Manufacturing Work Stations – Why Aluminum Extrusion Makes Sense

When you need manufacturing work stations you’ve got options. Buy standard units out of a catalog or from a website, build your own or design what you want and have someone build it. For best results it’s worth building your own, or having them built for you, and when doing that we strongly suggest using t-slot aluminum extrusion. Here’s why.

What is T-Slot Aluminum?

Aluminum is a light yet strong material that’s readily extruded into just about any profile you can imagine. When extruded as a square or rectangular profile with t-slots on each face it becomes an easy-to-use modular framing material.

The t-slots hold nuts captive while allowing longitudinal movement. Using these with appropriate fasteners, brackets and reinforcing plates, it’s possible to quickly join other lengths of t-slot aluminum. A wide range of accessories like castors, hinges and handles mount readily to the extrusion so you can build frames and structures of the size and complexity you need.

These structures can be as strong as any made from welded steel, if you design them right and use the appropriate materials. The keys are to use extrusion of a sufficient size and of the right duty, (we offer light, medium and heavy-duty,) and to engineer joints the right way. (Our product specialists can advise on this.)

Applications for Aluminum Manufacturing Work Stations

Factories need flat surfaces to hold products and materials, and for people to work. Examples of work stations that can be built from t-slot aluminum include:

  • Assembly benches
  • Test and inspection benches
  • Repair benches
  • Kitting and packaging stations
  • Desks for clerical and administrative duties

Why it Makes Sense to Design and Build Your Own

No one understands your methods and processes the way you do, and the layout in your factory is almost certainly unique. Standard manufacturing work stations will probably require compromises to get them in, and may not have all the features the people doing the work need.

When you design your own, and perhaps build them too, you get exactly what you need to maximize efficiency and productivity. If operators have suggestions for features to make their jobs easier – shelves, supports, brackets and so on – you can incorporate them easily. You can ensure the ergonomics are optimized to suit the people and their jobs too.

Engineering teams value flexibility in manufacturing work stations so they can reconfigure flows and processes without a lot of expense. When you design your own you can make them as big or as small, as mobile and as versatile as you want.

Why it Makes Sense to Use Aluminum Extrusion

The main difference between building your manufacturing work stations from t-slot aluminum rather than any other material is that it is modular. If, having bolted it together, you need additional features or want to change its size, that’s easily done. (Examples of additional features customers often find they need to include foot rests, lighting supports and monitor brackets.)

Other reasons are that it’s lightweight, so it’s easily moved, and it’s corrosion-resistant. It doesn’t need painting, and it will stay looking smart for years to come.

Next Steps

Industrial Profile Systems carries a wide range of t-slot aluminum extrusion and accessories. CAD files are available on our website, or alternative, we can design your work stations for you. Use this link to request a quote.

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