Have a Spare Parts Kit for Your Labeling System? Why It Matters
Remember feeling young, unstoppable — like an F-15 Eagle crushing the sound barrier at 1,800 mph?
Hey — we all remember being 18, right? And we’re guessing back then you likely didn’t put too much stock in health insurance — at least not until you broke your leg chasing the sound barrier on a mountain bike.
Then those insurance premiums deducted from your paycheck probably sounded like a dollar store bargain.
It’s the same way with the spare parts kit of your labeling system. Nobody really thinks about it until something breaks down — then everything goes haywire.
Say a belt snaps, a wheel warps, the new guy in shipping runs over a printer with a forklift — it’s probably going to happen at the worst possible time. What’s your emergency plan? Do you have everything in your tool kit you need to get those labels flowing again?
Because if you don’t… oh shipwreck!
Don’t Be the Highway Squirrel
A spare parts kit includes all the parts critical to a labeling system — especially those parts that may be custom to a particular piece of equipment. While standard parts can be priority shipped overnight, custom engineered components will need to be specially machined — worked into the schedule of a manufacturing plant, tooled and processed. Other specialized parts may need to be ordered from a supplier. The whole ordeal could take weeks if not months.
And even if you’ve got 4 out of 5 critical components on hand — you’re still stuck like a squirrel in highway traffic. Good luck.
How Long Can You Afford to Be Down?
When you think about it, your labeling machine practically prints dollar bills like a Scrooge McDuck printing press. When it stops — so does the very flow of goods and products that funds your paycheck.
Some companies build in enough inventory to absorb 2 to 3 days in downtime. Others in time sensitive industries like food or medicine might only be able to handle a few hours. Some lines are even spewing out 400 products a minute — a warehouse worth of offloading swiftly piles skyhigh in an 8 hour shift. There’s barely any room to move — much less breath.
The costs soar at lightning speed. An offline labeling system might as well be on fire. Your spare parts kit is the extinguisher. Keep it stocked and handy.
What’s in Your Spare Parts Checklist?
Check with your distributor what critical inventory should be in your spare parts kit — and then double-check like Santa with insomnia. One slipped miss could cost you a manufacturing fortune — and a pallet’s worth of headache medication.
The list could include standard equipment — especially anything you can’t afford to be without for more than a day. But what’s critical are the customized parts and inventory — keep these on backstock. Miss one of those and you’re down for weeks, maybe months. We break into a cold sweat just thinking about it.
Why We Budget Spare Parts Right into the Bidding Process
At CTM Labeling, we understand why the spare parts kit is so critical. That’s why we insist it’s budgeted in during the bidding process. Most don’t think about it until it’s too late. Because when a system goes down, that $20 cylinder of salvation is nothing but a figment of your imagination. All you can do is pray — and wait — for someone to make you another one. It’s pretty frustrating.
We like to talk about the importance of ordering spare parts upfront. That way it’s already taken care of when you ask administration for budget approval. After all, you might not just be buying one labeling system — but multiple units that may each require their own inventory backup list. It’s nice to have all your ducks in a row.
We like to save you the headache — and the heart attack — by taking care of it all up front. That’s just how we prefer to do business.
Our Helpful Guide
How do you build a trouble free labeling system you don’t even have to think about? Simple. Download our FREE GUIDE, 7 Engineering Secrets to Stress Free Labeling, to learn how.
Have a question about how to find the right labeling system for your specific needs? We’d be happy to chat.