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Weighing things up

Weighing up your options for material handling

Author: Sharon Ensbury/27 July 2015/Categories: PRODUCT GUIDANCE, Stock handling

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In the collection at the British Museum, among many other fine things, is a small cast lion weight, found in what is now modern day Turkey. Made from a tin/bronze alloy and dating to the fifth century BC, it’s evidence of the fact that weights have been used to measure commodities for trade since ancient times, just as they are today

In Roman Britain, a system of standardised weights was used to sell farm produce and food, while the weight of gold and silver coinage was also strictly monitored. This practice was continued for many centuries, but as technology advanced and industrial practices changed, larger weighing systems were required. The invention of the platform scale in 1830 meant that for the first time, large items such as crates or wagonloads could be accurately weighed. This was a big improvement from the previous method of suspending the item over a beam, which often resulted in damage to either the load or the beam, especially when dealing with very heavy objects.

In modern materials handling, the use of weighing systems is an important part of the handling process. When bulk handling materials such as grains, ores or liquids, weight is used as a measure to define the quantity of goods being processed. Scales are used when working with lifting trucks, cranes or other transport apparatus, to ensure the items being moved are within a safe weight range for the machinery. Scales are also essential when packing parcels to be posted, an important part of e-commerce, and even the transportation process is subject to weight restrictions, with certain vehicles deemed too heavy to travel on all roads or bridges.

At Action Handling, we supply several different types of weighing systems for use across different areas of industry. From our pallet truck weigh scale, which can handle loads of up to 2000kg while moving items across your warehouse, to a simple mechanical bench scale that only takes 10kg, our range covers almost all possibilities. We also carry platform scales, bench scales and crane scales, each with varying capacities – our sales staff are also always on hand if you’re not sure exactly which item you need.

So when you place your parcel on a scale,  your pallet on the truck or your grains into the silo, think back to the person who used that little lion weight two millennia ago. While you may be separated by centuries of technological advances, chances are he or she would recognise exactly what you’re doing and how it works.


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