Review of Casacde Xiamen Development of Product Technologies (I)
The past 30 years since 1987 has seen rapid growth of China’s forklift and attachment markets, presenting a constant circular rise from quantitative changes to qualitative changes. Through persistent endeavor in market development and expansion, Cascade forklifts and attachments are now well recognized by more and more customers thanks to their advantages of safety, efficiency, considerable extension of the application scope of forklift and apparent decline of goods destruction. For years, we have been providing attachments of various types and specifications, thus making forklift a versatile and efficient handling tool widely used in materials handling operations.
Based on different operating targets and sites and structural property of an attachment, common forklift attachments can be categorized as paper roll clamps, general attachments (such as soft pack folder), pallet handling attachments (such as side shifters, single and dual pallet forks), non-pallet handling attachments (such as push-pulls and carton clamps), special purpose attachment and additional devices for various special functions. Regarding products of different varieties, types and specifications, we have basically followed the rule of R&D and promotion from small to larger and simple to complicated. While satisfying the ever increasing materials handling demands in various domains, we have been maintaining our leading technological competitiveness thanks to the support by the strong technical forces of Cascade and our great efforts that enable us to satisfy personalized materials handling needs with more and more product categories and non-standard design.
Paper Roll Clamps
As among the most typical of forklift attachments, paper roll clamp is used in logistics processes involving handling of paper rolls or goods similar to round rolls, such as those processes for paper roll production, storage, transport and consumption. Paper roll clamps are classified as hinged arm, sliding arm and tower type. The hinged arm, as a common type in the market, consists of fixed frame type and swing frame type. From early 25F and 45F, we have gradually introduced fixed frame and hinged arm paper roll clamps. In response to increasing market demands, we also added 60F, 77F, 90F and those of larger sizes. For long, Cascade F series paper roll clamps have enjoyed good reputation thanks to their easy operation, safety, efficiency and endurance.
To upgrade structural design, strength and durability, operating efficiency and non-standard part manufacturing of our products, Cascade Xiamen, on the basis of the merits of F and G series of paper roll clamps, our proven domestic application experience and the market trend have worked together with the headquarters to bring out the new general H series. In 2012, 24H, 30H and 33H were gradually launched to the market. The Cascade H series made under the concept of more compactness, more reliability and easier operation shows the success of such an innovation result; in addition, it leads the trend of paper roll clamp technologies.
From the perspective of its structural performance, the optimized shape and reduced thickness of the pallet and arm tip lowered the requirement for operating space, featuring more flexible operation, significantly enhanced hinge strength and durability, better vision, more accurate and convenient clamp alignment, quicker movement and higher efficiency in compact stacking sites. Meanwhile, further improvement of the manufacturing process of critical parts makes it possible for efficient CNC processing in batches and more convenient for variant design of non-standard parts, which reduces lead time for the market.
In addition, we have the following options available as auxiliary measures for reducing paper roll damage, including Clamping force adjustment device (mechanical multi-position selective, electronic multi-position selective, hydraulic automatic type and intelligent adaptive type), clamping force testing and readout device, rotatory angle control device, forklift portal inclination adjustment device, split-arm type control valve and other devices that can be added to the forklift.
Sliding arm clamps fall on a major category of attachments. Once equipped with various clamp arms, the sliding motion type frame can clamp goods of different shapes. A soft pack clamp or pulp pack clamp with ribs on the arm is enabled with efficient mechanical handling of cotton packs, fiber packs or pulp packs; The contact face of the arm are furnished with multi-purpose clamps with rubber pads. Examples include the multi-purpose clamp with rubber pads on the arm contact faces, the tobacco carton clamp with small rubber pads, the drum clamp with circular rubber pad contact faces and the fork clamp with the pallet form as the clamp arm. General clamps apply to a wide range of forklift capacities. For instance, the soft pack clamp and the pulp bale clamp falling on its sub-category fit in forklifts with a capacity ranging from 2-12 tons. In addition, the basic frames of paper carton clamps and attachments falling on white household appliance that are developed on the basis of the basic structure of sliding motion-type arm and the characteristics of the working conditions for cartons of regular shape bear the structures of general clamps.
Such clamps are further classified into side-shift clamps and rotary clamps according to different motions of the frame. Different arm structures and contact face patterns for different operating objects bring up soft pack clamps (pulp bale clamps), multi-purpose clamps, tobacco carton clamps, fork clamps, brick clamps, drum clamps, dual purpose fork clamps and so on.
Cascade general clamps bear the following features: Solid and reliable frame and arm structure; middle part of the frame and elbow structure of the arm ensure good vision; durable sliding support structure that is applied in the sliding arm and frame ensures long maintenance cycle, low cost and easy replace of quick-wear parts; the casting arm base (elbow) features high strength and loading capacity; the strong and thin arm makes it a perfect tool in stacking sites for improving warehouse utilization and operating efficiency. The integrated control valve of side-shift clamps shows a simple structure and reliable performance and accommodates the control of 2 pairs of hydraulic actions, namely, the first action pair from the forklift hydraulic fluid input control valve are distributed by the hydraulic loop in the control valve and respectively reach the rod ports of a pair of oil cylinders connected to the left and the right arms, create lateral reciprocating motion and drive the closing and opening motions of the arms; while in case of the other pair, synchronous left and right motions are produced, thus not only realizing quick motion, but making it convenient for testing and maintenance as well. The spherical hinges at the joints parts on both ends of the cylinder ensure large arm opening and the ability of self-regulation even in case of heavy loading, thus realizing coaxial match, reducing faults and extending lifespan.
Since D series, we have got prepared for domestic production of soft pack clamps and multi-purpose steel arm clamps commencing from 35D and 50D, i.e., the type scope ensuring maximum market share of the segments with a capacity between 2-3 tones, after which we further expanded to 15D, X25D, 70D, 120G/140G/170G series to meet the new market needs. In terms of technology and manufacturing, critical parts of these products, such as hydraulic control valves, profiles and sliding supports were imported while structural components, general auxiliaries and fasteners were fabricated in-house, outsourced or purchases. Other products of large and special types were imported in whole to meet the domestic market demands.
Seeing the characteristics of the working conditions in the domestic paper-making industry, we have introduced Cascade Australian 4 series, domestic X55F and X70F series of all-steel sliding arms since 2003, which have further extended our product line and made available more options for our customers. F series sliding arm clamps that feature high structural strength and better shock resistance are particularly suitable for operations in waste paper stacking, de-stacking and feeding.
Based on market surveys on the brick industry and the sliding arm mechanism proven in the market, Cascade has developed the new brick clamp whose arms allow two-dimensional dual-directional adjustments. Such a structure accommodating automatic back-forth and down-up adjustments significantly improves distribution of the clamping force and ensures reliable clamping against unit brick goods, which reduces damage rate and is well received by customers both at home and abroad.
Facing the soaring diversified and personalized customer demands and the increasingly fierce competition, we have increased the percentage of self-made outsourcing parts and accelerated domestic production of CNC automatic welding/processing, castings, oil cylinders and rubber pads. Our above efforts for reducing cost and expediting delivery turned out a great success. Along with the steady improvement of non-standard part design capacity, we come closer to the market and respond to product and service needs more quickly.