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Direct Product Handling: Avoid Bottlenecks with These Conveyor Transfer Solutions

Posted by Craig Newberry | Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Conveyor transfers are essential to maintaining a manufacturing plant’s efficiency. Because these transfer sections have to interface and hand-off products to downstream processes, a poorly designed solution can increase scrap rates and may cause bottlenecks on the line. 

When something goes wrong with a transfer, it could shut down production entirely while repairs take place. If the system is a customized solution, it brings a new set of challenges with getting the line up and running again. You may have to fabricate new parts or break down other conveyor sections to access specific components. 

Direct Proroduct Handling - CSGIn a direct product handling application, where damage is a major concern, it’s not uncommon for manufacturers to resort to transferring products manually between different processing stages. This is often the case in production plants for products like solar panels, windshields, appliance sheets, or electronic displays. With Glide-Line’s conveyor transfer solutions, there are a million ways you can solve your application challenges and ensure the smooth, efficient, and consistent movement of products through your facility. 


Glide-Line Conveyor Transfer Solutions for Smooth Product Handling Directly on the Line

There are four main transfer requirements that may apply to your conveyor system:

  • Shuttling - Moving products in a linear direction between two conveyor sections
  • Vertical Elevation - Lifting or lowering a product to a different elevation before handing it off to another process stage
  • Angle Changes - Changing the angle of the product to a specific degree where the next conveyor section begins
  • Traffic-Control and Diverting - Accumulating and releasing products based on inspections, completions, or manual interactions

Designing a conveyor transfer solution for any of these requirements is easier than you may think. Glide-Line’s conveyor systems have a modular design that is proven to gently transfer products with smooth and controlled movements. Below, we discuss each of these conveyor transfer scenarios and how you can solve them using Glide-Line’s solutions. 


Shuttle Transfers Between Conveyors

While this may appear to be a simple transfer design, it requires precise control during the process. The upstream conveyor has to halt while the shuttle operation occurs, and then release the next product once the shuttle conveyor returns.

Any flaw in the design could lead to collisions and if the system’s starts and stops aren’t smooth, it could jostle products causing damage.

To solve this problem, Glide-Line designed our Zero-Contact Zoned Conveyors. By controlling each zone independently, you can protect products and expertly shuttle items from one conveyor to the next, without any of them ever touching. 

Check out this video to see how the system works and how it can accommodate almost all of your shuttling requirements. 




Vertical Lifts and Elevator Transport Units

Smart and efficient changes in elevation allow you to maximize the utilization of available space. Efficiently using all available space increases production capacity and saves costs. This trend is now reshaping the agricultural sector with high-density vertical farming becoming popular around the world. 

Direct Product VTUIn manufacturing applications, a vertical transfer unit enables you to automate all aspects of moving products between levels of the facility for processing, finishing, storage, or shipping purposes.

Glide-Line’s Vertical Transport Units (VTUs) are adaptable to any kind of application that requires a change in elevation. There are multiple application options available with different sizes, strokes, and deck configurations. 

Here is a quick video to demonstrate the versatility of our VTUs. 


Angle Changes and Rotating Conveyor Transfers

Some applications require you to change the angle of the product during the transfer process. The degree of change may also present a problem, as most roller-powered solutions will use a curved path, which increases the footprint of the conveyor system. 

With a lift and rotate unit, you can change the orientation of a product to any degree. Because the system lifts, rotates, and drops to the correct angle in a single, smooth motion, you can protect your product and change the orientation using the smallest amount of space. 

This design principle allows Glide-Line to deliver new capabilities with our conveyor designs. The Glide-Line 360 product line provides endless configurability, giving you all the flexibility without increasing costs or creating dead space in your facility. 

Listen to Kevin Mauger explaining why we designed the 360 conveyor solution range. 


Conveyor Traffic Control, Accumulation, and Diversion Strategies

CSG Circle v2To ensure the efficient movement of products through the facility, you’ll have to develop an effective way to control traffic before, during, and after transfers. Diverting products, changing elevations, and merging lines will ensure products move expertly between processing stages. 

Glide-Line’s range of customized standard solutions provides you with all the capabilities you need to maintain smooth and efficient control over all the traffic on the line. It delivers the same gentle movement of your products as our timing belt and roller chain conveyors, with expert manipulation that solves your application challenges.  

Discover all of our customized standard solutions and conveyor transfer capabilities in this video.  


Experience a New Era of Efficiency with Conveyor Transfer Solutions from Glide-Line

If you need a smart, efficient, and completely flexible conveyor transfer design, Glide-Line has you covered. Instead of telling you, we can show you how flexible, fast, and cost-effective our solutions are in our in-context 3D configurator called IMPACT! 

Discuss your requirements and start configuring your ideal conveyor transfer solution with Glide-Line today.


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Topics: Conveyor System Designs, Vertical Transport Conveyors, Direct Product Handling

Written by Craig Newberry

Craig Newberry is a Business Unit Manager for Glide-Line. His past involvement in a variety of competitive sports along with current passion for obstacle course races spills over into his desire to drive business forward. Concurring challenges is what motivates him on daily basis, while his family is what fuels his desire to succeed in life. Although a bit of an adrenaline junky, he also tries to live by a brilliant statement made by Ferris Bueller “life moves pretty fast, if you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you may miss it.”

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Glide-Line offers the most versatile multi-strand panel and pallet-handling solution available for the assembly automation industry.

We solve problems that other conveyor systems manufacturers won’t. We developed Glide-Line from the ground up with a few key, driving factors in mind. First, our conveyors had to be robust and reliable. Second, they would be simple – easy to maintain and service. Finally, we insisted on flexible configurability, creating an efficient, hassle-free customer experience. We’ve built the most versatile multi-strand panel and pallet-handling solution available for the assembly automation industry.

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