Benchmark Multi-Shifter
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Benchmark Multi-Shifter


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benchmark BRIEFINGSSITEMulti-Shifter, Inc.,Charlotte, NCAPPLICATIONPoint-of-use assembly for manufacturing andservice partsEQUIPMENTTwo Shuttle Vertical LiftModules (VLMs) with A Shuttle VLMControls 2000, FastPic™Inventory Management gave us 87%Softwareexpansion in floorspace and savedSUMMARY$450,000 toIncrease productivity by50% while saving 87% of $500,000 in newwasted floor spaceconstructionUp to 50 percent of walk and search time has been eliminated. The Shuttle VLM delivers the specified tray to a waist-high extraction platform for easy part removal costs.or return.A new approach to assembly and storage and retrieval operations to determine The Shuttle is a standalone, modular,service parts storage and retrieval has helped if improvements could be made. Small enclosed system of vertically arranged A Multi-Shifter, Inc., Charlotte, North Carolina, assembly parts were being stored in totes on storage trays, a workstation-type extractionadd a new spark to its industrial battery traditional shelving units—500 square feet of platform, and computerized pushbutton handling systems manufacturing operations. floor space in one area, 625 square feet in controls for part retrieval. It stores andMulti-Shifter, Inc. is a fully integrated manu- another. Product assemblers and service retrieves a variety of component containersfacturer of industrial battery handling parts personnel were spending increasingly on specially designed trays and ...



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APPLICATION Point-of-use assembly for manufacturing and
EQUIPMENT Two Shuttle Vertical Lift Modules (VLMs) with A Shuttle VLM Controls 2000, FastPic™ Inventory Management gave us 87% expansion in floor SUMMARYspace and saved Increase productivity by$450,000 to 50% while saving 87% of wasted floor space$500,000 in new construction Up to 50 percent of walk and search time has been eliminated. The Shuttle VLM costs. delivers the specified tray to a waist-high extraction platform for easy part removal or return. ahdadndalinnAmesysttsgewsparkl.ievaretrartropslftnorocnaserotstIaeroen52s,a6efequarnetiudniirtsostiamuneratgopurinfact.snoiflrooacspineA new approach to assembly andstorage and retrieval operations to determineThe Shuttle is a standalone, mod service parts storage and retrieval has helpedif improvements could be made.Small enclosedsystem of vertically arranged Multi-Shifter, Inc., Charlotte, North Carolina,assembly parts were being stored in totes onstorage trays, a workstation-type extra al batterytraditional shelving units—500 square feet ofplatform, and computerized pushbutto Multi-Shifter, Inc. is a fully integrated manu-another. Productassemblers and serviceretrieves a variety of component conta facturer of industrial battery handlingparts personnel were spending increasinglyon specially designed trays and delive vehicles and storage systems.The companymore non-productive time searching aislesthem to an ergonomically positioned produces battery changing vehicles forand shelves for correct part numbers.workstation. TheShuttle has a fast ve batteries weighing up to 5,000 lb., plusVertical storage and retrieval systemstravel speed, 212 feet per minute, and battery washing, storage, and waste waterappeared to be the solution to reducing theextraction speed as fast as 24 inches filtration systems and miscellaneous batteryamount of space required for parts inventoryper second. room equipment.The company’s batteryand improving part picking productivity.By installing two 21.5-foot tall Re handling systems increase operatingImproved space utilization is a key advan-Shuttle 250NT VLMs, the company has efficiency, worker safety, and spacetage of vertical storage and retrieval systems.reduced the floor space necessary for utilization in plants employing electrically-Depending on useable building interiorassembly parts by 87percent, from 1,1 powered materials handling trucks, counter-heights, 75 percent and more of a conven-square feet to only 140 square feet.T balance trucks, turret and narrow-aisletional storage system’s occupied floor spaceShuttle VLMs allowed Multi-Shifter to f trucks, pallet jacks, and automatic guidedcan be recovered.The small unit footprintspace in two of the plant’s four produ vehicles in multiple-shift or continuousmakes vertical storage and retrieval systemsassembly areas sufficient to double the operating environments.especially for point-of-use storage, allowingareas’ production.Now, the parts are more floor space to be used in value-addedsolidated vertically on 44 trays within Taking Advantage of Overhead Spacelockable 9.7' D x 7' W Remstar Shuttleoperations such as manufacturing and In order to help improve its own oper-assembly. OneShuttle VLM contains some 800 S ating efficiency and space utilization, Multi-Multi-Shifter chose The Shuttle Vertical(part numbers), the other about 1,400. Shifter management decided to analyze partsLift Module (VLM) developed by Remstar.present, only 70 percent of trays are in
Multi-Shifter has consolidated 2,200 different parts into two 21.5-foot tall Remstar Shuttle VLM’s.
for both the production and service depart-
ments. Oneof the Shuttle VLMs is stocked
with assembly parts and is installed within
the assembly area it serves.Previously, the
parts had to be stored remotely, which
added to an already excessive retrieval time.
