Building a Brand That is Engineered for Evolution

100 years ago, Richards-Wilcox Conveyor gave the world something no one had seen before.

The overhead enclosed track conveyor. Several generations and two industrial revolutions later, we continue to lead our clients into the future by engineering the world’s most effective conveyor solutions.

Evolution and innovation are at the heart of everything we do.

Inspired by British naturalist Charles Darwin and his theory of evolution: the species that are best able to adapt to changing environments are the ones most likely to survive in the long run – we got thinking about evolution in our industry.

Today, we live in the world of Industry 4.0.

Manufacturing and distribution operations are getting faster, smarter, leaner, more advanced. To survive, you have to be highly efficient. You have to take advantage of the day’s most effective technology. And you have to be ready to adapt at a moment’s notice.

For centuries, our conveyors have carried the same qualities as some of the most evolved species that walk the surface of this earth.

Tested in the Wild for More Than 100 Years…

Our systems are designed to adapt.

Flexible, modular, and integrated with your technology and your evolving floorplan.

Our conveyors are built for the future.

When the world changes and the pace quickens, you will stay at the front of the pack.

Our solutions are engineered to evolve.

Constantly adapting to meet the challenges of the modern factory.

Our new brand brings this vision to life in every word, pixel and piece of metal.

It stands tall in the form of larger-than-life beasts we built from the same steel structures that make our conveyors – serving as a daily reminder of our power and purpose.

As we celebrate our legacy and look boldly to our future, we encourage you to explore our new website to see how our company has evolved with every creative conveyor solution we engineer.

5 Key Benefits of Conveyor Design Simulation

Without a doubt, conveyor systems can provide a number of benefits to a wide range of industries. From carefully assembling equipment to welding parts together, from temporarily storing goods to ensuring their proper distribution to delivery trucks, conveyors carry out a host of valuable tasks. They maintain continuous workflows that substantially increase workplace productivity, while sharply reducing the need for manual handling and the incidence of human error. Better still, conveyors perform these functions in a provably cost-effective manner, as these systems in the long term consume significantly fewer resources than competing methods of handling materials. For many businesses, a well-managed conveyor system is the best possible means of assembling, treating, and/or transporting materials efficiently.

Even so, setting up a conveyor system is not a task to be undertaken lightly. Installation costs can be substantial and can be impacted by unanticipated design changes that necessitate rebuilding the system in part or entirely.  Therefore, preparation is fundamental. But how can company owners properly ferret out design problems in advance? How can they ensure that the installation process will result in a conveyor system they can depend on? The answer lies in conveyor simulation.

What Is Conveyor Simulation?

Conveyor simulation is a computer-generated model that displays the ins and outs of a proposed conveyor system. This allows the user to see exactly where the various components of a system would fit into existing space. It’s important to understand that these models are far from fixed, schematic diagrams; the simulation software is designed to imitate the workflow produced by a functioning conveyor. To that end, the software shows the conveyor system in motion, allowing the user to see graphical representations of products being moved through the various workstations in real time and in three dimensions. In addition, the user can also see the conveyor from multiple angles for detailed analysis. It’s even possible to “zoom in” for a closer look.

Conveyor computer simulation may be used either to design a new system from scratch or to explore proposed modifications in an existing system.

Benefits of Conveyor Simulation

So, how does conveyor simulation help you decide if a conveyor design will meet your company’s requirements? Simulation provides a number of key benefits, which we’ll explore below.

