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TKO Doors.

New Door Meets Needs for Dock Protection Against Weather and Damage

For the past six years the mission of TKO[R] Doors has been to balance the needs for dock doorway coverage and shipping dock operating costs. In continuing this charge, the company introduces the fifth version in their line of rugged and cost-effective knockout doors, the TKO[R] Middleweight[TM] dock door.

When the company developed the original knockout style dock door, partners Kurt Kellogg and Mike Tich identified a need that had plagued industry for years and had become sharply worse since the 1980s.

The dock door more and more had become a plug in the material-handling pipeline. With the economy putting greater demands for slicing the costs of moving product, the drive was on to eliminate support costs wherever possible to keep costs low, products competitive and profits high.

Material handling equipment manufacturers and systems consultants spotted their opportunities and turned out products and solutions to not only speed product through facilities, but also keep it on the shelf or on the floor in minimal time.

Despite all of this attention, neglected was the point of entry and exit that could hamper the process -- the dock door.

Material handling became faster. But this pace meant sending high-speed forklifts often manned by inexperienced drivers through confined spaces. Management and the material handling products industry tried to anticipate equipment damage. Shelving and other structures were beefed up to repel the effects of accidents, but the prime victim on this racetrack was with the dock door.

Solving this problem was not viewed as easy. Theoretically, the only time the forklift is in the vicinity of the dock door is when the door is opened to allow access to a parked trailer. In reality most collisions occurred when the door was closed.

As previously mentioned, operations are being pared down for economy and that includes the dock. Within this tight area forklifts plow into closed doors, back into door tracks and shove pallets into panels. Despite the perils, these doors have to be on duty guarding doorways against the cruelties of weather and break-ins, yet nimble enough to be thrown open when a truck arrives.

With every collision came the disruptions to the material handling operation. At times the damage is so drastic as to shut down the doorway. As one operations manager complained, "these accidents sometimes affected our truck rotation at our dock."

These are the challenges Kellogg and Tich tackled in creating a sectional dock door that was solid yet impact resistant, They succeeded in coming up with the TKO knockout door, built to withstand the force of forklift impact at any part of the door, yet continues to operate regardless of the abuse.

This original version was enthusiastically received by manufacturers and distribution centers. Other door makers jumped into the market with their approaches. While these competitors serve the market with one style, TKO Doors recognizes that there is no one type of dock operation. Therefore the company strives to offer more than one style of dock door to match the level of door abuse and the variety of conditions that exist on both sides of the dock wall.

Entering the ring to combat forklift damage is the TKO Middleweight dock door. This new door combines the economy of the TKO[R] Welterweight[TM] door with the ability to withstand punishment built into the TKO[R] Cruiserweight and TKO[R] Heavyweight dock doors.

TKO Doors has designed the hardware on the TKO Middleweight door, like of all of their doors, to withstand the demands of the typical dock that include tons of force from forklift impact and continual doorway coverage.

Door panels ride on rugged steel pins, guided along the indestructible "Impact-A-Track[TM]" guide track. When the panel is hit, the pins slide out of the track's V-Groove, enabling the forklift to pass through the doorway without shattering the panel. A quick tug pulls the panel back into the place and the door is immediately in service with absolutely no attention from maintenance.

Recall what a forklift can do to a standard sectional dock door -- splintered panels and contorted tracks at worse. Usually and just as much of a problem is the damage that is done to the door's ability to operate smoothly from panels out of alignment and bent rollers. Alignment problems can also compromise the crucial doorway seal.

For extra measure TKO engineers mount the side gasket on the door panel. No one can offer a flexible seal that can come into contact with a passing forklift and not torn out. Rather than trying to defy physics, TKO engineers chose to protect their gasket by mounting it on the door panel to be pulled out of the way during opening of passing traffic for a significantly longer life and a much more reliable seal.

The TKO Middleweight package of benefits includes a tougher track and higher panel insulation values. "We certainly put this door together for to give docks with extreme temperatures more resistance against door damage," maintains TKO Doors Engineering Manager Jeremy Beckerl. "And we also knew we are offering the food processing industries a door that better matches their needs."

This new door has an all-plastic "Impact-A-Track" guide track. On a standard door the track is the most fragile part; on the TKO Middleweight door it is now the strongest.

The TKO track literally deflects forklift impact and keeps its shape intact for smooth reliability. The V-Groove in the track enables door knock out to prevent panel resistance to the force, yet the door withstands knock in force for building security.

In fact the only time a facility would desire the door to be knocked in is when the door is raised. All manually operated sectional doors open up with torsion springs. Over time these springs can detense, allowing the door to sag into the doorway in the path of an on-coming forklift mast.

On a standard door this type of collision means a call to maintenance. On the TKO Middleweight door equipped with an optional double knockout track, the door is knocked in, pulled back into place and ready for the next shipment.

The plastic track also assists in door seal. Even through a door is closed a metal track is a means to transmit temperature differentials inside the building. When the metal track meets moist indoor air, the result is condensation, which can run on the floor creating a dangerous slick. The non-conductive plastic on the TKO Middleweight door track is always at ambient room temperature to prevent formation of moisture.

TKO Middleweight doors also have panels with the insulation -- R-12 -- food processing plants need to maintain a chilled dock environment. While keeping the dock cool, the panels keep the area clean with their easy to wipe down surface.

Optional Superpanel door panels provide an extra measure of protection against damage. This special coating on the interior panel offers a surface that deflects forklift impact. Most users will select a bottom Superpanel. Areas with greater damage may use additional panels.

This new door puts together the damage fighting doorway protection these facilities are looking for at an affordable price. The TKO Middleweight represents the on-going commitment from TKO Doors to keep product moving through the dock doorway regardless of the type of facility or operation.
TKO Doors
N56 W24701 Corporate Cr.
Sussex, WI 53089
Phone: 800-575-3366
Fax: 262-820-1273
Web Site:

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Title Annotation:Product Information; knockout dock doors
Publication:Material Handling Product News
Article Type:Company Profile
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 15, 2000
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