Types of Cranes and Crane Equipment
There are several unique types of cranes, all built for different situations and meant to perform different functions. Here are several types of cranes you may need for your job:
- Tower Cranes: These are the cranes you might see towering above a city's skyline.
- Level-Luffing Cranes: Similar in design and function to tower cranes, these have slightly different functions and mechanisms that provide flexibility on your job site.
- Mobile Cranes: Mobile cranes are by far the most versatile and flexible cranes you can find. Mobile cranes can be truck-mounted or on their own tracks. Many are designed to navigate rough terrain.
Depending on your project, you may be able to choose from a few options for your crane, but understanding the different kinds will help you ask the right questions.
Parts of the Crane
In order to better understand the type of crane you need for your specific job, it is important to understand the parts of a crane. Here are the key parts of crane equipment about which you need to know:
- Hook: Every part of the crane is essential, but the hook has perhaps the most important role for your project. It is the part of the crane that is actually connected to your load. The hook will include a series of pulleys called "sheaves." The sheaves help distribute the weight of the load, so the more sheaves a hook has, the more weight it can carry.
- Hoist: The hoist is a system of wire ropes you can see between the boom and the hook. This is the part of the crane that creates lift. An electric or hydraulic motor works in conjunction with the wire drum and the cranking mechanism to raise and lower your load safely.
- Boom: This is the most recognizable component of a crane. The boom is the part you see raised high to the sky. That height is not just for show; however, it serves the vital purposes of distributing weight and providing the height you need to get your load in the air.
- Counterweights: Cranes have the incredible ability to lift massively heavy loads. However, with all that weight on the front, have you ever wondered how it doesn't tip over? The answer is the counterweights placed at the rear of the crane. They can be removed for transportation and stacked on top of each other to raise the load capacity.
- Outriggers: To add additional stability, cranes have outriggers, which are metal rods that extend from the chassis. These help the crane stay planted on the ground even with the heaviest loads on the hook.
- Wheels: Mobile cranes have giant wheels or tracks for transporting across what could be difficult terrains. A crane's wheels must be in exceptional condition; otherwise, they could lead to dangerous, catastrophic failure.
Questions To Ask Before Hiring a Crane Rental Company
Now that you know the types of cranes and their components, here are some important questions to ask Before you settle on a type of crane or crane company:
- What type of crane do I need? Now you can describe your project to a crane operator and ask about types of cranes with confidence. Your crane rental company will not expect you to be an expert on cranes, but a little knowledge can go a long way toward making sure you get what you need.
- What type of cranes do you have? Not every crane rental company will have each type of crane. However, mobile cranes often prove to be the most versatile. Parker's Crane has multiple models of high-quality mobile cranes.
- What does my crane rental include? In addition to the crane itself, you may want to ask whether you can also hire crane operators. Parker's Crane can supply certified, experienced operators for your project.
- What is your safety record? We have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to accidents. That has helped us maintain a flawless safety record.
If you are ready to consult the experts to hire your crane in the Charlotte area and throughout the Carolinas, we would love to talk with you. We are happy to answer your questions and get you the crane you need for your construction project. Contact the team at Parker's Crane Service today.
You can also find even more crane specifics in our article, A Concise Glossary of Rigging Terms.