The Swabian equipment and machinery manufacturer Weckenmann, renowned supplier to the precast concrete industry, is distinguished by the wide product range, among others. Everything from one source: that is the successful company philosophy, according to which the long-established company completely designs, develops and manufactures its entire product portfolio at its own factory. The profound know-how and the comprehensive experience of the staff members as well as the high-grade machine park form the foundation of the excellent quality of all products.
Especially for the production of pallets, formwork, and shuttering systems, a new production hall covering 3,000 m² furnished with state-of-the-art equipment for formwork construction was already built in 2007. There, a well-established and experienced team is manufacturing a wide variety of molds and shuttering systems in excellent quality. No matter whether pallets or shuttering systems with magnet technology for circulation systems, stationary formwork units such as tilting tables, battery molds or molds for bar-shaped concrete components – there is the right product for any customer requirement.
Retrofit – turn old into new
A lot of precast producers use their plants over periods of more than 20 years, so that machines and shuttering systems show signs of wear after such a long service life. However, only a production plant that is competitively well-positioned in technical terms is able to respond to the growing challenges of the market.
The shuttering pallets, in particular, are of crucial importance for the surface finish and thus the product quality of a precast concrete element. Grooves or unevenness on the pallet surface have a negative impact on the surface finish of the precast concrete element. In many cases, the side rail of the pallet is also affected over the years.
Weckenmann not only supplies new machines, pallets, and shuttering systems at the highest level, but also repairs them for their customers. The experience gained over decades in the matter of new machines and equipment as well as retrofit makes Weckenmann an expert in all fields. Consequently, the pallets are carefully processed in excellent workmanship in order to achieve the tight evenness tolerances and the high-grade shuttering surface. „Because only this allows us to secure our high quality,“ says Dietmar Kiene, sales manager at Weckenmann.
Over 100 pallets refurbished in one year
In particular, for shuttering systems and pallets a retrofit is often an interesting alternative to new pallets or shuttering systems. In the process of pallet restoration, the shuttering pallets are sandblasted, straightened, sanded, and repainted. If necessary, the side rail is also retrofitted or replaced. As a result, the pallets have shuttering surfaces that are equivalent to new ones.
It has been shown that the restoration of the shuttering pallets costs about one third in comparison to a replacement, although the actual cost advantage is dependent on the actual state of the pallet to be restored.
So as not to interrupt the production process in the plant, the existing pallets and shuttering profiles can be removed one by one, restored and then reintroduced into the process. In practice, this means that the customer delivers a truck load of pallets or shuttering profiles to Weckenmann and takes back already restored products. These ones are reintroduced into the production process at the precast factory.
Using this interplay, many of Weckenmann‘s customers successfully renovated their old shuttering systems or pallets in the past. So more than 100 pallets were refurbished by Weckenmann in 2017 alone.
Pallet restoration for Betonwerk Bürkle
One of these customers is the Bürkle precast concrete plant located in Sasbach. The family-owned company was founded in 1957, is managed by Johannes Bürkle in the second generation and has an excellent reputation. In a survey conducted on behalf of Focus Money, the company was awarded top marks in terms of product quality, price-performance ratio, reliability, and safety at the end of 2017 for the fourth time in a row. „In order to ensure the quality of the final products, we exclusively acquire brand-name products and premium services from our partners and suppliers,“ Johannes Bürkle states.
In the course of the modernization of their pallet circulation system, Betonwerk Bürkle had its almost 30-year-old shuttering pallets renovated, too. In this process, the pallets were furnished with alignment points for the newly installed shuttering robot system. In addition, the pallets deformed in longitudinal direction were straightened, the damages on the steel plate build-up by welding and afterward the shuttering surfaces were completely sanded on a special machine. „We are very satisfied with the result of the restoration of our pallets at Weckenmann. The shuttering surfaces of restored pallets are as good as new, this is way beyond my expectations. As far as the costs are concerned, the restoration is really unbeatable compared to a replacement, too,“ expressed Johannes Bürkle obviously very pleased about the outcome.
Restoration of shuttering profiles
Apart from the shuttering pallets, the shuttering profiles above all are important for the product quality of a precast concrete element: first-class precast elements can only be manufactured with high-quality molds. Therefore, it is also true here: A restoration pays off. It is often less expensive than a new shuttering profile. Deformations, unevenness or damaged automatic switching equipment, but also a reduced adhesive force of built-in magnets owing to damages of the holding surface, among others, can be eliminated at Weckenmann in Dormettingen. The shuttering profiles are brought back into tip-top shape and, if necessary, furnished with new parts.