Well this week we are talking about rough terrain cranes and their purpose slash role in the crane rental industry. Rough terrain cranes much like carry deck cranes and crawler cranes have a special place in the market. The rough terrain crane and the carry deck, much more so than the crawler crane. This is a lengthy summary and description about Rough terrain cranes. If you want to listen to or watch the one-minute version of this, please click here otherwise enjoy this short read.
The rough terrain crane is built with massive rough terrain tires. They are bigger and than the all-terrain x-crane tires and have a tread pattern that is great “off the road”. This crane is ready to go through steep grades, mud, sand, loose gravel and any unfavorable terrain you can throw at it. That is one of the advantages of this crane class. It is beefy in the tire department. This tire package allows the crane to maneuver jobsites and project sites with ease. If you have a site that meets these types of requirements than the rough terrain crane might be the crane for the job.
Rough terrain cranes, carry deck cranes, crawler cranes and to some extent all-terrain cranes have an on rubber chart [or on tracks chart for crawler cranes]. This allows for this crane and the aforementioned cranes to be able to pick up a load and carry it with the crane. Unlike an all-terrain crane the rough terrain crane has a steering wheel and crane functions in one cab. It is pretty interesting to see. It is like what you see in an excavator or that type of equipment. Believe it or not one of our 40 ton cranes, the Terex T340–1XL can also be driven from the upper operator’s cab. But that is just a fun fact for you that I sprinkled in. Back to rough terrain cranes…This ability to pick and carry loads is quite advantageous for projects. The rough terrain crane like I mentioned before can handle all types of terrain, couple that with the ability to carry a load and you have one heck of a crane for job sites and projects.
The rough terrain crane transportation wise is much like the crawler crane that we talked about last week. It requires a heavy haul trailer and qualified driver to transport this crane. Which means to you that it can be costly to mobilize this crane to a job site or project. Luckily though, this crane has an integrated counterweight system. Meaning that the counterweigh is stationary. This allows for this crane class to generally only require one heavy haul load, unlike a crawler crane that can require 12 truck loads to 20+ truck loads. For this reason, you will typically get requests for this crane for long duration projects and rentals. Unlike an all-terrain crane or boom truck, you won’t be stacking up multiple rentals for this crane in a day or in a week. The rough terrain crane is perfect for long term projects and job sites. For this reason, we usually rent this crane on a bare rental basis, but we do offer operated rentals of this crane for any project.
The rough terrain crane is also a great support crane. We utilize this type of crane in our wind energy division almost daily. The rough terrain crane is a great tail crane. This crane is perfect for assisting our large all-terrain cranes and large crawler cranes when they are hoisting rotors for our wind clients.
The large all-terrain or large crawler hoists the rotor and the rough terrain crane hooks onto a blade to help rotate the vertical rotor assembly into a horizontal stance that is then placed on an elephant foot or rotor stand. This crane doesn’t take much to set up on de-setup [is that even a word?]. For that reason, this crane type also flourishes in plant shutdowns and plant turnarounds.