Moving Mirrors Through Packaging Process
A glass mirror manufacturer makes large mirrors for the furniture industry. In the packaging process of these mirrors, the large, heavy (up to 300 lbs.) sheets of glass must be lifted off a conveyor, tilted 90 degrees, and then placed in a wooden shipping crate. To keep the fabrication process running efficiently, one mirror must be lifted and placed in the crate every 60 seconds.
Concerns with Manual Lifting:
Before the Gorbel® system was installed with the vacuum lifter, it took four people to lift, tilt and position these mirrors in the crates. Doing this activity by hand was a problem for many reasons:
• People were getting hurt while trying to position the mirrors.
• Female employees had a difficult time performing this task.
• Mirrors were being damaged and dropped during the process.
• Employees were getting injured by broken glass when mirrors were dropped.
To resolve the problems with product damage and employee safety in this operation, the customer considered the following two options: An automated handling system with a lifter and a manually operated Gorbel® Work Station Bridge Crane with a vacuum lifter (by others). The automated handling system was very expensive to purchase and maintain however.