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Success with Ergonomics
American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) and
Pulp and Paper Safety Association (PPSA)

Company: AF&PA member company
Industry: NAICS Code 32212 (paper manufacturing)
Task: Gluing Headers onto Paper Roll
Employees: 36 (number at the site)

Success Brief: The site installed a custom-made height-adjustable table with a rotating top for applying glue to headers (i.e., the paper used to cover each end of a roll).

The Problem

A paper header is glued to the end of each roll to protect the ends from moisture, dirt and damage during distribution. Glue is placed on the header, which is then affixed to the roll. Previously, the header was placed on a non-adjustable, non-rotating working surface (e.g., table, improvised working surface, floor), and the manual process of applying glue to headers with a roller involved repetitive bending, reaching and twisting.

The Solution

A height-adjustable table with a freely rotating top was designed and made in-house.
Photo 1 - Height-Adjustable Table
Photo 1
Photo 2 Height can be adjusted by placing set pins
Photo 2 Height can be adjusted by placing set pins

Photo 3 - Height-Adjustable Table in use
Photo 3

The Impact

Using the adjustable turntable permits the task to be adjusted to the appropriate height for the worker, and avoid bending or stretching. Use of the rotation feature permits the worker to keep his/her arms and body in a comfortable working position. The net effect was to eliminate the bending and twisting, and minimize the extended reaching associated with this task. It is also a more efficient way to apply glue to the headers, and employees have commented that the task is now easier to perform.

Source: AF&PA; PPSA (July 2007)