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5 Must Have Products For Your Loading Dock

June 26, 2019  |  Comments

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Dock Board and Plates

The most common loading dock equipment are dock plates and boards. They usually act as a bridge to piece together and close a gap between a truck and dock for humans or items to pass through. Though dock plates and boards are very similar the boards have edges to prevent items from spilling out whereas a plate does not have barrier. The benefits of not having the raised sides is that the dock plate can be transferred with more ease because the sides will not get in the way.

Dock Lifts and Levelers

To go along with your dock board and plate you will also need a dock lift. This is what you use when there is a truck with an odd height differential. If a height difference is too much for the board or plate to fix, that is when you need the hydraulic dock lift. When loading a truck with boxes rather than individually handing the boxes and height differential the lift will do the job for you keeping you free from any strenuous box movement.

A similar product that does the same job is a dock leveler. For safety and efficiency, a dock leveler stays attached to the dock itself while raising and lowering. It provides better stability and minimized truck movement while loading. This product provides a convenient way to load and unload heavy products from delivery trucks.

Loading Dock Safety

Once you have found the product to bridge the gap between a truck and the unloading area, the next thing you will need is something that provides safety while unloading. Wheel chocks are a must have when working with delivery truck loading and unloading. A wheel chock will prevent a truck from moving when someone is loading and unloading boxes with a forklift. If a truck were to move accidentally moving. If a truck were to move, then the person in a forklift moving boxes will fall in between; this is not safe at all. If there is a miscommunication between a truck driver and forklift user, and the truck drives away this present a high danger. Danger should be eliminated in these sorts of material handling task, and because we want safety, wheel chocks are a must have.

Auto lock docks are a product that is very similar to wheel chocks, but it is even safer, more reliable and efficient. So, if you have the means to spend a little extra on the auto lock dock, we recommend you do so. With an auto dock lock the truck will back in and the lock grabs the truck, puts on a green light and allows the driver and forklift user to do their job safely. With this mechanical equipment the truck driver cannot mess up because even if he accidentally tries to drive, he will be stopped, and the box handler will be safe.

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Safety is important in a loading dock area, and therefore we want to inform you on the top 5 things we think you need for your work zone. These top 5 products will provide safety, efficiency, and reliability.

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Power Conveyors vs Gravity Conveyors

June 24, 2019  |  Comments

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At A Plus Warehouse we stock many different types of conveyors, two of which being power and gravity. Though they are very similar and serve the same purpose, they have differences to be aware of. Having this knowledge helps you to make the economically smart choice of product based on your application.

A gravity conveyor is an unpowered conveyor that moves items down a created pathway. The force moving the items in this case is the basic gravitational force or a gravity chute. Usually the conveyors are titled downward to keep the momentum of the moving object. A gravity conveyor will move an item, typically a heavier one, along a pathway without assistance. Usually it is an incline conveyor if you choose a gravity conveyor. Overall these sorts of conveyors are created to take the physical strain and stress off workers and employees and instead pass the heavy lifting and transporting to the conveyor. This does not only eliminate risk of physical harm or pain from moving large object, but it can also create a more efficient work environment. When a machine can do the strenuous work, the worker will have more time to do other more important tasks.

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A power conveyor works with a powered device that moves material along a conveyor line. An external power source is required with these sorts of conveyors. A power conveyor is typically a roller conveyor, and in other words is also referred to as a live conveyor. These conveyors may be powered by a belt or chain, depending upon application. Typically, these conveyors are more expensive, need more care with application, and have higher capacities. This is the product you would choose for those more industrial applications.

What is the difference between a belt and chain conveyor?

A chain conveyor is great for product accumulation, the constant addition of products to a conveyor line until they can be packaged. They have less frictions than belts, so they are best for accumulation. Chains are more flexible so when working with curves and other semi irregular shapes a chain is better. Chain conveyors tend to carry heavier loads and deal with large mass flows better. Whereas a belt differs, it is less flexible and has a tighter tension, which means it has a much larger accuracy. When you have small and delicate items you would want high accuracy because it minimized damaged of transfer from one belt to another. They can also move at higher speeds, while still maintaining the same level of precision.

