Shipping major manufacturing equipment around the globe is no simple task, requiring significant logistics planning and coordination between manufacturers and suppliers. For Mayfran International, a Cleveland-based global leader in scrap and material handling solutions, delivering its conveyor systems to its customers in the same quality condition in which they left the manufacturing floor is a top priority.
Mayfran’s customized machine tool solutions run the gamut from complex plant integration to unique paint jobs. The company has a strong commitment to customer quality, so the proper shipping techniques are critical to maintain that quality promise.
In late 2015, Mayfran’s continuous improvement efforts led to the realization that it needed a new way to ship its chip conveyor systems to its machine tool customers throughout the United States. It was made possible through its partners at S&S and Great Northern Laminations.
A Packaging Challenge
Mayfran discovered that some of its chip conveyor systems were experiencing damage due to the traditional wooden crating used to house the units during transit. The conveyors would experience skidding, causing some boards to break. This breakage caused wood to vibrate, leaving a visible mark in the paint of Mayfran’s machines.
“As soon as we discovered the issue we were having with our wooden framing, we knew it was unacceptable and we sought an immediate solution,” says Bob Clinton, Process & Quality Control Manager, Mayfran International. “Continuous improvement is something we live by. Neither our customers, who expect the best, nor our employees who put in the hard work, deserve this sort of incidental shipping damage to our products.”
Knowing he had a problem to solve, Bob began working closely with Fred Peschke of S&S in Cleveland and Suzanne von Valtier of Laminations, both packaging specialists for their respective companies. A new solution was proposed: replace the wooden crate with Laminations SURECrate® Custom Engineered Solution, a product custom designed and perfectly suited for Mayfran’s needs.
A New Alternative to Wood and Steel Crating from Laminations
Compared with the old wooden crating, SURECrate offered superior strength and cracking resistance, rooting out the vibration issue at its source. And in meeting all necessary requirements for international shipping (it doesn’t require heat treated lumber), Mayfran found a solution it could use across all its global shipping needs.
“We started by building a test model to assess the feasibility of the new material,” says Jarrod Lotz, Quality Specialist, Mayfran International. “We built it, everything functioned as planned, and we had our new way to ship chip conveyors.”
“In addition to solving the damage issue,” Suzanne von Valtier of Laminations adds, “Lamination’s SURECrate solution offers a better overall experience compared to wood crating.” The ability to add custom print options offered a new, polished look for Mayfran shipments, complete with the company logo for enhanced recognition. “SURECrate is also 100% recyclable,” said von Valtier, “making it easy to dispose of for Mayfran’s customers, as they can disassemble the SURECrate, and recycle it in their normal corrugated waste stream.”
“The solution we were able to develop with Great Northern Laminations was a success on every front,” says Lou Faraci, Shipping Manager, Mayfran International. “We’re now better able to keep our quality commitment to our customers – it’s what continuous improvement is all about, and it’s the most important part of our business.”
Peschke adds, “In my 35 years with S&S, I have seen a lot of innovations in packaging. I was still surprised to see such a versatile, cost-effective wood replacement. Over the years, Laminations has brought us many new products to help our customers solve their packaging challenges and this is another example of their efforts.”
To learn more about Laminations and SURECrate, go to www.laminationsonline.com.