Flowstore Logos and Argos select DuraFlow for order picking | Flowstore Systems EU

storage • shelving • warehouse • distribution • fulfilment • live storage • order picking

Argos pick their catalogue orders from DuraFlow

When Argos Facilities Manager recently saw a test unit of Flowstore’s new range of Duraflow modular multi-wheel roller track sections, he immediately recognised the versatility of the system and identified this as having potential to provide a flexible solution to their storage needs.

Argos, part of the leading UK home and general merchandise Home Retail Group with sales of over £5.5 billion in the last financial year, experienced phenomenal growth from their 670 stores and Internet Orders. With over 17,000 lines on offer, there is a large proportion of high value product in stock, which presents security issues both in store and in the distribution chain.

When Argos recently reviewed their operations at Lutterworth, they moved high value products from a mezzanine floor to a caged-off security area within the warehouse, with the intention of maximising on floor space and pick locations. Having used live storage in the past, Argos was familiar with the concept of first-in, first-out picking techniques and the way in which stock lines can be condensed into shorter pick routes, therefore speeding up picking and concentrating areas of operation. This obviously met their project criteria, providing both space saving and handling efficiencies, as well as improving supervision of pick activities.

DuraFlow’s versatility adds a new dimension
Utilising the new DuraFlow pre-assembled, modular wheel system enabled Argos to add a new dimension to existing pallet racking, by instantly converting it into carton flowrack.

Argos Facilities Manager Roy Siggery commented, “In comparing live store products, DuraFlow was the only modular unit fitted with wide wheels, providing a densely packed dynamic bed for ultimate handling flexibility, as virtually all carton variations can be accommodated without the need for track and guide re-configuration; so inventory change can be easily managed. In trial, Duraflow was most compatible in meeting our flexible storage needs and even at very low gradients, products ran smoothly and true from loading to pick face.

The DuraFlow multi-wheel track sections come ready assembled and couldn’t be quicker to install. Re-position a beam at the loading face to create the required gradient and then simply hook the track section onto existing pallet rack beams. With over 260 shelf levels it only took Flowstore 2 days with 3 installers to fit the entire system! I was most impressed by the quality and the speed in which this versatile flowrack system can be fitted. A shelf consisting of 5-7 tracks hooked over existing rack beams can be installed in less than 10 minutes.

System flexibility for Argos is important, as seasonal fluctuations in product sales may require flowrack bays to be converted back to pallet pick locations as volumes dictate higher or low stock levels. The DuraFlow system provides this facility, unhook and remove the track section and reposition the pallet beam - it’s as simple as that! 

The changes at Argos has resulted in increased warehousing capacity, better inventory of stock and provided some 1600 pick locations. Having reduced walking distances and with sequential picking, this will result in order picking efficiencies improving up to 10%. “


DuraFlow direct from the catalogue
Duraflow is a modular system of pre-assembled, multi-wheel roller track sections in widths of 305mm and 405mm and can be ordered online or from the DuraFlow catalogue to exact lengths, to fit customers racking requirements.

A typical shelf level 2.7m wide x 2m deep can easily carry 1300kg –1600kg of product, without any intermediate beams for support. Each track section has close-pitched skatewheels in an alternating pattern on common spindles, so the effect is a complete, virtually solid bed of wheels.

To enable stock to be correctly replenished by location, bright yellow clip-on adjustable lane indexers are available to signify a product division.

As most pallet racks have vertical slot pitches of  50mm or 75mm, no special beams have to be supplied in most cases, since the beam at the loading face is simply set in one or two slots higher than the off-load face.

Innovators and specialists in live storage techniques for over 20 years, Flowstore MD Simon Dennis is confident of further successes with their new system. He commented, “ Our multi-wheel DuraFlow system enables virtually any box width to be accommodated without loss of space, unlike standard conveyor tracks which limit carton widths and give rise to wasted shelf space. Speed and ease of installation from pre-assembled units gives our customers tremendous flexibility, and the problems associated with reconfiguring lane widths becomes a thing of the past!”

NOTE: Supporting photographs can be emailed  on request

Editorial contact to:
Eddie Collins, Director
B. C. Marketing Limited., 7 Eastway Business Village, Olivers Place,
Fulwood, Preston. PR2 9WT
Tel: 01772 654654   Fax: 01772 652233  e.mail:mail@bcmarketing.co.uk

Reader Enquiries to:
Flowstore Systems Ltd, Fairview Business Centre, 39 Clayton Road,
Hayes,  Middlesex  UB3 1AU
Tel: ( 020) 8581 5555    Fax: (020) 8581 5575   Email: sales@flowstore.co.uk