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Link 51 shelving solution results in halving of breakages at National Windscreens

A bespoke racking and shelving system created by Link 51 for one of the UK’s largest independent windscreen repair and replacement specialists has led to a halving of the number of breakages.

National Windscreens called in the leading shelving experts to its Bristol warehouse, which was operating at maximum capacity and used an unsuitable storage system of outside storage and tarpaulin covering, to provide a suitable alternative.

Link 51 saw that the existing storage arrangements had created stock control problems and did not allow staff to operate an efficient logistics system. The haphazard nature of the storage also meant that there was an unacceptable number of breakages.

Simon Baugh, Link 51’s Marketing Director, described how the team worked with National Windscreens to design and install an efficient storage and racking system for the newly created 22,000sq ft storage facility that was built to accommodate a mix of crates for a large variety of commercial vehicles and cars.

"Because of the size of the crates, space was needed so that operatives could gain access with a forklift truck to retrieve them," he explained. "We offered a number of solutions for National Windscreens and drilled down on the specific requirements so we could create a robust solution that would improve efficiencies."

Because the warehouse operates four reach and two counterbalance trucks, Link 51 installed five aisles of racking to a height of 8.5m, with depths that ranged from 800mm to 1450mm, and fitted open boarded timber decking to all beam levels, which created a shelf that enables operatives to store a range of crate sizes with some flexibility.

Paul Skinner, Regional Distribution Manager at National Windscreens, said he was impressed with Link 51’s approach to providing a suitable solution to the warehousing problems.

"Rather than provide an off the shelf racking system, they looked in detail at what we were trying to achieve and worked with us to find an appropriate solution," he said.

"As a return on investment, since the warehouse expansion and installation of new racking, our breakage rate has halved and is now below the accepted industry norm."

Simon Baugh said that as market leaders in for the supply of steel storage products, pallet racking, shelving and lockers, Link 51 was able to offer National Windscreens full project management expertise in the design and manufacture of a bespoke shelving system that was suitable for its way of working.

Combining the team’s extensive know-how and in-house manufacturing capability of a high quality product range meant that National Windscreen, which has 114 fitting centres and more than 800 mobile technicians, benefited from excellent service from conception to delivery and aftercare.

"We worked very closely with National Windscreens so that we could understand exactly how they operate and design a suitable system," said Simon. "We pride ourselves on our ability to create innovative shelving and racking solutions for all of our customers."

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