New storage solution increases capacity at automotive giant

COOL COLLABORATION The collaboration and constant communication between Acrow and its client Toyota has streamlined the design and manufacturing process of a new storage system

GOOD LEVERAGE The Canti-Rack system was developed specially for the installation at Totoya

RACKING IT UP The racking and shelving used at the warehouse amassed a substantial list of materials and components

SPRING TO ACTION The installation of spring leaf holders complemented the various storage solutions at the Toyota factory

4th November 2022

By: Halima Frost

Senior Writer


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Storage solutions manufacturer Acrow has successfully completed the installation of a new storage solution for global automotive company Toyota’s Africa Parts Centre in Boksburg, Gauteng.

The project started in November 2020 and the new warehouse was opened in July this year.

Acrow’s flagship canti-rack was reinforced and augmented for a bespoke product which was scalable with notably high carrying capacities to meet the demands of a safety conscious Toyota.

Cantilever racking is a versatile and robust racking system designed to store long, awkward or bulky materials and products of any length. Canti-rack is produced from certified structural steel and has outward extending arms that product can be stored on.

“The Acrow Canti-Rack Cantilever racking system is a longstanding, trusted product that has been used by many of our valued clients,” says Acrow CEO Sandra Moya.

For this project, the product was not changed, but its specifications were geared to suit the required load capacity and engineering specifics at Toyota’s warehouse.

“We followed our tried-and-tested research and development procedure, which ensures the greatest possible quality for the product,” Moya enthuses.

She adds that Acrow hypothesised an outline from a costing and requirements perspective, which it then presented to its highly skilled team of engineers to modify and design.

This was done to ensure that the structure met the requirements not only requested by Toyota but also required by global body the UK Storage Equipment Manufacturers Association and the EN international standards that Acrow adheres to.

“We built a prototype and tested it rigorously to ensure the functionality and strength of the structure,” says Moya.

Certified structural elements were used in the custom-built cantilever and it is the heaviest ever built by the company. Its arms have a 2 t capacity and are 2 m long.

A total of 576 m of cantilever uprights, 288 m of cantilever bases and 864 m of cantilever arms were installed.

The project entailed the installation of not only the cantilevers and static racking but also the leaf spring baskets and a range of the storage equipment such as the Z-beams and heavy-duty bespoke dividers for the glass works of windows, says Acrow national sales manager Dirk Kruger.

For the racking system installation, Acrow supplied 57 401 m of uprights, equating to 11 000 units, and 59 000 horizontal beams, totalling 144 334 m, 26 000 timber decks, as well as over 70 600 m2 of steel mesh panel and 13 000 wire mesh decks.

Acrow’s experienced installation team meticulously planned the complex installation so that they were able to work alongside the Toyota team who were operational at the time.

Although it is ideal to conduct an installation of this magnitude at an empty warehouse, this situation is often more the exception than the rule, says Acrow installations head Mlamuli Moyo.

Constant coordination was needed to ensure harmony between all parties on site. Open and constant communication with the installation team and the customer was key.

Further, while Toyota takes productivity seriously, “safety is at the core of Toyota’s philosophy, and its responsibility to its employees is a top priority”.

“Acrow went above and beyond” the required safety regulations to ensure that no one was hurt during the installation, he adds.

“It is quite normal for us to have ‘safety toolbox talk’, train and reinforce our training, enforce the use of personal protective equipment and generally take installation safety seriously,” says Moyo, noting that the Toyota installation “really pushed Acrow to take its safety working procedures to the next level”.

Kruger says ongoing work from the automotive manufacturer will form part of Acrow’s client service setup.

“The project most certainly added value to our market visibility and portfolio, as it is well known that Toyota only makes use of reliable, tried and trusted products that match the Toyota ethos,” he concludes.

Edited by Zandile Mavuso
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Features



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