« Abuse Resistant Belts work where others fail.
« Super Strong Joints are virtually unbreakable.
« High Tension Belts move heavier loads.
« Super Red Belts double capacity.
Dura-Belt 800-770-2358 614-777-0295 Fax: 614-777-9448 www.durabelt.com
Longer Lasting Belts
New Split Line-shaft Spools
l High precision. Reasonable price.
l Easy to install. Zero downtime.
l Can be locked to shaft. Eliminates
need for keyed spools and shafts.
We use 100% virgin
urethane (no regrind
waste). Makes stronger,
longer lasting belts.
Longer lasting Belts, New Split Spools -- no regrind:Layout 1 8/26/2009 4:37 AM Page 1
pallet racks unless needed immediately for
picking areas. The picking zones contain
a combination of carton flow racks, deck
racking on the bottom levels of pallet racks,
and bin shelving. Products are assigned to
specific locations based on their volume
and velocity. For example, most of the
faster-moving products are housed in the
carton flow racks.
Following instructions relayed via RF
devices, workers pick items into cartons
arranged on wheeled carts. Once all the
items are gathered, the worker wheels
the cart to one of seven conveyor drop
zones. He or she then removes each carton
from the cart and places it on the takeaway
Rush orders are handled in a special section of the facility known as the “dynamic
pick” area. This section houses the fast-est-moving SKUs—those used to fill orders
for large retailers that require replenish-ment shipments at least once a week. Flow
racks here have 1,200 densely packed locations. As in other areas, picking here is
directed by RF. Packing is handled at adjacent stations, with most cartons shipping
with fewer than six hats.
One of the more interesting features of
the facility is the 30,000-square-foot “heat
seal room.” If you’ve ever wondered how
championship hats are ready for sale so
quickly after a team wins the World Series
or Super Bowl, that’s where special “fast
response” processes like heat sealing come
into play. Rather than preproduce winning
hats for both teams, which would result in
tremendous waste, New Era waits until the
outcome has been decided before swinging
into action, affixing championship patch
decals to caps using special heat-sealing
machines. Workers in this light manufacturing area actually watch the sporting
events on large monitors so they can begin
work the second a champ is crowned. As
for how quickly this takes place, workers
in New Era’s heat seal room can turn out
40,000 hats in a single shift.
Once orders are completed in all areas,
the products are conveyed through a saw-
tooth merge in the conveyor line that
feeds value-added workstations and pack
stations located on an upper-level mezza-
nine. At the pack stations, hats are checked,
printouts and labels are produced, and the
packages are sealed. The completed
cartons are then placed onto a take-
away conveyor that transports them
to a pop-up shipping sorter. The
sorter diverts the cartons to seven
lanes for shipment worldwide.
HATS OFF TO THE NEW SYSTEM
Today, over 14 million hats flow
through the Harrisburg facility
annually, with nearly 70,000 picked
and packed daily during peak season. The automated equipment has
been instrumental in helping New
Era handle that volume, with room
The new system has also helped
the company adapt to the shift
toward smaller, more frequent cus-
tomer orders. A typical order now
consists of about six lines, with
about seven hats per line. Many of
the orders for large retailers are also
packed and labeled for individual
stores so that they can be swiftly
cross-docked upon arrival at the
customer’s DC without requiring
On top of that, the new system
gives New Era the flexibility to set
aside certain picking cells for special
processing to meet the demands of
Although throughput has
increased, processing times have
been greatly reduced. Orders are
now processed in hours as opposed
to days under the old system. All the
while, the cap distributor has kept a
lid on operating expenses: Though
the facility is now handling double
its previous volume, operating costs
have dropped by 30 percent.
Even better, the entire project was
delivered under the original budget.
That brought New Era a very handsome return on investment (ROI) of
1. 5 years, which was also six months
ahead of schedule—making the
project a grand slam all around.