Orchestra Premaman: relocation, refurbishment and ready to roll

Orchestra Prémaman made the decision to centralize their logistics activities. Their ambitious location in Arras will strengthen their digital activity. With this relocation came a challenging task. The move of their 75 meter long fashion sorter and conveyors.

The fashion brand Orchestra Prémaman is focused on maternity and children clothing. They have around 300 stores mainly located in France, Belgium and Switzerland.

Manual infeed with hoppers that bring the items to induction operators

The existing split tray sorter had been in use for 9 years and was good to go for many more. Therefore the decision was made to relocate and update the existing sorter. This solution provided benefits in terms of Total Cost of Ownership, but also greatly reduces the environmental impact of this project.

With the Equinox sorter doctor program we extend the lifetime of existing sorters by updating, expanding or relocating. We provide this service for our own machinery, but are also capable of taking over other brands.

Split tray sorter used for fashion items

Updating the existing machinery to improve efficiency

In the past years, the company has boosted its online activities and therefore the product scope of Orchestra Prémaman changed. The sorter itself is fit to sort these items, but the discharge station was originally designed for solely fashion items such as fine clothing and accessories. To allow efficient sorting of all products, two modifications were necessary.

  1. Allow sorting of a wider product range.
    The destination stations were perfectly designed to handle fashion items. But cartons? Not so much. As the number of cartons that needed sorting increased over the past few years, the stations needed to allow sorting of these cartons as well.
  2. Allow full utilisation of discharge stations.
    The sorter was equipped with double trays: two trays next to each other. However, the trays on the inside of the sorter only allowed sorting into the destinations on the inside. The same was true for the outside destinations. However, items were inserted on both inside and outside trays. In the old design, each destination needed to have one station on the inside and one on the outside. By installing flipper plates (image below) that guide products to the right discharge station, products can be sorted from both trays to the inside and outside. In new installations this could drastically reduce your system footprint. In this case it doubled the number of functional stations.
Flipper plates guide products to either left or right destination

Disassemble, optimize & reinstall

Transitic was the main contractor for this project and installed the WCS and the conveyors. Equinox was responsible for the relocation and updating of the sorter. It has now been disassembled in the old warehouse and travelled roughly one thousand kilometres to the centralized warehouse in Arras. There, the sorter was fully optimised to fit its new function and brought back up to speed. Ready to run for another decade.

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Project specifications

  • Relocated the split tray sorter from Montpellier to Arras
  • Installed new flipper plates to increase the number of stations to 440 stations
  • Updated the controls
  • Manual infeed with hoppers to feed the operators
  • Sorts 14,400 items per hour

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