Whether you came to learn about different conveyor types, different powered conveyors, or just to find the right conveyor for you, A Plus Warehouse has an endless supply of conveyors for you. View them on our conveyor landing page below.

https://www.apluswhs.com/conveyors/

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What Gauge Cabinet Do I Need for My Industry?

June 21, 2019  |  Comments

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Gauges, that’s one word you will hear often in a material handling blog. What is a gauge exactly some may wonder? Well, a gauge indicated the standard thickness of a sheet metal. AS a gauge increases the thickness of a material decrease, so the smaller the gauge the thicker the metal. A small gauge will weigh more than a higher gauged material.

Why Does Metal Thickness Matter?

A thicker metal will have a higher capacity than a thin metal. It will also be heavier and more expensive. You choose your metal gauge based on your application. So, if you need something very strong then you would choose the lower gauge. If all you need from a cabinet is a place to store items then there is no need to go for the lowest gauge, that is only for the heavy duty applications. When comparing a thicker metal to a thin one, the thick one is always stronger. In a drop cabinet test done by our vendor Stronghold, two cabinets were raised and dropped onto the other. There was the low gauge strong Stronghold cabinet and an ordinary higher gauge cabinet. One was dropped on top of the other, and then the roles reversed. The result of both tests was the Stronghold cabinet staying in position undamaged while the other collapse and broke.

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Guide to Our Cabinets

If you are looking for something strong like the cabinet mentioned above, then the Stronghold Heavy Duty Storage Cabinet is just that. This cabinet in 12 GA, so it is extremely durable and suited for most any applications. Because of the high quality metal this product is created from it is more expensive but also longer lasting. For something less expensive and lower strength for simpler application A Plus Warehouse can provide you with a Maxqual Set Up Storage Cabinets. This cabinets is similarly great quality, but it has a higher gauge so it has less capacity but could bet a better option for those smaller applications.

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Locker Tiers | What are They and Why are They Important to Know About?

June 19, 2019  |  Comments

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In definition terms a tier is a row or level of a structure. Usually one of the tiers is placed above another. It is also defined as a way for ranking items. The definition we use is the first one. In similar words a tier would be a section that is on top of another. In the case of lockers two opening stacked on top of each other in one locker model. A single tier locker has one opening and one column. A double tier locker would have the same single column but 2 opening because then there will be two rows. The same patterns go for triple tier and multi tier lockers.

Why Do I Want A Multi Tier Locker?

The reasons tiers exist is for spatial and storage reasons. Usually one compartment is for one person, but does someone need all that space in a single tier single wide locker? Sometimes one may only need half the height, and in this case a double tier locker would be a better option. This creates for less wasted locker space, and more overall space for other lockers. Why take up 2 columns of lockers each with only one tier, when you could have two opening but through a single wide double tier locker? One thing to note is the height of the locker. If it is a tall locker and is multi tiered you have to make sure that someone can reach that top compartment. These sorts of lockers do not work in a situation in which people are not tall enough to access the top part of a locker. These lockers are seen more so in an office setting rather than an elementary school setting.

Tiers vs Locker Widths

doublt tier three and four wide lockers

On our website we reference our lockers not only by tiers but by widths too. For example, we have single wide lockers which has one column, double wide, and triple wide. The wider a locker is, the more columns there are, and the larger the tier means more rows and sections within an individual column.

Our Lockers

The all welded in stock double tier lockers are a classic favorite amongst the A Plus Warehouse customers. It is double tier so there are two sections per 1 column and this product can come with at most 4 columns, making 8 compartment all together. Most people choose double tier over triple tier or multi tier. For more specific locker information and individual lockers check out the lockers page.

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What Do I Need to Know About Bollards?

