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Vertical order picker: Optimal reach height

Narrow aisle warehouse with vertical order picker for Nolte Küchen

Nolte Küchen, based in Germersheim in Rhineland-Palatinate, is one of the largest kitchen brands in Germany. The kitchen manufacturer invested in a vertical order picker and a narrow aisle warehouse in order to avoid picking the fronts of its units from the ground.

Ergonomic order picking

Previously only three rack levels could be reached from the ground, and as for the fourth, staff had to climb up a portable platform ladder. The kitchen manufacturer wanted to make provision of its goods more efficient and more ergonomic. A new storage concept with a suitable forklift truck was needed for this purpose. However, the load supports were to be kept: The trolleys are tailored specifically for the goods and the processes in the warehouse. These transport up to 50 fronts with varied décors and dimensions simultaneously to their targets without having to repack the parts along the way. In this case the fronts are vertically stored between padded separators.

Eckhard Windel
An operating technology employee at Nolte Küchen

"We chose Jungheinrich due to the long battery life on the vertical order picker and its additional lift.“

Order picker with auxiliary lift plus a flexible storage concept

At the logistics centre at Nolte Küchen GmbH & Co. KG in Melle-Bruchmühlen reach heights of up to 6.2 metres up to the eighth storey are now achieved. To do so, a narrow-aisle warehouse was designed for use with an EKS 312 vertical order picker. In addition, Nolte Küchen uses a total of 25 of our fork lift trucks, including the EKX 410 narrow aisle truck and the ECE 220 horizontal order picker.

The EKS 312 achieves additional height via it's additional lift. Low pressure brackets are fitted to the outside of the load sections so that a truck does not tip over to the side, or slides off the forks from the front. If the hydraulically operated additional lift is activated, the vertical order picker moves the front truck against the low pressure bracket and holds it in position. It can accept it without the aid of a lifting station on level ground and is therefore flexible anywhere in the warehouse.

Eckhard Windel, an operating technology employee at Nolte says regarding the concept: “As an alternative to the narrow aisle warehouse, we initially considered a mobile racking system. This solution would have had the problem that only two aisles would be accessed at all times. In addition, we would have had to reinforce the warehouse floor beneath the rails with strip elements to avoid areas of heavy load.” We also wanted to avoid rebuilding the warehouse in order to go ahead with the picking warehouse. In addition, processes and front trucks were to be kept.

Additional lift as a decisive factor

The efficient energy management of the fork lift truck was a decisive selection criterion. Operating technician Eckhard Windel says: “We chose Jungheinrich mainly due to the long battery life on the vertical order picker as well as its additional lift.” Windel continues: “An advantage is the high uptime level of the truck, which is practically 100 percent. We requested the additional lift solution and Jungheinrich were happy to implement it showing great flexibility. “

A future-proof storage concept, as well as the right forklift truck were important factors in the purchasing decision: “Due to the investment in the vertical order picker and the narrow aisle warehouse, we benefit from greater utilisation of space.” continues Windel: “The warehouse can be extended. This was a point that was decisive in handing the order to Jungheinrich. We put emphasis on flexibility so that we can readily react to new challenges.”

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