Reusable Packaging Supports Harley Davidson's JIT System

This case history about Harley Davidson comes courtesy of Orbis. It has been selected and edited by the MHM editorial staff for clarity, content and style.

Company: Harley-Davidson

Packaging Application: Harley-Davidson received daily shipments of OEM parts, including metal stampings, castings, forgings, electrical components and seats

Packaging Challenge: Several parts were being shipped into the facility in expendable packaging as much as twice a day. This type of packaging took up a lot of floor space and didn’t protect parts very well, which created great potential for damage. Disposing of the waste was costly and time consuming.

Packaging Solution: LINPAC* (acquired by ORBIS in January 2007) implemented a reusable container program to assist Harley-Davidson in assembling up to 600 motorcycles daily on a JIT basis. Using dunnage with ROPAK containers allows Harley-Davidson to standardize container types and reduce the potential for damaging parts during handling or transit. The containers are stacked up to 3 high, which saves on floor space.

Product: ROPAK™ 45"x48" and 32"x30" containers, both 34" or 25" tall

Results: Using the Ropak brand of high-density polyethylene containers has greatly reduced the costs associated with expendable packaging. Having few standard container sizes allows Harley-Davidson to cube out unit and trailer loads and saves money on shipping. The reusable containers protect parts and materials and also save space on the assembly line where real estate is always at a premium. When the containers are empty, they are collapsed, which economizes on the return and staging of empty containers.

*LINPAC was acquired by ORBIS Corporation in January 2007.

Source: ORBIS Corporation welcomes relevant, exclusive case histories that explain in specific detail the business benefits that new software and material-handling equipment has provided to specific users. Send submissions to Lisa Kempfer ([email protected]), MHM managing editor. All submissions will be edited for clarity, content and style.

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