June 17, 2019  |  Comments

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First, a bollard is a sturdy post used to divert traffic from an area. Originally bollards were referred to in the sense of boating. They were used for mooring boats and soon became used as barriers from cars, trucks, and other restricted vehicles. The most import detail of bollards is that they are durable and long lasting. Aside from the basic use of blocking a path and providing strength, there are different factors that distinguish some bollards from others. Not all bollards may be the same size, some may be mobile, and other could have a different material or design.

Protection

The biggest thing about bollards is that they work to protect. Oftentimes you will see bollards in front of a building, walkway, or school. Having bollards here prevents cars from running into it. The bollard is strong enough to handle the damage of a car and prevent damage from happening to the place the bollards are protecting. The bollard will absorb impact rather than a building, keeping the building and people inside safe.

Traffic and Road Bollards

Bollards on roads help to direct traffic and create lane barriers. These bollards are usually a safety yellow color with fluorescent white tape lining part of it. You want these colors to be bright so the traffic bollard can still be visible at nighttime. These sort of bollards guide vehicles and maintain traffic control.

ornamental bollard

Pedestrian Bollards

These sorts of bollards can create barriers and perimeter in a public space such as a park. It discourages people who do not belong in certain areas from trespassing. A fence can physically stop entirely, but in some situations, you may not need a barrier that large and a bollard will do just fine to stop someone.

Innovations

Bollards are known for guarding, creating, directing, and helping traffic but they can also be innovative. When some people think of bollards all they may think of is just a steel pole. Something important to note is that a bollard doesn’t just necessarily have to be that. There are bollards that also work as lights, which is good for nighttime streets. Others may work as cigarette receptacles which help prevent litter, and other bollard may be specially decorated to suit a certain building, museum, or office.

Bollards are not just any ordinary piece of warehouse equipment; it is worth learning about and obtaining. Bollards are made available to help with safety, traffic, and much more. Bollards of all sorts are available at A Plus Warehouse.

https://www.apluswhs.com/bollards/

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Medium Duty Roller Conveyors at A Plus Warehouse

June 14, 2019  |  Comments

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Our line of “Medium Duty Roller Conveyors” have many similarities and a few key point differences that many people may not know about. First of all, to differentiate between the medium, light, and heavy duty, the roller diameter is smaller for the lighter duty and larger for heavy duty. The medium duty roller size is 1.9” in diameter, heavy duty is 2.5”, and the extra heavy duty is 3.5”. The most heavy duty conveyor we have is the Super Heavy Duty Roller Conveyors. The roller diameter is  3.5”, and the wall thickness is large, .216. With high durability and strength this conveyor is practically indestructible. And in any warehouse in which lots of heavy and dangerous machinery is used, there should also be a practical roller conveyor, which in the circumstance is this conveyor.

Along with knowing the roller diameter, the thickness is also very important. The thicker the roller means the larger the capacity. This is referenced as the gauge of roller. The larger the gauge the lower the thickness of the metal, and the lower gauge means the larger the metal thickness. So the 9 GA roller conveyor has a thicker metal than the 12 GA roller conveyor. If you are looking for something with a larger capacity than it is best to go with the lower gauge. The lowest 9 GA conveyor has a capacity of 260 lbs per roller; or 1300 lbs maximum distributed live load per 10' sections with supports at 10' centers and 3200 lbs at 5’ centers. The higher 16 gauge has a capacity of 250 lbs per roller and the frame capacity is 1300 lbs for a 10 ft length; or 3200 lbs for that length supported at 5 ft centers. The difference is the 10 pounds per roller. 

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Our Conveyors

When purchasing a conveyor you should note the roller diameter, and metal thickness GA in order to figure out which is right for you. The highest capacity and best conveyor would be one with a large roller diameter and small gauge. Not all applications need an extremely high capacity, however. So first it is good to figure out what your application entails and pick a conveyor from there. Also, something to be aware of is the fact that with our conveyors green means go. If the image of our conveyor is green, then it can ship from stock. There will never be a hassle with the green conveyors, so they are a safe option.

