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Pack Expo 2017 is quickly approaching. We are finalizing booth designs and throwing a few unique ideas around to try to have a little fun with things this year. That's why I always love the Vegas show. It is a little more laid back than the one in Chicago, and I feel more comfortable letting our "hair down" as it were. It has been growing too, I fully expect them to add days to it at some point. There is an awful lot to experience there in two days. I'm sure that by now you have realized that Flex-Line isn't the kind of company to hound you about coming to see us, and I don't plan on changing that anytime soon. I can tell you that there is a nice little picture at the top of our home page that has a link to free registration for the show. So if you would like to come visit us and see the crazy things that we are doing this year click the link and swing on by. We will be waiting for you September 25-27th!... Read More
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Choosing your System Partner
Building off of last week’s post on 5 questions to ask yourself about your product before you decide to choose your conveyor type, I wanted to sit down and give you my insight into how you choose your conveyor supplier. Now there are several blogs like this out there floating around on the web, and those authors make very good points; but in my opinion they go off topic by exploring how to choose the conveyor system itself, not the supplier. Many suppliers handle multiple types of conveyors so maybe I am off base here, but I don’t think it is as imperative to choose your supplier based on their product as it is to choose a supplier that has experience with their product lines and who you can rely on. We have had times when our vendors, who don’t carry multiple conveyor lines, have called us because their customer needed something to which they did not have access. That is loyalty to their customer right there. That’s what you should be looking for. I am confident that whoever you choose to provide you with a conveyor will be able to find you a gravity, roller, belt, or tabletop conveyor if that is what you truly need.  The question then, isn’t really whether or not they carry the product; it is whether or not you can trust them to get you the best solution, even if it isn’t their premier product.  I’m not talking about a situation where the vendor truly believes that their product is the best on the market, because each ... Read More
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So, you have products that need to be moved from point A to point B. Naturally, you decide that you need a conveyor, right? Sure you could use a cart, or have people wearing their backs out toting boxes, but why not enter into the wonderful world of conveying options? Except maybe that the world of conveying is very overwhelming. It isn’t just about low cost leaders here. There is so much more to consider than upfront costs. Do you want gravity conveyor, or powered options? What about rubber or plastic belt; or steel belts? How about guiderails? Are they going to mar the product? If you accumulate, is your product going to all fall down? What style drive do you need? Do you need a VFD? Are you carrying multiple sizes of products on the same line? How fast is your changeover? How fast is your line? Can you even carry golf balls up an almost 90 degree incline? What about conveyor made from rubber bands, do they do that? Should you get a steel conveyor, or an aluminum one? Do you need adjustable height? Do they even make a conveyor for your application? Maybe most importantly, even if the conveyor works what is the system with lowest total ownership cost? So - Many - Options... Let me make it simple for you. Here are five questions to ask yourself about your product when you are picking out a conveyor system. Or, you could just call us and take advantage of our free engineering and experienced staff so you don’t have to worry about it, but I digress… ;) 1.... Read More
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We had dinner with one of our salesmen last night, Don Petsch  of Mike Petsch and Associates. As you might guess by the name, he is second generation in this business and has the experience that goes with that. He has been building conveyors with his dad since high school and has seen a lot of solutions, across a variety of industries, in his years of working with our product line. As we ate the conversation turned to FlexLink, which is pretty much inevitable during our dinner conversations. We talked about the differences between X65 and XL and X85 and its precursor XM. But that isn't what inspired me to write this morning. What inspired me to write this morning was one sentence, "You can move a refrigerator on an XM conveyor." Yes, you just read that correctly. We run into this misconception that a product has to be completely surrounded by a belt in order to move and orient it very frequently, and that is just not the case. Commonly, it is a much more economical option to move that refrigerator, box, bundle, can, package, or whatever else you might be handling down the line on a single belt with a creative guiderail solution. I don't think I am letting you in on any trade secrets when I tell you that a 2.48"/63mm wide conveyor is generally cheaper than a 11.61"/295mm one. Not only is looking at moving products that way economical, it has great benefits with respect to your floor space too. The price doesn't even take into consideration the world of reorienting opt... Read More
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Re-Orienting Solutions
It happens often. You have a package that comes out of your machine upside down or sideways; for whatever reason it needs to be turned, flipped, angled, or otherwise adjusted. What do you do? Call us of course! We have experience from across industries to know how to handle your product. We have fixed and powered flipping devices, gravity turning sections, bump and turn orienteers, side by side reorienting conveyors and many more solutions to get your production flowing the way you need it. Are you interested in re-orienting products? Contact us today with your product specifications and we will happily give you more information for the solution that will work best for you. ... Read More
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