Help counting products to ship?
January 18, 2012 1:02 PM   Subscribe

Where can I find something to help me count products I'm shipping?

We make a variety of products, all shaped about the size of a brick. We want to have them inspected, then sent through a funnel and counted, then dropped into a box for shipment. We can't find anything on the market to do this. Does anyone know where to find such a thing?
posted by pxharder to Work & Money (5 answers total)
Could you provide some more details about the physical process? There are optical counters that work by detecting the disturbance between two points (i.e., the beam spans a conveyor belt and gets broken by each box that goes by), there are counting scales that work by measuring a pallet and dividing by a pre-entered per-unit weight, there are mechanical clickers that work by detecting the toggle of a switch by some object physically brushing them, there are roller counters, there are...

I could go on.
posted by odinsdream at 1:04 PM on January 18, 2012

Digital Counters
Counting Scales

Depending on where you're located I can refer you to a mechanical engineer that specializes in deploying these kinds of systems on a line. Memail me for more information.
posted by odinsdream at 1:07 PM on January 18, 2012

Great question. We've relied upon counting scales to date but we're finding our products are so light that the variance in weight between two boxes might mean a significant amount of difference.

The other two options are the optical counter and the mechanical counter. Our products are assembled along a work table, then packaged for delivery. Physically, we'd like to have the counters to be mountable at the end of tables, then the products slid off the table, through the counters, and into the boxes. Once we hit our planned amount for the box, we stop and tape the box for shipment.
posted by pxharder at 1:09 PM on January 18, 2012

Sounds like the light beam option would work.
posted by odinsdream at 1:11 PM on January 18, 2012 [1 favorite]

You all are the best! I just looked at the light beam and that's exactly what I'm looking for. Thanks!!!!
posted by pxharder at 1:14 PM on January 18, 2012

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