The long history of cranes as a type of construction dates back thousands of years. Records show that the first cranes were invented and used by the ancient Greeks as early as 515 BC. Some reports suggest that cranes were used for irrigation in ancient Mesopotamia thousands of years ago. In fact, if many ancient buildings were to be built today, some cranes would need to be used.
Mobile cranes are mounted on crawlers or tires and are more maneuverable than standard cranes. Some mobile cranes can even travel on highways. They can navigate the job site and carry a lot of weight, making mobile cranes a popular addition to many projects.
There are several different types of mobile cranes, including:
1. Carry a deck crane.
The carry deck crane is a relatively new type of crane that has evolved from the old pick and carry model first introduced in the 1980s. They are small, have four wheels, and can rotate 360 degrees, making them more portable than other types of cranes. Deck cranes are easy to set up, small in size and easy to navigate in tight, open spaces, making them a staple in many workplaces.
2. Crawler crane.
Unlike wheeled deck cranes, crawler cranes are rail vehicles. The tracks are not wheels, but a landing gear based on a pair of rubber tracks. While this limits the track’s turning ability, the track can be used on soft ground and limited improvement sites without sinking.
Some crawler cranes have an additional telescopic boom that can be resized, making them highly adaptable on many terrains. Unlike carry decks, tracked crawlers are best for long-term projects because they are bulky, have special setups, and need to be transported from one station to another.
3. Floating crane
These floating cranes, also known as crane boats or crane vessels, are used in offshore projects such as ports or oil rigs. These cranes have a long history – they have been in use since the Middle Ages and have helped generations through continuous technological advancement.
So far, there are several types of floating cranes, such as single-leg and semi-submersible. However, the only difference between floating cranes and other common types is that they are used at sea.
4. Off-road cranes.
As the name suggests, these cranes are used for off-road and rough terrain picking. Rough terrain cranes are built in a similar way to crawler cranes, but instead of crawler cranes, the chassis is equipped with four large rubber tires that are usually equipped with four-wheel drive. The rough terrain crane is also equipped with telescopic booms and outriggers for improved stability and makes mobility in narrow rough areas more manageable.
5. Truck mounted crane.
The truck crane consists of two parts, the carrier (truck) and the boom (arm). Due to their unique construction, they can easily travel on the road without unique setups or transport equipment.
Truck mounted cranes are equipped with counterweights and outriggers to maintain stability for slow movement when carrying large loads. There are different versions of truck cranes; for example, special truck cranes are used for bridge inspection, maintenance and construction.
Choose the right crane.
Almost all construction work involves carrying heavy materials, so having a crane on hand is very important. In order to use a crane safely and correctly, you need operators, signallers and fitters. As of November 10, 2018, OSHA requires all crane operators to be trained and certified, and most states require operators to hold a license when using mobile cranes. However, fitters and signalers only need to be qualified to do the job.