ULMA Construction, one of the leading suppliers of formwork and scaffolding systems, was able to quickly create new storage capacity for formwork panels by installing an OHRA cantilever racking system outside. The plywood panels are protected from the weather in the 58 metre long outdoor rack by an integrated roof and a clad back wall. To be able to store the differently dimensioned panels without bending them, OHRA adjusted the distances between the rack uprights accordingly and varied them within the rack.
Inefficient floor storage
ULMA Construction generates most of its revenue from the rental of its formwork and scaffolding systems. This means that the maintenance of the elements plays a crucial role – only if all parts are always in perfect condition is it possible to pour concrete without defects and ensure a smooth supply of formwork elements to the construction site. For this reason, ULMA always keeps up to 20,000 square metres of coated plywood in stock, which can be used to repair and refurbish the formwork systems. Previously, the panels were stored on the floor. However, this took up a lot of space in the factory and meant that the plywood panels had to be moved by forklift each time to access the panels behind them. This made the whole storage situation confusing and inefficient.
Outdoor racking system frees up space in the production hall
ULMA took the introduction of a new concrete formwork system in Germany as an opportunity to implement a new warehouse for the plywood panels. An outdoor cantilever rack was the quickest and simplest solution to create additional storage space in a short period of time. Building regulations in the state of Hesse allowed for the construction of a cantilever rack over 6 metres high and 58 metres long without having to wait for a building or installation permit.
An integrated, 2 metre deep roof and a trapezoidal sheet metal back wall protect the stored plywood panels from the elements. One challenge was that the panels ranged in size from 3.3 x 2.4 metres to 0.6 x 0.3 metres. To prevent the panels from bending during storage, OHRA adjusted the distance between the uprights and varied it within the rack: The distance between 26 uprights is 1,000mm, the distance between the remaining 27 uprights is 1,200mm. Thus, all formats can be stored safely, and the space can be used well.
Efficient expansion of storage space
The huge racking system was implemented within six months, without affecting operations. With the new racking system, ULMA has efficiently expanded its storage area and created an orderly storage of plywood panels.