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Top 3 Signs Your Crane or Hoist Needs Repairs

Cranes and hoists are essential tools in many industrial applications. They make it easy to move bulky or heavy materials around the worksite, which increases efficiency and improves safety.

Given their vital role, it is important to maintain them properly. Otherwise, they may fail unexpectedly, which can lead to significant downtime and/or serious injury. That’s why all cranes and hoists should be inspected at least every 12 months for signs of failure. However, you should keep an eye out for signs of failure between annual inspections.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is an organization that focuses on ensuring safe and healthful working conditions in various job fields. Regarding work that utilizes cranes and hoists, they provide guidelines on what to look out for in the equipment that may indicate it needs repairs.

Below, we highlight the top three signs your crane or hoist may need repairs.

1. It has damaged or worn parts.

Cracking, stretching, warping, and other signs of excessive wear can mean the performance and/or safety of your crane or hoist is compromised. These conditions can appear on various components of cranes and hoists, including bearings, chains, pins, rollers, shafts, sheaves and drums, and welds. It is vital to regularly check all of these components to ensure they are not damaged or worn.

In wet or humid environments, there is also a risk that metal components will corrode. As this can significantly diminish the integrity of the crane or hoist assembly, it is also important to look out for corroded parts.

Whether a part is damaged or worn, it is important to repair or replace it quickly before it can lead to equipment failure.

2. It has broken or loose parts.

Over time, crane and hoist parts can loosen or break. If left unchecked, the loose or broken parts may affect equipment performance and, eventually, cause catastrophic failure. For example, in cranes and hoists that use chains, the chain component eventually gets worn out. If it breaks during operation, heavy or bulky materials may fall on employees or equipment.

During regular equipment inspections, it is important to check both small and large parts. The former can be easy to overlook. Additionally, look for both broken and loose parts. While the broken parts may be obvious, the loose parts may go unnoticed until they fall out completely.

3. It has leaking parts.

leaking crane or hoistIn cranes and hoists, leaks can appear in engines, hoses, and cylinders. If and when they occur, they should be addressed immediately as they can lead to serious operational and safety concerns.

  • In engines, leaks can cause issues with regular and emergency shutdown operations.
  • In hoses, leaks can signify failure or imminent failure. They can be caused by blistering and deformation on the outer covering.
  • In hydraulic and pneumatic cylinders, leaks can cause drifting. They can be caused by dents, nicks, scores, and other damage to the rods, barrels, eyes, or joints.

Partner With ACECO for Your Crane and Hoist Repair Needs

Want to learn more about how to tell whether your crane or hoist needs repairs? Turn to the experts at ACECO!

At American Crane & Equipment Corporation, we manufacture standard and custom cranes, hoists, and other material handling equipment for various industries and applications. Our expert team has what it takes to meet virtually any load lifting and positioning needs.

In addition to our equipment offerings, we also provide a range of field services to help customers keep their tools running effectively and efficiently. These include:

  • Repair
  • Rebuilding
  • Modification
  • Upgrading
  • Inspection
  • Load testing
  • Preventative maintenance
  • Installation
  • Retrofitting

For more information about our material handling products and services, contact us today. To discuss your equipment requirements with one of our representatives, request a quote.

Questions to Ask Your Crane Builder

Choosing a custom crane builder is a big decision. With so many important factors at play, it’s something that requires careful consideration. Before you commit to a manufacturer, there are several questions you should ask to get a better overview of what they do and the level of quality they offer in terms of service and the finished product.

What is your experience with similar projects?

Experience is important, but experience in your industry, as well as in custom cranes built with your application in mind is even better. Look for a history of satisfied clients in your industry.

Every industry has different regulations, requirements, and considerations, so the crane builder should understand what it’s like to be on your jobsite—and how to design a crane that does what you require.

How long will the crane last?

It’s essential to get the best materials and craftsmanship for your money, and you can’t compromise functionality to save costs. Doing so could lead to bigger headaches (and bigger expenses) down the road. Treating your custom crane as a long-term investment makes it easier to find an option that’s best suited for your application.

