Cranes have adapted to the form they are most needed. There are two categories of cranes, mobile and fixed. In each group, there are models with different kinds of specifications that are aimed towards certain jobs. There are fleets of cranes in all sorts of shapes and sizes for smaller companies to choose from. But how do you find the right kind of crane?
The right type
The first thing you need to look at is what the job requires. Since there are so many types, you can do a quick research about the kind you think will be the most suitable and compare it to the recommendation of the company you are considering hiring from. A couple of questions that can help narrow your search are: where is the project located? What kind of environment will you face during operations? What do you need the crane to accomplish?
To give a brief overview, mobile cranes have land and water options. For land, there are truck cranes, rough terrain, and crawlers. Truck-mounted cranes are the kind you can see in your town/city. It goes around with rubber tires and has a high range of mobility. You might have even seen them pass by your local roads. The rough terrain and crawler cranes are mounted on undercarriages with wheels and crawling track, respectively. Rough terrain cranes specialize in operating in rugged environments; they have four-wheel drive and outriggers to stabilize the crane. Crawler cranes also have their kind of outriggers to support the crane. For water, there is the floating crane. They are mounted on boats and barges and are generally outfitted for sea-use, though they can also be used on-shore.
Fixed cranes are made to carry heavier weights for more extended periods. For skyscrapers and similar buildings, a fixed crane has more stability and will reduce the chance of toppling over. The trade-off for carrying more weight is that it loses its mobility. Tower cranes are mounted on concrete, and their movements depend on the extension of the boom (as seen on a telescopic crane) or rotation of gear and motor (a balance crane).
The right size
As you find the right type, you need to check the lifting capacity. To simplify, the length of your crane roughly determines how much it can carry. This size equals power dynamic because there is a limit to mobile cranes and a shift to fixed cranes. Find the right kind of rig for your job. It is an essential part of your planning process.
The right quality
Like most heavy machinery, you must approach with caution, especially when working on a contracted machine. You do not know the wear and tear; do your best to ensure you have a crane that won’t cause any onsite accidents. Scout, the companies you are considering and check their certification, and their equipment are regularly inspected. Call to verify the validity of the certification before getting a quote. Most companies have websites like that allow you to do your research before committing to anything.
The most suitable crane will fit the environment in question, the project, and all involved safety.