New paint shop at STAS Factory Tournai
You’ve probably already seen STAS trailers in all possible colours on international motorways. One time you may pass a matte black trailer, the next a bright red one or a sparkling white moving floor trailer. At STAS we do everything we can to make the transport of bulk goods a real pleasure. This also means that our customers can fully personalise their semi-trailer from start to finish through specialised options but also through a unique colour matching their branding. While we’ve been doing this for some time, we have now also looked at the effect this has on our planet and our own employees. That’s why we’ve installed a brand-new lacquering line at The STAS Factory Tournai to make the painting process of our walking floor trailers even more sustainable.
Collaboration with Squadron
In order to make this project as efficient as possible, in March 2021 we called upon Squadron, a community of experts in optimising business processes. They had a look at our way of working and our machines and guided us through the entire process. They took care of the planning and technical follow-up of the entire project. Before the start of this project, STAS Tournai had 2 spray booths in which they worked manually. It was decided to demolish the oldest booth and the other booth is now being used to paint the chassis manually. Thanks to the partnership with Squadron, we were able to successfully finalise this project in October 2021.
From raw aluminium to highly finished trailer
At STAS Factory Tournai, we invested in a cutting-edge paint shop: a brand-new spray booth, spray robot, drying booth and sanding machine. The purpose? To make the painting process of our walking floor trailers more efficient and to protect our people from contact with potentially harmful substances.
When a new moving floor trailer is completely built, it first passes a sanding machine before being painted. This way, we avoid irregularities and the paintwork lasts longer. Where employees used to sand aluminium manually, we now have a sanding machine. This greatly reduces the number of working hours and ensures that our employees are less exposed to potentially harmful substances released during this process through the products that they use and the fine particles that are released during the sanding process. Once the walking floor trailer has been completely sanded, it can proceed to the spray booth.
Due to the new paint robot, we can deliver even better paint job to our customers and we have more control over the layer thickness. This has enabled us to achieve considerable paint savings. This in turn ensures that we emit less solvents and other harmful substances. Good news for our employees and the planet! Thanks to the new lacquering line, our employees can also work in a more ergonomic way: the large surfaces are sprayed by the painting robot, so that they can focus on the precision work on the front and back of the trailers.
Within this project, we have also optimised the drying booth. The drying booth now maintains a constant high temperature instead of constantly cooling and reheating. This allows us to be more efficient with our energy consumption.
The result? The capacity of the paint shop has increased considerably.
Now that the project has been completed, we continue to investigate and optimise other matters. For example, we are looking into the automatic mixing systems to make them work more efficiently and to capture more data. We are also looking at how we can further improve the paint quality and develop the optimal workflow.