2 Factors In Warehouse Design Which May Limit Storage Capacity

1.Building design 

If the primary purpose of a warehouse facility is to store products, it is vital that you look at the racking design in tandem with the overall building design. Making the building shell marginally too small could prevent an additional bay of racking from being installed.

Whilst an extra bay of racking sounds minimal in the grand scheme of things, consider this.  If each bay of racking contains 4 pallets and there are 5 beam levels, that’s 20 pallet positions. Now if there are 100 runs of pallets, that’s an extra 2000 pallet positions.

In a recent project we were called in to assist with, the client was at the early stage of the build process with the steel structure in position. However, when we looked at the drawings and began designing various racking alternatives, we quickly identified that if the design had allowed an extra 400mm in height, the client would have been able to have a racking solution which was 5 pallets high instead of 4.

This would have created over 1600 pallet positions with very limited additional cost to the actual structure, but will mean the client has to continue to use external storage for some of its products, costing tens of thousands of pounds every year.

2.Forklift Specification

The specification of the forklift will also play a major role in determining the overall capacity and efficiency of the racking solution. The first thing the forklift specification will impact on is the required aisle width between the racking uprights.

So for example, using existing forklifts which are design to suit standard adjustable pallet racking will immediately prevent the specification of narrow aisle racking and potentially drive in.  The physical reach of the forklift will also determine how high the racking can go. A forklift with a reach of 3 metres will clearly be unable to place a pallet on a beam which is 4 metres high.

By designing the racking in conjunction with the specification of the forklift will allow you to explore the full range of alternatives to maximise the cube.

By understanding your SKUs, stock movements and products being stored Sunnyrack team can work with all the partners involved in the project to deliver the most effective solution.