Schmalz Makes Lifting Easy

Manufacturing commonly requires operators to lift and move heavy materials, which can lead to injury and fatigue. This material handling solution makes lifting a breeze.

Customer

A leading US Electronics Recycling Company.

 

Challenge

This customer wanted to reduce the possibility of injuries from the amount of lifting their operators were exposed to. This problem was leading to higher turnover in specific areas due to common complaints of lifting parts that were upwards of 120 lbs! Thus reducing the rate of production and declining morale throughout the production floor due to manual lifting.

 

Air Power Solution

The Schmalz JumboFlex 50 was able to lift the customers’ desired weights of 40-120 lbs and capturing their desired throughput goal of 60-70%. This piece of equipment utilizes a vacuum suction pump that relieves the weight of the piece you’re picking up and relieving the amount of strain on the operator’s backs. Pairing the JumboFlex with Schmalz’ Column Mounted Jib Crane, we are able to reach out 10ft and have 270 degrees of full motion!

 

Results

This material handling solution completely eliminated the customers’ problem. The Schmalz JumboFlex 50 eliminated the risk of injury for operators. This allows them to work faster, increases the rate of production, and reduces fatigue from constantly lifting heavy materials. The Section Manager stated, ” It’s not about the speed we’re able to go at, what this piece of equipment has done for us is, improve employee morale and reduce turnover now that they don’t have to lift heavy stuff all day long.”

 

 

Assembly Made Simple

In this case study, Air Power builds a custom integrated system that makes Ergonomics, Safety, and Quality simple with a team effort.

Customer

This customer is a supplier in the Truck and Bus industry.

Challenge

The customer needed to outfit a new work cell assembling large metal components. First, the weight of the fully assembled sub-build components exceeded 1000 lbs. requiring a high weight capacity work table. Secondly, the height variation of the operators presented ergonomic issues from shift to shift to ensure each operator performed his necessary tasks at optimum work heights for ergonomics and safety. Thirdly, target torque for each component exceeded the safety threshold for handheld tooling, 69 ft/lbs, and 135 ft/lbs. requiring a torque management solution to be included in the overall work cell build. Lastly, the components needing to be torqued are deemed quality critical, requiring all data for the fasteners to be documented to ensure a proper build.

Air Power Solution

Air Power included the following in our solution; a 2000 lbs. capacity adjustable height pneumatic Presto lift table, a GCI torque reaction arm, and a Cleco MPro 300 controller with right angle NeoTek tool. We were able to meet the high weight by working closely with Presto directly to customize the adjustable height scissor lift table. GCI was able to build a custom torque arm to provide the needed reach and vertical travel while managing up to 240 NM of torque reaction. We were able to mount the torque arm directly to our adjustable height table, allowing the entire work station to adjust to ideal work height for any given operator. All of this wrapped around the brand new Cleco 300 controller with NeoTek right angle tool allowing for a precise fastening solution meeting and exceeding the quality critical parameters required. The Cleco 300 also allows our end-user to monitor, collect, and organize critical data to ensure they every unit out the door is a quality part.

 

Assembly

Results

Air Power’s solution addressed all of the problems the customer faced with this assembly process. The Presto Lift table allows the operator to adjust the height of the entire system to eliminate and bending and back strain. The GCI torque arm holds and handles the Cleco right angle NeoTek tool. This eliminates any lifting and hand or wrist injury from handling a torque tool. Lastly, the Cleco mPro 300 controller gave the customer the ability to ensure perfect quality with every assembly.

 

 

DOTEC Air Balance Lifter

When short pick & place applications warrant the need for user-friendly, ergonomic solutions— consider the

Dotec ABL Air Balance Lifter

 

This Plug & Play system that can be featured with a variety of tools for lifting small rolls, boxes, crates, buckets, or bags. The options available are a pallet box and quick change tool for different applications. This system can be used to handle a variety of substrates. Cans, Kegs, and Sacks are a few of the applications that can benefit from the advanced technology that the Dotec Air Balance Lifter can bring to your manufacturing operation. Available with floor mount setups, as well as mobile platforms.

Dotec Lifter

Capacity:

-Weight max: 50 kg (110 lbs)
-Vertical Travel: 1600 mm (5.25 ft)
-Horizontal Travel: 2100 mm (7 ft)
-Rotate: 360 degrees (4200 mm radius)

 

Dotec AirBalance Lifter

 

Learn more about Dotec

Source: Why Dotec

Ingersoll Rand Improves Ergonomics

Manufacturing facilities in today’s competitive market strive to reduce the ergonomic impact of their operators. In this case study, we will discuss the importance of recognizing every company’s desire to improve ergonomics and reduce injuries.

Customer

A global manufacturer, producing products for the heavy truck and bus industry.

