Choosing Your Overhead Crane

Choosing Your Overhead Crane

Choosing Your Overhead Crane – A Simple Guide

An overhead crane, commonly referred to as a bridge crane involves a hook-and-line mechanism that runs along a horizontal beam, called a bridge, which in-turn travels along a supporting structure called a runway beam. The purpose of the overhead crane system design is to offer complete coverage and versatility for the crane operator to move the desired load anywhere inside the facility.

Overhead cranes come in single, double and box girder designs, the design you choose ultimately depends on your lifting capacity and application. Typically, single girder designs support lifting capacities of 20 tons with spans of 60 ft. Anything above a 20 ton capacity would be supported by a double or box girder design.

Overhead cranes are available in multiple configurations, the crane you choose should be custom engineered to suit your application.

1. What is the load capacity you need?

The maximum weight of your application should not exceed the lifting capacity of your crane.

2. What is the crane span needed?

Determining the span of the total coverage that is needed is an important factor in determining the size of the crane system required. Will the crane cover the entire span of the facility, or a specific workstation?

3. How long will the crane be used?

The operational frequency that your crane will be used will define the crane classification required for your application. Each classification is clearly defined using the CMMA service classes by the Material Handling Industry of America.

4. Free standing or building attached runways?

Typically, overhead crane systems are supported by runway structures that are attached to the building to reduce the amount of space needed for the structure. An alternative design is a free standing runway that is custom engineered to support your structure.

5. Consult with an O’Brien expert. 

Our product experts are available by phone and on-site to help you map out your overhead crane requirements and fine the overhead crane configuration that fits your specific application.