Certain materials offer more moisture, UV light, and chemical resistance than others. Think about how your crane is used and how material choices could impact the crane’s lifespan. Your crane builder should be able to pull from their experience to offer insight into how those various materials will perform under your jobsite’s conditions, and how long your crane can be expected to last under its expected workload.

What value added services do you offer?

From equipment upgrades and site support to OSHA compliance inspections, load testing, quality assurance, and more, the value added services your crane builder offers should indicate their primary focus in taking care of their customers. A manufacturer that goes above and beyond when it comes to their products and customer service ensures you’ll be completely satisfied with your finished product. Look for versatile manufacturers that support you throughout your crane construction process, from that first inquiry to long after your crane is at work on your jobsite.

What post-purchase costs will there be?

You should expect transparent pricing, so you have a clear understanding about the investment your crane will require. While the overall purchase and installation will be the major cost, regular maintenance is also critical to ensure your crane functions optimally for as long as it possibly can. Those maintenance costs are minimal compared to the cost of replacing a crane, but you’ll want to set aside a budget for maintenance and repair moving forward.

Different types of cranes require different maintenance routines, so you should consider these costs before you place an order. A reputable manufacturer will help you compare different models, their maintenance requirements, and any common issues that may arise, so you can budget accordingly and make a maintenance schedule to keep your crane running smoothly.

Find the Best Custom Crane Builder for Your Needs

Building a custom crane is an exciting endeavor, as you get to create a piece of equipment designed specifically for what you require. Choosing the right crane manufacturer will make the process simple and enjoyable.

At American Crane, we specialize in high-quality custom cranes for critical lifting, biofuel handling, bridge maintenance, warehousing, hazardous environments, reactor rooms, paper mills, wastewater treatment, and so many other applications. Contact us and ask us all the questions listed above—we’re happy to answer them for you—or request a quote for your project.

6 Industries That Use Overhead Cranes

Overhead cranes are adaptable tools that are vital to the safety and success of numerous industries. They can be customized for any space, including challenging environments where space is limited, and greatly increase manufacturing abilities. As a leading manufacturer, American Crane has been designing innovative solutions to fit the specific requirements of many industries. Here, we discuss the six of the many industries we serve for overhead crane applications.

1. Automotive and Transportation

transportationA popular use of overhead cranes within the automotive industry is on assembly lines. They move automotive materials along different stations until the end product is completely built, making assembly lines much more efficient. In the transportation industry, overhead cranes assist with unloading ships. They greatly increase the speed at which large items can be moved and transported.

2. Aviation

Boeing craneThe aviation industry is similar to transportation and shipbuilding in that heavy components are moved along an assembly line and precisely placed within an ongoing construction project. Cranes within the aviation industry are mainly used inside airplane hangars. Within this application, an overhead crane is the best option to move large and heavy machinery accurately and safely. Additionally, the reliability of overhead cranes makes them an excellent choice when dealing with expensive items because an unreliable crane presents costly delays.

3. Concrete Manufacturing

Virtually everything in the concrete industry is large and heavy. Due to this fact, overhead cranes make everything easier. They are efficient at handling premix and precast and are much safer than using other types of equipment to move these items. Within the concrete manufacturing industry, bridge cranes are typically used inside the factory and gantry cranes in the yard.

4. Metal Manufacturing

Overhead cranes are essential to metal manufacturing, and are used for a variety of tasks. For example, they can be used to handle raw materials and melting buckets, or load finished sheets of metal. In this application, it is not only heavy or oversized materials that require a crane’s strength; cranes are also necessary to handle molten metal so workers can keep a safe distance. Specialized attachments can be added to move different types of metal products, such as spools of wire.

5. Power Plants

power plant imagePower plants need to remain constantly functional, as any downtime can cause a blackout. For this reason, power plants must be capable of fixing any problem that might arise quickly. Overhead cranes are perfect for this application because they remain in place and are ready to be used the moment a problem arises. They also save valuable workspace and deliver a reliable performance that saves time and money on repairs.

