequency identification,” and it can be used to track products as they move through the conveyor system.

This information can be used to improve the efficiency of your system by ensuring that products are properly sorted and routed. It can also help to reduce the need for manual product tracking, which can free up your employees for other tasks.

5. Diverting & Merging

If your conveyor system handles a lot of products, you may want to consider adding diverters and mergers. Diverters allow you to send products down different paths, which can be helpful when you need to sort products or send them to different areas. Mergers, on the other hand, allow you to bring two or more conveyors together, which can help to increase the capacity of your system.

Both of these additions can help to improve the productivity of your conveyor system by increasing the amount of product it can handle.

6. Training and Maintenance

Another important factor to consider when trying to improve conveyor productivity is training and maintenance. Your employees need to be properly trained in how to use your conveyor system, and they also need to be aware of its capabilities and limitations.

Conveyor systems require regular maintenance to keep them running smoothly. This may include tasks such as lubricating moving parts, checking for damage, and troubleshooting any issues that arise.

By properly training your employees and keeping your conveyor system well-maintained, you can help to improve its overall productivity.

7. Consider What Works for You

When it comes to conveyor productivity, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. The best way to improve productivity is to consider what will work best for your specific operation.

For example, if you have a large operation with a lot of products to move, you may want to consider adding an accumulation zone to your conveyor. This will allow your conveyor to store products until there is enough space to move them, which can help to improve the flow of your operation.

If you have a smaller operation, you may want to focus on increasing the speed of your conveyor. This can help to move products through your operation more quickly, and it can also help to improve accuracy.

Conclusion

There are a number of other ways to improve conveyor productivity, but these are some of the most effective. By increasing speed, adding accumulation, or integrating robotics, you can make a big difference in the efficiency of your system.

distribution conveyors

Conveyor Design Considerations for Pharmaceutical Distribution

A Busy Future for Pharmaceutical Distribution Needs a Conveyor that’s Built to Keep Up

Pharmaceutical distribution systems have been getting some due attention lately. With the current demand fueling industry projections distributors are upgrading. Is it time for you to think about upgrading to a Richards-Wilcox conveyor?

The world of pharmaceutical distribution comes with its own set of requirements. A conveyor designed for cleanliness and accuracy is exactly what pharmaceutical distributors need.

A Richards-Wilcox conveyor is an ideal solution for the needs of pharmaceutical distributors. Our systems use the power of robotics and automation to ensure the greatest accuracy and output. Richards-Wilcox engineers our conveyors to meet the specific needs of the client. These systems meet and exceed the highest standards of material handling equipment cleanliness.

Our material handling solutions come with automatic control systems. Tracking, switching, diverting, merging color typing and more. The user can have all these systems automated to their requirements.

Industries know our systems for their accuracy and dependability. We will introduce every possible variable to the system to show you just how flexible it is.

distribution conveyors

Systems Built Specifically to the Needs of the Distributor

It is safe to say that most pharmaceutical needs for conveyor systems center on material handling and distribution. This is true when it comes to medicine and the components that make them. Some pharmaceutical distributors may have production uses for applications like producing equipment.

We cannot overstate the importance of taking all the clients’ needs and challenges into consideration. When designing a customized conveyor system, we engineer every detail.

If space is an issue, high-density storage is the best way to maximize what you are working with. Combine this with a side-by-side conveyor to make the most of your floor space.

Our systems also support many load and unload points. Overhead systems using your building’s airspace and floor space provide options. What challenge is your space dealing with? Our team can help you to make the best of it, without shutting down the show for months.

High Output Low Downtime

In the world of manufacturing, accuracy is crucial. Pharmaceutical distribution is certainly no exception. We design our systems to operate smoothly to maximize output. The goal of maximizing output involves minimizing downtime. To do this we design our machines with intelligence built-in.

Richards-Wilcox designs its systems to cut wear on components. This makes troubleshooting and servicing them as efficient as possible. We build our conveyors to cut downtime. We build them intuitive and accessible: reducing how often systems need maintenance work.

With Richards-Wilcox, you get 125 years of experience, dedicated engineering and in-house simulations. This means the downtime is minimal and the benefits are exponential. The whole world is watching pharmaceutical distribution: it is time to produce.

Get in touch today and let us build you the best possible conveyor system

material handling and fabrication

What Is Material Handling?

The manufacturing chain is an intricate system of processes, machinery, human input and algorithms, all designed to engage with materials in fascinating ways. When it comes to industrial material handling, however, the equipment and solutions available all have incredibly focused roles in handling, storage and transportation.

