Doncaster based CEFCO is the distribution arm of CEF, the UK’s leading electrical wholesale network, which ensures the regular supply of the company’s wide range of electrical products to its national and international outlets. Due to a marked increase in the volume of goods handled at the warehouse, the need to make maximum use of the storage space available became a priority. By bringing in an Aisle-Master as a replacement for reach trucks CEFCO has been able to increase storage density by 30% in its 37,000 ft2 footprint.

”The upsurge in business coincided with our fleet of reach trucks nearing the end of their working life,” explains Warehouse Manager Neil Dillon, “so we were very receptive to a suggestion from Gary Hawkhead of Forkway that we look at a more space saving system. The Aisle-Master’s ability to work in narrow aisles has enabled us to drastically reduce the widths between racking and increase the pallet count from 1,300 to 2,000. This has also avoided the need for additional outlay on extra warehousing facilities.”

Aisle-Masters have a reputation for build quality and reliable operation, and Neil was  struck by this when he looked at the various articulated brands on the market. “You could tell just by its appearance that it stood out from the rest – we all liked the fact that it is a sturdy piece of well engineered kit with a high end finish, made of solid steel with no flimsy fibre glass panels.” In practice the truck has proved to be as reliable as it is good looking: it has a 100% operational record in its 18 months of service and has had no need of any attention from Forkway’s service engineers.

The AC electric powered Aisle-Master’s  versatility enables it to work as a reach truck for outside offloading and loading, before taking the pallets to the interior racking. With lift capacities of up to 12.5m it easily copes with CEFCO’s top racking height of 8m. “The articulated system was new to us when we made the change from reach trucks,” says Neil, “but we are more than happy with the outcome. Our drivers adapted easily, we have increased our warehouse capacity and we know that we can reliably fulfill any delivery schedules that are required.”

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