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Keep Things Ergonomic and Economic With A Modular Building Kit

Ergonomics — the science is making sure that everything you work with on a daily basis is both accessible and comfortable to use — isn’t a goal to be reached. It’s a process that we engage in with the goal of improving productivity and reducing injuries that come from repetitive stress. The big challenge of ergonomics is that even small changes in the height, weight, or other physical attributes of a worker can cause significant differences in what constitutes an ergonomically correct environment for that worker.

Building an ergonomic work station can’t be a one-size-fits-all project — but at the same time, no company is going to pay for a completely unique workstation for each of its employees. The best answer is the use of a modular building kit that will allow the same basic materials to be infinitely adjusted for each worker’s needs — even if those needs change over time.

A modular workstation building kit from Peerless Engineering offers you some significant advantages:

  • The highest possible load-bearing capacity, allowing you to set up the widest possible variety of equipment — even the heaviest items — on the workstation.
  • Most workstations can be assembled by a single individual, saving time and money.
  • Almost 200 different profile variations — the widest range on the market.
  • As turnover occurs, the same workstation can be adjusted to the precise ergonomic needs of the subsequent worker assigned to it. No need for new anything; just adjust and keep working.
  • The workbench can offer 100% electrostatic discharge protection — much more effective than just a mat.

What’s more, these systems aren’t static. Every new quarter brings new user requests, and with those requests, new options and ideas for our modular workstation. Look for new add-ons, increased customizability, and further refinements that will make the basic structure even stronger and more durable over the coming years.

Don’t confine yourself — or your workers — to one-size-fits-all wooden or steel workstations that don’t fit the workers that are using them. Invest just a little bit up front in our aluminum modular workstations, and watch the bottom line love it as those same workstations last for generation after generation of workers, fitting each one perfectly.

Static Can Deal Shocking Damage — Get Electrostatic Discharge Protection

Electrostatic discharge protection (ESD) is no laughing matter. We generally think of static shock as that tiny spark you feel when you scoot across the floor and then grab the metal doorknob — but humans are actually ridiculously insensitive to electricity. Compare us to the platypus, which is so sensitive to electric fields that it can sense it’s prey by the minute electrical fields its’ muscles generate when they tense up — or to modern semiconductors, which can be completely destroyed by voltages so low that even the platypus couldn’t feel them.

To give a specific example, moving a plastic bench across your workstation can generate up to 20,000 volts of static — but many electrical components can be destroyed by a discharge of as little as 400 volts.

Static electricity is called ‘static’ because it’s built up in a form that can’t move anywhere — there’s no path for it to move along. The moment that ‘static’ electricity has a path to travel along, it’s not static anymore: it moves, and that’s why you feel the zap when you touch a metal object.

Obviously, then, protecting your electronics from the tiny electrostatic discharges that happen every time you touch something metallic is a key element of many commercial and industrial workplaces. So how do you keep your electronics safe? There are a couple of ways.

First, you can keep the static charge from building up on your workers in the first place. A simple conductive bracelet, wired to a grounded piece of metal, will give any electrical charges that could have built up a swift exit. But this solution can make a worker feel ‘chained to their desk’, and can cause secondary problems like tripping others.

Second, you can keep the static charge from having an escape route through the electronics you’re working on. By using an ESD-proof work mat that lines your workstation surface, you can handle electronics confidently knowing that there’s no circuit being formed — the mat keeps your electronics from having anywhere to conduct the static too. Combined with an ergonomic work bench that keeps your worker from having to reach or strain (which decreases the possibility of a trip or spill and of accidentally touching exposed metal and forming a damaging circuit for that built-up static), an ESD prevention mat can save you thousands of dollars in damaged electronics in the long run.

What a Vacuum Pump Does For Your Pneumatics

When you remove the air from a closed space, you create a pressure differential between the inside of that closed space and the outside of the space. If the enclosure is strong enough, it will stand up to the pressure differential. If it’s strong enough but there’s a simple plunger attached, the pressure differential will cause the plunger to move toward the low-pressure area until the pressures have equalized.

The same principle applies to spaces that are filled with liquids, albeit with different mechanics. Because fluid cannot be expanded or compressed the way that air can, removing the fluid from one side of an enclosed plunger-system moves the plunger in a much more stable manner; a pneumatic vacuum-plunger system will wobble back and forth slightly as the air expands and contracts back and forth until stability is achieved; a fluid system’s plunger will move once, decisively, and stop exactly where the fluid forces it to stop. That’s because there is no vacuum created; it’s merely the movement of fluid out of a container and the movement of the container to match the new amount of water inside of it.

The machine that removes the air from one side of the plunger arrangement is called a vacuum pump. Vacuum pumps are available in three grades: rough, middle, and high-vacuum. For industrial purposes, all vacuum pumps are rough pumps because it’s easier to increase work performed by increasing the surface area of the plunger than by increasing the strength of the pump.

In pneumatic systems, the fact that a stable vacuum can be created and essentially put ‘on hold’ until its work is needed is particularly valuable in that a single vacuum pump can, by the use of a pneumatic manifold or other switches, create dozens of pockets of vacuum in specially-designed cylinders all around a given device, which can then be ‘popped’ for bursts of work at a later time.

Because of the different physics, vacuum pumps cannot exist in hydraulic systems; no matter how strong the shell of your hydraulic manifold, you won’t ever be able to create a stable vacuum in fluid — the pump will overheat and burn out or the manifold will crack or crumple before that particular law of physics gives up. For pneumatic systems, however, vacuum pumps are vital and powerful units that every industry has found use for.


March, 1976: Joe: “What makes you think you can do the job?” Roy: “What do you think I am? Stupid?” Joe: “You’re hired.” And so began Roy Northcott’s employment with Peerless Engineering Sales Ltd. On September 30th, after 35 years of dedicated service, Roy is retiring from Peerless Engineering. Roy managed the Peerless main warehouse where he enforced his philosophy that “a warehouse is a living, breathing animal” requiring continuous and consistent consideration. This philosophy resulted in great efficiencies benefiting both our customers and employees. In October Roy with his wife, Irene, will move to Kamloops to explore other interests.  Everyone at Peerless wish Roy and Irene health, wealth and tons of fun. Congratulations Roy!

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Peerless booth at 2011 BC Canadian Healthcare Engineering…

Peerless booth at 2011 BC Canadian Healthcare Engineering Conference at Whistler