Turn Tables Boosting Efficiency : Streamlining Material Handling and Process Optimization

Turn Tables Boosting Efficiency: Streamlining Material Handling and Process Optimization

Turn tables, also known as rotary tables or revolving tables, are versatile and innovative equipment that revolutionize material handling and process optimization. These rotating platforms enable smooth and controlled movement of products, components, or equipment, enhancing efficiency, reducing manual labor, and improving overall productivity. In this blog post, we will explore the concept of turn tables, their key features, benefits, and practical applications across various industries.

Turntables are horizontal, rotatable powered table mechanisms for transferring material/container between conveyors that are in angular relation to one another.  They often provide both loading and unloading of their contents to and from a conveyor.  In order to increase productivity and ergonomics in any manufacturing operation, equipment such as turntables are a small but integral part of the total process to maximize workplace efficiency.  By using turntables operator fatigue can be reduced.  Operators can focus on assembly or other production process rather than have to struggle with the material handling aspect of their operation.  Turntables are also ideal for loading and unloading of pallets and other containers when minimum floor space is a concern.  Turntables keep production operations moving without interruption.

I. Understanding Turn Tables

A. Definition and Functionality:

  1. Definition: Explain turn tables as circular platforms designed to rotate products, components, or equipment in a controlled manner.
  2. Types of Turn Tables: Discuss different types of turn tables, including manual turn tables, motorized turn tables, and indexing turn tables, highlighting their specific functionalities and capabilities.

B. Key Features and Capabilities:

  1. Rotation Control: ability of turn tables to rotate products at varying speeds, with continuous or indexed rotation.
  2. Load Capacity: Discuss the load capacity of turn tables, including the maximum weight and dimensions of objects that can be accommodated.
  3. Versatility: Explain how turn tables can be customized and adapted to different applications, accommodating various shapes, sizes, and weights of products.

C. Benefits of Implementing Turn Tables:

  1. Enhanced Efficiency and Productivity: Discuss how turn tables streamline material handling processes, reducing manual labor and boosting overall productivity.
  2. Space Optimization: Explain how turn tables maximize floor space by efficiently utilizing the available area and eliminating the need for excessive movement of products or equipment.
  3. Improved Ergonomics and Safety: Highlight the ergonomic benefits of using turn tables, such as reducing strain on workers and minimizing the risk of injuries associated with manual lifting or twisting movements.
  4. Process Optimization: Discuss how turn tables optimize workflow, reducing bottlenecks and enhancing the overall efficiency of manufacturing or assembly processes.

II. Requirement of Turn Tables

A. Manufacturing and Assembly:

  1. Product Assembly: Explore the use of turn tables in manufacturing and assembly processes, enabling efficient rotation and access to components during the assembly phase.
  2. Quality Control and Inspection: Discuss how turn tables facilitate easy access and inspection of products, improving quality control procedures and ensuring product conformity.

B. Packaging and Logistics:

  1. Material Handling and Sorting: Explain how turn tables are used in packaging facilities for material handling, sorting, and aligning products before packaging or distribution.
  2. Palletizing and Depalletizing: Discuss the application of turn tables in palletizing and depalletizing operations, enabling efficient movement and stacking of goods.

C. Retail and Display:

  1. Merchandising and Display: Explore how turn tables are utilized in retail environments for product display and promotion, allowing for eye-catching and dynamic presentations.

D. Medical and Healthcare:

  1. Examination and Imaging: Explain how turn tables are employed in medical facilities for patient examination and imaging procedures, facilitating easy positioning and access.
  2. Laboratory Testing: Discuss the application of turn tables in laboratory settings, enabling efficient rotation and handling of samples during testing processes.

III. Implementing Turn Tables

A. System Integration and Customization:

  1. Assessing Requirements: Explain the importance of evaluating specific operational needs and requirements to determine the appropriate type and specifications of turn tables.
  2. Integration with Existing Processes: Discuss the integration of turn tables into existing workflows, considering factors such as space availability, workflow optimization, and compatibility with other equipment.

B. Safety Considerations and Compliance:

  1. Risk Assessment: Highlight the significance of conducting thorough risk assessments to identify potential hazards associated with turn table operations and implementing appropriate safety measures.
  2. Compliance with Standards and Regulations: Discuss the importance of ensuring that turn tables comply with relevant safety standards and regulations to maintain a safe working environment.