6. Shipbuilding

Ships are complicated to build because of their size and shape. Moving large, heavy objects around inside an oddly shaped area can be nearly impossible without the right specialized equipment. An overhead crane makes it possible to freely move tools around a slanted hull. Most shipbuilding companies use wide overhead gantry cranes, which are excellent in heavy fabrication applications.

Learn More About Our Overhead Cranes

A vast number of industries rely on cranes to complete work safely and efficiently. Even within individual industries, there are numerous applications for industrial overhead cranes. If you work with large, heavy, or dangerous items or in a location where broken machinery needs to be fixed immediately, a non-movable crane is an excellent solution.

At American Crane, we believe that grit matters, and we persevere with integrity to deliver quality products. To learn more about our solutions for your specific application, request a quote or contact us today. You can also check out our product catalog and familiarize yourself with the products and specialized equipment we offer.

How to Prevent Hoist Breakdowns

Proper hoist maintenance facilitates better workflow efficiency and operator safety. While every operation should have a detailed emergency plan to follow in the event of an incident, taking appropriate precautions and preventive measures is the best way to avoid unexpected downtime caused by unexpected equipment malfunctions. This blog will discuss best practices for preventing hoist breakdowns.

Inspections and Maintenance

inspectionBeyond actual equipment operation, hoist operators should receive training in proper inspection and maintenance techniques for all equipment they operate. The operator acts as the first line of defense against unexpected equipment breakdowns. Hoist operators should physically inspect the equipment at the beginning of each day.

A routine visual inspection should include:

  • Checking the hoist wire rope for any damage
  • Inspecting the hoist hook and latch for wear and tear
  • Examining the chain for signs of wear or degeneration
  • Looking for signs of electrical failure

Daily inspections and regular maintenance will help to identify potential issues before they turn into more extensive problems. Daily checks provide an added layer of hoist troubleshooting beyond monthly or annual inspection periods.

Beyond these daily checks, you should also schedule routine inspections from a trained professional. A more comprehensive monthly walkthrough and thorough annual inspections will keep your lifting equipment operational and avoid costly OSHA violations.

Maintain a Spare Parts Inventory

crane safety and inspectionWhile preventative maintenance is essential, some problems are difficult to catch before they fail. Make sure to keep high-wear parts and components in inventory to minimize downtime when replacements need to happen. Your hoist distributor should have a list of recommended spare parts for you to keep on hand, but a general list of commonly replaced parts may include:

  • Motor and control fuses
  • Trolley contactors
  • Transformers
  • Hoist safety latches
  • Push-button stations

Keeping these and other critical parts on hand allows you to fix your equipment right away. Failing to hold common parts in inventory at your facility can extend your hoist downtime by hours or days as you wait for shipments from your supplier.

As the old adage goes, you would rather have the parts and not need them than need the parts and not have them. Ultimately, maintaining your own parts inventory will grant you peace of mind knowing that potential equipment downtime will be minimal. You can check out our available inventory of replacement parts in our catalog.

Use Equipment as Directed

Many hoist breakdowns result from pushing the equipment beyond its capabilities. To get the job done faster, operators sometimes give in to the temptation to ignore weight limits and place undue strain on the equipment. Pushing your lifting equipment beyond its limits may result in equipment breakdowns—or worse, catastrophic accidents.

Emphasis should be placed on operators and supervisors to follow safety requirements. Operators must have all relevant training and certifications regarding their specific hoist equipment, so they understand its limitations. Additionally, operators must remain aware of their surroundings and follow proper protocols to ensure their own safety and the safety of the surrounding personnel.

About American Crane

American Crane is a leading manufacturer and distributor of heavy-lift material handling solutions. We offer hoist solutions for a wide array of industries and applications, and we ship replacement parts quickly to get your cranes and hoists up and running after a breakdown. We can also provide regular OSHA-compliant inspections for your lifting equipment.

