Equipment | KION North America

Category Archives: Equipment

Why You Should Use Daily Safety Checklists

Safety checklists may seem like repetitive or even unnecessary actions; however, using them not only helps the safety of your employees, but they also positively influence the overall function of your warehouse itself. Understanding the purpose behind daily safety checklists is something you should check off your list. Read more below to gain a better understanding of the importance of using daily safety checklists and how to implement them:

Utilizing Checklists

There are a variety of general checklists that are offered to companies to ensure warehouse safety. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, OSHA, provides safety checklists that correspond to laws and regulations that help to keep employees working their workspace safe. Following the checklists that they offer will help guide your warehouse’s general safety. These checklists also assess employees to ensure they are properly handling materials and equipment and following procedures set by the warehouse.

Making Warehouse Specific Checklists

By creating your own warehouse specific checklists, you are helping to ensure the safety of your warehouse. Tailoring checklists to your own work environment helps to ensure more safety. By including employees in the process, discussion and feedback can result in even stronger safety protocols. Evaluating safety checklists periodically helps to cover all areas of a warehouse, making sure nothing is left unsafe.

Equipment Safety Checklists

Using warehouse safety checklists daily helps to ensure general safety; however, by following equipment specific checklists for machinery such as forklifts can help avoid potential safety concerns. Operating forklifts pose numerous hazards; however, using daily checklists to make sure they are functioning properly will help prevent major issues caused by these machines. Conducting safety checklists for all equipment in your warehouse will further help keep employees free from danger.

Using daily safety checklists are essential to the overall safety of your warehouse and your employees. Safety is of utmost importance to us at KION; therefore, we understand the importance of using safety checklists.

Pallet Jackets and Trucks: Electric vs. Manual

Contrary to popular belief, the biggest machine is not always the most reliable, in terms of getting the job done. Although forklifts are made in varying sizes, they are not always the most efficient in material handling due to their inability to fit in all spaces in a warehouse. That is why pallet jacks are also very common in warehouses because they can handle most goods and deliver to any area regardless of space or size. They are a very versatile piece of handling equipment and are a valuable additive to a warehouse. Similar to a forklift, the purpose of this machine is to efficiently transfer pallets and other heavy material goods to various locations within the warehouse and loading dock areas. Similar to our post forklifts, pallet jacks have advanced since their beginning, and offer a variety of features, weight and pull capacities, and size. Below are a few of the differences between electric and manual pallet jacks for those who may be interested in purchasing a new one.

Things to Consider with Manual Pallet Jacks

Manual pallet jacks are amongst the most commonly used in warehouse for simple reasons; anyone can use it as it does not require any specialized training to operate, and it is much less expensive to use and maintain than an electric pallet jack. They are usually a fan favorite because; they do not require a motor; they are powered by human force and are smaller, making them more conveniently stored. They are usually able to carry up to 5,500 lbs; which is favorable for warehouses with large loads.

The downsides to using only a manual pallet jack are worth considering depending on the type of environment of the warehouse. If the facility is large or is usually handling large loads, one person operating the pallet jack may become difficult or tiring. The risk of danger and injury is greatened with a manual pallet jack. For example, if a worker has to carry a large load up an incline or rough surface, without the help of someone else, the worker could lose control of the load and face serious injuries. If you work in a large facility, the possibility of different departments needing to use these manual pallet jacks is high, since they are so accessible, and you may find that they become unavailable when you need them the most. 

Things to Consider with Electric Pallet Jacks

Although not as common, electric pallet jacks are still a favorite for equipment operators. These machines are not as strenuous on workers because electric pallet jacks operate on a motor rather than human power. They can handle more weight with their weight capacity being 6,000 lbs. Unique to the electric pallet, the motor in the jack assists in lifting and lowering the forklift, whereas the manual pallet jack is restricted to staying on the ground. Due to this, the electric jack increases productivity for warehouses because they can carry larger loads, go farther distances at a faster rate, and move loads to high or low areas.

The cons of electric pallet jacks cannot be ignored when comparing the costs to manual pallet jacks. One factor that deters buyers from purchasing an electric pallet jack is the cost. One electric pallet jack will cost you anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000 depending on the brand and the features. You also have to consider maintenance fees as well for the motor and the wheels. Another way that electric pallet jacks can pull at your pockets is with their constant need to have their fuel resupplied. Even if the motor is battery operated, it will still need to recharge, meaning you will need a charging station. Lastly, another con to having this equipment is that it requires a strict operating training and certification process. Unlike manual pallet jacks, OSHA states that those who are not trained on how to operate this equipment will not be able to use it. This requires employers to fund training, which requires extra time and money.

