Krone facility doubles capacity following €11.3M upgrade

German OEM, Krone, has established two new assembly lines at its Herzlake site to ramp up dry freight trailer output.

Capacity has increased to more than 180 units per week, made possible by a site investment of €11.3 million.

Krone said in a statement the Dry Liner with smooth steel body and clinched sidewalls is manufactured on the ‘STG’ (smooth steel body) assembly line.

“This robust all-rounder with full-sided keyhole plates as standard can be equipped with further equipment and load securing variants, for example with a double-deck device,” said Krone.

“On the second assembly line ‘STP’ (steel plywood), the Dry Liner Plywood is the next Highrunner to be produced. Here, too, the Plywood sidewalls can be combined with all the standard equipment variants available on the market. Thanks to the flexible modular system, other body types such as lightweight plastic sidewalls and sandwich panels are also possible on request.

“All body types are equipped with a steel roof as standard, but can also be combined with a translucent plastic roof or an insulated roof if required. The Dry Liner thus always offers the right solution for everyday transport – whether for general cargo, CEP companies (courier, express, parcel), moving and furniture logistics, or the textile industry. In the course of close cooperation with customers from a wide range of industries, Krone has developed a multitude of functions and practical details for a wide variety of applications over the years.

“For particularly theft-prone goods such as cigarettes, electronics and perfume, the Dry Liner STG with its double-walled forklift collision protection and galvanized steel smooth-wall cassettes is the ideal solution. On the other hand, anyone transporting temperature-sensitive goods such as varnishes and paints is on the safe side with the Dry Liner SDK LI with light insulation. In addition, the Dry Liner not only ensures that the goods arrive dry, but also always communicates the trailer’s location and other vehicle-relevant data thanks to Krone telematics.”

The panels, up to 13.6m long, whether made of plywood, plastic or foamed sandwich, are inserted in one piece.

Krone’s Herzlake facility is highly automated, using a a driverless transport system for order-picked line supply, which takes over essential material supply tasks directly in the assembly area. New paths are also being taken in gluing technology. Pre-assembly of the GRP and ISO roof variants is now carried out using an automated gluing table. Also, automated sidewall production has doubled with the addition of another gluing table.

“The new assembly lines focus on work ergonomics, occupational safety and increased efficiency,” said Krone Factory Manager – Herzlake, Sascha Kwiecinski.

“This can be seen, for example, in the new ‘Krone screwdriving technology’, which is characterised by battery-powered screwdrivers and a targeted screw drop design.

“The entire product range had already been fundamentally revised in the run-up to the fair in order to further enhance quality and further increase customer benefits. Numerous robot production lines were also implemented as part of the extensive automation.”

In addition to Dry Liners, Krone also manufactures swap bodies and swap flatbeds as well as CEP vehicles for courier and express trips at its Herzlake site. A key quality feature is the extremely robust corrosion protection provided by the KTL-plus powder coating for the chassis – up to a length of 16m, a height of up to 3.2m and a width of up to 2.6m.

Herzlake is also home to Krone’s automated component production. Components such as rear doors, end walls, drop sides as well as centre and corner stanchions for the entire Krone vehicle program are produced in the robot-assisted production facility.

Commenting on the double-digit million investment in the Herzlake site, Managing Director Bernhard Brüggen said: “Due to the very positive demand for interchangeable systems and Dry Liners, Krone has significantly increased production capacity at the Herzlake site. Our Dry Liners and our swap systems stand for high product quality combined with numerous innovative load securing solutions and are therefore in high demand.”

The total area of the Herzlake plant covers around 352,000 square meters. In summer 2021, the next expansion stage will be reached with the relocation of swap body assembly to the new hall. This assembly line has also been completely redesigned.

Krone has invested 11.3 million euros in the new assembly hall at the Herzlake site.