Ergonomic pressing station for Pirminius workshop PirmasensMiniTec design ensures participation in working life 12. July 2023
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It doesn't always have to be a complex workstation. Ergonomic solutions can also be simpler designs that have a big impact. Like a device for the Heinrich Kimmle Foundation in Pirmasens, which allows an employee to continue working in the workshop there.

When Hartmut Lelle picks me up at the reception of the Heinrich Kimmle Foundation in Pirmasens, the lunch break is just over. As we walk through the building, the people we meet are in a good mood. Some are playing table football, others are chatting happily. Then we come to Tobias' work area. He is sitting at his pressing station and is also beaming all over his face. He clearly seems to be enjoying his work. Together with his colleague Peter, the 22-year-old ensures that two parts of an electrical box are pressed together to form a complete unit. After Peter has loaded the device via a kind of drawer, Tobias presses a large button with his elbow, which triggers the pressing process. After each successful pressing, he utters a kind of "tschakka" and seems extremely satisfied and happy.

"The whole thing goes back to a consideration of how we can keep Tobias, who is severely disabled, in the workshop with a suitable activity, especially as he didn't want to go to a day care center himself," says Hartmut Lelle, Head of the Packaging and Assembly Department at HK Pirmasens. The job could not be subject to too much deadline pressure.


More fun in a team - Tobias and Peter at work.

Equipping the pressing station.

Wanted: The right device for the right product

A suitable product was then found in the form of electrical boxes. They consist of a base and a lid that are pressed together. The customer was not under too much pressure to produce them - just right for Tobias. What was needed now, however, was a machine that could carry out the pressing process and meet the special ergonomic requirements.

"Due to our carpenters' very good experience with customized MiniTec workstations, we approached MiniTec directly with our request and didn't even look around for alternatives," says Lelle. Together, they developed a suitable concept and then had the machine built. "And now the work and the machine are at Tobias, and it works, as you can see," says Lelle with a wink.

The station consists of an aluminum profile frame with Plexiglas as protection, in which the pneumatic press is located. The release button can be moved into the correct position using a multi-jointed swivel arm. There is a drawer on the side so that the second employee can load the press. This contains suitable inserts so that the individual parts are always in the correct position. The appliance is mounted on a table with castors so that it can be moved at any time.


Practical test passed

The system has now been in use for two weeks and has clearly passed the practical test. Hartmut Lelle comments: "Tobias likes it very much. He is also someone who enjoys working, just like Peter. They also fit together as a team and enjoy working together." The course of the project with MiniTec also suited the head of department: "We were very satisfied with the collaboration. Therefore, if special devices are required and need to be built again in the future, we will turn to MiniTec again."

Tobias presses the trigger for the pressing process with his elbow.

Pneumatic pressing of the cans.

Hartmut Lelle will also take MiniTec on board for future projects.

The Heinrich Kimmle Foundation

The Heinrich Kimmle Foundation in Pirmasens is a workshop for people with disabilities and currently has nine locations. Around 900 people with disabilities and 360 employees work here. The workshop was founded in 1965 by Pastor Kimmle. In addition to the actual workshops, there is also an integrative day care center, a Pirminius School, various residential and support services, an integration service and an inclusion company.

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