Challenge

Operators were manually lifting 40-150lb truck hubs and rotors to palletize for their shipment to their end-users. The operators were refusing to use their current lifting method as it was slow and delayed their production during the days shift resulting in reduced throughput per operator per shift.

Air Power’s Solution

We proposed they moved to a single large floor supported structure with multiple bridges, air balancers, and welded end effectors. This allowed multiple operators to use a single structure with each having their own ”bay” containing a bridge, balancer, end effector combo. This gave everyone the room they needed to load pallets as well as the lifting method that allowed the ergonomic impact to be reduced while still allowing the productivity of the manual lifting application. The air balancers’ speed and the pendant control allowed the operators to move at the speed they deemed fit for each application and individual operator preference.

Result

Currently, we have installed 5 large lifts in this facility with more now being planned at their sister facilities, leading to many overall ergonomic improvements.

Ergonomics

Ergonomics - Ingersoll Rand

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learn More about Ingersoll Rand 

Levitate in the News

Levitate Technologies is a small tech start-up that began with the goal of building human augmentation to help surgeons and medical professionals. Today, Levitate has successfully designed the AIRFRAME. It is a wearable, lightweight technology engineered to improve upper extremity musculoskeletal health in professionals and skilled trade workers who engage in repetitive arm motion and/or static elevation of the arms. This one-of-a-kind technology has been creating a buzz in the manufacturing industry since it hit the market. Check out these articles about the Levitate AIRFRAME technology!

The AIRFRAME exoskeleton makes light of hard work

 

The Levitate AIRFRAME transfers the weight of the arms from the shoulders, neck and upper back to the outside of the hips, evenly distributing energy to reduce stress. It slips easily on and off and moves seamlessly with the wearer without intruding into the workspace or limiting motion or dexterity. The AIRFRAME’s mechanical support system progressively activates as the arm is lowered, resulting in just the right level of support – at just the right time. It’s personalized to fit each wearer, so they can use their arms as normal while enjoying reduced fatigue and comfort they never thought possible.

 


Levitate - Wall Street Journal


Levitate - The Fabricator


Levitate - Exoskeleton Report


Levitate - Forbes


Levitate - ASME


Levitate - Industry Week


Levitate - Material Handling Network


Levitate - Digital Trends


Levitate - San Diego Business Journal


 


Levitate - Workplace


Levitate - Engineered News-Record

 

Learn more about Levitate Technologies at Air Power. We offer on-site, live demonstrations to show you the difference with the Levitate AIRFRAME!

See Also: Levitate Anti-Fatigue Exoskeleton

Levitate Technologies

Presto Lifts P3 All-Around Level Loader

The P3 All-Around Pneumatic Level Loader improves the efficiency of manual pallet loading and unloading jobs by eliminating bending, stretching, and walking around the pallet while carrying heavy loads.

 

 

Presto Lifts P3 All Around Load Levelers

 

Load and unload pallets without stooping, stretching, or walking. The P3-All Around Pneumatic Load Leveler automatically maintains pallets at a constant level and comfortable working height as layers of boxes are added or removed.

Leveling is accomplished by a heavy-duty, reinforced rubber airbag that can handle loads up to 4500 lbs. After airbag charging with shop air is complete, the P3 All Around can be disconnected and moved to any location in the plant. Because the P3 is pneumatic, it can accommodate loads that vary substantially in weight (from 400 – 4500 lbs.) so one unit is versatile enough to work in several areas.

A turntable top with easy turning anti-friction bearings allow users to spin loads so they are always working from the near side without having to walk around the unit.

 

Source: prestolifts.com

Ingersoll Rand In-Line Handle Air Balancer Control Kit

 

Ingersoll Rand In-Line Handle Air Balancer Control Kit

 

Designed for precise pick & place applications, the Ingersoll Rand In-Line Air Balancer Control Kit can integrate with all of Ingersoll Rand’s existing single rope basic unit air balancers.

– Compatible with 150, 200, 350, & 500 lb. capacity air balancers.
– Adjustable lifting and lowering speed based on pressure applied to up and down movements.
– Ideal for repetitive pick and place lifting applications.
– “Float” range allows for precise placement.

 

Contact Air Power today to get a live demonstration!

 

Ergonomics and Quality Control to New Heights

 
Manufacturers of passenger transportation systems make every effort to exceed in safety intelligence within the industry. This case study demonstrates safety improvements, as well as, operator ergonomic advantages, in an effort to decrease facility liability.

Customer

 
Manufacturer of vertical transportation systems.

Challenge

 
Operators manually load and unload valves utilizing an older pneumatic torque tool. The current tool utilized within production was non-shut off and provided no verification of installation. The operator was responsible for assuming the proper socket and torque combination capable for a successful installation. The inability to measure torque accurately resulted in an inconsistent quality of final product with no verification that it was done properly. In addition, this application proved labor intensive and was the cause of concern for operator safety and ergonomics.

