Inventory Management System Pairs Scale and Balance

An accurate inventory management system combining a reference balance and a bulk scale speeds the flow and accuracy of product quantities from the receiving dock through inventory control and outbound shipments. The high resolution Kern FKC stocktaking counting system, available from Tovatech, quickly calculates stock quantities, which can be transferred to a PC for record keeping. A barcode scanner can be integrated with the stock keeping system to reduce errors in stock identification.

The FKC inventory management system combines a KERN KB-N reference balances and a KERN FKA bulk scale.

Inventory Management System Components

1. Reference Quantities
Reference quantities are established with the Kern KB-N reference balance, available in maximum weighing ranges of 120 (KB 120-3N) or 1200 (KB 1200-2N) grams (4.23 or 42.33 ounces) and respective readout of 0.001 and 0.01 g, also representing the minimum piece weight. Individual piece weight is established by weighing a quantity of product … Read the rest

Tips for Analytical Balance Weighing Accuracy

Accuracy is a prime if not the prime criterion for analytical balances used in industries such as researching and compounding pharmaceuticals. Analytical balance weighing accuracy is a measure of how close the displayed weight is to the actual weight of samples on the weighing pan.

Two terms apply here. The first is readout, which is the smallest difference in weight that can be read and displayed by the unit. For an analytical balance it is typically 0.1 milligram or 0.001 g. Micro and ultra microbalances can weigh lighter samples.

Accuracy is sometimes confused with precision but it is an incorrect assumption. Precise means that results are consistent. However they may be consistently wrong, and therefore not accurate.

Instead, the second term or criterion to look for is linearity. Linearity is the maximum ± deviation of the displayed sample weight vs. the actual sample weight over the weighing range of the … Read the rest

How to Achieve Precision Weighing with an Analytical Balance

Take steps to assure analytical balance accuracy
Take steps to assure analytical balance accuracy

An analytical balance is a precision instrument requiring much more care and attention than industrial scales and balances used outside academic and industrial research and QC labs.  Analytical balances also represent a substantial investment with prices depending on weighing range, readout, reproducibility and linearity.  For these and other reasons lab personnel should understand how and how not to use these instruments, thereby maintaining equipment accuracy and extending equipment life.  Here are some basic steps to follow.  The balance operations manual, however, is the authority in all cases.

Setting Up an Analytical Balance

As Maria sings in “The Sound of Music” let’s start at the very beginning.  Setup instructions for Kern analytical balances offered by Tovatech stress the importance of location, which ideally will be permanent.

Before unpacking the precision scale select a firm level surface remote from extreme heat, temperature fluctuations, direct sunlight, … Read the rest

GLP Compliant Precision Scale for Recipe Weighing

The Kern PCB precision balance from Tovatech is an excellent tool for recipe weighing and when coupled with a statistics printer and a PC meets GLP/ISO record keeping requirements.
The Kern PCB precision balance from Tovatech is an excellent tool for recipe weighing and when coupled with a statistics printer and a PC meets GLP/ISO record keeping requirements.

A sous chef exercising a bit of creativity when following a recipe for a dessert might discover a significant improvement in the final product.  Or maybe not.  Such creativity is to be fully avoided when compounding drugs or other products where strict control of ingredients is mandatory.  A precision balance employed for the purpose of recipe weighing and record keeping is the tool of choice in applications where regulatory compliance and lab efficiency are goals.

Recipe weighing using  precision scales such as the Kern PCB available from Tovatech also supports research in labs where technicians create and vary formulations while seeking to develop new or improved products.… Read the rest

A Primer on Precision Scale Calibration and Test Weights

Precision digital scales and analytical balances must be recalibrated for accuracy to be in compliance with international standards and to maintain good laboratory practices.  Analytical balances such as the Kern ABJ series can be recalibrated using internal motor-driven weights.  The internal calibration sequence is initiated manually.  Semi-micro analytical balances such as the Kern ABT series automatically recalibrate using internal weights under four scenarios:  1) Four hours after the previous calibration; 2) When there is a fluctuation in temperature of 0.5oC (0.9oF); 3) When the balance is switched from standby to weighing mode and condition (1) or (2) has been met or 4) If the balance was disconnected from its power source.

Other scales require external recalibration, which is performed by using test weights under procedures that should be spelled out in your company’s Quality Management manual.… Read the rest

How to Count on Your Digital Counting Scales

There’s no doubt that using digital counting scales can save time and money.  Easier to explain is time, because these accurate tools can do in seconds or minutes what it would take hours to count by hand.  That in itself saves time, but if the scales are also used in inventory control they can help identify unusual movement of product out of storage.  Who is taking the product and why?

As good as they are – and products such as Kern’s CXB counting scale are examples – when using them one must keep in mind the old computer admonition “garbage in, garbage out.”

These scales can weigh but they can’t think.  This requires operators to establish uniformity of weight across the products being weighed.  What can throw this off?  Well, some products in the batch may have burrs or other imperfections that will lead to inaccurate counts.  In fact, anything … Read the rest