Material handling solutions are woven throughout the supply chain and in the very procurement of resources and raw materials. Given its importance, what is material handling and how does it affect so many moving parts in industrialization?

material handling and fabrication

Storage and handling equipment

When it comes to equipment, storage simply refers to the infrastructure used to temporarily house materials. Because of the broadness of the term, storage equipment can refer to anything from a single shelf to a freight container.

However, one of the most common features of storage equipment is the utility of space. From making use of vertical space in warehouses and shelving to lighter and stronger storage boxes to reduce weight and the resource cost of storage.

Bulk material handling equipment

Now we start getting into some of the specifics. Material handling equipment manufacturers design their handling solutions around the product that either needs storage, transportation or altering. One of the most common material types is bulk material, which refers to materials that are handled in loose bulks.

Loose bulks can include ball bearings, grooms, pellets, stacked piles and a host of other materials. Bulk handling technology is built around keeping this material in the appropriate predetermined clusters. There might not be much reason to reinvent the wheel, but when it comes to bulk material handling, the bucket has seen plenty of innovation.

Industrial trucks

In an increasingly globalized world, long-distance custom material handling solutions have never been more important. The industrial revolution brought about the ability to transport large quantities of goods with the power of steam and coal engines. Today, freight ships and trains represent the technological edge of industrial transportation.

There is one vehicle, however, with the mobility and capacity to keep operations running on land from small businesses to vast industrial networks: the truck. Lighter on fuel than its counterparts, more versatile in distance management and certainly easier to maintain, trucks are the lifeblood of transportation when it comes to material handling.

Automated handling

The word “handling” tends to conjure up images of delicate packages, which we in turn associate with human handling – care. For those who work with automated handling systems, however, it will come as no surprise that industrial handling technology has advanced to the point where machines form an important part of the handling process.

From the conveyer belt to the loading dock, engineers have worked for decades to create capable and reliable automated handling systems. They’ve progressed in leaps and bounds thanks to innovations both in software development and hardware design.

The result is a system of automated machines that allow the handling process to move like clockwork, creating a more reliable and efficient supply chain and manufacturing process.

conveyor control system

Benefits of Conveyor Automation

Automation has become an integral part of the manufacturing industry.

Stiff competition and the need for efficiency has compelled manufacturers to automate the various key processes.

Apart from picking and packing, managers should also automate conveyor systems. Automation of conveyor system designs makes moving raw materials, finished products, and other goods easy and is cost-efficient.

At Richards-Wilcox Conveyors, we create automated systems for assembly, material handling, and fabrication, finishing line, and specialty applications like robotic integration into a paint line for car parts.

Automation may require a huge investment, but in the end, its advantages are apparent.

Benefits of Automated Conveyors

conveyor control system

Reduced Labor Costs

Installation of automated conveyors costs a lot. However, they result in overall reduced day to day labor costs and a high return on investment (ROI).

Unlike humans, robots do not get fatigued, don’t require off days, holidays, and overtime pay. Additionally, they don’t get injured in accidents and definitely won’t sue for damages.

They can perform the work faster and consistently without the need for more human labor. All you’ll need is an overseer and a few engineers to handle any software or hardware problems that may arise.

At Richards-Wilcox Conveyors, we design conveyors customized to your factory’s needs and optimize productivity while cutting human labor costs.

Reduced Error and Injuries

Humans are intelligent but not perfect.

While robots require human supervision, they’re reliable and more consistent. Proper programming of conveyors and automation makes it less likely for costly errors to occur.

Our conveyor systems and engineering come with conveyor controls with Operator Interface Displays, the latest hardware, straightforward software configurations, and a Graphic User Interface (GUI) where the operator can see the real-time production information.

Additionally, they also feature emergency shut-down capabilities, thus reducing errors and preventing injuries. The conveyor controls also come with support documentation and comprehensive training on operation and maintenance.

Saves Space

Automated conveyor systems require less space on the passageway between conveyors as there’s no room required for forklifts and manual machines.

The production floor can open up and look less cluttered. Moreso, automated conveyors do not necessarily require to be on the floor.

If there’s limited space, we can design and install a conveyor that suspends from the ceiling to reclaim the space on the floor. But first, our conveyor simulation will demonstrate how it will work.

Before installation, we design a conveyor simulation, a computer-generated model that demonstrates how your conveyor will work. It shows you the exact components of the system and how it will function in your space.

