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Pallet Flow

Pallet flow is a FIFO (first in, first out) dynamic storage system. Pallet flow makes it possible to achieve high density storage while maintaining FIFO retrieval order and handling efficiency. This type of gravity flow pallet system maximizes storage space by reducing aisles. Pallet flow systems can be designed to hold 2 to 20 pallets deep or more in one lane, and allow for quick and efficient inventory turnover. Customization is key in pallet flow rack systems, and manufacturers offer multiple types of rollers to meet the demands of individual users’ pallets and products. Most manufacturers can even customize their pallet flow with speed controllers that are uniquely designed for the users wide range of pallet weights.

How A Pallet Flow System Works

Pallets are loaded into the storage lane from the replenishment aisle and gravity flow, in order, to the pick aisle. The pallets are first placed onto rollers upon which the pallets easily flow towards the front of the rack system. Once they’ve glided to the front of the system, pallets rest on pallet stops until they’re unloaded. As pallets are removed or unloaded from the system, each of the pallets that were behind them “flow” into the next position via gravity.  Pallet speed is controlled by the speed controllers engineered into the system.

Common Questions Regarding Pallet Flow Systems

What is the estimated lead time for a pallet flow installation?

Lead times for pallet flow projects are similar to other engineered rack systems, with lead time periods generally hovering in the 6 to 12 week range. Lead times can be influenced by the approval process and high manufacturing demand at time order is placed.

What is the typical pitch of a pallet flow lane?

The pitch of a pallet flow lane can vary from system to system. That being said, the most common pitch given to pallet flow lanes is 3/8" to 1/2" per linear foot. To illustrate this, imagine a pallet flow lane that is 20’ long. If the pitch is 1/2" per linear foot, the load end of the lane will be 10" taller than picking end. This pitch allows the pallet to “flow” effortlessly from one end of the system to the other.

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