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Crane Pro Parts upgrades new wire rope cutting machine to enhance safety, productivity

(Springfield, OH) - Crane Pro Parts is Konecranes U.S. parts supply organization for more than 40 brands of overhead lifting equipment.

Crane Pro Parts supplies parts for any brand of overhead crane or hoist, and carries over 100 different sizes of wire rope, in full spools and custom lengths. When the company began shopping for a new wire rope cutting machine for its Watertown, WI warehouse, Director of Component Manufacturing Bill Heinze and Facilities and Safety Manager Steve Roloff wanted to make sure that the new machine would be safer to operate than the one it replaced.

The team selected a machine from Finland's Heitech Oy that eliminated the need for the operator to manually guide the wire rope onto the spool, a major safety factor. The machine is also self-propelled, so there is no need for a forklift to move it.

"The new machine is completely guarded on three sides, with a light curtain across the back," said Heinze. "However, there are operations like annealing, swedging and shrink-wrapping that we need to do inside the light curtain. We added features that allow the operator to enter and safely work in that area."

Roloff designed PLC programming changes and additional relays that allow the operator to work safely inside the spooling area to tape and wrap the finished roll. Then the machine lowers the roll to the floor and pulls the bar out, making it ready to ship. Crane Pro Parts ships wire rope spools ranging from 10 to 350 pounds, so the task is different every time.

"On our old machine, any order over 70 pounds required the operator to use a portable crane to remove the spool," Heinze said.  "The new machine offers a portable unwind stand that facilitates unloading."

According to Roloff, the effort to revise the interface was worthwhile, both in terms of operator safety and productivity. "Had we not made changes, we would have had to design a different process to finish off the spools for shipping, as there were originally no controls on the back of the machine," he said.

Additional information:
Chelsea Wright, Marketing Specialist and Communications Coordinator,
Region Americas or 937.525.5533.

About Konecranes, Inc.

Konecranes is a world-leading group of Lifting Businesses™, serving a broad range of customers, including manufacturing and process industries, shipyards, ports and terminals. Konecranes provides productivity enhancing lifting solutions as well as services for lifting equipment of all makes. The Group has 18,000 employees at 600 locations in 50 countries. Konecranes class A shares are listed on the Nasdaq Helsinki (symbol: KCR).

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