There are many options for taking apart pallets for commercial and hobby recycling

You will be able to use the right tools if you intend to dismantle pallets regularly, whether it is for a single job or in a large-scale production environment. There are many options available for disassembling pallets. These include power tools, pry bars and machinery for high-volume recycle operations. Below are some examples. This article will discuss how to use a few pallets as a basic tool for dismantling them.

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Pry Bars

A prybar is an often used tool to manually remove pallet boards. There are two types of pry bars. The double fork and duckbill are the most popular pry bar styles. The duckbill can be used to remove the lead board from the pallet’s edge without causing damage. The jaw of the tool is placed on the board, and the handle is lifted upward. To remove interior deck boards, the double fork prybar is used. Its effectiveness depends on the heel of its bar resting on top of the stringer. Then, using leverage, the forks move under the next board to pry it from the stringer.

This article’s accompanying photo shows a combination bar with a duckbill attachment on one end and a double knife at the other.

Power Hand Tools

The dismantling of pallets can be simplified by using power tools. The reciprocating saw, also known as a Sawzall or the Nail Kicker, are two common power tools. The reciprocating saw cuts the nails at the joints that hold the wood components together. The Nail Kicker works in a similar way to a pneumatic nailing device, except it doesn’t drive a nail into wood. It is instead designed to drive nails out of the wood or push them deep enough to remove deck boards from the pallet.

Pallet Dismantling Machinery

Pallet disassembly machines are a key component of high-volume pallet recycling. There are two types of commercial dismantling machines. There are two main types of commercial dismantling machinery: the pressure type which uses circular cutting heads and the bandsaw dismantler.

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Pressure Dismantlers

In the 1970s, pressure-type dismantlers were first developed. This method uses free turning discs with an adjustable top. The discs feed the pallet through them, and shear off any fasteners where the deck boards meet with the pallet stringer. The number of heads determines the speed of the operation. Three cutting heads are sufficient to disassemble a pallet. Only the top and bottom passes are necessary. This style of equipment has one problem. It can be very quick, but it can also cause damage to pallet components. Nail stubs should also be removed and flattened.

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Bandsaw Dismantlers

The pallet industry’s most reliable tool for dismantling pallets is the bandsaw dismantler. The bandsaw blade is set at a height that allows it to cut through the board where it meets the stringer. The clean, neat cut leaves no nail stubs and allows for superior lumber recovery.

Additional equipment, such as conveyors, can be added to either type of unit to facilitate the flow of disassembled pieces from the unit for sorting, stacking or further processing such as a chop saw to cut pieces to a shorter length.

Robotic Dismantlers

Robotics is a new approach to pallet disassembly, assembly and repair. Automation is becoming more expensive as the labor market tightens. CHEP announced that it had made a $240million investment in automation in its service centers. This included robots. Alliance Automation, a robotics company, uses a robot for pallet feeding into a bandsaw dismantler. This removes the human element.

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You can find a variety of suppliers for pallet dismantling machines to meet your needs.

These vendors include:

  • Alliance Automation
  • The Pallet Machinery Group
  • PRS Group
  • Smart Products
  • Trace Equipment