Ways to Improve Warehouse Productivity

warehouse
Running and managing a warehouse can be chaotic. That’s why it’s important to look for new ways to ensure your operation run smoothly. We’ve come up with the following tips that can be incorporated into warehouses which are struggling with improving productivity.

Picking manifest

Picking manifest pulls multiple orders at once. This means orders in different sizes are pulled separately. For instance, large and small items are separated and ready for boxing.

Improve Employees comfort

Improving the comfortableness and atmosphere in the warehouse can help people increase their productivity. For example, you could get a sound system or a radio playing while they work as music is proven to improve the overall productivity in workplaces. Ensure you have a heater and a fan where workers can use them to control the temperature in the warehouse.

Leave bulky items till the end

Large and heavyweight items are difficult for picks. Ensure you leave them last for the final staging area. Also, bigger orders should always come from a pallet.

Incorporate ideas from employees

Employees are the people who spend most of their time working in the warehouse. You can ask your employees for some feedback or ideas that you can use to help improve the system. It’s also essential to make your employees feel heard and a part of the operation as they will care more about their job.

Low-stocking

All items have a shelf life and an expiration date. New items are rotated with the old stocks and the more inventory you have, the harder and longer it will take to rotate them. To save time and space, ensure that you don’t have too much of everything.

Picking path

Picking paths needs to be in place to ensure the flow in the warehouse is smooth. There should be a picking point at the end of the warehouse.…

Continue Reading →

What is ferrous metal?

There are different recycled materials in the world and serves as a component for some products like home appliances, industrial machinery, cars, and construction material. A good number of these components are metals which are used in the manufacturing of several products. We have two types of metals: ferrous and non-ferrous metals. For the benefit of this post, the focus is on ferrous alloys only.

You’d get insights on ferrous metals and the reasons why it’s a useful element in the production process of manufacturing companies. The common forms of ferrous metals would be highlighted with details of their unique components. Furthermore, its peculiar properties in its different would be identified as well.

Definition of ferrous metal

Ferrous metals are elements with iron and magnetic properties which offer little contention to rust. Most ferrous metals are good conductors of electricity which makes it a suitable element in the manufacture of electronics. The metals are durable and possess malleable strength like cast iron and steel. The metal can be extracted from iron ore in the earth’s crust which contains compounds like iron oxide.

Ferrous metals are mainly composed of iron, and they are used in the manufacturing of commercial and domestic tools, shipping containers, industrial pipes, construction, rails, tools, nuts and bolts, machinery, aircraft, drills, and electrical appliances. Iron and steel remain the most common forms of ferrous metals.

Ferrous metals include the following:

  • Steel
  • Alloy steel
  • Carbon steel
  • Cast iron
  • Wrought iron.

The features of carbon and alloy steel

Steel is a ferrous metal, and about 40% of steel production in the world is made from scrap because it’s cheaper to make use of recycled steel rather than to produce new steel through the mining process. Furthermore, recycling steel gulps less energy in comparison to forming steel from raw materials. The physical properties of steel aren’t lost during the recycling process so it can be used again. About 500 million tons of steel is formed from scrap materials and manufactured using different melting furnaces like electric-arc, induction, open-hearth, crucible, and Bessemer converter.

Carbon steel: These are ferrous metals that are made of iron with carbon elements, and produced in open-hearth furnaces. Carbon steels are alloyed with other elements like chromium and nickel to enhance its physical properties. It can be welded, forged, or machined for the production of chisels, nails, gears, hammer, fenders, and rivets.

Alloy steel: The ferrous metal has higher durability than carbon steel, and it’s used in the manufacturing of different equipment.  The metal is melted in the induction and electric-arc furnace with mixtures of limestone, scrap, iron ore, and pig iron. Common elements used in alloy steel are molybdenum, chromium, nickel, silicon, tungsten, and vanadium. Nickel helps to increase the strength and toughness of the steel even as it reduces the temperature for hardening. Chromium is used to prevent corrosion and improve the resistance of shock. Chromium preserves metals from rust because it enables the top molecules of the metal to oxidize and still stay bonded to the metal below through the process of passivation thereby forming an impenetrable shell.

The features of Wrought and Cast iron

Wrought iron: This is a ferrous metal produced in a puddling furnace and made from pig iron. The presence of slag makes it resistible to oxidation and corrosion responsible for rusts. Wrought iron is useful for nails, chains, fencing, barbed wire, decorations, ornaments, and porch railings. The advantage of wrought iron is due to its ability to quickly bend when heated or cold, and the rate of rusting is low. However, its low level of hardness is a limitation, and it melts gently without emitting sparks.

Cast Iron: This is a ferrous metal that has low melting temperature, and it’s similar to carbon steel. However, the difference lies in the fact that it has silicon with additional carbon content within the range of 4.5 percent while the range for basic steel is between 0.03 and 1.7 percent. It reacts slowly with molding materials but doesn’t have sufficient malleability to be forged. It is produced by mixing pig iron, limestone, scrap metal, and carbon, then heating them up till a suitable level of all the elements is attained. Cast iron enables the production of complex shapes, and it has excellent fluidity which is desirable for casting. It’s also brittle and robust with lubricating properties.

