ST. THOMAS, PA – To meet the challenges of foreign competitors, who were importing cheap and lesser quality cast iron products, this client decided to install a new paint system for their cast iron counterweights used in heavy duty construction equipment.

They saw that finishing the counterweights added value to their product by providing a near-automotive quality finish, on a just-in-time basis. However, the biggest challenge was the mere weight of the parts to be finished; ranging in weight from 5,000 to 19,000 pounds! Knowing that they needed expert help, the company entrusted HERR to design, fabricate, and install the new system.

The major and most difficult objective for the project was to provide an overhead conveyor system that would perform reliably under the great weight of the part, and still allow all of the product surfaces to be evenly coated. If a floor conveyor was to be used, portions of the counterweights would be obstructed by the product cart. HERR’s expertise led them to recommend a power and free conveyor system to tackle the job.

Unfortunately, the client was constrained by a tight budget. HERR then designed an ingenious conveyor system that met their needs, without the price tag of a typical power and free system. The design was a side push power and free conveyor, combining standard and specially designed components. The design permits the counterweights to be transported at a high rate of speed between the load and unload stages, as well as three sanding/ preparation spurs.

When ready, the parts are released to the process conveyor that automatically transports the counterweights through the paint booths, flash tunnels and cure oven.

HERR’s ability to manage a very tight time schedule on a budget was put to the test and they succeeded by having the system up and running by the deadline.


The following equipment was incorporated into the design of this Paint Finishing System; with the maximum part size being 33″ wide x 48″ high x 84″ long and weighing 19,000 lbs.:

  • Warming Oven
  • Infrared Oven
  • Two (2) down sidedraft Paint Booths
  • 40,000 cfm Air Makeup Unit
  • Sanding Dust Collection System
  • 350 ft. 8 in. I-Beam Free Rail
  • 500 ft. X-348 Transport Conveyor
  • 200 ft. Enclosed Track Transfer Conveyor