To see how our team can help improve the safety and longevity of your hoists and cranes, please contact us or request a quote today.

Serving the US Overhead Crane Industry as CMAA President

American Crane is a proud member of the Crane Manufacturing Association of America (CMAA).  I am honored to serve as President of the CMAA for the next two years. The CMAA’s mission is the deliver technical specifications and resources that promote safety in the design, operation and maintenance of overhead cranes.  This group is an affiliation of the Material Handling Industry (MHI),  and is an independent trade organization that advocates for optimal crane safety, Overhead Crane Best Practices and serves as a resource for all types of professionals within the industry.

CMAA Members are include top US industrial cranes manufacturers, leading suppliers of overhead crane systems,  designing, manufacturing, assembling, installing and servicing overhead cranes and components. The CMAA organization brings crane industry leaders together and facilitates various industry events and educational opportunities.

CMAA’s engineering committee includes over 50 experts including structural, electrical and mechanical.  The volunteers, including several of our American Crane engineers, work together to design, review and update specifications that are recognized as the preferred design standards for overhead traveling cranes and integrated crane systems, as well as crane components.  We use these specifications to engineer and build our cranes.

The Crane Manufacturers Association of America (CMAA) has released in late 2020 the latest updates to two of its technical specifications. This release is the first substantial changes to the specifications since 2015.

CMAA Specification 70 – Specifications for Top Running Bridge & Gantry Type Multiple Girder Electric Overhead Traveling Cranes

CMAA Specification 74 – Specifications for Top Running & Under Running Single Girder Electric Traveling Cranes Utilizing Under Running Trolley Hoist

These releases contain updates to the following areas:

  • Runway rail straightness and elevation table
  • Wind Restraints
  • FEA design
  • Service wind load
  • Box girder design updates
  • End truck deflection
  • Hoist wire rope angle of loading
  • Wire rope and D/d ratio
  • Hoist drum design
  • Keys and keyways
  • Continuous and intermittent duty motors
  • Wiring practices
  • Cab, pendant, and radio layouts
  • Regenerative power considerations
  • Application of IEEE 519 for cranes
  • Magnet controls
  • Rail clamps

CMAA has also created a comprehensive Buyer’s Guide to assist procurement professionals in the selection of material handling equipment. This is a great tool to use when purchasing overhead cranes.

As a top overhead crane manufacturer and supplier in the USA, we are proud to be an executive member of the CMAA and I look forward to serving our industry as President of this organization.  For more information, please contact us.

 

Bridge Maintenance and Repair Travelers

Bridges require regular maintenance and repair to remain safe for use. At American Crane & Equipment Corporation (ACECO), we offer a wide range of lifting solutions to facilitate bridge maintenance and repair operations for our customers. One of our product specializations is bridge maintenance and repair travelers.

What Are Bridge Maintenance and Repair Travelers?

Bridge maintenance and repair travelers are movable platforms that enable personnel to access the underside of bridge structures for inspection and maintenance purposes. Compared to other similar bridge repair and maintenance equipment (e.g., scaffolds), they allow technicians to reach critical points and complete work without impeding traffic.

Given the critical nature of their applications, these structures are designed and built with numerous elements to ensure smooth and reliable performance and user safety, such as:

  • Anti-skewing technology: enables operation on flexible, uneven, or misaligned runways
  • Fully caged work platforms: prevent personnel from falling from work platforms
  • Non-slip platform surfaces: minimizes the risk of personnel slipping and falling on work platforms
  • On-board personnel access lifts: improves accessibility for personnel
  • Portable operator controls: enhances the user-friendliness of operator controls
  • Redundant drop capture systems: prevents separation of the traveler from the bridge

Features of ACECO’s Bridge Maintenance and Repair Travelers

ACECO bridge maintenance and repair travelers are available in self-propelled, gas, diesel, or electric variations. While each traveler is custom-designed for its intended application, some of the standard features include:

  • Stainless, galvanized, or plated steel construction on non-painted surfaces
  • Weather-hardened design (including specialized corrosion-resistant coatings) for heavy-duty performance
  • On-board personnel lifts

Optional features include personnel seating, telescopic extensions, Coast Guard approved navigation lights, diagnostic equipment, backup motors, escape devices, emergency stop buttons, warning devices.