Solution

 
Air Power implemented a custom Ingersoll Rand DC Electric Assemble tool, integrated into a GCI torque reaction arm, with a pneumatic clamping fixture omitting operator strain and removal before completion. Custom sockets were provided to insure precise fit.  The custom fixtured Ingersoll Rand DC Electric tool was coupled with a front end Norbar Multiplier producing actual real time torque verification and discreet I/O output, which was coupled with an Air Power provided PLC to monitor torque and track data usage.

 

 

Results

 

The solution realized by Air Power created a torque verified product that allowed for a safer work environment and smoother process for the operator. All build requirements can now be monitored, tracked and viewed through a transparent build as a result of system implementation.

 

 

 

Levitate Anti-Fatigue Exoskeleton

Introducing the AIRFRAME®, a practical new device that reduces muscle stress and fatigue – making the end of the day feel like the beginning.

 

The Levitate AIRFRAME is a wearable, lightweight technology engineered to improve upper extremity musculoskeletal health in professionals and skilled trade workers who engage in repetitive arm motion and/or static elevation of the arms. The AIRFRAME lowers exertion levels by up to 80% – keeping workers healthier and more productive, while mitigating healthcare and disability costs.

 

 

 

HOW IT WORKS

 

The AIRFRAME transfers the weight of the arms from the shoulders, neck and upper back to the outside of the hips, evenly distributing energy to reduce stress. It slips easily on and off, and moves seamlessly with the wearer without intruding into the workspace or limiting motion or dexterity. The AIRFRAME’s mechanical support system progressively activates as the arm is raised, and gradually releases as the arm is lowered, resulting in just the right level of support – at just the right time. It’s personalized to fit each wearer, so they can use their arms as normal while enjoying reduced fatigue and comfort they never thought possible.
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FEATURES

Light and Comfortable
Personalize Fit
Full Range of Motion
No Power Required
The AIRFRAME’s sleek, aerodynamic design and lightweight material construction make wearing the device feel nearly unnoticeable. Each AIRFRAME is custom-fitted to the individual user, allowing the device to fit comfortably on any body type or size. The AIRFRAME offers full range of motion, allowing the user to easily perform any task without limitation or stiffness. The AIRFRAME requires no electrical power – it is mechanically engineered to rely on a patented system of pulleys.

BENEFITS

 

Lowers Injury Risk
Boosts Productivity
Improves Quality and Precision
Lowers Healthcare and Disability Costs
On-Site Training
There are more than 650,000 cases of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WSMD) annually. The AIRFRAME lowers exertion levels by up to 80%, significantly lowering injury risk. WMSDs are responsible for $50 billion in lost productivity annually. The AIRFRAME keeps workers healthy, and production humming. Muscle stress and fatigue are the enemy of productivity. The AIRFRAME allows workers to maintain quality and precision for longer periods of time. Musculoskeletal disorders represent $1 of every $3 spent on workers compensation. The AIRFRAME limits exposure to these injuries, reducing costs and boosting profits. We offer full, on-site training for both workers and safety engineers on how to custom fit and operate The AIRFRAME for all users.

Tire Lifting Solution Case Study

Material Handling Need

Aircraft Tire/Wheel shop activities require significant handling of large aircraft tires and rims weighing up to several hundred pounds.  Handling these assets by manual means/methods had resulted in several serious injuries, culminating in lost workdays and long-term medical impact on shop personnel and worker well-being.

Original Process:  Two to Three operators required to lift C5 aircraft tire from pallet position, stacked up to four(4) levels high and onto rim assembly.  Assembly was then lifted from a horizontal position to vertical to be rolled into a rack staging area.

Tire Lift weight: 400 pounds+

Tire Size:  44”-56” outside diameter(OD), 17”-20” width

Air Power Solution

Air Power’s solution consisting of aluminum overhead rail, bridge crane to suspend one (1) manipulator for the tire lift process, and one (1) bridge to suspend a pneumatic hoist for the F15 Rim process for the original C5 aircraft application. The C5 Solution was installed in 2013.

Due to the increase in the C130 aircraft process requirements, Air Power was contacted to offer another solution for the C130 unit in September 2015.

An additional bridge was added to allow processing for the larger C130 tire application (tires over 400lbs) to allow pickup, positioning, and processing of these components.

Air Power Inc provided a TurnKey solution for both C5 and C130 tire applications.

 

Results

Implementation will reduce injuries, enhance efficiency, improve quality and ergonomics in the support of the warfighter mission.

“An effective and user-friendly solution that was way overdue” –Bobby Munda, WRAFB 402MXE

“Awesome, absolutely awesome!” –Candace Lauderdale, Safety Specialists, WRAFB

Original Pick Up Method Pick Up Solution Original Set Down Method Tire Set Down Solution