Product Review: Drive Cart by Caster Concepts
Posted on July 12, 2022 | in Ergonomics
VelocityEHS’ Jennie Gober meets up with Dr. Elmer Lee of Caster Concepts who describes the company’s newest ergonomic product offering.
Jennie: Hi, I’m Jennie Gober-Dustin, a Senior Consultant with Humantech (now VelocityEHS Ergonomics). Today, we’re at Castor Concepts in Albion, Michigan, and I’m joined by Dr. Elmer Lee, who is the Head of Engineering here at Castor Concepts. We’re here today to talk about the Drive Cart, which is a new product that you guys offer. Maybe you can start, Elmer, by explaining what the customers’ needs were, where this came from, and what caused you to create this product?
Elmer: Right. So, a lot of our automotive customers have asked us to develop casters that can carry more and more load and still meet ergonomic specs. So, we’ve tried for a number of years to do that, and at some point, we understood that you really needed to add a motor and a drive system to meet ergonomics and safety for these plants. And so now, what we’ve done is developed a drive cart that can carry about 6,000 pounds of load and move anywhere in the plant.
Jennie: Fantastic. Okay, and that’s certainly something that our clients have expressed as well, so it’s fantastic that you’ve created this. So maybe if you can walk me through some of the three key features that make this cart really special and unique.
Elmer: Sure. So, the first is the drive system. We call it the Drive Caster. It is a bolt-on system that will carry the load and be able to control the speed and give you directional control as well.
Jennie: Okay, fantastic. So again, it’s not the employees that are having to create the force exertion. It’s now the caster that’s doing the work for them, right?
Elmer: Right, it really creates a zero-force push cart.
Jennie: Very cool. Okay, very good. And what else?
Elmer: So, we also have a charging option. We’ve noticed that a lot of our customers say that this battery system doesn’t… they don’t want to charge it. They want to plug it in to charge it. So, we have something called an E-Gen Caster. As you’re towing it around, it’s actually charging itself, recharging itself, so that it never needs to be plugged in.
Jennie: And that’s again something that I’m sure customers would really like to see. That you no longer have a cart just sitting there idle. You can be using it all the time and really get a lot of efficiency out of this cart. Okay, great.
Elmer: So, the last really unique feature is this Auto Disengage when you’re actually towing. So, the Drive Caster actually acts as a brake when you don’t power it up. And so, when you’re trying to tow it, you actually have to lift it. When you activate the tongue, a sensor senses that, and it will automatically lift the Drive Caster and allow you to tow it around the plant.
Jennie: So, we have some built-in safety features but also some features that really make this versatile and so that this can be manually pushed, as well as you can hook it up to a tugger, which I think is really cool. There’s not a lot of carts that have that option.
Elmer: Yes, it has dual functionality. So, you can do drive and towing.
Jennie: Very cool. All right, well, thank you very much for your time again. Jennie Gober-Dustin with Humantech (now VelocityEHS Ergonomics), and here talking at Castor Concepts with Dr. Elmer Lee about the Drive Cart. Thanks very much.