One of the key elements that set our bridge maintenance and repair travelers apart from the competition is SAFTRACK® technology. By combining our proprietary control software and field-proven bridge crane components, it offers users a number of advantages, including:

  • Utilizing anti-skewing technology to accommodate operation on flexible, uneven, or misaligned runaways
  • Allowing for custom solutions using conventional crane components
  • Enabling independent control of each traveler drive
  • Providing controlled acceleration and deceleration of each traveler

Contact the Bridge Maintenance Equipment Experts at ACECO Today

At ACECO, We are Your Expert, Craftsman, and Partner for all of your bridge maintenance equipment needs. We focus on making your job easier by providing turnkey material handling solutions backed by extensive experience and quality resources. Our custom bridge maintenance and repair travelers enable your technicians to access critical bridge points safely without the need for road or lane closures. To learn more about these products or discuss your requirements with one of our experts, contact us or request a quote today.

Five Factors that Affect Gantry Crane Design

A gantry crane uses its own legs for support rather than a beam or other fixture within the facility. Indoor gantry cranes may have a single or multiple girders, with multiple girder models better suited to heavy-duty work. There are four primary styles of gantry crane, each suited to specific applications:

  • Full gantry cranes.The most popular style, full gantry cranes have two legs that run along a track. That track is typically embedded into the work surface, so trucks, forklifts, and other vehicles can easily cross it.
  • Semi gantry cranes.This type of gantry crane has one leg. The other side of the crane runs along a track on the wall to save space. Both full and semi gantry cranes are common in heavy-lift manufacturing applications.
  • Portable gantry cranes.These cranes are fixed on wheels, allowing them to be moved throughout a facility and easily stored out of the way. Portable gantry cranes are best-suited for lighter lifting tasks. Portable gantry cranes are often used to hold a load so workers can easily access it for maintenance or modification. Portable gantry cranes have a myriad of uses in manufacturing and warehouse environments.
  • Adjustable gantry cranes.Another light-duty option, adjustable cranes allow adjustment of the span or the height of the cranes to manage different types of loads. These cranes see frequent use in warehouses and in manufacturing environments with variable loads.

Primary Factors that Affect Gantry Crane Design

It’s important to choose the right crane for the job. Depending upon your application, you may require a custom gantry crane design. This ensures the crane suits its intended working conditions, facility layout, and load requirements. The following factors impact gantry design:

Arm and Span Length

When determining arm and span length, first consider the size of the work area and the size and weight of the maximum load. This is where gantry crane design begins. Determine how big the crane needs to be, and how much weight it must support or lift reliably.

Indoor or Outdoor Use

The operating environment of the crane will determine the ideal materials and finishes used to fabricate its various components. Consider temperature extremes and fluctuations, weather exposure, and harsh operating conditions to help guide the selection of the proper materials and finishing processes.

Fixed or Rotating Axle End Trucks

Indoor cranes typically use fixed axle end trucks because they largely stay in one place. Outdoor cranes may need to move across yards where they can gather dirt and debris that will impact performance. Rotating axle end trucks have fewer parts and use lubrication to block dirt and debris.

Speed

Gantry cranes are versatile, cost-effective, and easy to maintain, but they move loads slowly. If speed is a priority within your operation, you may need to consider a different type of crane. Attempting to move a load more quickly than a gantry crane allows could cause an accident or damage the load or equipment.

