Pallet Flow | Gravity Flow Racks for FIFO
Gravity flow pallet racking has the high density (check), the high efficiency (check), the highest throughput (check) and is purest form of First in/First Out storage (check). Gravity flow rack checks all of the boxes! That is why it is considered the top of the line pallet storage rack system on the market and also … Continue reading Pallet Flow | Gravity Flow Racks for FIFO
Gravity flow pallet racking has the high density (check), the high efficiency (check), the highest throughput (check) and is purest form of First in/First Out storage (check). Gravity flow rack checks all of the boxes! That is why it is considered the top of the line pallet storage rack system on the market and also the most expensive. The expense comes when you combine the cost of the rack with the cost of the flow lanes.
The big payoff is the tremendous storage density and picking efficiency. Talk about dense pallet storage, pallet flow racking reduces the number of aisles you in your warehouse which helps you maximize storage space. Pallet flow racking can be configured 2-28 pallets deep x 4-5 pallets high. The system has integral brake wheels that come in contact with the bottom of the pallet and slow it down so it doesn’t come crashing to the front of the system.
Pallet flow racking requires two aisles, one in the front of the system and one in the back of the system. Pallets are loaded from the back of the rack system, slowly but surely flows to the front where they can be picked. This allows for perfect FIFO where items purchase first are loaded first and picked first. First in/ First out storage is a must for companies storing products with an expiration date – like Food Distributors.
Pallet flow rack is ideal for cooler and freezer applications – places where cost per square foot is the highest. It helps you maximize your storage space while offering the highest throughput. Of all the high density and high efficiency rack systems on the market pallet flow allows for the highest number of pallets to pass through the system in the shortest amount of time. It also incurs less damage than other systems because the forklift picks from the front of the rack system and doesn’t go into the rack.
I’ll let you in on a secret, most pallet rack manufacturers don’t manufacture their own pallet flow rails. We partner with pallet flow rail manufacturers and together we design a system that is guaranteed to work. We ask you questions about the pallets and loads you are storing as well as questions about the space you are wanting to rack. With this information we can design, quote and supply a system that meets your needs. Lastly we provide engineered drawings for your approval.
The success of pallet flow rack system depends largely on the quality of the pallets. High quality pallets are uniform loads are a must. We often have the customer send a typical pallet load to the factory for testing to insure that it flows properly. This allows us to be sure pallet that pallets are sufficient quality, have sufficient number of bottom boards, that rails are spaced properly and have the correct pitch (incline, slant or slope). You can count on us to give you system that works.
Another popular use for pallet flow rack is to install in on the bottom shelf level of a back to back selective pallet rack system. This creates a 2 deep flow system that is loaded from aisle on one side and picked from aisle on other side with has full pallet storage above. This use to be called a “Poor man’s pushback”.
Pallet flow rack is the most expensive pallet rack system because it offers you the highest density and highest efficiency while insuring first in first out pallet rotation but it is not for everyone. Everyone would like a Lamborghini but you don’t see many in the parking lot. Pallet flow rack can cost $220.00, $250.00 up to $350.00 per pallet position based on where you are located and the size of the job. This price includes the rack, the freight and install cost. Pallet flow on the West Coast is more expensive.
Of course selling pallet flow rack is not like selling regular “stick” pallet rack uprights and beams. At the end of the day we want the pallet flow rack system we sell to work perfectly for your needs. That requires we engage in a conversation about your unique requirements. Here is a list of questions we would like to discuss with you:
#1 Question: Do you need FIFO (First in, First Out) pallet storage? New SKU palletized product is loaded in the back of the rack system and flows to the front of the system for picking. Primarily used if your products have an expiration date like Milk or Pharmaceuticals where you must ship the oldest first. Great for Lot control.
#2 Question: Do you need dense storage?
#3 Question: Do you have a high number of pallets per SKU?
#4 Question: What kind of pallet do you use? Is it of consistent high quality with sufficient number of bottom boards to flow? If you send us a photograph of your pallet, specifically the bottom of the pallet and we can determine what kind of pallet flow system you need.
There are three different types of pallet flow that we offer:
Railed System – Utilizing pallet flow rails with poly or steel skate wheels.
Full Roller System – Full rollers allow proper flow of poor quality pallets or pallets that vary in size and construction
Split Roller System – Three small split rollers have more channels that offer more capacity than full roller system.