Injection moulding is an industry in which Pelloby have a great deal of experience of providing lifting solutions. We were recently asked by West Midlands injection moulder and tool manufacturer, Goodfish Ltd. to design and produce a new 10 tonne crane for their factory in Cannock.
The crane’s 19 metre span beam stands at 4.3 metres in height thanks to a special stooled up construction and allows the team at Goodfish to prepare their various moulding machines for use as well as letting them install new equipment whenever required.
This crane also utilises a Verlinde electric wire rope hoist unit which features an LED floodlight for added visibility. The entire system is operated via a handheld radio control remote.
Crane safety features
Pelloby also provided 32 metres of freestanding gantry steelwork for both sides of the Goodfish warehouse for the new crane to run on. A resulting complication of this steelwork was that it is located in front of a roller shutter door and while it stands at a height that allows people to comfortably walk underneath it, it blocked passage of taller goods, materials and equipment coming into or going out of the warehouse. Therefore the Pelloby designers incorporated a small removable section of gantry in order to be able to move machinery in and out of the building when required.
We also took care to add in extra crane safety features to ensure the wellbeing of staff while using the system. The underside side of the removable length of gantry has guide slots that allow it to be clamped securely to a forklift to be removed with ease, while special temporary end stops were provided to be fixed to the ‘new’ edge of the gantry. But in order to completely guarantee that the crane cannot be accidently driven over the end of the gantry, a special key switch has to be turned before the removable section can be taken away which stops crane from moving completely, until another switch is turned to reactivate it.
Raised crane legs and wider baseplates
In order to maximise the height of lift, the crane featured a stooled up design, which means its legs are higher than those of most cranes. This height could have also been achieved with taller free standing columns however as 18 of them were required to support the weight of the crane plus a potential lift capacity of up to ten tonnes, this would have meant using considerably more steel and ultimately been a less cost effective option. Instead, shorter columns with reinforced wider baseplates were utilised which also helped reduce the crane’s overturning point.
Kevin Turner, Senior Technical Manager at Goodfish Ltd., explained that the installation process of the crane was a success.
“I was very happy with all areas of this project with Pelloby. The installation went as smoothly as possible, with Risk Assessments and Method Statements (RAMS) being received early on which allowed us to assess potential hazards in advance and audit through the entirety of the installation.
“The teams both at Goodfish and Pelloby worked efficiently together over a two week period covering both preparation and installation, resulting in very little disruption to production requirements. The success of the installation could not have been achieved without full and clear lines of communication between Goodfish and Pelloby throughout.
“This is a major asset introduction for Goodfish, probably the biggest the company has undertaken to date. The original method of tool changing consisted of split tools being lifted into injection moulding machines with a three tonne A-frame gantry. This was a very slow and cumbersome operation which also had its own health and safety risks attached.
“The new crane will allow for optimum tool change times with the assistance of SMED methodology. Production up time will increase as a matter of course but better still – the increased lifting capacity of ten tonnes will open the door to new business opportunities and new potential customers.”
If you would like to know more about this project or are interested in what crane safety features your workplace can benefit from, contact our team on 01952 586 626 firstname.lastname@example.org.