Marlin Steel’s Taking the Edges out of Wire Baskets

In Sheet Metal Fabrication, Custom Wire Baskets, Wire Forms

Drew Greenblatt on April 29, 2014

taking edges out of wire baskets 4

As anyone who’s ever worked with mass-produced commodity wire baskets can tell you, those suckers can have some unbelievably sharp edges on them. When a company is more preoccupied with creating their product quickly and cheaply rather than creating for quality, sharp edges and other issues with the baskets tend to be overlooked.

thumbnailtaking edges out of wire baskets 2As a matter of fact, sharp edges on wire cuts was once one of the contributing factors in injuries to Marlin Steel’s own employees before we adopted automated manufacturing processes. Even worse, these sharp edges could result in injuries for the end-user as well.

While a small cut from a sharp wire basket edge might sound like a minor annoyance at worst, it can be a big problem. Cuts from poorly-made commodity wire baskets can lead to:

  • Food contamination. In the food service industry, wire baskets are a common tool. From bagel and donut display baskets to deep-fryer baskets for French fries and onion rings, wire baskets are frequently near or even touching food. A sharp edge can cause a bloody cut that spills into food, contaminating any food or cooking surfaces nearby with human blood.
  • Infection of the cut. Without prompt treatment with disinfectants and styptics, a cut can quickly become infected. A cut in the skin is an opportunity for bacteria and viruses to enter the bloodstream directly, greatly increasing the chances of the person with the cut contracting an illness. Swift treatment of a cut greatly reduces the odds of this happening, which is why it is always a good idea to have a first aid kit on hand.
  • Reduced productivity. When workers have open cuts on their hands or fingers, it can really limit their productivity for as long as it takes that cut to heal. Not too many people will be able to carry heavy loads with open wounds on their hands. Besides, do you really want someone with open wounds handling sensitive items? Thankfully, this is usually temporary with minor cuts.

While the first bullet point refers mostly to those who will be handling food, the other problems can affect anyone who has to work with wire baskets.

Cutting out the Sharp Edges

Thankfully, Marlin Steel’s new automation equipment and processes allow us to not only manufacture wire baskets quickly, we can also minimize the occurrence of potentially hazardous sharp edges as well. A client (who asked us not to reveal their identity) in the medical field recently requested baskets that feature an improved design over the common commodity basket, a design that totally eliminates sharp edges, making them safer to handle in a sterile environment.

taking edges out of wire baskets 3We immediately went to work on finding a method to create baskets that met this client’s exacting needs. By combining our precision-manufactured wire forms with a sheet-metal hem, we combined advantages of the open space offered by wire baskets combined with the sturdiness and smoother edges made possible by sheet metal.

These new baskets fit the client’s requirements exactly, and we were soon in full production mode. The precision of our automation combined with the know-how of our engineers allowed us to move from concept to execution quickly, and create a consistently high-quality product.

Our investment in automated manufacturing and in our people makes Marlin Steel ready to adapt to nearly any client’s wire form needs.

Are you interested in learning more? Contact Marlin Steel with your wire form questions and needs.

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Author: Drew Greenblatt
Drew Greenblatt
Drew Greenblatt bought Marlin Steel Wire Products in 1998 when it was a small maker of a commodity product. Since then, it has grown revenue seven-fold. In the face of challenges to the global economy, Marlin Steel has invested more than $3.5 million in robotics in a quest for quality and speed.

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