For years, management experts have praised Japanese companies for using daily calisthenics to reduce workplace injuries. However, workers at three manufacturing facilities belonging to Steelcase Inc. (Grand Rapids, MI) also have an effective ritual.

The company manufactures office furniture. When first-shift employees report to work, they spend a few seconds at control switches that automatically raise or lower their workstations to a comfortable height. The same ritual occurs when second-shift employees arrive, and again for any third-shift employees.

The device that makes this adjustment possible is the Super Dyna-Lift from Monarch Hydraulics (Caledonia, MI). The Super Dyna-Lift is a system of ready-to-install hydraulic cylinders that work together to adjust the height of workstations, tables and machines. It also has synchronized operation. It is available in two sizes and two configurations. The smaller size handles loads up to 6,000 pounds, while the larger size handles up to 20,000 pounds. Both sizes are available for integral or retrofit attachment. Standard units provide 12 inches of vertical motion, and custom units can deliver up to 20 inches. The compact hydraulic pump and motor fits into the existing machine design or stands alongside.

As Larry Hanify, automation engineer, states, "The company wanted to address the height adjustabililty of its equipment. In one case, the day operator on a certain machine was close to 7 feet tall, and the night operator was less than 5 feet tall."

Ironically, the company's File Div. approached Monarch with the idea for the Super Dyna-Lift. The company already supplied Steelcase with height-adjustment equipment built into some of the company's freestanding desks. That design was modified for the demanding industrial environment.

The fixture and machine department operates as an internal original equipment manufacturer for the company's facilities worldwide. The company now offers Super Dyna-Lift as an option on every machine concept it develops, because the justification cost is reasonable.

For more information on lifting devices, call Monarch Hydraulic at 616-891-3532, visit or Reply 1.