Conventional Pallet Racking Needs to Optimize

For over 60 years, the material handling and warehousing industries have generally settled on using two different types of storage systems. One is the traditional “roll-formed” rack, which typically utilizes an open C-section steel column of varying shapes depending on the manufacturer. Traditionally in the U.S., this product has a brace welded into the upright, becoming a welded truss, horizontally and diagonally. Some companies in both Europe and America bolt the brace into the column instead of welding it for two main advantages – to save manufacturing costs and reduce shipping costs by compacting the load. The disadvantage of manual assembly is that the welding costs are transferred to the costs of installation, which involves labor and sorting the many boxes of nuts and bolts at the jobsite.

The other type of rack is “structural”. Manufacturing starts with hot-formed structural angle and channel steel which is then cut, hole-punched, welded and painted to customer specifications. Structural racking can typically support much more weight than roll-formed and is much heavier because of the heavy gauge steel used in its construction. Some companies make either the C-section or the structural racks. Hannibal makes both types to satisfy any need their customers might have.

Increasing Demand Puts Pressure on Material Handling Industry

These solutions have worked and continue to work, both in the United States and the world over. However, as time has gone on and the global economy has continued to grow and evolve, new challenges and requirements for material handling have emerged. Operators have continued to require higher and stronger rack configurations to bear the weight of increasingly heavier pallets (the average pallet handles 2500 pounds and is expected to reach 3500 pounds in the immediate future) along with an increased volume of goods. This economic growth has forced pallet racking systems to require larger and thicker warehouse footprints, which can be prohibitively expensive. Whereas 10 years ago warehouse concrete slabs averaged 5-6 inches, meeting todays seismic requirements with these increased loads can require 10 inches or thicker, constituting potentially millions more dollar in construction costs.

Game Changing Technology for a Growing Economy

To meet this need, Hannibal Industries and their long time engineering consultant collaborated on a new pallet racking system that could take material handling into the future; TubeRack is engineered for earthquakes and high seismic areas. Patented in 2012, TubeRack’s “dual movement” frame allows flexibility both front-to-back and side-to-side giving it the ability to withstand impacts and seismic events more safely with traditional pallet rack design. Anchor plates with bolts closer to the frame aid in this seismic flexibility, reducing rigidity and potential for shear. Its horizontal bolt-together modular design handles more capacity with less steel in many instances, while reducing the stress on the slab. This modular design also allows for future flexibility and simple racking configuration changes or repairs. Hannibal Industries' TubeRack affords warehouse operators more capacity than standard pallet rack, meaning slab thickness need not increase to store more product. Discover more in our Case Study: Records Storage Management System of a recent project we completed with a high density catwalk system using TubeRack.

Tough, Durable Innovation Leads the Way Forward

TubeRack utilizes A500 Grade-B structural tubing design, the same structural tubing used in building columns and bridges. This structural tubing provides up to twice the straightness tolerances of structural channel as defined by ASTM specifications. Additionally, TubeRack allows for maximum weight over cube, providing an average 35% savings in shipping costs.

As a Master Dealer for Hannibal Material Handling, Conveyor & Storage Solutions is well versed in their entire product line, especially TubeRack. Systems that utilize it provide a stronger, safer and smarter alternative to conventional racking systems. C&SS is able to incorporate it into any storage solution design such as Selective, Double Deep, Push Back, Pallet Flow, Drive-in, Pallet Shuttle, GlideRack, Archive, and retail systems.