The Cutting Edge

Nov. 1, 2002
Lifting and moving products in heavy industries.


The Twister turns a box onto its side while it travels along a conveyor at high speed — up to 120 cartons per minute. The trick is the L-shaped, 10-ft section of flexible conveyor that is also twisted so that the vertical section becomes the horizontal section. Cartons traveling along the twisted section remain in contact with the conveyor and are cradled in the L groove while being reoriented 90 degrees. With custom design, almost any carton can be twisted. WHM Equipment Co.;, 513-771-3200.


New visual technology helps reduce tire handling throughout the automotive assembly process and ensures the presence of correct tires and wheels at multiple process points. The TIS-8000 Tire Identification System recognizes tire treads and sidewalls. It verifies tire models prior to mounting onto wheels and ensures the correct sequence of tires prior to shipping. The WIS-8000 Wheel Identification System recognizes spoke patterns, wheel finish and other features. It identifies wheels prior to balancing to trigger the proper balance routine, ensuring the correct wheels are paired with the correct tires for a car. These two systems operate with 99.99 percent accuracy. PatMax geometric pattern matching technology recognizes specific part features such as treads and spoke patterns. Variations in part position, scale or appearance do not hinder the technology. For more information, contact Cognex at


Moving large items, such as helicopter blades, tailbooms, logs and steel rods, can be a logistics maneuver with multiple lift trucks and flatbed trucks. Side-loader trucks make that work quick and easy. Two examples illustrate this idea. The SF 40U, from Fantuzzi USA, has a maximum capacity of 8,800 lb and a lift height of 157 in. The unit can travel at a top loaded speed of 18 mph, easily going through doorways. The SBQ side-loading lift truck, developed by Czech manufacturer VKP Chrudrim, offers platform widths of 4 feet to 5.25 feet. It can lift loads weighing 4.5 to 6.5 tons to heights of 12 to 22 feet. Bosch Rexroth Group supplied the hydraulic components for the VKP’s travel drive, steering and brakes. Fantuzzi USA,, 630-655-8169; [email protected], or