Honda UK – Civic Centre
Honda’s UK production plant in Swindon, assembles Civic and Accord models for the world market. At Swindon there has been a programme of continual investment and improvement since 1985 when Honda first moved to the site. Assembly capacity has increased substantially with 1000’s of additional jobs being created along the way. In the latest round of improvements Honda spent another £1.5 million on efficiency gains in the main assembly plant.
Undertaken during a plant shutdown, the latest changes included the extension of an existing narrow aisle storage system in the materials logistics area. This was to create additional space to store component parts being delivered by fifteen dedicated suppliers.
In the past these suppliers had delivered to Honda’s regional distribution centres. However, with ever-changing specifications and product development the distribution centres were becoming over stocked which affected service levels and flexibility. Now, having these components close at hand, enables Honda to make cars to a greater number of different specifications and more quickly.
Redirack was chosen to provide and install the new racking. We put up a block of narrow aisle pallet racking extending to 75 metres in length. Within the racking block there are 27 bays each having a 2,700mm clear entry. Each bay has five beam levels with the top beam being at 5.4 metres. Throughout the scheme the racking has wooden decking to cater for the different sizes of stillages used within the Honda system. In some areas they have changed the racking beam levels to cater for over height loads.
Narrow aisle trucks work within the scheme. Low profile guide rails provide the in-aisle guidance. Stillages sit on the floor behind the guide rail in the bottom racking locations. In total the extension added 560 storage locations and in a typical day it will ship and receive around 600 stillages.
Honda’s Tony Pidgeon explains why they chose Redirack: “Redirack was extremely flexible in its approach to this project. We needed delivery and completion within a very tight timescale, which they achieved – and while they were on site they were very accommodating. At Honda we consider after sales service to be a key consideration and Redirack has performed exceptionally well.”