The conveyor simulation shows how effective the system is, allows modification to customize the system to your needs, and detects any problems before it is installed.

Conclusion

Automation is the future of manufacturing. At Richards-Wilcox Conveyor, we will build and install automated conveyor systems for you. We will provide you with a simulation before installation to make sure the system will work as expected. Our conveyor systems design comes with conveyor controls and everything you need to make conveying seamless.

Distribution Conveyors - box on conveyors

Conveyor Systems & Engineering for Distribution Applications

Richards-Wilcox Conveyor is well-versed in conveyor systems and engineering.

We have options available for many different purposes and needs, such as belt conveyors, roller conveyors, carrier conveyors, and enclosed track conveyors. This is because we know that conveyors are key not only in assembly applications but in distribution applications as well.

We can ensure that your distribution center is as efficient, clean, and streamlined as possible. Richards-Wilcox Conveyor has solutions that trim down features such as tote handling, empty carton return, and more. This saves on precious time, labor costs and efforts, and means that our uniquely designed trash conveyors can deposit waste to your recycling area automatically.

Distribution Conveyors - box on conveyors

Some excellent options for distribution applications are our Inverted Zig-Zag Conveyor & Zig-Zag Enclosed Track Conveyors.

The Richards-Wilcox Inverted Zig-Zag Conveyor is the way to go for distribution applications where slick operation is paramount. It is an ideal solution for electronics manufacturing, pin systems, kitting assembly, tote conveyors, pan conveyor assembly, and package handling.

This system has an inventive design in which our inverted pendants provide vertical flexibility that is impossible to achieve otherwise. They pivot forward and backward on the wheel axel which allows rotations of up to 30° without torque and wear on the chain. Additionally, they have adjustable (and removable) load centers, modular components that allow for a speedy installation and incredibly precise use, minimal headroom requirements so that your production space is maximized, and removable pendants for ease of maintenance, replacement, and reconfiguration.

Their capacity ranges from 25-75 lbs. per load pin.

We specially designed these inverted monorail conveyors to bring the future to your factory. They accomplish this goal in a few ways:

  • – They eliminate drip pans and sanitary hooks, extend chain and track life – the pivoting pendant means no torque and wear on chain assembly
  • – Reduces maintenance – this reduces costs and downtime
  • – Reduces operational costs – the pendants last longer
  • – Increases production – with less downtime, maintenance and conveyor costs, there is a more streamlined, efficient, and cost-effective operation

Richards-Wilcox Conveyor also offers the Zig-Zag Monorail Enclosed Track Conveyor, which is the product of almost a century of invention. Our first iteration of it launched in 1938 and since then we’ve continuously been refining it.

With its simple and modular design, this is ideal if you’re looking for overhead conveyor applications. The Zig-Zag Monorail Enclosed Track Conveyor is easily installed on manufacturing floors, in auto-body shops, receiving areas, etc. It is an ideal solution for (but not limited to) paint finishing systems, WIP buffer systems, investment casting, progressive assembly, trash conveyors, tote handling, die cast rack storage, empty carton return, plating rack storage, silver can delivery, and robotic interface.

Our Zig-Zag Monorail system has a 75 lbs./load capacity, standard packages up to 750 lb. chain pull, and vertical wheels on 6’ centers. It has many benefits:

  • – Highly adaptable system – the only overhead chain conveyor that may be upgraded to a power and free system with only its existing components
  • – Enclosed track design – products are protected from contamination that is typical from open-chain conveyors. This protection also means that the chain life is prolonged.
  • – Standard, modular components – ease of installation, modification and maintenance.
  • – 6-inch pitch – shortest in the industry. This provides tighter horizontal curves, closer load pendants and less wheel loading. These add up to as much as 33% more productivity
  • – Standard 1’-6’ horizontal and 2’-0’ vertical curves – these can allow for tight changes in direction and elevation. Floor space is therefore freed up for other operations
  • – Vertical wheels on 6’ centers – load is distributed evenly across more wheels which reduces wear. Product damage is minimized as the system can transport product anywhere

If you need more information or have more questions in order to find the perfect conveyor solution for your needs, we are always available to help you.

