What’s Old is New Again: The Many Uses for Used Robots

Written By: Mark Colzani

The modern-day industrial robot is one of the most robust technologies and will generally last for years, even decades. However, as with all good things, they eventually move toward the end of their useful life. When this occurs, a robot-owner is presented with a few options.

Find a New Function for Your Used Robot

Before decommissioning your robot, carefully consider what other functions it may be able to perform within your facility. Robots are an extremely versatile and flexible technology. Sometimes all it takes is a simple modification of programming or a new end of arm tool to re-purpose a robot for a new task. The addition of certain ancillary equipment can also help allow the robot to perform a different function, or permit it to continue to perform its normal function at a higher rate, and thus extending its useful life. Additionally, Bastian Robotics’ service department can provide customizable preventative maintenance plans to keep your robot functioning at its highest level.

Replace Your Used Robot with a New One

However, eventually some robots do reach the point where they need to be replaced in order to maintain competitive throughput levels. In cases like this, our engineers will evaluate your operation and recommend which robot works best for you, your requirements, and your budget. We can also analyze throughput increases to show you exactly where this robot will make the most positive impact on your process. Additionally, we are able to integrate a new robot with most existing ancillary equipment in order to minimize your required capital expenditure. End of Arm Tools (EoAT) can oftentimes be reused or just upgraded with a simple redesign. This also helps minimize the amount of spare parts required and saves you money.

Think Outside the Box

At Bastian Robotics, we have found a couple of “outside the box” uses for our robots that have served their intended purpose. With some clever design work from our engineering team we have been able to build some creative end of arm tools that allow the robot to function in fun and interesting ways. For instance, the robot in our entry has been repurposed as a television stand to hold a monitor that displays messages and videos. Additionally, we have a robot outside of our building functioning as a flagpole holder. With inventive thinking, we have been able to give these “retired” robots new purpose in our building.

Re-use Robots - TV Stand Used industrial robot flag pole

In fact, in recent discussions with the city, they found this to be a very useful and interesting mix of technology and landscape architecture. We have identified a number of robots for them to use in unique ways. Similarly to what other cities have done with painted pigs, horses, and cows to commemorate agricultural heritage, St. Louis is interested in portraying their heritage as well as their future through the use of industrial robots.

Whether it be an upgrade, a replacement, or something outside the box, there are many different options available when it comes to used robots. Please contact us to learn more about upgrading or replacing them.

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