Projects & Infrastructure
Bridge cranes used in new B.C. facility for Food Process Solutions
By Crane & Hoist
By Crane & Hoist
Richmond, B.C. – Food Process Solutions (FPS) is an expanding company that specializes in the design and manufacture of large refrigeration vessels for the food processing industry worldwide. Overhead lifting is an essential part of its operations, offloading incoming materials, during the fabricating process, and when handling finished products.
Norelco, distributor for R&M Materials Handling in Canada, was tasked with providing the lifting capacity at FPS’s new manufacturing facility. Its new 80,000-square-foot facility in Richmond, B.C., increases the company’s production area by 80 per cent with a 50 per cent uplift in capacity anticipated once fully utilized.
Over the last few years, Norelco has supplied FPS manufacturing sites with more than 20 R&M QX bridge cranes with capacities ranging from five to 10 tons. For this project, Norelco received an order for 18 QX 10 ton bridge cranes and runways to drive FPS’s enhanced manufacturing capacity.
“Not only are there 18 cranes to manufacture but also included in the contract were all of the crane runway beams, rails and down shop conductors,” said Keith Ellis, general manager at Norelco.
The scale of this project provided its own challenges to Norelco, such as sourcing the steel to fulfil the job, storing six 200-foot crane runways, and storage of the R&M hoists and components until the cranes were ready to be assembled.
Eric Lau, plant operation manager at FPS, noted that different production teams are located at different bays around the facility. Different teams will make their own parts, before final assembly and packing. Each bay must have overhead cranes to support the progress of jobs through manufacturing.
All 18 cranes and runways have now been installed to drive FPS’s enhanced manufacturing capacity. Norelco designed, manufactured and installed complete crane systems in collaboration with the building engineer to incorporate the crane runways into the building.
Norelco initially supplied FPS with two 10-ton x 55-foot span R&M QX top running single girder (TRSG) cranes. Ellis notes that FPS was impressed by the performance and reliability of the R&M SX hoists and now specifies R&M for all new additional cranes.
“The overhead cranes are definitely important equipment to assist our production,” said Lau. “With most of our components made in stainless steel, we always use cranes to support the heavy parts for our production. We use sling and shackles to hang the parts. Under proper rigging training by our safety team, our production team uses overhead cranes frequently and safely.
“If we don’t have this equipment, the efficiency will drop 30 per cent at least, as lots of raw materials and finished components will be moved by the cranes.”