C. Operator Training and Skill Development:

  1. Equipment Operation: Emphasize the need for comprehensive operator training programs to ensure safe and efficient operation of turn tables.
  2. Maintenance and Troubleshooting: Discuss the importance of providing operators with maintenance skills and troubleshooting knowledge to address minor issues and perform routine maintenance tasks.

IV. Overcoming Challenges and Ensuring Success

A. Workflow Optimization:

  1. Process Analysis: Explain the significance of conducting a thorough analysis of existing workflows to identify areas where turn tables can be integrated for maximum efficiency.
  2. Continuous Improvement: Discuss the value of continuous improvement initiatives, encouraging feedback from operators and utilizing data-driven insights to optimize turn table operations.

B. Maintenance and Support:

  1. Preventive Maintenance: regular preventive maintenance to ensure the optimal performance and longevity of turn tables.
  2. Technical Support and Spare Parts: Discuss the availability of technical support from equipment manufacturers, as well as the need for readily available spare parts for quick repairs and minimal downtime.

C. Sustainability and Environmental Impact:

  1. Energy Efficiency: Discuss the importance of selecting energy-efficient turn tables and optimizing their operation to minimize energy consumption and reduce environmental impact.
  2. Material Recycling: Highlight the significance of responsible disposal or recycling of turn tables and associated components at the end of their lifecycle.


Important specifications for turntables include load capacity, maximum dimension or diameter and speed.  The load capacity is the maximum weight or force supported by the turntable.  This will dictate the weight of the load.  The maximum dimension or diameter is the width of a rectangular turntable and the diameter of a circular turntable.  This will dictate the size of the load to be put on the turntable.  The speed is the velocity at which the turntable rotates.

Turntables are commonly powered by air, or by hand, or by a motor.  Air powered turntables have cylinders or air motors powering the turning action of the table.  Manual turntables are rotated manually by a crank or lever.  Motors provided automated turning.  Turntables can be actuated by a pushbutton mechanism.  Some manufacturers will provide integral clamps for handling drums or odd shaped packages.  Some turntables also have the ability to tilt for the facilitation of dumping the contents of the table.  Fixed and retractable rotation stops can be positioned at 90 or 180 degrees for positioning at specific workstations.

Conveyor TurntableMaterial Handling Machines


The rollers advance the pallets to the staging conveyor, which allows pallet-by-pallet passage onto the staging turntable. The turntable positions its rollers in the same direction as those of the separation conveyor to take over the pallet. Once the pallet is detected at its position on the turntable, it starts its rotation and carries out a quarter of a turn to deliver the pallet to the exit conveyor.
A conveyor turntable is driven by a motor reducer connected to a geared chain pinion, which rotates the turntable.
Motorized rollers then move the pallet on and off the turntable.

Examples of Use
Conveyor turntables can be used for transferring pallets in a cement plant, distributing freight, manufacturing automobiles on an assembly line, and sorting containers in a chemical plant.

– Turntable
• Roller turntable
– Turning platform
– Turntable with free or motorized rollers, turntable with transfer
– Turntable with transfer

Related Machinery
– Belt curve conveyor
– Strap or strand chain transfer
– Curve with conical rollers
– Return elements
– Motorized roller curve

System Options
– Guides
– Guide disk
– Pneumatic stop
– Retracting lock
– Conveyor-turntable link
– Gauge and weight tester
– Load identification (bar or magnetic code)
– Electro-zinc finish or stainless steel for food processing
– Flow control software
– PC
– Printer

Upstream Downstream Machines
– Conveyors of all types
– Vertical elevator
– Multiple level elevator
– Continuous vertical elevator
– Elevator table
– Magazine
– Empty pallet magazine
– Automated guided vehicle


The implementation of turn tables offers numerous benefits, including increased productivity, optimized workflows, and improved safety. Their applications span manufacturing and assembly, packaging and logistics, retail and display, as well as medical and healthcare settings. To ensure successful implementation, organizations need to assess their specific requirements, integrate turn tables into existing workflows, and prioritize operator training and safety measures. Continuous improvement, preventive maintenance, and adherence to environmental considerations are essential for sustaining the benefits of turn tables in the long run. By embracing turn table technology, organizations can revolutionize their material handling processes, streamline operations, and achieve greater efficiency and productivity in today’s competitive business landscape.

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