Here at Richards-Wilcox Conveyor, we can increase your productivity, streamline your distribution, and revolutionize your operations. Contact us for design simulation, a quote, or simply more info, and allow us to bring the future to you with our customizable, innovative solutions.

material handling conveyors

Conveyors For Custom Material Handling & Fabrication

Richards-Wilcox Conveyor is the master of conveyor systems engineering. We specialize in engineered systems and creating custom solutions. Material handling and fabrication are crucial warehouse operations, and we excel in optimizing conveyor systems design to solve for custom material handling & fabrication. But before we talk conveyor design, there are many factors to consider about your factory and your needs

Our conveyors are ideal for many types of material handling equipment situations, like fulfillment centers and fabrication facilities.

material handling conveyors

Material handling is about getting goods and raw materials from point a to point b in the most efficient manner possible. Your chosen solution should correspond to your needs: if your traffic is intermittent or has insufficient volume and needs a variable path, then an industrial truck may do the trick where the cost of a conveyor cannot be justified. But in a flowing factory, material handling equipment manufacturers, a conveyor is a game changer for process and productivity. Cardboard boxes hanging from hooks on an overhead make for an effective pick and pack solution. A floor-mounted conveyor belt can make for effective tote handling. It’s important to have the correct corresponding types of industrial material handling equipment including hand trucks and pallet trucks (make sure they are equal to the height of the fixed conveyor for easy loading and unloading at conveyor stops).

Sometimes materials are not headed to market, but destined for warehouse storage systems like push back racks: we can also help with high-density storage solutions.

To accommodate all these various needs, there’s no better bulk material handling system than a monorail conveyor. Custom material handling solutions call for ease of use, and so Richards-Wilcox Conveyors are built with redundancy and repetitive decision-making in mind to ensure efficiency and ease of use. These cost-effective workhorses seamlessly integrate into your production line, and the setup is completely customizable to whatever type of materials order pickers need. Whether you go with our Zig-Zag® Monorail Enclosed Track conveyor, or one of our inverted floor-mounted models, your workflow comes first.

The same considerations can be said of fabrication applications.

Fabrication is a catchall term for many methods of molding and manipulating metals into various shapes and states. Machining; where excess metal is removed to achieve the desired shape, through drilling, turning, or milling; punching, the process of piercing holes through the metal; and many more permutations from folding to shearing and stamping.

Conveyor systems design can be crucial for the flow of fabrication. For such intensive volume of often dangerous work, automation is essential. Precision is a key consideration, so each Richards-Wilcox system is deftly timed, and even run through simulations so the end-user can see how the system will work, before it’s even built. Furthermore, each of our conveyor systems can be seamlessly integrated with robotic components. In this exacting world, both operator and OS enjoy extensive safety measures with built-in tolerances. We even consider your trash conveyors: the slider bed with a guardrail that creates a trough to dispose of debris to disposal points, from cardboard to metal scrap.

At Richards-Wilcox, we’ve designed conveyor systems for a vast array of companies over a number of decades. Let’s fabricate a solution together: we have the materials, and the minds to handle them.

monorail conveyors for finishing

Monorail Conveyors For Finishing Applications

Monorail conveyors are an essential starting point for any factory – they’re clean, simple, and efficient, with a low initial cost to build and maintain. With load-carrying and drive derived from a single endless chain, these efficient powerhouses are essential units in any facility. But while they can be the beginning, monorail conveyors can also bring the finish.

monorail conveyors for finishing

Because they only follow a single path, they are best dedicated to a single function or part, like a finishing application. For this reason, we offer customizable monorail systems perfect for painting applications and more.

Before you choose the system for you, it’s important to consider the following factors:

  1. What is the optimal layout for your physical space?
  2. How heavy are the parts you’ll be processing, and what size?
  3. The make of the material matters: is it plastic, metal, wood?
  4. How are you curing the product? Ovens, dip tanks, or chemical processes?
  5. Do you want the item attached to an overhead conveyor system, or will you need to use a ground-level cart on your monorail?

Should an overhead solution be the right call for you, there’s our tried and true Zig-Zag® Monorail Enclosed Track. As the industry standard for overhead enclosed track conveyors, Zig-Zag’s modular design and smooth operation make it an ideal for overhead hook painting processes and material handling necessities.

While overhead systems tend to be an industry standard, we like to flip the script on traditional systems. Our PaintLine™ Inverted Monorail Conveyor pioneers the painting process. It’s perfect for when the situation requires a clean environment like paint finishing or varnishing. Thanks to a flexible vertical pendant, PaintLine eliminates the need for add-ons like drip pans and sanitary hooks. Better yet, the pendants pivot forward and backward on the wheel axel, allowing free rotation of up to 30 degrees with no torque or wear on the chain.

Whatever part you’re looking to complete, we’d like to be part of your solution. Finish the job with the best in the business at Richards-Wilcox Conveyor.