Plastic components are playing an increasingly important role in intralogistics. Highly resilient and more cost-effective to produce than metal, these parts are used in state-of-the-art sorting systems and shuttles. Faigle – a producer of engineering plastics solutions and the leader in the plastic wheel market – is now firmly established in this high-performance segment thanks to its wide range of standard products and custom components: the group currently produces 25 million wheels per year for various industries. In 2020, Faigle will be showcasing its exciting products and services at the LogiMAT fair.
Austrian plastics specialist Faigle recognized the benefits of plastic over metal at an early stage and has developed components specifically for use in intralogistics. The company manufactures plastic components using injection molding, which delivers a range of advantages for facility operators. With this process, high-volume production is 20 times faster – and more cost effective. Injection molding also translates into short delivery times for plastic parts and components. “Faigle scores highly with intralogistics companies when they require large quantities quickly and at low cost. We produce half a million plastic wheels every week, and this underlines our capacity and flexibility when it comes to handling customers’ orders,” comments Chiara Steiner, Director Sales & Business Development Intralogistics at Faigle. The products on display at Faigle’s stand at LogiMAT in Stuttgart (DE) from 10-12 March 2020 will include its latest shuttle wheels.
High plant availability
Shuttle systems are an increasingly popular choice for companies with high warehouse throughput and large numbers of orders. The trend towards autonomous transportation devices is also fueling demand for shuttle wheels. A major consideration with high-performance shuttles is availability, as breakdowns can be expensive. The shuttle wheels which Faigle will display at LogiMAT already have a strong reputation in the industry. They are injection-molded in a single production stage, so the tire is an integral part of the wheel. “Strong adhesion of the tire to the hub plays an important part in system reliability. Producing shuttle wheels using injection molding is extremely efficient, so we can offer it at low cost. What’s more, the true-to-life quality and endurance tests we carry out in house give our customers additional peace of mind – before the parts even enter service,” Steiner explains.
In-house custom developments
Intralogistics shuttles often produce vibrations that cause packages to shift out of position, slide or tilt. In order to overcome this problem, many facility developers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) take advantage of Faigle’s expertise to continuously improve their systems. They bring the plastics specialists on board as a partner to develop special components tailored precisely to their requirements. The benefit for OEMs is that Faigle has invested in building high-end master molds. “Our customers can save substantial costs, especially with custom shuttle wheels with diameters of between 80mm and 150mm,” Steiner points out. Then, mold inserts are all that are required for bespoke solutions, which reduces the initial costs for customized solutions. Faigle’s extensive stocks of thermoplastic pellets and ball bearings also ensure a high degree of flexibility in production.
Faigle produces all of its injection-molded intralogistics components at its plants in Europe and Asia – a powerful selling point for OEMs with a global presence. “We have two production facilities where we produce exactly the same products to exactly the same quality standards. This means we’re always close to our customers and can quickly deliver anywhere in the world. In Asia, we use production and quality assurance systems which are identical to those we employ in Europe. They are the product of our 70 years of experience with plastics,” Steiner concludes. Today, Faigle’s wheels set the standard in the global market.
About The Faigle Group
Faigle produces, adapts and sells engineering plastic solutions. It is the leader in the plastic wheel market. The company’s products are used in mechanical and plant engineering, as well as in various devices – primarily in intralogistics, escalators and moving walks, railway systems and public transport. The majority of the plastic wheels currently on the market are based on Faigle’s developments and inventions. Every year, Faigle delivers millions of wheels from big-name manufacturers for use in warehouse logistics, sorting and conveying systems. All of the world’s top escalator manufacturers have put their faith in Faigle’s solutions, including Schindler, Kone, Thyssenkrupp, Otis, Hitachi, Fujitec and Mitsubishi.
With around 70 years of experience in plastics engineering, this Austrian family business develops and produces plastic components for its own range, as well as bespoke parts tailored to customers’ needs. The company also deals in semi-finished plastic products. The Faigle Group has a total of four sites in Europe and Asia, where it also carries out production. The group comprises the parent Faigle Holding and Faigle Kunststoffe GmbH (Hard, Austria), Faigle Industrieplast GmbH (Hard, Austria), Faigle Igoplast AG (Au, Switzerland) and Faigle Engineering Plastics Co. (Suzhou, China). Faigle collaborates closely with customers, suppliers, partners and research facilities around the world.
Faigle Group: facts and figures
Managing Directors: Wolfgang Faigle, Roland Bartenbach
Employees: 470 (288 in Europe, incl. 270 in AT)
Revenue, 2019: EUR 75m
Business purpose: Developing and producing engineering plastics solutions, plastics processing and trading in semi-finished plastic products
Lines of business: Engineering plastics solutions for escalators and lifts (passenger movement), intralogistics, railways and public transport
Headquarters: Faigle Kunststoffe GmbH (Hard, AT)
Locations: Faigle Kunststoffe GmbH (Hard, AT), Faigle Industrieplast GmbH (Hard, AT), Faigle Igoplast AG (Au, CH), Faigle Engineering Plastics Co. (Suzhou, CN)
Export ratio: 72%
ikp Vorarlberg GmbH