Material Flow Archives: Past Racking System Projects

Here’s a look inside some of Material Flow’s past racking system projects.

Cantilever Rack

Cantilever Rack - Boat Storage

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Proper Sizing & Selection of Frames & Beams

Determining Frame Depth
The depth of the frame is determined by the size of the pallet. The most common pallet used is a 40″ wide x 48″ deep GMA wooden pallet. Using that as a guideline, the pallet should overhang the beams 3″ in the front and 3″ in the back thus making the frame depth 42″. The reason for this RMI rates beam capacities with 3″ front and back. When the operator is putting pallets away in the upper levels, it is wise to allow overhang so that the driver doesn’t inadvertently miss the beam when setting the pallet down.

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Selective Pallet Racks

There are three basic components of a selective pallet rack.

A) Upright frame: This consists of vertical columns, footplates and horizontal, diagonal and or cross braces. Horizontal shelf beams connect to the upright frames which forms a storage level onto which a palletized load is placed. Generally, two pallets wide is the most common configuration. Three pallets wide is sometimes used for lighter loads. Racking is often arranged in rows of two or more bays, extending in a down aisle direction.

There are many accessories to selective rack examples are listed below:

Decking: Plywood, particle and the most common decking wire mesh panels with channels.

Cross Barmembers or Front to Back Supports: Steel drop in cross bars, double flanged cross bars, 2″ x 4″ wood stringers, 2″ x 6″ wood stringers, the 2″ x 6″ members are the most common.

Other Accessories: Drop on drum supports, drop on skid supports, row spacers, wall ties, overhead top ties, just to mention a few.

Stromberg Pallet Racks

Stromberg Pallet Racks

Stromberg Pallet Racks

Stromberg Pallet Racks are great for many applications.

  • Adjusts on 2″ centers
  • Teardrop design which is the most commonly manufactured rack in America. Our rack interchanges with most tear drop designs.5″ x 7″ x 3/8″ seismic plates are standard.
  • Vista green frames, orange beams.
  • Many other colors choices are available.
  • Quick shipment available on the most common sizes.
  • We build and design racking systems to your operation reinforced struts and column guards, set back frame designs.
  • We address your needs not just sell you a pile of steel.

We build and sell all kinds of racking systems:

  • Archive Storage
  • Bulk Rack & Shelving
  • Case Flow Racks
  • Drum Racks
  • Cantilever Racks
  • Die Storage Systems
  • Lumber Racks
  • Mezzanines
  • Multilevel Pick Modules
  • Pallet Flow Racks
  • Pick Racks
  • Pick Systems
  • Specialty Racks
  • Stacking Racks
  • Rack Decking
  • Rack Supported Buildings
  • Systems Design

How to Design a Storage Area

Warehouse Storage Solutions

Design your storage system from the inside out or another way to put it is the function to the reality.

If you look at many warehouses the beams are all at the same levels and the aisles are 12′ to accomodate the lift trucks. Don’t buy your lift truck befor you determine what you are trying to accomplish. You must consider the following:

1. Do you have a new building? If so design your storage system before you build it. Most poeple go to architects which in turn design  the same old building. The column turn spacing can easily get in the way. Why not design your storage area and flow patteren and THEN tell the archictect to put the building columns where they are not in the way. In other words, plan and then do more planning. What you put in on the front end pays dividend laters.

2. Do you have an existing building? If so design similar to above and then adapt the building columns and any other obstructions.

For all your warehouse storage needs visit

Rack Supported Structures

Rack Supported Structures

If you need a massive storage system, a rack supported structure may be the way to go.  With a rack supported structure the rack frames support the roof and walls. This reduces cost as there is no expense for structural steel or footings. This also reduces the cost of professional services.

Time is another area where you will save with a rack supported structure. It simply takes less time to build a rack supported building than a conventional structure since the storage system is the support system for the building. You don’t have to build a building and a storage system.

Since every square foot of a rack supported structure is used for storage and handling it offers higher efficiency than a standard structure.

Rack supported structures may also offer special tax advantages since it is classified as equipment, not structure.

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Pallet Racking Glossary

Pallet Rackl

Aisle Guide: A barrier used to direct or limit movement in an aisle.

Anchoring: Lagging or fastening methods, used to secure columns, beams and ties.

Base Plate: Pad used to support a column and transfer column load to floor or ground.

Beam Connection: Device used to fasten shelf beam to column, wall etc.

Bracing: Restrictive supports used to limit movement in racks, uprights, shelves etc.

Buckling: The failure or collapse of a column generally caused by an added force.

Decking: Solid or perforated material used on shelves, load beams, or walkways to support loads of variable sizes.

Deflection: Distortion of column beam, tie, ect.. caused by a load or force.

Impact: The striking of one object against another. A load striking a beam or rack member.

Industrial Steel Storage Rack: A series of steel supports or beams connected together to form an assembly used to store industrial goods or material.

Live Load: Load being moved in or out of a rack system. Pallet load as opposed to dead load or weight of actual rack members.

Pallet Clearance: Clearance or unused space at sides, rear, and above loaded pallet.

Plumbness: The closeness of an upright or column to being vertical.

Rack Beam: A horizontal load support member in a rack system.

Rack Column: A vertical load support member in a rack system. A post.

Retrieval Device: Any device or mechanism used to select and pick up stored material from a rack. May be a manually operated fork truck or a completely computer controlled mechanism.

Safety Factor: Extra capacity designed into a system to cover unusual or extra demands on the system.

Skid: Steel or wood, movable unit load.

Uniformly Distributed Load: A load, as on a shelf, or pair of load beams, supported by all, or nearly all of the shelf or beam supporting surfaces.

Upright Frame: The vertically supporting assembly in a rack system. Generally consisting of 2 or more columns tied together with bracing members.

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