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Most Common Types of Overhead Cranes & Their Uses

12 April 2023

The overhead crane is built in four major variants and contains many distinct characteristics. They are employed in numerous industries, including bridge, workstation, gantry and jib cranes. The needed lifting height, job class, and weight capacity all have a bearing on the recommended crane.

Types Of Overhead Cranes


The jib crane is built partially horizontally and depends on a boom or jib to support a moveable hoist. The real job is to fix safely and securely a pillar on the floor or a wall. This model of crane is quite common in manufacturing environments. Plus, it can come in a more compact version and be placed on speciality vehicles, such as those used in the military. A key benefit of adopting the jib design is the ability to spin the crane 360° to allow tremendous versatility in lifting and loading.


In manufacturing, which has to hoist and transfer the smaller weights, the gantry crane is a more practical solution than the other options. The style of this crane might vary. Common layouts include those with an I-beam construction, while others are designed with enclosed rails. The gantry crane has a high degree of adaptability and can be readily customised to meet the demands and requirements of the working environment. They comprise both stationary and mobile components. The moveable platform is used for offloading, while the permanent platform provides a stable surface for loading. Plus, there is the option to incorporate a smaller capacity or wire rope chain hoist.


The bridge crane was designed to function with multiple runways that are parallel to one another. These runways use a moveable bridge to connect the space between them. The mechanism that travels over the bridge is called the hoist, which is responsible for lifting the heavy weight.


You can install a ceiling-mounted or freestanding unit for your workstation crane, making it a durable and powerful lifting solution. The crane is constructed with several bolt-on rails or connectors, making it very simple to modify the installation to suit the tasks at hand. In addition to this, it is an excellent option for working environments that require the lifting of big items or the performance of repetitive motions.

Overhead Crane Applications

Moving big, heavy, awkward goods through a manufacturing facility’s aisles and floor may be unsafe and time-consuming. Applications may be conducted more efficiently, cost-effectively, and safely by utilising a factory’s overhead area by installing an overhead crane. Loads may be conveniently lifted, lowered, and transported through the vacant area to save time and energy.

The crane’s movement is controlled by well-trained operators using various control devices. When considering mobility alternatives, it is critical to consider the available space and the feasibility of constructing an overhead crane.


When considering the requirement for an overhead crane, the first industry that springs to mind is warehousing, where supplies, equipment, and materials are continually transported, positioned, and prepared. The timely transportation of heavy products from storage to the shipping dock is a significant advantage of utilising an overhead crane in warehousing.


Large equipment assembly industries require a method for lifting and transferring partial assemblies from one site to another for completion. Forklifts, AGVs, and other means of material handling are insufficient and unsafe, necessitating the deployment of an overhead crane. Assemblies may be easily shifted as a natural part of the manufacturing process.


The limitations to warehousing also apply to transportation, when big bulky items must be loaded onto aircraft, trains, and trucks. Large goods may be readily positioned for delivery using overhead cranes. This is especially true for international commerce when large containers and goods must be lowered into ship holds.

The many varieties of overhead cranes function in different ways, so it is helpful to know the capabilities of each to make it easier to install the correct heavy-duty gear to fit the unique requirements. When selecting a crane for use in a manufacturing or storage facility, it is important to look for one that can considerably enhance the efficiency of lifting and transporting big goods.

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