Adelaide-based car recycler U Pull It Auto Recyclers (Upullit) has seen a 20 – 30 per cent improvement in saleable recovery after purchasing Kobelco SK135 Multi Car Dismantlers as part of its long-term business growth strategy.
The key to the improved recycling recovery has been the efficiency of the mechanical dismantling, with Director Mark Kraulis saying, “Without the Kobelco machines, it was not economical to recycle some components.”
Mark says that the machine’s comfort and capacity to handle growth beyond the current intake of 700 cars per month across three yards was a key factor in the purchase.
He explained, “The decision to purchase the Kobelco dismantlers came after extensive local and international research, and we see them as a key element of the next stage of our business growth strategy.
“They are purpose-designed for the application, and the patented clamp design had auto recycling as its primary target.”
These purpose-built machines have a clamp arm attached to the frame for holding a car while a rotating nibbler attachment on the boom precisely removes the various components that are recycled separately.
This nibbler allows surrounding metal to be removed to provide access to components. It allows the components to be selectively removed and it allows the metal to be folded into compressed blocks that are consolidated in Sierra S5 Evo balers bought at the same time as the Kobelco machines.
The Upullit investment in the Kobelco SK135 dismantlers went well beyond the machines themselves. It provided Upullit with an opportunity to provide a safer environment for its workers by largely removing manual handling, and gave workers the opportunity to upskill to operate the Kobelco dismantlers. This provided workers with a comfortable air conditioned working environment with low noise levels, light lever action and good sight lines to the nibbler and clamp.
An experienced operator has taken primary responsibility for training, and within a two to three week period workers without previous operating experience have become proficient in understanding the mechanical recycling process and in operating the machine.
Upullit is a recognised industry leader, having received the 2012 APRAA (Auto Parts Recyclers Association of Australia) award for being Australia’s most environmentally aware auto recycler.
Its business model of maintaining a current parts list on the internet, allowing customers to remove their parts in a safe environment, providing a 12-month guarantee and having a customer reward system is innovative in the auto recycling industry.
The commissioning of the Kobelco dismantlers takes the already acclaimed Upullit operational and environmental performance to a new level of recycling and throughput capability, and involved relaying of the yards at Elizabeth, Lonsdale and Gilman.
Prior to the dismantlers processing the cars, the fuel, engine oil, brake, transmission oil, coolant, and battery fluid are drained for recycling. Air conditioner gas is also removed, and tyres are removed for recycling. By doing this in a purpose-built contained area, the risk of contamination from vehicles is greatly reduced.
The Upullit path to operational and environmental leadership commenced in 1998, and over time Mark has put together the team and operational and reporting systems to achieve that goal. The Kobelco dismantlers are a key element in Upullit’s efforts to continue to lead the auto recycling industry.