Ferrous metals have magnetic properties and a high amount of carbon, so they are susceptible to rust when laid bare to the elements such as moisture and acidic environment. However, wrought iron is preserved due to its purity and stainless steel because of the presence of chromium. They also have tensile strength, hardness, and durability.  Carbon steel has less ductility and toughness,

Recycling of ferrous metals

A lot of companies make use of scrap ferrous metals as it’s more cost-effective with less environmental hazards because it reduces air pollution and utilization of water. Another benefit of recycling ferrous metals is the reduction of solid waste deposits in landfills which is quite expensive. Some ferrous metals can be recycled such as cars, vans, home appliances, railway tracks and it saves iron ore, limestone, and coal. Since the metals are magnetic, the scraps could be retrieved with the use of a magnet and transferred to the recycling unit.

The process of recycling ferrous scrap metals is cheaper than producing metal directly from iron ore. The most significant source of scrap ferrous metals is the processing of old automobile by crushing and flattening the body before shredding into little pieces. Afterward, the remelting and recasting of the scraps is the next step in the recycling procedure. However, one disadvantage of ferrous metal scraps is increasing the technical challenge in production due to the introduction of impurities into the steel.

Many companies use ferrous metals because they are essential in the production of a wide range of tools, machineries, household appliances and equipment. Ferrous metals can be derived from iron ore or through the recycling of scraps as a cheaper …

Continue Reading →

The Benefits of Sustainable Manufacturing

The term “sustainable” is used to describe many different techniques and trends, but in essence the word is self-explanatory. Being sustainable simply means you can keep your business going in the future. The alternative is that you run out of finite resources (whether that’s fuel, cash or customers) and go out of business. It’s worth remembering that sustainability is not really optional, it’s essential for the survival of your firm.

With this in mind, let’s consider some of the short term benefits of getting ahead of the curve when it comes to environmentally-friendly manufacturing.

Cut down on energy bills

Energy efficiency reduces your costs directly, although some initial investment may be required. On a monthly basis, changing your practices or infrastructure may cost more at first, but annual savings are likely to be significant. In a similar way, you can cut costs on supplies and materials by recycling more internally and wasting less.

Get access to tax benefits

The government offers various programmes to support businesses when they choose to invest in greener technology. You may be able to reduce the amount of tax you pay if the money goes towards sustainability projects.

Improve internal culture

The more positives things you can do as a business, the more likely it is that your employees will feel happy and engaged. Sharing the same goals always helps productivity, so working together with staff to cut down on environmental costs is often beneficial.

Make your business more appealing

Customers will care that you’re looking out for the environment, as long as you convey this clearly in your marketing. It provides another advantage over your competitors and draws attention to the fact that you have a long term plan rather than being out to make a quick profit. Being called out publicly for damaging the environment, on the other hand, can cause a lot more trouble for your brand.

Have a real impact on the world

Regardless of the size of your business, changing your actions to become more environmentally friendly is directly contributing to making the planet better off. By creating less pollution and investing in the future of sustainability, you are helping future generations live better lives.…

Continue Reading →

Advantages of Hydroblasting

When most people think of demolition, the image of a building imploding through the use of explosives may come to mind. However, only 1% of demolition work is actually done through those techniques.

Several more modern and popular solutions are significantly easier to control and pose less of a hazard, a major option being hydrodemolition. This works by using a highly targeted hydroblast of pressurised water to cut through concrete, a concept that appears to defy logic, but works incredibly well. The key benefits of hydroblasting include the following.

High-precision hydrodemolition

Blasting through concrete using water is, surprisingly, one of the most effective methods for cutting highly accurate lines. Depending on the equipment used, settings can be controlled very precisely to get the desired result, and only a defined area will be affected.

Removes weakened concrete

Although hydroblast equipment will not damage concrete outside of the specified area, it does remove any weak or loose concrete in the direct firing line, which most demolition methods would fail to address. This leaves behind a rough but extremely strong surface.

No chemicals required

Water is the only material required for hydrodemolition, and it is not necessary to use any potentially toxic or abrasive chemicals at any point in the process.

Environmentally friendly

Since no chemicals are used, there are no fumes or pollution directly caused by hydroblasting. The water mixes with the concrete to form a slurry, but this can be processed to extract and recycle the water.

Widely applicable

Since there is very little effect on the surrounding area when using hydrodemolition, it can be used in a relatively small, indoor space as well as externally without much clean-up.

Training is quick and simple

It only takes one day to be trained on the basics of hydroblasting, and up to three days for using more advanced tools. Experience helps to improve efficiency, but the basic training does not require significant investment.

The process can be automated

In order to make training and execution even simpler, a lot of hydrodemolition is handled by robotics which feature relatively straightforward controls. This means the required water pressure, flow and other factors can be automatically calculated rather than relying on the judgement of an operator.

Low safety risk

Since the concrete being demolished is broken down into very small pieces and water is the only other material involved, safety risks when conducting hydroblasting are relatively low. Although specific precautions are still needed, most alternative methods are significantly more dangerous.…

Continue Reading →