Posted in: Sponsored Content

How IntelliFinishing Elevates Forklift Part Manufacturing for Hyster-Yale

Posted on Friday, March 18, 2022

Hyster-Yale is a world-renowned name in the forklift truck industry and has carved out a space as the United States’ leading manufacturer. Hyster-Yale forklift trucks are used around the globe by just about any industrial operation needing robust material handling, meaning the company needs solutions that help maintain a production capacity that satisfies that demand and drives efficiency and savings.

To that end, Hyster-Yale made the decision in 2020 to invest in a finishing system to powder coat a variety of forklift truck parts, such as roll cages and chassis. To meet Hyster Yale’s expectations, the finishing system needed to fulfill additional requirements without sacrificing high capacity or adding unnecessary complexity.

Hyster-Yale chose to add an IntelliFinishing automated powder coating industrial finishing system to its operation.

The Challenge: Checking All the Right Boxes with One Finishing System
Because Hyster-Yale plays such an important role in the global forklift truck industry, it was important that the organization find a powder coating system that could exhibit consistently high capacity without unnecessary expense, inflexibility or complexity.

The system also had to exhibit other benefits, such as reliable uptime, energy efficiency, a tighter footprint than traditional power and free systems, flexibility per carrier, effective and intuitive software control, automation, manual touchup capabilities, wash and dry, a wide range of colors, and more.

The Solution: An IntelliFinishing Automated Powder Coating System
By working with IntelliFinishing, Hyster-Yale was able to invest in an automated powder coating finishing system that satisfied all its requirements – at a cost that was spot on competitive with traditional system proposals upfront but will be much less when lifetime cost of ownership and maintenance and scalability are considered.

IntelliFinishing designed and built a system that features a high-volume capacity in a tighter footprint than traditional power and free systems and offers the ability to paint parts in an effectively infinite number of colors. The system includes a pretreatment process that includes a large shot blast and three-stage wash followed by a dry-off oven, automatic powder coat booths that leverage robots and reciprocators to coat parts, a manual touch-up functionality, and final cure ovens in two lanes that offer a wide range of time and temperature options, along with multiple load and unload options to fit the plant’s layout.

The system provides:

  • The ability to finish a wide variety of parts on the same system.
  • Functionality to use different recipes per each carrier of parts loaded.
  • A modular approach that saves footprint and could be scaled up or changed over time.
  • Less costly operation due to energy saving oven and conveyor designs.
  • Variable speed and VFD control to allow for higher part density and the ability to “make up” gaps in the line, meaning more throughput per hour.
  • High system uptime to process more parts and avoid costly maintenance.
  • Enhanced finish quality due to recipe-based approach and lack of chain-based lubricants and other contaminants.

These benefits elevate the IntelliFinishing automated powder coating system above competitive options, which can limit flexibility, create inherent waste, require more potentially destructive forces, result in poorer finish quality, and more.

Want to see this powder coating system in action? View the Hyster-Yale system video: 

The Results: A System Ready to Scale with Hyster Yale
Hyster-Yale’s system was installed in 2020, and as the world continues to march toward a new normal, Hyster-Yale is ramping up fabrication and assembly production, To date, the organization has only run the system at about 50% of capacity and have taken advantage of this time to work alongside IntelliFinishing to tweak the system and make it as efficient as possible. One of the benefits of an IntelliFinishing system design, is that it more easily adapts to times when the system is running at less than full capacity, compared to traditional systems. Due to multiple lane ovens, it’s easy to just turn on enough oven and not too much. Traditional systems tend to have single lane or serpentine ovens that are either fully on or off and therefore waste a lot of energy if the line isn’t being loaded to full capacity.

IntelliFinishing’s system also saved Hyster-Yale significant footprint, which allowed the organization to construct a smaller addition to its existing facility and freed up additional space for manufacturing and assembly. 

Because IntelliFinishing offered a much wider range of finishing options per carrier, each carrier can have a recipe for every process through the system that is optimized for the type of part being finished. This means some parts can be shot blasted longer or shorter, wash stage pressure or timing can vary, dry and cure times can be changed to match the part specifications and substrates, color can be different per carrier without the need to batch items by color, and unload routing can be based on process flow.

IntelliFinishing was able to work with Hyster-Yale and its specifications to design a finishing system that came in within $100 out the several million-dollar system cost of competitively bid traditional systems while providing more options as well as less cost- to-operate on a day-to-day basis. The system is much more energy efficient, will have higher uptime, and has variable speeds per carrier per section of track, allowing random production gaps to be filled and greater part density per carrier.

To learn how IntelliFinishing can design and build an automated industrial finishing system with proven technology to address your unique operational challenges and goals, contact us today!

And don’t forget – you can view the Hyster-Yale system video here!