  • Calculate Production Rates Conveyors are highly effective in transporting products from one workstation to another in a speedy fashion—exactly how speedy depends on a variety of factors that can be difficult to calculate without putting the system into action. Figuring out how quickly products can be sent through the system is vastly important, however, as it relates closely to the profitability of the business.  Fortunately, conveyor simulation allows these all-important calculations to be proven needing to build a real live functioning conveyor system.
  • Calculate Manpower Needs When compared with traditional production methods, conveyors minimize the number of personnel needed to manage workflows. For example, conveyors generally make it unnecessary to keep forklift drivers on hand to transport materials from one end of the facility to another. Nonetheless, these systems require a certain number of workers to manage the various workstations. With a good simulation program, it’s possible to figure out exactly how many workers are needed to run the system. This optimizes staffing capacity.
  • Detect Conveyor Problems in Advance Sometimes a conveyor system will “look good on paper” but not yield optimum productivity. There are a number of hidden problems that may not be revealed until considerable amounts of money have been spent. For instance, one all-too-common conveyor problem is “bottlenecking,” where too many Work In Process products end up crowded into a particular area of the system; a bottleneck will considerably slow down the workflow and impede production. Therefore, a conveyor engineer must detect design problems like this well before the time comes to construct the physical system. Luckily, this is entirely possible with a conveyor simulation program.
  • Demonstrate Effectiveness of the System As we have said, installing a conveyor system involves an expenditure of significant amounts of time and resources. Those responsible for “signing off” on a new system will naturally look for reassurance that the project is worth the expense. By showing a simulation of the proposed conveyor system, the team responsible for its implementation can demonstrate the integrity and efficiency of the design.
  • Avoid Unneeded Expenditures All the benefits listed above connect to the bottom line: Conveyor simulation lets businesses save money. With a proper simulation program, a business has access to a cost-effective way to improve workflow efficiency, identify problems in a conveyor system, try out new production ideas, and dispense with wasteful trial-and-error assembly and disassembly of equipment. An ounce of prevention beats a pound of cure—that old adage applies to conveyor assembly as well as anything. R-W Conveyor invites their clients to explore Richards-Wilcox computer simulation for the finest in conveyor system planning. They are available to help you save money and map out a first-rate conveyor system for your company. 

View more of our conveyor simulations online by visiting our YouTube channel: RW Conveyor Systems


Where Can You Install Our Zig-Zag Enclosed Monorail Conveyor System?

Since its introduction in the early 20th century, the overhead conveyor has revolutionized several industries. These conveyors use an arrangement of overhead monorail systems to move products connected to the monorail from one point to another, thus allowing for seamless transitions between various process operations. This automated transportation of goods and materials minimizes human labor and, as a result, significantly reduces time, as well as cost.

Overhead conveyors offer numerous advantages. Specifically, they free up valuable floor space, thereby maximizing facility floorplan layouts and increasing plant efficiency and flexibility.

Richards-Wilcox’s Zig-Zag overhead conveyor can be used in almost any industry that requires items to be transported around facilities as part of their daily operations. They are ideal for a number of applications ranging from simple, in-line systems to complex storage retrieval systems.

Conveyor-Assisted Industries

Although the applications for Zig-Zag monorail conveyors can be plentiful, some of their most common industrial applications are:

  • Manufacturing – Overhead conveyors are an essential element in manufacturing automation. Assisting in a broad variety of processes ranging from assembly to fabrication and packaging, Zig-Zag conveyors aid the movement of parts or components – particularly heavy or bulky items – from one phase of the manufacturing cycle to another automatically.
  • Warehouses & Distribution Centers – In the warehouse and distribution industry, sorting, tracking, and packaging large amounts of items are essential to daily operations. Overhead conveyors often deliver the empty cartons or totes to the picking modules while maximizing floor space, thereby allowing workers to focus on specific tasks with minimal obstructions at ground level.
  • Automotive repair – Because automotive parts are often cumbersome, manual transportation can be impractical in the repair industry. As an alternative, Zig-Zag overhead conveyors are ideal for rapidly and consistently transporting car parts and bodies from one repair or assembly process to another. For instance, a car part can be moved from the stamping process straight to painting in an automated and seamless fashion.
  • Paint finishing and detailing – Zig-Zag conveyors are also useful solutions for handling products during painting and detailing operations. Since the monorails are installed overhead to increase available floor area, painters have ample working space to work with bulky and complex shapes.
  • Garment industry – Correctional institutions, hospitals, dry cleaning facilities, and hotels all make use of overhead conveyors to easily store and retrieve garments or textiles. By utilizing overhead space, multiple levels of clothing storage increase storage capacity. Enclosed monorail systems can also be used for highly efficient and automated employee uniform retrieval systems.
  • Food & beverage – Process automation in the food and beverage industry is crucial as increasing consumer demand and fierce competition necessitates faster and more efficient production. Conveyors move food products between various processes ranging from manufacturing to packaging with minimal human intervention and increased efficiency. The use of conveyors and the reduction of manual handling are also essential for meeting strict safety and sanitary regulations.