Although both types of pallet jacks offer their own benefits and disadvantages, it is still a wise investment to make for your company.  It is a huge asset that can help to drive your productivity results and help your facility operate at a higher level. The smallest tool can make a significant impact on your company, and this proves true with the pallet jack.

Forklift Pricing—What You Need to Know

The right forklift is the critical component for a growing business. But how do you know what the best type of forklift is for your company or if you’re paying too much? Although buying a forklift can be a big investment, it doesn’t have to break the budget. Below we have provided some tips to help you find the correct forklift machine(s) that helps to maximize productivity for your company.

Types of Forklifts

There are seven different classes of forklifts, which may seem overwhelming; but helps to reemphasize why you need to be so selective when selecting a forklift. The first class, electric motor rider trucks, operate on an electric motor and a battery. They are equipped with cushion tires and do not emit pollutants making it more suitable to be used indoors. The second class of forklifts, electric motor narrow aisle trucks, are very similar to the first class except they are specifically designed for narrow aisles. If you are looking for lift trucks for short distance jobs, class three electric motor hand trucks will get the job done. These machines are designed specifically for short distances and lifting and unloading just a few inches off the ground.

Class four and five forklifts are very similar; their tires are what distinguishes them and help to identify their function. Internal Engine Combustion trucks with cushion tires are designed for smooth, indoor areas. This truck with pneumatic tires is designed for outside areas with rougher surfaces; these trucks are better at carrying and unloading larger loads and operate at a higher capacity. Class six forklifts are known as electric and internal combustion engine tractors. Unlike the other types of forklifts, their primary function is to tow instead of the lift. Finally, the last class of forklifts is known as rough terrain forklifts. These machines are going to be the most durable and are typically used on construction sites.

Shopping Efficiently without Cutting Costs

It is best to know that you are going to spend between $15,000 to $30,000 on these machines due to different features and functions. For this reason, opting for a lower priced machine may not always be the best decision because a low selling price may run you a large bill in maintenance cost in the future. For example, an electric forklift is more expensive than an internal combustion forklift but requires much less maintenance, which means lower maintenance costs.

According to OSHA, “forklift overturns are the leading cause of fatalities involving forklifts” which is why it is better to not skip out on paying for features such as seatbelts, notification alarms, or monitoring systems to reinforce stability. It is best to measure a forklift’s long-term costs versus the upfront price.

Top 6 Forklift Options to Reduce Maintenance Costs

One of the biggest keys to having a profitable business is to find ways to reduce costs without sacrificing quality or customer satisfaction. Buying a forklift, regardless of size, is expensive enough so the maintenance can be even steeper in price. We have compiled a list to help your company save some coins in maintenance costs to make sure you are providing quality as a standard to your company and your customers.

Repair Floors and Eliminate Sources of Tire Damage

Worn out floors can cause serious damage to your forklifts’ tires if the floors have holes or are badly worn down. Debris and waste such as plastic, wooden pieces, and other trash can also cause tire damage, which eventually leads to your machine needing new tires. Making sure that your manufacturing site upholds cleanliness standards and investing in smooth, even floors can eliminate the chances of employee accidents and machine damage.

Introduce Forklift Operating Safety Training

When is the last time your forklift operators participated in a forklift operating safety training? If you could not answer immediately, that means that it is time to plan for a training session. These sessions act as a refresher on safety protocol, while also update operators on any new driving/handling techniques when operating the forklifts. The benefits of these training sessions are that they increase forklift operator awareness and significantly decrease the amount of damage to the machines and any inventory.

Sticking to One Brand of Forklifts 

Various companies make forklifts, and not all of these machines are made the same. Different companies like to add on signature gadgets to build their brand stand out, and these additions can come additional costs. It may be a smart investment to be consistent with the brand of forklifts that your company uses to ensure that you do not have to kick out extra maintenance fees for different brands of forklifts.

Replace Tires and Wheels Frequently

Due to the lack of suspension that forklift machines have, their tires and wheels are prone to become worn down very easily and require frequent maintenance. An excellent investment tool would be to invest in shock absorption pads and replace tires and wheels frequently. Even the most skilled forklift driver is bound to have an incident on while operating the machine. These minor accidents can accumulate damages very quickly, and soon, you will need to replace an expensive machine. Investing in shock alarms to help indicate and absorb some shock will help keep track of how often to replace tires.

Setup a Maintenance Program

Having a contract with a maintenance provider could help companies maintain repair costs. Instead of having unexpected, or large repair bills, Have a monthly fixed price with a service provider to address any problems and eliminate the potential for any significant issues in the future. This is why sticking to one brand of forklifts is essential because this one factor could help to regulate the monthly cost of your maintenance bill. Even if there are no significant repairs one month, the constant upkeep on your machines will save you a ton in the long run.

