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Explaining The Differences Between An Overhead And An Industrial Crane

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There are so many different ways and different machines that lift and move heavy objects from one place to another. The problem is that everyone refers to these machines in a very generalized way as "cranes." Even if you get a wee bit specific, you might confuse industrial cranes with overhead cranes. While it could certainly be said that an overhead crane is a type of industrial crane because it is used in industrial and manufacturing plants, you should know that an actual industrial crane is something very different. To sort out the confusion, the following is provided. 

Overhead Cranes Have an Affixed Bridge

​Overhead cranes are called overhead cranes because they slide back and forth overhead on a heavy duty steel bridge. The bridge is affixed to two points in a factory, which are typically two walls that face each other. The crane itself is more of a hoist, an mechanical piece of machinery that drops a strong cable with a hook down to pick up loads. It can only move the length of its bridge, and that is all. 

​Industrial Cranes Have Swinging, Moving Arms That Are Not Affixed to Two Points

​An actual industrial crane has an "arm" that is able to swing about. It is not affixed to two points like the overhead crane, giving this type of crane more range of motion and freedom to move. Rotation and movement on more than one axis is typical of this type of crane.

​Overhead Cranes Rely on Electricity

​All overhead cranes rely on electricity. They will only work when the plant has electrical power, and they will fail to work when the power is out. However, if a plant has backup generators, then this is sort of a moot point and the overhead cranes will only experience a momentary lapse in movement while the generators kick in to cover the loss of power. 

​Conversely, Industrial Cranes Can Use Gas and/or Electricity

​Some industrial cranes use gas, which is why it is so important that they be used in well-ventilated areas. A few may also use electricity, either as a sole source of power, or in conjunction with gas to operate. If you are concerned that a crane will not work during storms and power outages, and there are no generators in a plant, then the industrial crane may be a better option than the typical overhead crane. 

Contact a crane service for more help.