AIR TECHNICAL INDUSTRIES announced the development of a versatile die and mold handling transporter with a new “twist”: It can rotate heavy objects — dies, molds, motors — through 360°. This new feature is very important when long dies or molds have to be transported through narrow aisles. They can be stored lengthwise, which takes much less space than storing them crosswise. The new unit can store, retrieve and transport the die lengthwise for easier maneuverability and then it can rotate crosswise at the press for installation.
With increased lift, dies and molds can be stored on the shelf or racked two high, thereby doubling storage space. The ability to rotate dies 90° increases storage capacity up to 400%, according to ATI.
The die transporter unit is equipped with four push-pull arms: two short arms that hold the die close in and two long arms that can push the die into the press of the die transporter up to 24 in. deep. When the operation is completed, the die transporter retrieves the die out of the press back on to the transporter. The die is then rotated 90° from the way it comes out of the press to lengthwise for transporting to storage. The push-pull arms are folded up or down manually (or, optionally, powered.) The arms also can be made adjustable laterally to handle various widths of molds.
Rotation and storage of the dies improves safety and efficiency by a push of the button, instead of three or four people pushing, pulling, stretching and reaching which can cause injuries, pain, lost time, and worker's compensation claims.
During transport of the die, the short arms are holding the die securely. The lifting and lowering of the die to press height or shelving is hydraulically operated, as well as pulling and pushing of arms. The transporter deck is equipped with roller conveyor or polyurethane bearing material with a smooth finish.
The transporter is installed on polyurethane roller bearing wheels equipped for easy and quiet mobility. Propulsion is solid-state variable speed from zero to 4 mph. Steering is 90° to each side for cutting sharp angled turns or maneuvering in narrow aisles. Propulsion and lifting is battery powered with available built-in battery charger that makes the unit self-sufficient.
Capacities available range from 2,000 lbs. up to 50,000 lbs. and deck sizes range in width from 24 in. up to 96 in., and length from 48 in. up to 144 in. long. The new mold installation retrieval and transportation system can be built custom for any special or unusual requirement.
The equipment is specifically designed with ergonomics and safety consideration in mind. It provides safety, efficiency, time savings and storage space savings for installation of heavy dies and molds. In addition, the unit can be used for handling many other heavy items, such as manifolds, castings, motors, and machine loading of heavy parts making the job easier by taking the load off of peoples' backs.