Power Delivery

Cable reels are a common choice for supplying power, as the spring-loaded or motor-driven design can release and retrieve cable as you need it. Mounting the cable reel on a swivel provides an ability to work in multiple directions, but the downside is that the cable will sag when long lengths are in use. This may cause problems for foot and motor traffic on the ground. Custom solutions may include a series of poles and beams designed to keep wires off the ground. For portable gantry cranes, a longer extension cord may be sufficient, or it may be possible to simply position the crane closer to a power source.

Common Applications & Uses of Gantry Cranes

Some indoor gantry crane models can lift up to five tons, making them useful in a range of applications such as shipyards, warehouses, manufacturing facilities, forges, and more. Gantry cranes offer versatility and reliability when lifting large and heavy components, raw materials, and heavy finished parts.

Gantry Crane Design Standards

Like other heavy equipment, gantry design is based on specific standards for function and safety. These standards cover design, fabrication, material selection, and even painting.

The Operational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) offers guidelines for the safe operation of gantry cranes. The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) provides guidelines for building gantry cranes, as does the American Welding Association (AWS). All cranes must comply with these standards.

When you work with a reputable crane supplier, you can trust your gantry crane design meets all regulations to keep your workplace OSHA compliant and your employees safe. All gantry cranes manufactured or sold by American Crane follow the requirements set forth by these organizations. We also adhere to the stringent quality requirements and standards of the Crane Manufacturers Association of America (CMAA) in duty classes A through F. We factory test all of our gantry cranes before we ship to the customer.

Indoor Lifting Solutions From American Crane

American Crane is a leading manufacturer and distributor of cranes and hoists. Our quality assurance program meets the standards for the nuclear industry, and we offer an expansive range of customization options to tailor crane solutions to specific application environments. Our portfolio of gantry cranes includes:

We can help you rebuild existing equipment or provide you with brand new solutions. We also offer load testing, upgrades, inspections, and an extensive parts catalog.

Contact us or request a quote to learn more about gantry crane design or how we can help you fully customize a gantry hoist to suits your needs.

A Time of Change and Disruption

Everyone is dealing with a huge amount of change and disruption right now.

But change and disruption are not new.  They are a normal part of business. A common obstacle to overcome and leverage is possible. What is new to the scene is the pace.

What is keeping you up at night?

For me, as the leader of one of the top overhead crane manufacturers in the USA, it is the rate and pace with which change is happening.  As a business leader, I look to work with vendors and partners who can help me stay ahead of waves of change here at American Crane and Equipment Corporation. As a partner, we strive to be one that can help our customers overcome these obstacles.

A new business landscape was unfolding before the challenges of 2020. We have entered a period of time with 10x speed up on digital advancements affecting industry. John Chambers, Former CEO CISCO, states this warning for business leaders – “50% of Fortune 500 Companies Won’t Exist in 10 Years.” This is in reference to our current period of time where you either disrupt or you get disrupted.

How do we manage this? What steps can we take?

Here are a few tips that we use here at American Crane:

Can I have a little help from my friends?

It has never been more important to select key partners and suppliers who will help you navigate the choppy waters of change. We value our key relationships and look for suppliers and partners who deliver on what they say they will do. We look for transparency with no surprises. This is also what we strive to provide to our customers.

Look beyond the Horizon.

We are always looking to the horizon for disruptive technologies and potential innovated solution. Make sure to your company has scouts looking to the horizon for opportunities and potential pitfalls.

Cultivate and Grow your Garden, your people.

Our amazing people are the key to our success. We have worked hard to create and maintain a culture of innovation and empowerment that allows our people to thrive. We embrace our people and our culture as our secret weapon. We call it GRIT Matters – Perseverance, Heart & Integrity. It has been essential during this crisis.  I am inspired and motivated by my amazing people who have risen to the occasion.  And I am grateful that our ship is continuing to float during this storm as many others are have much more difficulties than we do. This provides me with inspiration and motivation to stay the course and outlast the storm.

Stop the struggle, embrace digital transformation.

