Success Stories

Itoh Denki's PM635FS Roller Provides Heavy Duty Solution for Houston Distributing (August 1, 2006)

     As one of the largest Miller Brewing distributors in Texas, Houston Distributing of Houston Texas knows the importance of customer satisfaction. In order to maintain their high standard of excellence, Houston Distributing looked for a retrofit to their existing conveyor line. Facing the daunting task of conveying pallets of alcoholic beverages safely while expediently, they turned to Itoh Denki for a solution. The original conveyor system was initially installed with a belt drive under the rollers that was engaged by means of pneumatics. The main problem was when cases would break. This would cause the drive belt to get wet and sticky. The belt couldn’t drive the rollers when wet and the pallets would get stuck requiring that they get pushed until the belt dried out. The belt would also sometimes walk off their drive rollers when spills occurred.

     The conveyor was refurbished to use Itoh Denki PowerMoller® 24 motorized rollers and control cards. The roller that was chosen was Itoh Denki’s PM635FS. This particular roller is ideally suited for pallet handling applications. With its 2 1/2” diameter, heavy duty construction, and strong motor torque, the PM635FS turned out to be a perfect fit. The controls were retrofitted using the existing PLC, I/O wiring, and sensors. The 24VDC outputs that were controlling the pneumatics were connected to Itoh Denki’s CB-016S2 driver card run signals. Only minor PLC program modifications were required to adjust some timing. The system provides complete automation of the distribution of beer in cases. The product arrives directly from the bottling plants in the form of uniform cases stacked on reusable plastic pallets. The system handles unpacking the pallets, sorting, stacking, shrink wrapping, labeling and manifesting orders for wholesale distribution. The product that is conveyed on the out-feed system is assorted stacked cases that weigh up to 1800lbs. per pallet. The conveyor is set to operate at 36 FPM. The total system can distribute up to 4000 cases per hour.

     After installation it became apparent that the motorized roller was ideal for the company. The benefits that were the reason to justify the retrofit costs are reliability, less down time, easier maintenance, and smoother conveying. Itoh Denki is proud to have teamed up with the fine organization of Houston Distributing to assist them in their motorized roller needs.



After almost 9 years in service we followed up with Houston Distributing to see how the Itoh Denki solution was working. We asked them a few questions regarding their decision to try Itoh Denki PowerMollers in their facility. Here are some of the comments from Houston Distributing regarding their choice of Itoh.

Are the Itoh rollers able to perform to your rigorous demands?

  • “Our operation runs 18-20 hours a day, 5 days a week. That doesn’t leave a lot of time for preventative maintenance so the system has to be tough with reliable components like the Itoh Denki powered rollers.”

Has downtime been an issue at your facility since the change to the Itoh motorized rollers?

  • “If a roller or driver card does fail only a small section of the conveyor is down and the rest of the system continuous running while it is replaced. This results in almost no interruption in production.”

How does the Itoh Denki product compare to other conveyor technologies?

  • “Compared to other conveyor technologies the motorized rollers are much simpler to replace”

How many rollers and driver cards have you replaced since the inception of this program?

  • “We still have almost all of the original replacement rollers sitting in our maintenance cage. We have rarely replaced any rollers or driver cards. Rollers that have been replaced were damaged somehow and didn’t actually fail under normal use”

Origianl Project Quantities                                                                    Spares Quantities that were ordered for inventory

(148)      PM635FS-20-1047-D-024                                                     (10)  PM635FS-20-1047-D-024  (6 remaining in the stock room)

(79)        PM635FS-20-1250-D-024                                                      (5)  PM635FS-20-1250-D-024  (3 remaining in the stock room)

(227)      CB-016S2                                                                              (15)  CB-016S2  (11 remaining in the stock room)