Several of our competitors said it couldn’t be done, but our most installation at Honda of the UK Manufacturing’s Swindon site has proved the doubters wrong. We believe that, in terms of its height, the carton live storage system, erected in the second car assembly plant, is the tallest installation of its kind in the UK.
The new system stands more than eight metres high, has twenty-one storage levels and is twenty-six metres long. In total there are 1260 picking locations, designed to store the standard motor industry 600x400mm and 400x300mm small parts totes.
The installation consists of twelve 2100mm clear entry bays, which are 2400mm deep and comprise two 700mm frames with a space of 800mm between. The carton live storage gravity roller beds are bolted in place to each frame upright. The whole assembly is extremely rigid and provides a safe and secure storage and order picking environment.
Our carton live storage products provide high density storage, yet ensures good selectivity as all items in the system are readily accessible. The totes are loaded onto inclined lanes of gravity rollers. When a load or empty tote is taken from the picking face, a full tote rolls into position automatically. Full totes are loaded from the back of the lane, which means that picking operations can continue unhindered by the replenishment process.
Whilst it is unusual for a carton live system to be as high as the Honda installation, it is the ideal solution. Storage space, within the assembly plants is limited. One of Honda UK’s stated ambitions, under its ‘Green Factory’ philosophy is to minimise its impact upon the environment by keeping its plant as small as is possible. When assembly of Honda’s CR-V model started in Swindon, a one million pound extension to one of the assembly halls was undertaken to accommodate the safety stock.
This is held in case there is a problem with any part on the production line. It is imperative, therefore, that the back up stock can be picked quickly and moved to the assembly line without holding up production. As Honda needs to hold a large number of parts, all with good selectivity, but in a limited floor space, we proposed the high rise live storage solution for the smaller, lightweight items. Larger parts are held in standard pallet racking, adjacent to the live storage lane. The system is accessed by man up order picking trucks for both picking and replenishment operations.
This is the fifth installation of Redirack racking and shelving products at the Swindon site. It is a testament to its success, together with the excellent working relationship between the two companies that there are currently a number of other projects on the drawing board.