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9 May 2019

What is a Kit-Cart?

Amir Chihani

Amir Chihani

Operations Manager

FlexQube in successful relationship with Proterra, the maker of zero emission buses!

Shadow Boards in use at Proterra 

 

Last Modified: 05.03.2020

With a growing number of variants in the end-product for manufacturers and especially OEMs within the automotive industry, there is not enough room to store all the different part articles and numbers at the assembly line at the same time.

Therefore, components need to be provided just in time, or in sequence or, in smaller batches using from example kit-carts or carts where you store different part numbers but in smaller quantities. How do these manufacturing kitting carts look like and why would a modular system like FlexQube be a preferred concept to use in these applications?

Many times, you refer to this as a naked material presentation. The components are presented to the operator at the production line or a workstation without any packaging or taken directly out of the box, ready for use. They are placed in a position where the operator can easily access the parts. Kitting parts means that more of the work related to material handling is transferred back to the warehouse or logistics employees.

Manufacturing kitting carts have several benefits in a warehouse. One of the main benefits is the overall effect on reducing the processing time and the downtime for the assembly line. Read more about the benefits of kitting here and manufacturing kitting carts here.

The space on the assembly line and the pace on the assembly line is crucial, which means that the operators and assemblers cannot spend any unnecessary time unwrapping parts or opening cardboard boxes. They must concentrate on putting the part onto the end-product and let the logistics people handle the material handling tasks. Kit-carts are a useful tool in all this, and the need for flexible solutions is, of course, great since the shape, dimensions, quantity, etc. will change over time.

Using a flexible and modular system like the one from FlexQube makes it possible to adjust and adapt the kiting carts to the continually changing needs. FlexQube has cantilever-style carts to hold pipes, rods, wire ropes, or hoses. We have delivered kit-cart solutions to a variety of industries, including heavy industrial equipment companies like JLG Industries, Cummins, and Doosan Infracore. Other references for our manufacturing kitting carts are Whirlpool and Isringhausen.

Kit carts for ring shaped components

Kit-cart for ring-shaped components at Eberspaecher

The strict definition of kitting means that the kit contains the precise number of parts or amount of material to produce a set number of products. A broader definition of kit-carts means that the carts are being used to transport a limited amount of parts to the assembly operations.

In some cases, in a sequence, meaning that the parts must be put onto the cart in a specific order to make sure the operators pick the right part for the right product. Of course, it is also essential to set up the kit-cart in an efficient way to make sure the picking time, both in the warehouse but more importantly, the assembly line is kept short. By gathering information about batch sizes, sequence, a mix of parts, and other parameters, FlexQube can help customers design and adapt the perfect kit-cart. A kit-cart with built-in flexibility for upcoming changes in component design and manufacturing mix etc. A kit-cart can be used for one specific type of component or multiple different components. They can vary in size and complexity. If it holds very large or heavy parts, it is crucial to consider lifting tools and make sure those can access the component at the assembly line.

The Kitting Process

The kitting and assembly process is commonly broken down into a number of steps. These steps can be used as a guideline as an introduction to implementing a kitting process into your facility:

  • Receiving
  • Storing
  • Picking
  • Packing
  • Distribution

Kit cart for windshields by FlexQube

Kit-cart for windshields at Proterra

In the kit-carts category, you will find several different designs that can help you bring the material to the operators in a better and quality assured manner.

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