Stable and durable, but still light - at best, all these properties apply to an interchangeable load carrier. Thanks to a spirit of innovation and valuable input from a logistician's practical experience, a company from Ahaus has developed just such an interchangeable case. And it has even more advantages.
Learn more about the innovation story from Münsterland.
XBond (formerly Räckers) is a second-generation family business from Münsterland and has been in existence for 40 years. The company is a metalworking technology partner of holistic system solutions as well as a supplier and manufacturer in German vehicle construction and other industries. With many years of experience as a supplier and manufacturer of interchangeable systems, XBond works to make innovative solutions durable, stable in value and sustainable.
As a specialist in fashion logistics, the Osnabrück-based family business Meyer & Meyer offers a range of services from raw materials and production logistics to warehousing, processing and quality assurance to distribution to retailers or end customers. From its headquarters and a network of branches and partner companies in Germany and abroad, Meyer & Meyer manages logistics activities in Europe, Asia and North Africa with 1,800 employees.
As a textile logistics company, Meyer & Meyer uses swap bodies for transporting textiles. A swap body is an exchangeable cargo container that a truck (similar to a container) can drive under for loading and that can be separated from the transport vehicle just as easily.
On their week-long journeys between and through Europe and Africa, the suitcases have to withstand a lot: For one thing, they are exposed to wind and weather. On the other hand, the transport is not always smooth, for example when the suitcases are packed tightly together on the ferries to and from Morocco or Tunisia. Time and again, this results in damage that has to be repaired in the Meyer & Meyer workshop. That is why the workshop employees have often thought about how to make the suitcases more robust.
The challenge: to make the cases more stable and less susceptible to corrosion, but not to increase their weight. Up to now, more stability has usually been achieved by using materials that are correspondingly heavier. But that in turn would mean that less weight would be left over for the actual load. In addition, there was potential for improvement in corrosion protection, which was raised to a new level by XBond.
Meyer & Meyer finally found the ideal partner in XBond. XBond succeeded in developing a robust and stable interchangeable case and benefited from Meyer & Meyer's experience and expertise.
XBond took a close look at Meyer & Meyer's specific problems and requirements. The timing was favourable, as XBond was already well advanced in the development of a completely new steel swap body. The result was the XB1212 steel swap body, which combines several advantages.
Firstly, all components are fully galvanised and thus provide lasting corrosion protection. Secondly, the innovative lightweight construction allows the case to be robust but light at the same time. All wall and door elements are double-skinned and particularly impact-resistant. In addition, the swap body has fewer interfering edges (superstructures that protrude beyond the screw location or in the immediate vicinity) than is usually the case with swap bodies.
Thirdly, the steel swap body scores with its functionality: thanks to the modular product system, customers can have certain details put together individually: for example, a smooth roof where water runs off and thus no ice plates can form, a variable rear portal with internal or external locking bars or individual interior fittings and load securing.
The stable construction and sustainable corrosion protection make the case more robust and ensure fewer repairs and a longer service life. This reduces the so-called life cycle costs: replacements or new purchases are less often necessary and the resale value increases significantly. Thanks to the constructive lightweight design, the suitcase is significantly lighter than usual on the market, which reduces fuel consumption and gives more scope for efficient utilisation.
"We are very pleased to have found a partner of equal standing in the family-owned company XBond, with whom we were able to tackle this project. We now have a case in use that offers us and our customers optimal transport conditions," emphasises Robert Justenhoven, Head of Resources and Analytics at Meyer & Meyer. And Eva Räckers, Managing Partner at XBond, adds: "XBond and Meyer & Meyer are both family businesses. We share important values and a partnership for passionate solutions."
As a regional joint initiative, Enabling Networks Münsterland supports companies and universities in the Münsterland region in developing innovations, implementing them and finding the right partners for the project. In order to show how innovative and at the same time cooperative Münsterland already is, the project also went in search of innovative cooperation projects from the region. The results are presented on this page. The Enabling Networks Münsterland project is funded by the European Union and the NRW Ministry of Economics as part of the ERDF call "Regio.NRW".