At the beginning of 2011, storage specialist BITO-Lagertechnik Bittmann GmbH, headquartered at Meisenheim (Germany), presented a new series of heavy duty plastic containers, which are now available in the UK from Nuneaton-based subsidiary, BITO Storage Systems Ltd. From both a technical and an economic point of view, the SL series provides an interesting alternative to conventional large volume containers, mesh box pallets and other large-size containers from metal or wood. The new SL86 heavy duty containers, formed from polypropylene, are available as SL86421 standard models (with a useful interior height of 373 mm) and SL86621 (with a useful interior height of 573 mm). Both can be supplied in a variety of versions.
BITO has designed the new heavy duty container series, which has base dimensions of 800 x 600 mm and a height of 520 mm or 720 mm (including fork lift shoes), with a strict focus on the particular needs of manufacturers, fitting and installation companies and distributors. The advantages of this series become particularly apparent in lean production environments as the design takes into account the trend towards ever-smaller batch sizes in production and assembly. This trend leaves existing large volume containers and mesh box pallets half-filled, which in turn means that valuable storage space is wasted both in terms of unused filling height and floor space occupation, as existing containers with their high empty weight and large size will not 'store away'.
Lightweight solution for heavy weight applications
The new SL86 series, made from hard-wearing polypropylene, is the ideal answer to all handling issues in warehousing, intermediate storage, intralogistics and transportation. The SL containers have a much lower proper weight compared to mesh box pallets or steel bins yet are equally suited for taking heavy loads.
With its outside dimensions of 799 mm in length, 599 mm in width and a total height of 520 mm including fork entry shoes, the SL86421 heavy duty container weighs just 14.5 kg. The SL86621 with identical base dimensions but a total height of 720 mm (including fork entry shoes) weighs no more than 18 kg. This means that the containers can be manually handled, which extends the range of applications to operations without forklift truck handling.
With standardised dimensions of 800 x 600 mm, two containers can fit onto the footprint of a single Euro pallet. A 3:1 stacking ratio means that up to 3 containers with a weight of up to 500 kg each can be stacked on top of the lowermost container. This adds up to 1500 kg for static storage while for dynamic storage situations, such as during transportation, the stacking load is 1000 kg.
Customise your SL container with optional equipment
A range of equipment options allow the container to be tailored to individual requirements. The 0.5 ton power pack SL86 with solid sides can be supplied with robust opening flaps on the long side or on the short side. To facilitate loading or to make retrieval in picking or assembly environments more convenient, the flaps can be closed with just one hand while a well conceived hinge construction prevents bothersome jamming.
The colour variation option is very useful for dedicating containers to a certain area or purpose. The extra strong vertical edges can be manufactured in a different colour to that used on the container sides and base. This makes it easy to distinguish different functionalities or areas of use at first glance. Colour coding can also be used to make a difference between your containers fitted with edges in your company colours and those from other companies of a supply chain.
Lid options a drop-on lid or a hinged two-part lid allow the containers to be closed to provide further protection. Because the two-part lid is fitted firmly to the container with hinges it cannot be lost. Moreover, it can be strap-sealed and secured with single-use security tags.
The heavy duty containers can be handled with hand pallet trucks and fork lift trucks. The fork entry shoes have been designed for roller conveyor use and can be exchanged if required.
BITO SL86 containers can also be supplied with a base to suit use in automated storage facilities. This of course means that SL86 containers meet all the design, precision and quality requirements that are standard for automated logistics operations. The SL86 variation for automated storage and handling comes with a smooth-surfaced double base and in two height options 420 mm and 620 mm.
Heavy duty SL containers gives long service life
BITO's SL86 heavy duty containers are a single part product and their rigid construction gives a long service life. Smooth interior surfaces and clear internal lines without edges make for easy cleaning a definite advantage in metal processing operations. With their robust design, the containers are suited to rough handling as would be the case in shuttle traffic between machining and metal forming component suppliers and in final assembly operations.
Last but not least, the SL86 series comes with a broad range of accessories such as push-fit dividers, interlayers made from polypropylene twin walled sheets, welded-on or glued-on label holders, optional integration of RFID transponders in the vertical edges and adapted container dollies to place a heavy duty container used for order picking into the ideal position at the assembly workplace and to allow container relocation at any time.