Loader cranes are a staple of construction sites and with increasingly improved lifting capacities and smart accessories, moving materials to where they need to be is becoming quicker and easier. Niamh Marriott reports

New models launched to the market are allowing for work on restricted and confined sites and are particularly useful for city lifting work.

Hiab’s new Effer iQ.1400 HP 135 tonne-metre rated hydraulic articulating crane (Photo: Hiab)

As reported by ICST, Hiab’s new Effer iQ.1400 HP is a 135 tonne-metre rated hydraulic articulating crane. This latest model follows on from the launch of the Effer iQ.950 HP, a new 90 tonne-metre model announced in February 2023.

City lifts

Manufacturer Hiab, part of Cargotec, says the latest one is a super heavy loader crane ideal for urban operations in metropolitan areas.

Its maximum vertical reach is 39.5 metres and adding the jib means it can deliver materials with an “up and over” of 26 metres, Hiab says.

Instead of the 12 sided boom section of the smaller 90 tonne-metre model, this latest one has the V10-Force decagonal (ten-sided) boom and the latest SPACEevo control system. The V10-Force boom, as also used in the Effer 1000, is designed for increased strength enhancing vertical performance, to its maximum 83 degrees working angle. With the control system it also helps reduces oscillation to help place loads more precisely.

Being able to work closer-in to buildings is ideal for restricted sites in urban areas.

Palfinger added two new installation tips to its equipment portfolio (Photo: Palfinger)

“Customers will be able to experience a whole new level of heavy load lifting, with a crane that excels in vertical reach of over 39 metres,” says Marcel Boxem, Hiab’s vice president, sales and product management, loader cranes heavy and super heavy.

“The engineering, combined with a CombiDrive4 remote control from Olsbergs gives operators unprecedented precision even at high heights. The 135 tonne-metre range delivers performances similar to bigger segment cranes. The smaller frame makes it suitable for installations on smaller trucks and provides plenty of payload, not normally seen in this segment.”

The new model shares parts, components and controls with other iQ. and iX series cranes which the company says helps with operator familiarisation and reduces inventory for parts and service items.

Loading out

Austrian manufacturer Palfinger offers a large range of loader cranes which are set to work at different job sites.

A Palfinger loader crane was used to lift four heavy life rafts in Estonia (Photo: Palfinger)

Recently a Palfinger PK 135.002 TEC 7 loader crane was used by Estonian transport company Sintravella to lift four heavy life rafts from and onto the ferry Megastar in Estonia, in under an hour, so that they could be safety checked and approved for use for the next year.

The crane, with a fly jib PJ150 E moved the life rafts, which weigh around 500 kilogrammes and are located 22 metres above the quayside. With its capacity of 30 tonnes and a maximum reach of 36.6 metres, it managed the lift by co-ordinating via radio remote control. Palfinger’s P-Fold assistance system made disassembling and folding the crane easy for the operator, the company said.

Estonian transport company Sintravella putting the PK 135.002 TEC 7 loader crane to work (Photo: Palfinger)

It’s not just the loader cranes themselves that are being updated, crane accessories are also being continually developed.

In addition to its loader crane offering, Palfinger recently added two new installation tips to its equipment portfolio for loader cranes. The tips were specifically developed for heavy-duty loader cranes with P-Profile and boast a load capacity up to 20 tonnes.

“Challenging operations are the speciality of Palfinger heavy-duty loader cranes,” says a spokeperson for the company. “In combination with an installation tip, even complicated operations can be successfully mastered in confined spaces.

“With the tip, the anchor point is offset away from the extension arm. This offset gains crucial centimetres and the load can be manoeuvred effortlessly through openings and narrow passages that would be impossible to get through without it.”

Below the hook

At the end of 2022 Spanish crane accessories provider Elebia was approached by a construction company in search of a solution for the remote releasing of timber roof trusses.

Elebia’s crane hook remotely releases timber roof trusses (Photo: Elebia)

“We understood the importance of safety in such operations, as they are generally performed at elevated heights, posing risks for the operators,” says a spokesperson for the company.

“The evo2 automatic crane hook, while the smallest safety hook in our range, is capable of engaging and releasing any load remotely with a lifting capacity of 2.5 tonnes.

Elebia’s evo2 automatic crane hook (Photo: Elebia)

“We equipped the evo2 lifting hook with a magnet sensor, which indicates when the wire rope sling is attached to it. This information is then displayed in the eMAX remote control. The hook was configured in ‘Autoclose Mode’, allowing it to automatically close when the magnet sensor detects the ring is in position, eliminating the need for manual closure by an operator.”

With this set up, the last piece of the puzzle was attaching a wire rope sling to the evo2 automatic hook to ease the sling recovery once the load was disengaged or released. The evo2 safety hook with magnet sensor has been a game-changer for the construction company, allowing for safe and efficient remote releasing of timber roof trusses.

Industry partners

Danish crane manufacturer HMF is developing a new high tech automated production factory with its supplier partner Migatronic Automation to ensure it can continue to meet the industry’s loader crane demands. The company also recently announced its new distributor for crane and equipment in France, TechMat.

Søren Kjær, HMF CCO, says, “TechMat, a subsidiary of hook lift manufacturer Dalby Group, is specialized within the industry of loader cranes and vehicle body building as well as sheeting systems and mobile skips.

“As such they have vast experience in sales and service of truck-mounted cranes, together with their national network of vehicle body builders and service workshops all over France. We trust that TechMat is the right partner for HMF in our goal of expanding our market reach.”

HMF also disclosed that Soma Environmental Solutions will be its new distributor for Portugal.

Soma usually specializes in waste handling and environmental solutions but has decided to create a separate crane division with HMF cranes. It will make it possible to extend its line of business, so it will not only handle the cranes on its own vehicle bodies, but also sell them to a new category of customers.


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