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Why Choose Stainless Steel for Your Material Handling

June 11, 2019  |  Comments

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When starting from an appearance standpoint many people likes how a stainless steel product looks. It usually looks more professional, clean, and modern. Another benefit of stainless steel is the fact that all stainless steel item look the same, color wise. Matching other equipment in your material handling warehouse is sure to be easy if all surfaces look the same. Material wise stainless steel is an alloy which means it is long lasting and extremely durable. Your stainless steel items last years and will continuously look fresh and new, as long as you keep up with cleaning. A problem many companies run into are products getting ruined or damage by rain or water. Rain corrodes items which is why there must be a material resistant to it. Stainless steel is resistant to water damage and rust which is just what many kitchens and other sort of workspaces need protection from.

Stainless Steel in the Kitchen

Stainless steel is seen everywhere, but the most important place to have stainless steel items is in the kitchen. A food cabinet for an industrial kitchen must be both large and stainless steel. For example, the Stainless Steel Counter Height Cabinet is the sort of item you would see in an industrial kitchen. It has all welded construction and is made from 18 GA 304 stainless material. Anything kitchen related must be sanitary 24/7. Stainless steel is a safe material to have kitchen work because of its resistance to rusting and its high sanitation. Because of the nonporous material, kitchens with stainless steel equipment are kitchens you can trust to cook food safe for you and other consumers.

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Cleaning Stainless Steel

This material is long lasting and keeps items looking new year after year, but because of its properties fingerprints and smudges are very noticeable. In general stainless steel can be cleaned with soap and water, but for more specific touch ups and fixing fingerprints glass cleaner can also be used. Of course only a small amount of the glass cleaner. Stainless steel works to keep your items sanitized, safe, and long lasting!

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Increasing Work Productivity in a Warehouse

June 10, 2019  |  Comments

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First you should note that comfort almost always leads to efficiency. If an employee is comfortable then they are more likely to be working better. A worn down and stressed worker is no good for any company, so our employees must be taken care of. Along with comfort, safety is a must have in any workspace, especially a warehouse where material handling and machinery are being used. Safety makes workers feel secure in their job and keeps the worry of danger away. Threats of danger prevents precise and efficient work. All sources of danger should be taken away in order to create the ultimate efficiency in a warehouse.

Creating Warehouse Comfort

In most warehouses workers are using standing all day. This sort of labor can be tiring and strenuous on the body, especially if there is not the proper equipment to provide body relief. A product that proves to be great for supporting posture and ease body pain for those day long standing jobs are anti fatigue mats. Sure they look nice, but they actually serve a purpose as well. Anti fatigue mats are padded and shaped to provide bodily and foot support. Body support starts with the feet, so if someone is standing on hard concrete for an entire day then the rest of their body is likely to be in pain. With an anti fatigue mat, feet are provided with more comforting support, which stabilizes and supports the entire body.

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Comfort is extremely important because it puts an individual into the right mindset. If one is lacking comfort, then their mind is likely to wander more which in turn takes the thinking off one’s jobs. Providing comfort allows for one’s mind to be settled and focused on the task given.

Safety and Efficiency

Safety is a key factor for efficiency. If there is a small level of safety, then how can an employee be working proficiently? If safety is not guaranteed for workers, then the will to work decreases. How can an employee be expected to work so diligently in an unsafe environment? Safety is extremely important not only because of preventing harm or injury, but also because a safer environment put employees is a better head space to do their work. Safety equipment for warehouses would consist of locks, guards, spill collectors, and much more.

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5 Steps to Organizing Your Office Workspace

June 7, 2019  |  Comments

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1. Figure out what your workspace is

Not all workspaces are the same, so you cannot exactly organize them the same way. Some may be offices where all you need is a pen and paper, and others may be more industrial where you need more hardware and material handling equipment. Not all offices are the same, some are private whereas others are open. Many offices today have individual cubicles along with shared coworker spaces. It is important to understand the work environment when deciding how to organize a space.