We embrace digital transformation combined with our ability to adapt, manage & leverage disruptive change, as yet another competitive advantage. This was critical to our survival in 2020 and will only continue to be so into the future.  We have experienced a speed up this digital transformation in our business operations and products as a manufacture of overhead cranes and hoists. The crane industry is no different. Digital transformation is affecting our industry. From smart designs and enhanced connectivity to Remote diagnostics, maintenance monitoring and automated positioning. We can now make our equipment intelligent, thru advanced crane technology, providing us with valuable feedback on safety, reliability, and efficiency. This can help extend the life of your equipment while providing scalable and safe lifting solutions.  This all can translate into reduced downtime, cost saving on maintenance and extended life your equipment. As a crane technology leader, we have been pushing the technology edges of our products, solving the toughest challenges for our customers, and providing overhead lifting and material handling solutions for almost 50 years. Whether in the office, in the shop or in the field, we do not shy away from the waves of change from digital advancements, instead we seek to learn to surf them and make them a part of our business.

Your Expert, Craftsman and Partner – Trust American Crane as your top overhead crane manufacturer and supplier in the USA

As one of the top overhead crane manufacturers and suppliers in the USA, we care about the success of not just our equipment but our customers. And as a partner to our customers, we strive to help make their lives easier by providing excellent project management. It is our job to make the process of purchasing, engineering, and installing your overhead lifting needs as painless as possible. We understand that our products are tools to help you get to the real work, your work… Letting you serve your customers.

We are passionate about delighting our customers.

We want to be your best partner, delivering what we say we will. Our mission is to make our customers’ live easier. We do what we commit to do, do it well and do it on-schedule. At American Crane, we have the knowledge and expertise necessary to help you find the perfect solutions for your application.

When you work with us, we deliver as the expert in our technology, as a partner to make sure you project goes smoothly working thru any challenges with you, no surprises. And, as a craftsman, providing reliable, quality equipment backed by our know-how.  This is what we demand of our vendors and partners, and what you should require from yours. You can have high expectations of American Crane as your partner for all your overhead lifting needs.

 

Karen Norheim

President & COO

How Does a Hoist Work?

A hoist helps to raise and lower heavy loads and is sometimes used to transport objects from one location to another. There are many types of hoists that may be operated manually, pneumatically, or electronically. This mechanical device most often features one or multiple fixed pulleys, a moving pulley with a hook or other component for attaching loads, and a braided rope between them. As a leading manufacturer of hoists, American Crane can help you decide on the best crane hoist for your project’s needs.

Parts of a Hoist

There are many components that make up a hoist, including:

●      Traveling Machinery. Made up of a motor, gear, and brake, the traveling machinery allows for the horizontal movement of the hoist.

●      Trolley. A trolley is a support structure that the hoisting machinery is attached to. It is composed of a load beam and end carriages.

●      Rope. The rope of a hoist features strong metal wires that are laid together like a helix or braid.

●      Hook. The hook features a clamp that connects the load to the hoist. The clamp or other locking mechanism is necessary to support the object moved by the hoist.

●      Controller. A radio or pendant operates the control system, which directs the vertical movement of the hook as well as the horizontal movement of the hoist.

How a Hoist Works

Operating a hoist includes knowing the weight restrictions and requirements as well as built-in safety features. The operator may set operating limits of a hoist, which limit movements under certain circumstances. A hoist also comes with safety features that prevent overloading a lift, limit travelling movement, or prevent all movements with an emergency stop button.

Once all regulations and requirements are set, the operator uses the controller to activate the relevant button or joystick to move the hook vertically. The signals given by the operator, along with any safety devices or sensors, control the break and motor. When the hoist receives the signal, power is supplied to the motor, releasing the break. The motor drives the hoisting gear, which reduces the rotation speed and increases torque in order to lift the load.

The rope is fixed to the hoisting drum on one end and connected to the rope anchorage on the other. As the hoist drum rotates, the rope winds or unwinds and is guided into the correct groove of the drum, allowing the hook to raise or lower. There are two ways to stop a hoist: by releasing the up or down controls on the controller, or by activating the emergency stop button.

