Why Rack Armour Racking Column Guards Outperform Steel Column Guards in Pallet Racking Protection

In the world of warehouse management and logistics, ensuring the safety and integrity of pallet racking systems is paramount. While traditional steel column guards have been a common choice for protecting these structures, recent advancements have shown that Rack Armour racking column guards, made from a hard yet flexible ballistic resin, offer superior protection. This article delves into the physics behind why Rack Armour guards are more effective, using the analogy of a Newton’s Cradle to illustrate the concept of kinetic energy transfer and absorption.

Understanding Kinetic Energy Transfer with Newton’s Cradle

The principle of kinetic energy transfer can be easily visualized through the Newton’s Cradle toy, where a series of metal balls suspended by wires transfer energy from one end to the other. When one ball at the end is lifted and released, it strikes the next ball, transferring its energy through the line until the ball at the opposite end swings outward. This demonstrates how kinetic energy can be transferred through solid metal objects without much loss.

Steel rack protector connected to damaged racking
Steel rack protector connected to damaged racking

Applying this principle to pallet racking, when a forklift or other machinery collides with a steel column guard, the kinetic energy from the impact is transferred through the metal guard into the racking column, much like the energy transfer in a Newton’s Cradle. This can lead to structural damage over time, as the energy is not absorbed or dissipated but rather passed through to the racking system.

The Superiority of Rack Armour Column Guards

Rack Armour column guards, on the other hand, are designed to absorb and deflect the kinetic energy of impacts, rather than transferring it through to the racking structure. This is achieved through the unique properties of the ballistic resin material, which is both hard and flexible. The flexibility of the material plays a crucial role in energy absorption, allowing the guard to deform slightly upon impact, dissipating the energy over a wider area and reducing the force transmitted to the column.

Rack Armour column guard for racking
Rack Armour column guards are superior racking protectors

Furthermore, the design of Rack Armour guards incorporates a foam insert inside the resin shell. This foam layer adds an additional level of energy absorption, further cushioning the impact and minimizing the risk of damage to the racking column. The shape of the Rack Armour guards, often contoured to fit snugly around the racking columns, also contributes to their effectiveness. This design ensures that impacts are evenly distributed across the surface of the guard, reducing the concentration of force on any single point.

Quantifiable Results: Reducing Racking Damage by 80%

Rack Armour Column protectors for racking - showing protected and unprotected racking
Rack Armour Column protectors for racking – showing protected and unprotected racking

The combination of material properties, design features, and the innovative use of a foam insert allows Rack Armour column guards to significantly reduce racking damage. In practice, the use of Rack Armour has been shown to decrease damage to pallet racking systems by up to 80%. This remarkable reduction in damage not only ensures a safer working environment but also translates into significant cost savings in terms of reduced repair and maintenance needs.


The superiority of Rack Armour racking column guards over traditional steel column guards lies in their advanced design and material composition, which enable them to absorb and deflect kinetic energy effectively. By preventing the direct transfer of energy to the racking columns, these guards offer unparalleled protection against impact damage. As logistics and warehouse operations continue to seek more efficient and safer storage solutions, the adoption of Rack Armour column guards represents a smart investment in the longevity and integrity of pallet racking systems.

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