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Industrial Shelving

Sep 10, 2008
Theoretically, any proportionally balanced container or object can be stored on an industrial shelf. Provided the container or object has a flat bottom surface, it can safely balance on the supporting shelf. Even round containers can be stored on industrial shelves provided they have a sufficient diameter on both ends that will allow the cylinder to rest securely on its end.

Industrial shelves come in all sizes, design builds, and weight capacities to fully accommodate the many environments found in the typical factory, warehouse, or services center. Light weight units are often used in offices, whereas more heavy duty models are used in warehousing, shipping/receiving, and automotive service industries. Industrial shelving has a way of paying for itself with a number of benefits that carry with them a substantial return on investment. Converting unused space into storage areas reduces the likelihood that an organization will have to spend money on relocation or an expansion. It also makes it easier for workers to access products and supplies, which in turn helps speed up process flow.

Different sized industrial shelving units are used in specific environments.The strength of the shelf will to a certain extent determine what can be stored on it. 18 gauge and 20 gauge closed back industrial shelves that can easily support 400-450 lbs in weight are routinely used for storing boxes in stockrooms. Smaller open backed shelves are often used by office managers to store to the entirety of a wall can be reorganized with as many of these units as you need to stack and store materials, products, supplies, tools, and even paperwork. Larger industrial shelves, of course, are used for more heavy duty storage, and they are often linked together in a "boxed shelving" configuration to support up to 2,000 pounds in weight.

When choosing industrial shelving, keep three things in mind.

1. The first priority is safety. With extremely heavy items and large containers, order shelving whose weight capacity exceeds the total weight of items. Maxing out a brand new shelving system is never a good idea. A worker may not be aware of that a shelf already contains all it can handle and inadvertently add additional weight beyond safe limits.

2. The second thing to consider is accessibility. If workers have to retrieve items from the front of the shelf only, closed back industrial shelving offer a sturdy, cabinet like design build for stability and security (the units can be shut and locked at night if necessary). If items stored aren't that sensitive, or if workers need to access them from any angle at will, open ended systems work well for this task.

3. Keep perspective in mind. The dimensions of a shelf are not true indicators of the actual interior, usable storage space. To make certain every square cubic inch pays you back for your investment, talk to your material handling specialist about usable storage space, weight capacity, accessibility, and methods of ensuring the unit remains stable and secure in every conceivable scenario.
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Easyrack.org. For more information on Industrial Shelving and Industrial Steel Shelving visit us online.
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