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More Space and Better Handling for Toolbank

More Space and Better Handling for Toolbank


Specialist hand and power tool distributor Toolbank installed a Penny Hydraulics Mezz Lift at its warehouse in Exeter to replace an inefficient conveyor system to handle items between the ground floor and mezzanine stores area. The company was able to free space for other tasks, improve efficiency and introduce greater flexibility into its operations and handle new types of load.

“It suits our purpose absolutely perfectly,” says Paul Angell, Manager of Toolbank’s branch in Exeter. “We have freed up space and can handle more loads more efficiently.”

Toolbank specialises in the distribution of quality hand and power tools made by many of the world's leading tool manufacturers and operates from 12 strategically placed warehouses throughout the United Kingdom. The company had previously been using a conveyor at its Exeter branch to move items between the ground and mezzanine floors but this was proving to be unreliable. It was also taking up a lot of space.

The business has been growing and the company wanted to introduce new materials handling equipment that would enable it to move items more easily between the two floors. The company’s Dartford branch had previously looked at the Mezz Lift from Penny Hydraulics and recognised it would be suitable for use in Exeter. The Mezz Lift is a robust and versatile platform lift for handling all sorts of loads up to 300kg safely and efficiently. It offers users a cost effective way to comply with manual handling regulations and reduce the risk of injury to employees. The entire handling process can be undertaken by a single person without any manual lifting to promote safety and productivity.

The compact and self-contained design of the Mezz Lift enabled Toolbank to specify the unit and free up a considerable area in the warehouse which it was then able to use for other tasks such as storage and order processing. The integrated hydraulic systems deliver smooth and precise operation with no need for a floor pit, which meant that Penny Hydraulics was able to complete the installation quickly and with very little disruption to the ongoing operations. The lifting speed of 0.5m/s means that items are now handled between the ground floor and mezzanine much more quickly than with the old conveyor. There is also greater handling versatility because, unlike the conveyor, the Mezz Lift can handle picking trolleys and carts as well as ordinary packs and cases.

A unique hold-to-run system promotes safety by stopping the lift whenever the control lever is released. Additional safety features include overload protection. Penny Hydraulics supplied the Mezz Lift with interlocked gates to prevent entry to the working area while the lift is moving.

“I’d have no hesitation in recommending it,” says Paul Angell. “It’s a good solution for this type of application.”

Penny Hydraulics designs and manufactures lifting and load handling equipment for use in a wide range of applications. Products include the Swing Lift range of medium duty cranes for use on pick-ups, drop-sides and flat-beds and the Step Lift, Load Lift and Tail Lift lifting platform ranges for use on pick-ups, drop-sides and vans. The company also manufactures the Mezz Lift for handling loads between ground floor and mezzanines and specialist equipment for handling wheels, tyres and barrels in vehicles and at customers’ premises. Penny Hydraulics is a privately owned family business based in Clowne, Derbyshire.

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