Semi-Automatic vs. Automatic Palletizers: Features & Benefits

Are you considering deploying an automatic or semi-automatic palletizing system in your warehouse to increase productivity and lower costs
Here are just a few benefits of implementing automated or semi-automated palletizing systems:

Automatic Palletizers — Benefits and Features

An automatic (robotic) palletizer is a machine that automatically builds up a stackable unit from individual pieces on conveyor belts. These machines typically have one or more feeders to feed individual products onto the line where they are conveyed along until they reach one or more accumulators where they are stored until needed by another component in the process. 
Benefits of investing in an automatic palletizer:
  • Speed - Automatic palletizers are highly desirable due to their rapid speed. Unassisted by human operators, they can create up to six pallets per minute, making them a great fit for companies needing to store large amounts of items quickly and effectively.
  • Accuracy - Automatic machines are more accurate in placing your product on pallets than or semi-automatic palletizers. They can detect errors like misaligned bins and wrong spacing between items, and adjust accordingly, thus reducing waste in production.
  • Versatility - Various grippers give the robot great versatility and constitute one of the robotic palletizer’s most important elements. Its specialized end-of-arm tooling can be adapted to almost every need. From vacuum to lateral, finger, and magnetic grippers, they are designed to handle multiple types of containers at a time, regardless of their shape.
  • Safety - Advanced capabilities make manual assembly safer, reducing the risk of repetitive motion injuries since no hands need to be inside machinery during operation.
Features of automatic palletizers like include:
  • Intuitive drag and drop operation
  • Product-friendly handling
  • Overlapping of bags
  • Perfectly straight stacking
  • High efficiency
  • Low maintenance
WATCH the SYMACH Mach Series Palletizer in action:

Semi-Automatic Palletizers — Benefits and Features

Semi-automatic palletizers are easy to maintain and operate, making them a good option for smaller warehouses on a limited budget.
As the name ‘semi-automatic- suggests, the machines can be programmed to load and unload products onto pallets automatically, or the operator can manually override this action. 
Benefits of investing in a semi-automatic palletizer:
  • Cost - Semi-automatic machines are also typically less expensive than their automatic counterparts — which makes them attractive to small companies that don’t have huge budgets for equipment.
  • Versatility - Semi-automatic palletizers can Palletize cases, trays, display trays, totes, or bags
  • Efficiency - product feed from any direction
  • Safety - Eliminate bending and lifting to palletize cases
  • Scalable - Easily upgrade to automatic operation
Features of semi-automatic palletizers:
  • Versatile design
  • Convenient for Operators — Operators can reach and handle cases or crates as they move along an overhead conveyor at a height that does not require strenuous lifting.
  • Minimal maintenance
  • Manual override capabilities

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Which one should you choose: A Semi-Automatic or Automatic palletizer?

When you need to produce pallets of boxes, bags, and crates of root vegetables and other fresh produce, consider your options carefully before purchasing palletizing equipment. 
The best palletizer depends on the work area, speed needs, and available budget.
When in doubt, your budget will always be an excellent place to start. Starting with a semi-automatic palletizer can help increase your output, thereby increasing ROI. 
Pepper Equipment will be happy to upgrade your machine to an automatic palletizer when appropriate.
today to discuss solutions customized to your warehouse needs.