The Right Tool for the Lift

Enerpac Cube JackEvery maintenance job and every heavy lift is different. There is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Therefore, how do you know the right tool for the job? Today’s heavy lifting technologies provide a wealth of operational efficiencies and cost savings over older lifting solutions. An examination of these points along with working with a trusted supplier will have long-lasting effects on your business and the project work you can win.

Core Considerations in the Selection of Heavy Lifting Solutions

Capacity: How much weight needs to be moved? There are two important considerations here: the weight of the lift you are doing today does not correlate 1-to-1 with the solution you need to perform the lift; and business owners with an eye towards growth and expansion should consider the type of work they aspire to do in the future when specifying a solution. If you have a 100-ton load to lift, the answer is not to use a 100-ton capacity solution. Will the load shift during the lift and place more strain on one part of the lifting equipment over the other? While most tools on the market today are engineered to outperform rated operating capacities, it’s not wise to lean on that when selecting a lifting solution. In some cases, a solution rated at more than twice the weight of what you typically lift may be recommended.

Lift Height: Know your height restrictions — and with a similar caveat as weight: don’t select a solution that only meets today’s needs. Select a solution that will fit your hauling projects, but also consider where you want to take your business in the future.

Type of Lift: Whether you’re lifting from above or below will have a significant impact on the type of solution you choose, as well as the accessories required to perform the move.

Space: Understanding lift weight and height needs to be reconciled with the overall space in which the move takes place in. How much space is there around the equipment you are moving? What is the foundation like? Do I have clearance from above or does it need to be a horizontal move?

Time: You may have a tool that can do the job — but does that tool require extensive transportation and setup that doesn’t fit in with the timeline of the job? Matching the right solution to the work you perform most frequently will ensure that your bidding for labor and expenses in relation to handling the solution is as streamlined as it can be.

Transportation: The ability to get your lifting solution to the job site is a major factor in cost and logistics — but it doesn’t have to be difficult. There are large gantries with modular designs that are packaged in a way that they still fit on a standard trailer and can be forked off and moved around using common handling equipment. Select something that works and that doesn’t create logistical challenges comparable to what you’ve been hired to transport.

Usability: Brute strength is nothing without brains. Research the control options that come with each solution; and focus on controls that are intuitive, help reduce operator error, improve safety, and provide the greatest control to precisely place the load. While many factors affect safety, the right control system can provide excellent safety checks, such as the ability to automatically stop in case of overload or an out-of-tolerance condition. Some suppliers also provide controls as a standard — simplifying the sales process — whereas others make it an aftermarket decision that requires additional purchases and support.

Evolution: No one buys new equipment for the sake of buying new equipment. It’s time to upgrade when older equipment is worn and beginning to impede work – especially in a competitive marketplace where newer technology is driving operational gains. It’s also important to consider how new technology may actually help you lower your total cost of ownership.

Support: If something goes wrong during the move — what does that downtime cost you? Is your solutions provider capable of supporting you and responding in a timely manner to get you up and moving? Do they have a parts network that ensures availability and delivery of parts in a timely manner — regardless of where you might be working? After-sales support ranks consistently as the highest purchase driver in capital equipment decisions, and its impact on your profitability and customer satisfaction should not be overlooked. Also, does that partner provide after-sales training to get your team up to speed on the equipment quickly and safely? Work with a partner who does.

“The Enerpac SCJ-50 Self-Locking Cube Jack is a new solution in which all of the considerations mentioned above were on the forefront in the designing phase”, says Tom Eggert, Product Manager of Heavy Lifting Technology.“The cube jack uses a base lifting frame and self-aligning, lightweight steel cribbing blocks to provide high-capacity and stabilized lifting – offering a safer, controlled and more efficient alternative to climbing jacks with wooden cribbing.”

With an 81.4” final lift height, the Cube Jack is a compact and portable solution, capable of fitting under a haul truck, dozer, crawler and more. For maintenance work, the system is a safer lifting option, automatically mechanically locking after the lifting or lowering stroke. “The self-aligning steel cribbing blocks save time, handle up to 1.5 percent side load, and eliminate the need for wooden cribbing materials. Jobs are more economical, with less labor due to simplified operation sequence with 50 percent less cycles than climbing jacks”, added Eggert.

Learn more about the Cube Jack at CONEXPO-CON/AGG by visiting the Enerpac booth number S60713 in South Hall 1. Enerpac is bringing an all-new exhibit highlighting tools for construction equipment repair with several hands-on displays showing high force tools in action.

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