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Optimized Conveying of Fabricated Metal Products

Posted by Tom Churchill | Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Metal fabricators need material handling conveyor systems that enable them to cut, shape, and mold products accurately at different stages in the process. Conveying products directly may be one of the biggest challenges for fabricators and manufacturers concerned about the efficient handling and manipulation of wider products.


Product Handling Design for Flexible Manufacturing

Direct Product Circle 1Flexible manufacturing during metal fabrication tasks depends on automating as many of the processes as possible, using systems that can execute precise product manipulation – whatever dimensions the product may be. The material handling capabilities of every facility are being pressed to the limit, just to keep up with modern designs and consumer demand.

By configuring a flexible design for your product handling and conveyor design, metal fabricators can achieve new efficiencies and reduce manufacturing bottlenecks.


Challenges with Conveying Fabricated Metal Products

Metal fabricators are facing a host of challenges right now. Supply chains are strained, and sweeping economic shutdowns created intermittent disruptions that required a new level of agility just to stay afloat.


Some of the major challenges fabricators faced during COVID-19 shutdowns were:

  • Pivoting to new products quickly when systems were custom-designed for a particular process
  • Overseeing procedures remotely and keeping track with limited on-site staff available
  • Lift-Transfer-Swivel-TiltAutomating lifts, transfers, swivels, and tilts that depended on human interaction to complete the manufacturing process


To become more resilient in the future, fabricators will likely look for greater flexibility from conveyor system manufacturers to create tailored, efficient and flexible designs to accommodate unique challenges when conveying wide products. At Glide-Line, we address tough product handling challenges when it comes to wide or long product handling, atypical movement (read: unique movements nobody else wants to do!) & smooth, no-contact motion control. While these may seem like custom designs, they are standard to us.


Material Handling and Heavy Duty Conveyor Considerations for Fabricators

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Flexibility is one of the key requirements when investing in a new material handling solution for your factory. With so much “on-the-line”, you’ll need a highly configurable system that accommodates everything from vertical conveying to zone-controlled, zero contact product to product manipulation.

A multi-strand system can support weights of up to 250 pounds per strand during transport. For metal fabrication, the advantages of a timing-belt driven, easily expandable system capable of conveying appliances, wide metal products, or refrigerator panels (if need be) are self-evident. 


A multi-strand conveyor system gives you:

  • Complete product manipulation capabilities with a multitude of devices integrated to transfer, store, and retrieve each item between points A and B
  • Delicate handling of products while avoiding marring or scuffing during each stage of the final assembly process when conveying finished paneling
  • A flexible design that you can adjust to your needs as your product line evolves, while also helping you use your available space efficiently (drastically improving your facility’s line balancing)


Glide-Line’s Integrated Product Handling and Conveyance Systems

Glide-Line’s range of products provides an economical alternative that can handle a variety of situations, with any kind of manipulation you may require in between different stations. When you need additional width, you can just include another extrusion / belt to accommodate your wide product, while adding any number of accessories between sections using our highly configurable design.

We can shuffle around interferences, customize lift transfers (from wide-edge leading, to narrow-edge leading, and again back to wide-edge leading), and you can configure your system on our IMPACT! software (using SolidWorks). Glide-Line provides complete, precise, and timely material handling solutions for fabricators in every industry.


To discuss your direct product handling needs today, get in touch here.


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Topics: Solutions for Applications Engineers, Flexible Conveyor Solutions

Written by Tom Churchill

In addition to having the biggest laugh and smile in the room, Tom brings a passion to the growth of our company that is unmatched. He thrives on helping customers and building long term relationships. Tom is a "go anywhere, go anytime" guy willing to do whatever it takes to help the cause. He has a fantastic family in Cleveland where he lives with his beautiful wife Linda, and is near his children and grandchildren who light up his face, which in turn, lights up the room.

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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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