The other Shuttle VLM is stocked with both
assembly items and replacement parts that
which means the company has capacity to
serve future assembly operations.
The systems provide inventory control
Remstar International Inc.
tray. TheShuttle VLM automatically nests
placing parts of similar heights on the same
tions, assemblers can enter sub-assembly kit
Even more helpful to picking opera-
minimizing part storage heights and by
Multi-Shifter maximizes storage density by
flaps and plastic bags that are sticking up.
software for that tray.
The later information is especially
helpful for pointing out unclosed carton
forces placed on more sensitive parts.
Because it could expand storage
sequence a VLM through a series of trays in
the most efficient order.The company can
adjust both the vertical travel and extraction
speeds of each tray individually to reduce
over the place.
We had to stop
searching for a $5
part at $50 an hour.”
By utilizing otherwise wasted overhead space, Multi-Shifter has been able to maximize floor space for today and tomorrow. Only70% of the total 44 trays Multi-Shifter has are in use, allowing for future expansion.
“We had stuff all
and overall operations efficiency.
capacity by using the plant’s unused vertical
percent the floor space formerly consumed
by small parts.The parts consolidation has
also successfully delayed a costly building
expansion and increased worker productivity
numbers and the FastPic program will
man-aboard battery changers is extensively supported by the Remstar Shuttle VLMs. Known as the Cubemaster Series, the mobile changers have eliminated lift chains and rack-in-pinion mechanisms for leveling the roller bed.Instead, a self-adjusting hydraulic equalization system performs this function. Benefits include 30% fewer components, lower maintenance, and fewer adjustments. No Walking by Assemblers Conventional static storage systems like the shelving used by Multi-Shifter require workers to spend up to 70 percent of their time traveling aisles searching for items. Vertical storage and retrieval systems can virtually eliminate wasted travel and retrieval time. Althoughthe specifics of each installa-tion differ, typical productivity can increase by more than 2.5 times when vertical systems are compared with static systems. At the Multi-Shifter facility, the Shuttle VLMs provide enclosed, point-of-use protection for densely packed vertically stacked trays of parts.When called for by a Multi-Shifter assembler, a 72”W x 33”D tray is automatically lowered from the stack to a waist-high extraction platform, where it advances out toward the operator for easy part removal or return. Tray-to-tray cycle times range from 32 to 47 seconds for Multi-Shifter’s 21.5-foot high lifts.Load capacity per tray is 594 lb. and balancing the load is unnecessary because trays are chain-driven from both ends. Partsas tall as 29.5 inches can be accommodated. Quick retrieval is assisted by Remstar’s state-of-the-art Controls 2000 operating ® system, which is integrated with Windows based FastPic inventory management soft-ware loaded on adjacent PCs.Using pass-words and keying either a Controls 2000 operator panel or the FastPic PC, assemblers retrieve parts without walking through rows of shelving.Retrieval times have been cut approximately in half as a result. Automation Simplifies Storage To retrieve a part, an assembler simply enters the part number plus the quantity desired. Thecomputer instructs the lift module to present the appropriate tray—in FIFO order if the part number is stored in more than one location.After the pick, the assembler hits a confirmation button, which automatically decrements inventory and returns the tray.Before and after extraction, a light curtain sweeps the tray looking for parts extending beyond its edges and for parts taller than the last height seen by the
The Shuttle VLMs also helped the
foot plant—a costly and time consuming
to build an addition to its 20,000 square
also eliminated the need for the company
Shuttle VLMs into operations at Multi-Shifter
are shipped to customers.Integrating the
41 Eisenhower Drive,Westbrook, ME 04092 8006395805
cube, Multi-Shifter has reduced by 87
trays as closely as possible.
company introduce a new product line.
The manufacture of a new line of