As the market leader in spiral
conveyors in the logistic industry we
think of solutions for handling cases &
SKU’s. It’s what we do.
At AmbaFlex it’s not just about
building the right equipment, it’s
about developing a special solution
for you. Here’s to spiral conveying.
Spiral elevators for goods-to-man
systems, picking modules and sorting
BY AMBAFLEX | WWW.AMBAFLEX.COM
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The picking process begins with an order carton that’s been
automatically erected. The cartons come in a variety of sizes,
with most holding either six or 12 shoeboxes. There are also
cartons designed for one, two, or three pairs, which are useful
for e-commerce orders. The order carton is given a bar-code
label, which is scanned to marry that carton to the order.
The first SKU needed for the order is then delivered to the
station. A display shows how many pairs of that SKU to pick
from the source carton, which holds the shoes in individual
shoeboxes. The worker selects a shoebox and scans it with a
Datalogic scanner to confirm the pick before placing the box
into an order carton. If additional pairs of that SKU are needed for the order, the worker will repeat the process as often as
The source carton is then returned to the OSR, and the system presents the next carton containing items for the order.
This continues until either the order carton is full, in which
case another order carton is presented, or the order is complete. The average order line consists of 1. 3 items.
The order cartons next head to packing. The packing area
contains 28 stations, about eight of which are used for value-added services like special labeling, although the design
provides for any station to be used for these services if
needed. Smaller cartons are packed manually—workers add
air-cushion dunnage from FP International, close the cartons,
and apply shipping labels before placing them on takeaway
Larger cartons, such as the six- and 12-pair cartons, are
sent through two automated closing machines. The machines
measure the contents of the cartons, cut their tops down to
just above the topmost shoebox, apply a lid, and seal it onto
the top of the carton. Right-sizing the shipment provides for
better cubing of trailers and saves on freight costs. A shipping
label is automatically printed and applied using equipment
from Weber Packaging Solutions. The weight and volume of
each carton are also captured using Mettler Toledo systems.
Cartons that are not yet ready to ship are conveyed either
to OSR2 for temporary holding or to the conventional rack
areas. Cartons that are ready for loading onto a truck are conveyed to an inline sorter with roller diverts that send cartons
to 13 dispatch lanes based on carrier and route.
ROOM TO GROW
As for how the new DC is working out, the Clarks managers
say they are pleased with the results. Among other benefits,
the dense storage provided by the automated systems has
enabled the company to shoehorn more product into what
is a relatively small footprint. The new facility also allows for
higher throughput with less labor and fewer touches than
were required in the old building. On top of that, the setup
gives Clarks room to grow along with the ability to flex with
“The world is changing around us, so we have to react to
that,” notes Paul Clark. “We’ll continue to work with Knapp
to stretch the capabilities of our systems even further.”