Investing in Multi-Function Display Screens

Multi-function display screens are vital to any machine. Their primary function is to display the performance of forklift, determine its current condition, and if it’s time for any maintenance checks. It can control and regulate the speed of the forklifts and even measure oil levels. This is a brilliant investment to have seeing as it does most of maintenance monitoring for you.

PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT: 5195 LINDE NARROW AISLE REACH TRUCK

At Linde Material Handling, we are looking back on more than 70 years of designing the most reliable forklift trucks in the industry and our new warehouse products are no exception. The new Linde Series 5195 narrow aisle reach truck combines operator comfort with increased efficiency and enhanced visibility. These features make the Linde reach truck the right choice for every warehouse environment.

Ergonomics

With the Linde’s ergonomically focused compartment, adjustable steer tiller and control handle coupled with the most operator room in the industry, the compartment can be adjusted to provide the operator with a comfortable working environment, reducing fatigue and maximizing overall productivity.

Maintenance

With a service door that opens well nearly 180 degrees, technicians have full and easy access to all necessary componentry, allowing for the truck to remain in service longer. The new Linde reach truck also has a 2-piece cover that grants additional access to critical components and makes service a breeze. Technicians will appreciate the onboard diagnostics used to quickly and effectively check and address truck systems. The CAN bus electronics integrate truck systems with reduced wiring and electrical connections. Overall, the Linde Series 5195 reach truck enables easier and faster maintenance.

Performance

Linde’s powered lowering drastically increases lower speeds, reducing cycle times, and pumping energy back into the battery. Long run times and reduced cycle times make the 5195 series an efficient material handling solution. Variable steering resistance and an informative display with the truck status support the operator staying in perfect control of the truck and its valuable loads during operations. The 5195 series preserves the engineering pedigree of all Linde products, holding industry leading residual capacities, allowing heavier loads to travel higher and reducing adding to the flexibility of your warehouse’s storage capabilities.

Efficiency

Linde’s cushioned hydraulic system allows for delicate handling of any load, including controlled acceleration, smooth maneuvering and responsive braking with or without a load. This increases operator efficiency while helping to guard against product damage. 

Confidence

Linde’s glass overhead guard provides the operator with zero obstructions while checking load placement on a rack. With the glass overhead guard, the operator can stay within the compartment throughout the handling of the goods even at higher heights. This increases fork accuracy, and in turn, decreases cycle time and product damage. 

For more information or to request a demo, contact your authorized local dealer today.

Product Spotlight: 1101 Linde Electric Walkie / Rider Pallet Truck

With over 30 years in this industry, Linde knows warehousing. With a combination of this industry knowledge and the needs of warehouse operators, Linde has released the new 1101 Linde Electric Walkie / Rider pallet truck.

We understand that warehousing isn’t easy and this truck is designed to withstand the most demanding duty cycle. Matching performance with ergonomics, the 1101 Linde Electric Walkie / Rider pallet truck is a high performing and comfortable pallet truck designed to get the job done.

Intuitive Controls

With the latest technology in the controller and design of the motor, the Electric Walkie / Rider pallet truck gives the operator smooth control of the truck. A variety of drive tire options provides smooth movement of the pallet truck, along with the ergonomically designed, impact resistant, aluminum reinforced control handle with twist grip control.

These intuitive controls make for smoother operations and less strain on the operator. To achieve even more effortless control, there is an option to add electric power steering to reduce steer effort. This truck is equipped with traction and lift controls grouped on a tiller head, allowing for control with either hand. Linde’s Easy Pick with Coast Control drastically improves case picking efficiency.

Maintenance

A one-piece cover provides noise reduction and full access to key components on the truck. The low maintenance AC traction motor with built-in thermal protection is enclosed for protection against damage, debris or moisture. Regenerative braking minimizes the use of the service brake and relieves heat from the traction motor increasing the life of the truck.

For easy maintenance, the CANbus design and diagnostics can be controlled through a single point plug. Fault codes are shown on the multi-function display for easy identification and quick repair.

Reliability

The solid frame construction and the fork linkage design are proven in the most demanding applications. The solid steel tie bars are maintenance-free with load wheel bearing block assemblies designed to support shock loads over the entire width of the forks. Fork wear or bending are not an issue.

Performance

With a proven history in warehousing, you can expect the 1101 Linde Electric Walkie / Rider pallet truck to exceed expectations. Whether you use this truck occasionally or constantly, you can rest assured that the high performing, low maintenance, reliable vehicle will work best in your application.

