The Answer…. Start with Pallet Flow!
When you think push-back rack, you probably picture the traditional cart and track systems using nested wheeled carts on inclined rails. Just in case you’re not that familiar, here’s how it works – the first pallet load is placed on the top cart. As the 2nd pallet is inserted into the system, the first cart is gently pushed back by the fork lift, exposing the subsequent cart and so on, storing anywhere from 2-6 deep. The last pallet is placed directly on the rails. All carts flow forward to the aisle face as loads are extracted for easy, accessible last-in/first-out (LIFO) stock rotation. Unlike drive-in, each lane in a push-back rack system can store a unique SKU, providing full selectivity, combined with high density.
The problem with this traditional design is limited lane density. The complexity of the cart/track interface combined with cart stacking heights, limits the depth of traditional push-back rack to a maximum 6 pallets deep, with the most commonly used being 2-3 deep. The simple and often over looked answer is pallet flow! Using heavy-duty pallet flow rails, which require less vertical height, Mallard’s push-back is ideal for multiple deep applications up to 12 deep. Pallets are loaded and gently pushed back on slightly inclined rails and flow forward to the aisle face for easy order picking. Pallet flow rails require less time and labor to install and can easily be converted to gravity fed pallet flow.
Pallet Flow Push-Back Advantages
- Promotes Last In First Out (LIFO) storage
- 90% more storage capacity vs. selective rack
- Stores a unique SKU or pallet type in each lane
- Stores up to 12 pallets deep (vs. 5 deep using push-back carts)
- Easily converts to pallet flow
- Promotes selectivity for faster pick rates