If you are looking for a truck with crane, there are some details about the crane that you should consider before choosing. The term ‘small crane’ has, until recently, meant rudimentary lift equipment – often home-built. The typical small hydraulic crane or hoist consisted of a hydraulic jack mounted under a hinged steel arm with a hook on the end. These cranes were sold by discount auto parts stores for installation on a boom truck. While these cranes were inexpensive, they also were very basic. No power swing, no overload protection, and no outriggers. As a result, these small service truck cranes were often unsafe, clumsy, and difficult to operate, weighed a lot and interfered with cargo space because they did not stow when not in use.
All this began to change in the 1970’s and 80’s when hydraulics were integrated into articulated cranes in Europe. About thirty years ago, a small hydraulic truck crane, often referred to as a small ‘hiab’, made its appearance. While usually under 3.5tm/25,000 ft.lbs in size, these small ‘hiabs’ incorporated the design, safety and operating features found on a larger, more expensive crane truck.
Today, more sophisticated and rugged small cranes are produced by the major knuckleboom crane companies as well as by several smaller companies. Technocrane Inc., based in British Columbia Canada, focuses entirely on small cranes for trucks. Of the various small cranes available today, Technocrane’s BIGMAX TC series crane line offers the broadest range of models with the most advanced features available anywhere.
Following are the many features found in the BIGMAX range of electric or hydraulic cranes as well as the larger, more expensive industrial cranes.
- Hydraulic slewing. This feature gives the operator full control of the load and enables the crane to be rotated safely in both directions under power. This feature eliminates the risk of a crane slewing out of control causing injury to the operator and damaging the load.
- Hydraulic boom elevation. Unlike most small cranes that have a davit type, fixed boom, BIGMAX cranes have an articulating boom that is raised and lowered by the controlled flow of hydraulic oil in and out of the lift cylinder. The load is raised and lowered using the hydraulic boom function. This feature allows the operator to better control the load.
- Hydraulic boom extension. This important feature enables the operator to position the load on the deck after it has been lifted. Small truck cranes without this feature still require the operator to manually move the load around on the deck, potentially exposing the operator to the same back injury that could result from lifting the load onto the deck without a crane.
- Overload protection. This feature is provided by a safety valve on all BIGMAX hydraulic cranes. The valve effectively monitors the load being lifted by the crane. In contrast, because most small non-hydraulic cranes will lift until they stall, without any reliable load monitoring, they are vulnerable to overloading, lack of load control, structural failure and tipping the carrier chassis.
- Proportional controls. Proportional controls are included on all BIGMAX cranes give the operator soft-start, smoother and safer control of the load, eliminating the jerky stop/full speed type of control provided by off/on, bang/bang (non-variable) control systems common to many small cranes.
- Additional control valve. An additional control valve section is included with all TC series BIGMAX cranes to operate the outrigger stabilizers or another additional hydraulic function to maximize the utility of the crane.
We invite you to view our TC 300 which has proven to be a great service body crane. To get more information about all Bigmax cranes for sale, call 1-877-531-8644 toll free.