For more information or to request a demo, contact your authorized local dealer today.

 

Difference Between Pneumatic and Cushion Tire Forklifts

A big decision is being made when buying a forklift. It is an expensive and a substantial piece of machinery to own and maintain. You’ll want to be sure that you are buying a forklift that can match your environment and can handle the amount of lifting you’ll need. Different forklifts require different tires, with doing proper research beforehand to ensure the tires are appropriate for your work setting. It is imperative to select the right kind of tires because it will affect the overall handling and welfare of the forklift. Here are the differences between pneumatic and cushion tire forklifts.

Pneumatic Tires
Pneumatic tires are typically used for outdoor operations and are able to grip uneven and rough terrain. There are two different types of pneumatic tires, solid pneumatics and, air pneumatics. Solid pneumatic tires are made solely out of rubber and are additionally more resistant to puncture, while air pneumatics are air-filled. Pneumatic tires are more commonly seen on construction sites and other similar establishments. Brand new pneumatic tires can range from $20,000 to $25,000, because of this, used pneumatic tires can sell rapidly.

Cushion Tires
Cushion tires are created by smooth, solid rubber. These types of tires are also much cheaper to manufacture and are essentially very straightforward when it comes to prolonging them. However, these tires do not get a similar level of traction as pneumatic tires do. Cushion tires are generally best for flat and smooth surfaces and are more ideal for indoor warehouse spaces rather than outdoor settings, and can regularly be seen being used on loading docks. They can’t withstand as much weight as pneumatic tires can, but can function in smaller capacities.

Now that we have explained the difference more clearly, between cushion and pneumatic tires, you’ll need to decide which is best for you. Think about how your forklift will be used, the amount of room you have and the type of setting you are in. Take into consideration that your work environment will play a heavy role in making the ultimate decision between choosing one of the two tires. Both cushion and pneumatic tire forklifts can be acquired in any load volume, from less than 2,000 pounds to more than 200,000 pounds.

If you are still having trouble deciding, we are more than happy to give you our input and opinions. At KION North America, we understand the importance of choosing the best tire for your forklift. Please contact us if you have any further questions at 843-875-8000.

Product Spotlight: Linde Series 1120

The Linde Series 1120 not only provides the operator comfort and control you have come to expect from Linde products, but the series also offers extreme efficiency with increased shift life in narrow aisle environments. As we know, employees are most productive when they are comfortable and confident. In this superb, stress-free working environment the operator is motivated and fully focused on the task at hand.

The Linde Series 1120 is offered in seven different models with a lift capacity ranging from 3000 to 4,500 lbs. (5000 Lb. on special request). With this range of offerings, your warehouse is sure to find a model that works for you. Some models can even be fully customized for your particular warehouse and your specifications. Applications for the Linde Series 1120 models include; refrigerated or cold storage, even special attachments, for companies who need more manufacturing space and warehousing of all types.

Ergonomics

As with every Linde product, the ergonomics on the Linde Series 1120 models are exceptionally designed. Linde engineers design each truck around the operator to help ensure the most stress-free environment as possible. These trucks offer a world first for reach trucks, with the operator cab mounted “floating” to the base chassis, to give an unsurpassed level of comfort to the driver. A fully adjustable air suspension seat and integral control console with fingertip joystick control of hydraulics along with the unique Linde rheological electric steering system enables effortless operation and assured maneuvering and traveling.

Safety

Safety is always the most important feature on any truck. Three independent breaking systems with all-wheel braking, emergency power cut-off, Linde clear-view mast design, Linde Load Control (LLC) with fingertip activation, large diameter load wheels, and Linde Digital Control (LDC) with electric regen are among the impressive range of protective features that ensure a safe and efficient work environment for the operator.

With a variety of options such as an optional camera system for driving and stacking and an optional laser pointer shows the operator the exact position of his forks and helps him to stack or retrieve pallets quickly and safely, improving the already safe working environment.

Efficiency

Becoming more efficient end goal of every business, especially where warehouses are involved, and depending on your working environment the Linde Series 1120 can help with that. With excellent stability and outstanding performance, the Linde Series 1120 can help increase efficiency throughout your operation. An ergonomically designed operator compartment provides your employees with reduced operating fatigue and an advanced hydraulics system provides smooth travel and precise load handling on all surfaces and ramps.

The sideways-seated driving position helps the operator achieve high pallet throughput. Powerful traction and lift motors guarantee high performance and productivity. Thanks to the Linde System Control (LSC) the optimum performance is calculated in real-time in relation to the load carried – a great advantage for maximum throughput.

