Ingersoll Rand Ergonomics Reduce Injury Risks

 

One of the most common workplace injuries reported is muscle strain due to repetitive motion.  Manufacturers are seeking ergonomic material handling solutions to reduce the risk of injury for operators. In this case study, Air Power proposed a solution that successfully eliminated the risk of injury for these robotic machining cell operators.

Challenge

 

This customer had dealt with various injuries due to the operators handling parts of various sizes/weights while loading and unloading parts onto automated infeed/outfeed conveyors on robot machining cells. Hand and finger injuries were commonly reported, as well as various back injuries. The customer required a solution that was safe and easy for operators to use. The solution needed to be located out of the way of forklift traffic and out of the work area of the cell so as not to impede on the operator’s workspace. They needed a device with the ability to grasp multiple sized parts without hassle. This solution also required a system that was low maintenance, durable, with low compressed air usage.

Air Power Solution

 

Ergonomics

Air Power proposed an Ingersoll Rand column mounted with a 10ft reach and articulating arm. This system mounts out of the work cell yet reaches into the work cell to reach the work area for loading and unloading. It includes an integrated 500lb air balancer for lifting/lowering with the ability to adjust both the lifting and lowering speed to dial in the exact application. This device features low rotational inertia for ease of use and improved ergonomics for the operator, low maintenance, low CFM usage per cycle.

This Custom Air Power/Ingersoll Rand Manipulator is made of heavy steel for durability with pistol grip controls and a dummy handle for ease of use and maneuverability. It includes single-hand controls for lifting/lowering of the device & clamping/unclamping of parts, safety interlock that is load sensing to prevent parts from being dropped once elevated off the work surface, V-shaped movable jaws to allow clamping of various sized parts, padded jaws to prevent damage to machined surfaces, and requires little to no maintenance.

 

 

 

ErgonomicsErgonomics

 

Air Power in the News Again

Air Power has been featured by Finishing and Coating in a full-length article that highlights Air Power’s recent growth with the Zenmar acquisition. The article also talks about Air Power’s rich history in the manufacturing industry and the services we provide to the manufacturing community. We’d like to Thank Tim Pennington and the team at Finishing & Coating for recognizing our impact in the manufacturing community.

 

Air Power Article

 

Filling Station with Timed Dispense System

 

In this video, Air Power Account Manager Aaron Osborne walks you through this Lubricant Dispense Station. The customer needed to pre-fill cartridges so the operator could utilize it in a manual application for the day shift. Air Power proposed a solution that combines a Loctite Timing and Pressure Dispense System with a Graco Husky Pump. This Filing Station solution reduces down fluid pressure and allows for multiple cartridges to be filled and stored. When the operator needs a cartridge s/he grabs from filling station and attached is bench side dispenser for accurate dispense into the end product.

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.

 

 

Product Demonstrations

Check out the latest updates at Air Power!

Product Demonstrations

Air Power Manufacturing Solutions is making efforts to be sure that we can continue to effectively support the manufacturing community during this time. We love to be able to visit customers on-site and demonstrate how the products we sell can improve manufacturing processes, but there are a variety of other ways we can show you the latest technologies. Follow the link below to read about the ways Air Power can help you improve your manufacturing process!

 

 

pRODUCT dEMONSTRATIONS

 

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) : Outside the Body

 

 

Taking care of both the inside and the outside of your body in the workplace is critical. In this video, Air Power Application Specialist Travis Stirewalt and Account Manager Eddie Rhodes, talk about the importance of Personal Protective Equipment and how to choose the right PPE for your application. Whether you are dealing with HAZMAT, VOC’s or nuisance dust, taking care of your skin, bones, and internal organs are vitally important to staying healthy. Stay tuned as we look to help you maneuver through PPE basics.

 

Learn More about the brands mentioned:

Bullard

Binks

 

 

Get the Perfect Ratio with GEMS 2K

 

When it comes to mixing paint, accuracy is the key to achieving a high-quality finish. In this case study, we discuss a 2K solution that helped this customer perfect their process and save tons in production costs.

Customer

 

Manufacturer of roadside transformers.

 

Challenge

 

This company has a small parts booth for primer and topcoats. The operator had to manually mix two types of epoxy and one urethane. Each day he had to spray all three colors from the same hot pot system. The color change process was a major problem as the different parts to be sprayed were not batched. This caused a lot of waste of paint and solvent. The other concern was being off ratio and parts not curing properly. This was a major cost to the company. They also had a large booth that sprayed the finished transformer. They had to utilize the same paints and this process had the same problems. If the large transformer was off ratio, they had to sand the paint off and repeat the entire process. This proved to be a very expensive problem.

 

Air Power Solution

 

Air Power proposed to install a Carlisle GEMS 2K mix system for each color. We also put in a pump system to pump and circulate all paints to the mix machines. The catalyst was dispensed to the machines from 5-gallon pressure tanks. The 55-gallon drums of paint each had an agitator in them to keep paint in suspension to maintain viscosity. By having a machine for each color there was no color change or off ratio problems.

 

Results

 

The Air Power Solution eliminated the need to hot pot in tanks. Since each color is mixed on demand; this system provided a major labor savings. There is no paint waste and the newly established process saves about 2 to 3 hours per shift as compared to manually formulating and mixing paint. The solvent usage was greatly reduced as there was not a tank to clean each color change. This solution has been able to speed up production on all three shifts. Our technical group and installers were able to put the system in place without impeding the customer’s production runs.

 

GEMS 2K Mix System