The versatility of Zig-Zag monorail systems also makes them suitable for other applications such as:

  • Inventory storage
  • Plating rack storage
  • Die-cast rack storage

Installing a Zig-Zag Overhead Conveyor System

RW Zig-Zag overhead monorail systems offer several benefits over conventional conveyor systems. The standard modular construction of the monorails is designed to be durable and reliable while providing essential flexibility and customization for a broad range of applications.

To learn more about how Zig-Zag monorail systems can address your conveying need or to discuss the specifics of our installation process, please contact our technical support team for more information.

Optimize Your Space With Power & Free Conveyors

Many manufacturing and storage facilities are pressed for space, leaving smart plant managers struggling to find ways to optimize their facilities to increase efficiency and save room. Power and free conveyor systems can often provide substantial space savings, helping companies to avoid having to find larger facilities or reduce efficiency by squeezing important processes into their available space.

Richard-Wilcox Conveyor Systems offer a number of power and free conveyor systems to clients in order to help them improve productivity and efficiency in their facilities. Companies considering a conveyor system should study the advantages these systems offer and find the system that best suits their needs.

Power and Free Conveyor Systems Explained

Power and free conveyor systems are built on a two-track system. These conveyors, also referred to as asynchronous conveyor systems, allow loads hanging beneath each track to move at differing paces. Users can program the machine operating the conveyor to have loads start or stop independently of one another. Users can also have loads switch tracks if necessary.

Power and free conveyors are called “power and free” because one track is operated by a powered track while the other track has free trolleys running on the lower track.

Power and Free Conveyor Systems Explained

Power and free conveyor systems are built on a two-track system. These conveyors, also referred to as a synchronous conveyor systems, allow loads hanging beneath each track to move at differing paces. Users can program the machine operating the conveyor to have loads start or stop independently of one another. Users can also have loads switch tracks if necessary.
Power and free conveyors are called “power and free” because one track is operated by a powered track while the other track has free trolleys running on the lower track.

Advantages of Power and Free Conveyors

Power and free conveyors have a wide variety of applications in:

  • Manufacturing facilities
  • Distribution centers
  • Shipping centers
  • Assembly line operations
  • and Paint shops, among others.

Power and free conveyors have the advantage of:

  • Compact design
  • Easy installation
  • Centralized control
  • Modular design
  • and High availability of parts


Richards-Wilcox Conveyor Provides a Single Solution to Integrate Carton, Tote, and Trash Handling

Richards-Wilcox Conveyor Provides a Single Solution to Integrate Carton, Tote, and Trash Handling

Aurora, IL – Richard-Wilcox Zig-Zag® Overhead Enclosed Chain Conveyor provides a singular solution for multiple applications. Manufacturing and Distribution centers can now combine three operations such as carton, tote distribution, and trash handling all in one powerful and durable overhead conveyor system that can integrate with existing floor conveyor systems. By implementing a Zig-Zag system, companies can increase packing efficiency and productivity, realize a cleaner and safer working environment, and automate manual functions to significantly reduce labor hours.

Contact Richards-Wilcox today to get a free copy of our Zig-Zag demo video on CD-ROM and learn how you can increase productivity and streamline your distribution.
Call for more information 888-852-1020, e-mail or visit our web site

Richards-Wilcox. American Made. American Owned.

Richards-Wilcox Twin-Trak Power & Free Side-by-Side Conveyor For Limited Space Applications

Richards-Wilcox Twin-Trak Power & Free Side-by-Side Conveyor For Limited Space Applications

Aurora, IL – Richards-Wilcox Twin-Trak Conveyors combine power & free capability with a side-by-side track configuration. Twin-Trak offers the ideal medium-to-high capacity solution for product storage and transportation where limited overhead space is available.

Twin-Trak’s side-by-side design uses only 8” of vertical space and can be installed in facilities where an over and under Power & Free conveyor is out of the question. Twin-Trak is designed for applications such as progressive assembly, finishing systems, and WIP buffer storage.

Twin-Trak increases throughput using controlled accumulation and delivery, eliminating the usual wait time with storage banks. Work in process is stored overhead, freeing floor space, and is transported down to meet production requirements for each stage of the operation. This system delivers the right parts at the right time to the correct operation, making a continuous flow. Twin-Trak eliminates product rehandling and manual transporting by integrating finishing and assembly processes in one material handling system.

Call for more information 888-852-1020, e-mail or visit our web site

Richards-Wilcox: American Made, American Owned