The installation at the facility, which represents Kimura’s first venture outside of its native Japan and is used for manufacturing rapid prototype castings and small-lot production services, took just three weeks.

Mark Drake, territory sales at Service Crane Co., explained that originally only five top-running cranes were required—two 3t and three 2t—but the end user requested an additional 3t unit when the others were already installed. The larger ones all have a bridge span of 63.1ft.

Drake added: “We continue to embrace the varied material handling challenges of Kimura, which has already involved supplying below-the-hook equipment to connect our lifting machinery to the facility’s varied loads.”

Kimura established the facility with the goal of becoming the “world’s number one clean foundry”, and is pioneering factory operation based on ‘5S’: sort, set in order, shine, standardise, and sustain. Cody White, environmental health and safety coordinator at the Shelbyville site, oversaw the installation of the R&M cranes and conducted operator training, and said that Kimura’s automated systems are recognised for an ability to reduce performance variation and increase safe operation, as well as to improve productivity. The company’s clean factory operation effectively reduces workplace accidents and risks, added White.

The processes adopted by Kimura shorten industry-standard lead times by months, delivering final products to customers within 5–7 days. Because of this, the company relies on crane components and parts that are readily available, easily serviced, and provide dependability.