Maintenance

All machines require maintenance, but the Linde series 1120 is designed with durable equipment ensuring long maintenance intervals and rapid service. This savings is particularly significant when compared with the more conventional pantograph reach trucks. Some of the design features include quick, easy battery charge or change, CAN bus connection streamline truck diagnostics and servicing, maintenance-free AC motor and enclosed electronics.

If you are looking for a quality electric forklift that you can rely on without breaking the bank, the Linde Series 1120 models could be a great fit for your operation. Please see a list of options on our website or for more information, please contact your authorized local dealer today.

Product Spotlight: Linde Series 346

The Linde Series 346 is exactly what customers have to come to expect from Linde products. This truck raises the standards for comfort, efficiency, economy of operation and durability. Offered in eight different models, the Linde 346 has a lift capacity ranging from 3,500 to 4,000 lbs. This truck can fit well in a multitude of applications, including general warehousing, manufacturing and beverage.

Ergonomics

The ergonomics on the Linde 346 are phenomenal. Linde engineers painstakingly developed the truck around the operator to help ensure the most stress-free environment as possible. All areas where operator and machine meet were carefully designed. Equipped with an adjustable armrest, a vibration-isolating suspension seat and generous amounts of legroom, the 346 can make any size operator feel comfortable. With all of these ergonomic features, driver fatigue becomes less of a problem in your workplace.

Safety

At the end of the day, safety is the most important feature on any truck whether you’re the manufacturer or the operator and the Linde 346 doesn’t fall behind anyone when it comes to the safety of the operator and the people around the truck. A key element of forklift safety is visibility of the load through the mast. Linde has installed a unique mast design to optimize the view. This was achieved by replacing chains with cylinders in the main lift stages. This allows for a drastically wider field of vision. The truck also has standard safety features including two spotlights, an overhead guard and an emergency power cut-off.

Efficiency

Becoming more efficient is everyone’s end goal and depending on your working environment the 346 can help with that. This truck features the new Linde drive axle, which is an assembly that includes drive motors, hydraulic motor, reduction gears, brake system and power modules. This system has eliminated long power cables, which is one of the major sources of excessive energy consumption. Linde has also made energy visible, meaning the new Linde electric trucks have a unique energy management system, including an advanced battery state of charge indicator. This measures the current and available voltage to provide a continuous update of the battery’s overall condition.

Maintenance

All machines require maintenance, but the Linde series 346 has maintenance intervals of 1000 hours. This truck has many design features that allow for this high maintenance interval. Some of these design features include automatic deceleration, maintenance-free brake system and electronic diagnostics. This truck is also equipped with an AC system for all motors which operates without brushes and is completely sealed extending component life.

If you are looking for a quality electric forklift that you can rely on without breaking the bank, the Linde 346 could be a great fit for your operation. If you think there are other options that would benefit your workplace, please see a list of options on our website or for more information please contact your authorized local dealer today.

Linde at Work: South Carolina Aquarium

In May, KION North America loaned one of its Linde Series 346 electric forklifts to the South Carolina Aquarium to assist in the transport of Kiki—a female sand tiger shark that has called the Charleston-based attraction home for the past four years.

The South Carolina Aquarium is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization whose mission is to inspire conservation of the natural world by exhibiting and caring for animals, by excelling in education and research, and by providing an exceptional visitor experience.

Kiki, who now lives at Marineland in Florida, is 6.5 feet in length and weighs about 165 lbs. The aquarium wanted to use an environmentally-friendly forklift that aligns with its mission to inspire conservation to secure the lid on the tank used for transport. With a load capacity of up to 4,000 lbs. and manufactured less than 30 miles away, the Linde Series 346 was the perfect solution.

The counterbalanced electric forklift offers more precise load placement, greater accuracy, and reduced noise and vibrations—all great features when you’re working near a live animal.

“Kiki is very special to us and to the species as a whole because she is a new, active participant in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan for sand tiger sharks,” said Bethany Morgan, public relations manager for the South Carolina Aquarium.

The goal of the Survival Plan, with a focus on captive breeding efforts, is to protect sharks and learn more about their genetic diversity and health. Sand tiger sharks have a very low reproduction rate compared to others, which makes it difficult to manage their populations. In collaboration with staff from Marineland and Georgia Aquarium, South Carolina Aquarium biologists participate in breeding workshops and assist with reproductive health exams on sand tiger sharks.

“These efforts will offer valuable insight into the sharks’ reproductive abilities that will hopefully sustain wild populations in the future,” said Morgan.

Has your company benefited from using a Linde (or Baoli) forklift? We’d love to hear about it. Submit your photos of our trucks at work to marketing.na(at)kiongroup.com