Mobile cranes are some of the most useful examples of construction equipment in use today, and they come in many shapes and forms. This article looks at various forms of mobile cranes and their uses.
The name of these cranes is self-explanatory; the truck the crane is mounted on allows users to move it around, and the crane can be easily transported along major roads which is an advantage as there is no need to arrange special crane transportation.
Whilst a truck-mounted crane is in use, care must be taken not to swing its load from side to side, across the direction in which it is travelling. Outriggers are put out to stabilise the crane when it is stationary, and many have counterweights for extra stabilisation.
Rough terrain crane
This type of mobile crane is mounted on a special undercarriage which has four rubber tyres, allowing it to travel easily over off-road and rough-terrain-type surfaces for pick-up-and-carry jobs. There is usually one engine which powers both the crane and the undercarriage, and the engine is usually located in the undercarriage.
All terrain crane
This types of mobile cranes can travel on public roads as well as on the job site where the terrain may be rough. Designed to lift up to 1200 tons, these cranes combine the manoeuvrability of the rough terrain crane and the ability to travel on roads of the truck-mounted crane, and they use all-wheel and crab steering on the rough terrain.
These types of mobile cranes have a range of lifting potential from around 40 US tons up to around 3500 tons. A crawler crane is mounted on top of an undercarriage featuring a set of tracks or crawlers that keep it stable and allow it to move.
These cranes are very stable and travel well with loads and moves around relatively easy on site. However, they are very heavy and it can be expensive to move one from one site to another, with larger varieties having to be dismantled and transported by road, rail or even by ships.
These are cranes that are mostly used in the construction of bridges and ports, and occasionally the offloading of awkward loads from ships. Cranes can be in the form of crane barges, and these are very strong with a lifting capacity of more than 10,000 tons. For this reason they can be used to transport entire sections of bridges, and they’ve been used before to salvage a ship which has sunk. Other types of mobile floating cranes are pontoon-mounted.
There are many other types of mobiles cranes; this is not a comprehensive list but a cross-section of some of the most commonly-used in the industrial world today.