Contact American Crane: Your Expert, Craftsman & Partner for Hoists Today

There are many components of a hoist that work together to properly raise and lower loads within a facility. At American Crane, we offer a wide range of custom and standard hoists and hoist accessories for a diverse range of industries and applications. Our hoist options include air, electric, and manually-operated rope and chain hoists. To learn more about our products and capabilities, contact us or request a quote today. You can also check out our hoist catalog or download our Bridge Crane Lineup sheet.

Top 12 Crane and Hoist Terms to Know

Selecting the best crane or hoist equipment for your application is a challenging process. To find equipment that will facilitate safe and efficient operations, it is important to have a thorough understanding of crane terminology, different crane types, parts of a crane, and lifting terms. To help you, here is an overview of the top 12 terms you should know.

C.M.A.A

CMAAC.M.A.A. refers to the Crane Manufacturers Association of America, an independent trade association that establishes and maintains quality and performance standards for electric overhead cranes. Established in 1927 as Electric Overhead Crane Institution, the C.M.A.A. is an internationally recognized authority for crane standards.

Crane Boom

One of the most noticeable crane components is the boom. While a crane boom encompasses a variety of designs and features, it is fundamentally defined as the framework that supports and moves the load.

Critical Load

Critical load refers to a load that requires additional control or support because it approaches the maximum weight capacity. If released or moved without adequate control, a critical load can severely compromise the safety of the system. Critical loads require the use of single failure proof cranes, which ensure adequate operational safety.

Explosion Proof Crane

Explosion proof cranes are specifically designed to contain explosions and prevent heat or sparks from entering the surrounding workspace. They are used for applications where flammable and explosive materials are present, and they are typically divided into Class I, II, and III.

Class I is the most stringent, and these cranes are intended for applications where ignition of highly combustible materials and gases is likely, while Class II cranes are for potentially combustible airborne dust. Class III is the least strict, and these cranes are for applications with potentially ignitable airborne fibers.

Flux Vector Drive

A flux vector drive is a variable frequency drive that is used to monitor and control the speed and direction of the crane’s motor shaft. It allows for a greater degree of control over crane speed and braking by using a closed-loop system and adjustable incremental encoder to monitor the motor shaft during operation.

Hoist

The term “hoist” defines equipment that is used specifically for lifting and lowering loads. Hoisting, by its definition, is the act of raising a load on the vertical plane, and the term is often used in reference to the lifting applications of cranes.

Lift

For cranes, lift refers to the highest point to which a crane’s hook, magnet, or buck can lift a particular weight. Critical load calculations are used to define the lift of a given crane or hoist assembly, depending on the size and configuration of the crane and the weight of the load.

Load Block

Load block is the assembly of crane accessories suspended by the hoisting lines, which includes the hook, swivel, bearings, sheaves, pins, and frame. It is used to lift and move the load, and it monitors the tensile pressure to ensure that the loads remain within lifting capacity.

Overhead Crane

An overhead crane is specifically designed to move heavy loads by operating from a fixed overhead structure. They can be operated using a mobile or stationary hoist and mobile bridge. Overhead cranes are available in a variety of designs and configurations.

Single Failure Proof

Single failure proof cranes are engineered to ensure that if one crane component fails, it will not cause the failure of another component within the system. This helps to secure the load, particularly in instances where load failure can have extremely negative effects.

Top Running Crane

Top running cranes are a type of overhead traveling crane that travels along rails supported by single or double girders with truck ends attached to runway support beams. They are capable of carrying loads without limiting capacity and are ideal for load-bearing applications in facilities with limited overhead space.

Wheelbase

The wheelbase of a crane or hoist refers to the distance from center to center of the outermost wheels, measured parallel to the support rail. This measurement can be used to determine carrying capacity.

Contact the Crane and Hoist Experts at American Crane

At American Crane, we have the knowledge and expertise necessary to help you find the perfect mobility solutions for your application. To learn how our crane and hoist equipment can improve your operations, contact us today or request a quote.