Reduce Pallet Costs With Slip Sheets
Many material handling operations are starting to use slip sheets in place of pallets to save money and increase efficiency.
The material handling industry is always growing, changing and improving. Although wooden pallets have been the de facto standard in warehouses for many years, more and more operations are starting to use slip sheets instead of pallets.
What Are Slip Sheets?
Slip sheets are thin sheets of paper, cardboard or plastic that come in a wide range of sizes and configurations for many types of material handling applications. Like traditional pallets, they are positioned beneath a load and are used to push or pull goods on and off of a forklift.
Slip Sheet Forklift Attachments
In order to use slip sheets, you generally need a special attachment for your forklift. There are two main options:
Push/Pull: this attachment tightly grips the slip sheet and pulls both the sheet and product onto platens, which are wide, thin forks designed for use with slip sheets.
Roller Forks: roller forks have multiple sets of rollers along the length of the forks, allowing the operator to slide the forks under the slip sheet as opposed to clamping on to the sheet an pulling it. Roller forks can also be used with other types of products that don’t rely on slip sheets.
Because slip sheets are inexpensive and consume very little storage space, they are becoming very popular in many different industries.
Slip sheets vs. Pallets
Slip sheets offer numerous advantages versus traditional pallets:
- Unit Cost: While many pallets can be $10 or more, slip sheets are often less than $1.00 apiece, making them a very economical choice.
- Storage Density: Pallets are several inches high and consume racking space within a warehouse. Eliminating pallets allows you to fit a substantial number of additional goods in a warehouse.
- Transportation Cost: Without the size and weight of pallets, more products can be loaded onto a trailer and there is no need to transport the extra weight of pallets.
- Labor Cost Reduction: Slip sheets can be readily disposed of and they are far easier to pick up and move around a facility.
- Eco Friendly: Because most slip sheets are highly recyclable paper or cardboard, they are more sustainable than using wood products.
In general, slip sheets are best for uniform goods, as opposed to mixed pallets with different carton shapes, sizes or weights. They make the most sense in high volume environments where all or most loads can be packed on slip sheets and the return on forklift attachment investment can be easily justified.