2. Toss it or Keep it, what needs to stay and what needs to go?

What to toss and what to keep? For starters if you use something every day then you should keep it. If there is something that never gets used it should be tossed. Let’s say there are files that are never used but you want to keep them just in case. No matter what, those files and paperwork do not belong in your everyday workspace. Whether it is an office desk or hardware area, items that are not used every day should not be in your space. This leaves us with the “what next?” what do you do with those items that are important but not used often? For paperwork you can do one of two things. More millennials and others who work more with electronics would prefer to scan all the documents and save it as a PDF on the computer. For those who want something simpler and more olden day, a filing cabinet desk is a great fix to this problem. The one that A Plus Warehouse sells has locking doors to keep your documents safe, and it also has a bottom shelf for even more storage. The bottom shelf is deeper and is open so the items one could store there would be extra paper, printer cartridges, envelopes, and other supplies.

3. Storage

Now that you figured out what kind of space you are working with and what items you should trash and keep the next step is to find storage. Every warehouse, school, office, and conference room are going to need storage. Whether you are storing large bulky items, or smaller individual desk items, having a clutter free and preferably clear desk is a must. In every workspace a trashcan or recycling bin is a must have. There will always be trash or scrap paper in which you do not need and if you already have a bin to place it in then you are less likely to obtain clutter. Once you have a trash system in which you know what items or papers you do not need, the next step is to find a place to store other items.

Storage is important in all workspaces. Some areas may need small storage whereas others may need more industrialized storage. Cabinets are a good starter for storage in any work zone. Cabinets can range anywhere from a mini individual size to a massive heavy duty steel material cabinet. Many cabinets also feature a locking mechanism so any item you store can be safely locked up and out of reach from those unauthorized users. If you are looking for an in between cabinet that can work for a shared office or even large industrial space, our Control the Chaos Metal Cabinet is a good choice. With a high shelf capacity, and great durability, this cabinet has been a favorite of the A Plus Warehouse customers.

4. Organize

By this point you should know what items you are tossing, how to store your items, and what sort of storage suits your space. Now that its all figured out it is time to sort. You already know that important documents go in a filing cabinet, tools and bulkier items in a large cabinet, and smaller individual items in a small cabinet, so what’s left?

Every work zone is sure to have some excess chairs, computers, perhaps desks, and other large items that have no use at the time but potential for future use. For items like these you could have a separate room dedicated to those sorts of items. For smaller items that may fit, bulk storage is also a perfect storing system. Collapsible bulk containers are good because when they are in use they serve as an organizer but when you don’t need them, they can collapse to take up less space.

The most important step in organizing is to have the surface of your workspaces mostly clear. If an area is cleared away and clutter free, then you have more space to do your work.

5. Put it all together

The final step is to keep your space clean after having gone through the previous 4 steps. It is much easier to keep an area clean if you like an area. By this I mean if someone has old gross furniture then the desire to keep it nice will decrease. Because of this having nice looking furniture, comfortable seating, and a put together room is sure to make someone like their workspace and want to keep it clean. With all these steps complete you are sure to have that ideal clean area you have always wanted.

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Dock Board VS Dock Plate

May 29, 2019  |  Comments

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Dock boards and dock plates are similar looking and have very similar applications but, there is still a subtle difference that is good to be aware of. A dock board has curbs whereas the dock plate does not. Both items close gaps and ridges that could be potential safety concerns. Also both provide easier transition of items.

About Curbs

Unlike a dock plate, dock boards have curbs. The curbs are used to catch any runoff. Dock boards are oftentimes used for the heavier items or when forklift application is involved. The curb provides ease of material when a forklift is being used. When using a forklift you would want your items to remain stable which is why the curb on a dock board acts as a support for your item being transferred. A curbed plate is good to hold regular sized objects in place.

Choosing a Dock Plate

If you are not working with heavy loading and unloading, then a standard dock plate is a good option. Dock plates do not have curbs so it wouldn’t catch runoff, but if there is no runoff then it does not matter. Sometimes dock board curbs can get in the way whether there are irregular and sharp turns or if the load on the plate is oddly shaped. A dock plate is better with holding an oddly shaped item whereas a dock plate may not be able to do so as well.

dock plate vs dock board image

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