American Crane & Equipment Corporation crafts, installs, and services a wide range of complex material handling solutions for various high-performance industries, such as oil and gas, nuclear, and aerospace.
Overhead cranes — including bridge, gantry, and stacker cranes — are critical tools for countless industrial applications.
Overhead Crane Usage and Benefits
Overhead cranes offer the highest lifting capacity of any material handling solution; both bridge and gantry models allow for heavy lifting performance over long distances. Thanks to their high efficiency, these cranes provide ideal solutions for manufacturing and maintenance applications while decreasing downtime, saving space, and improving workflow on shop floors.
Truly versatile, overhead cranes also offer unmatched safety assurance, load control, and ergonomic benefits.
Common Overhead Crane Types
Overhead cranes can be designed in various styles to accommodate different industries and applications. The most common types include:
- Overhead Bridge Cranes: Often used in manufacturing environments, bridge cranes run on an elevated rail system and are prized for their triple-axis lifting performance. They offer superior load positioning and stability.
- Gantry Cranes: The most versatile crane style for transporting in outdoor settings or between buildings, these operate in a similar fashion to the overhead bridge crane. Gantry cranes are supported from the floor and connected to a set of rails or wheels. These cranes offer free mobility, custom height adjustment, and reliable handling of tremendous weight.
- Base Mounted Jib Cranes: Ideal for 360-degree performance, these cranes are floor mounted, covering circular spaces with a pivoting head and boom assembly. Jib cranes can often be mounted directly to a standard concrete floor, with a hoist attached to the pivoting head setup.
- Stacker Cranes: An essential lifting solution for shelving and storage management, these customizable tools are invaluable for loading and unloading products from shelf-style storage and offer reliably smooth, safe, and efficient performance. Warehouses, tool rooms, and limited-space storage facilities rely on stacker cranes to meet various needs.
Overhead Crane Applications
The general uses of overhead cranes are as varied as the industries they serve. Common applications include:
- Warehousing — To move large, heavy products to and from docks and loading areas
- Assembly — To move products through the production process from start to finish
- Transportation — To load railcars and trailers with finished cargo
- Storage — To transport and organize bulky loads
Metal fabricators rely on hoists to handle the demanding service cycle of large coils, billets, and sheets of material. Automotive manufacturers utilize hooks to maneuver large molds and components. Industrial operators depend on girder cranes for precise placement of large equipment. No matter the size or weight, overhead cranes offer safe, efficient load management.
Overhead Crane Maintenance
Overhead cranes require routine maintenance to ensure a long life of safe, reliable lifting. The American Crane team encourages operators to run a series of checks every day to help maintain top performance for their systems. Daily precautionary actions should include:
- Checking the hoist’s upper travel limit switch
- Ensuring that the wire rope is not kinked or wearing
- Listening for any unusual sound
- Checking for exposed wiring
- Observing the hook motion for consistent travel and responsiveness
Be sure to follow the OEM recommended inspection schedule; with proper maintenance, an overhead crane can last for over 50 years.
Overhead Crane Solutions from American Crane
American Crane is proud to offer high-quality tools, parts, OSHA inspections and service for overhead cranes of all kinds. Our comprehensive inventory of replacement parts and components includes our own cranes, hoists, and trolleys, as well as those of other well-known brands. In addition, our overhead cranes are:
- Tested for complete function, both indoor and outdoor, prior to shipment
- Backed by stringent quality assurance guidelines, including CMAA, HMI, and ASME standards
To learn more about our material handling solutions and services, or to discuss how we can help with your next project, reach out to the team today.