Case Study 5: Galvanizing Plant Bridge Crane Rehab

A galvanizing plant in Muncie, Indiana had a bridge crane in need of some serious assistance. Galvanizing is a process by which metal pieces and equipment are coated by molten zinc, making them many times more resistant to oxidization. The hot-dip galvanizing process involves some extremely corrosive chemicals (most notably hydrochloric acid [HCL]) that have a hugely damaging effect on any metal equipment used in the galvanizing process. Even the hardiest steel bridge crane can’t stand long against that kind of daily caustic bombardment… we should know, because the 10-year-old bridge crane in question was one of our own – a 10-ton single-girder top running unit that CraneWerks designed, built and installed in 2010. Under normal circumstances and with regular maintenance, this crane would’ve lasted 30 years or more without breaking a sweat. After a single decade in this environment, though, it looked more like a 100-year-old crane than a 10-year-old one.


The Application:

  • Customer: A Muncie, Indiana galvanizing plant that’s part of a multinational galvanizing and metal treatment corporation.
  • Dealer: Harriman Material Handling
  • Rehabber/installer: CraneWerks, Inc.
  • Original manufacturer/dealer: CraneWerks, Inc./Harriman Material Handling

The customer is a company specializing in hot-dip galvanizing. Their decade-old 10-ton single-girder bridge crane was in need of some serious TLC after daily inundation by some of the most caustic substances in the industrial world.


The Challenge:

To breathe new life into a crane that looked to be on its last legs. The 10-ton single-girder top running overhead bridge crane – that CraneWerks had designed, built and installed for them 10 years earlier – was a pitted-out mess, with a deteriorating flange, end trucks in danger of falling off the girder, and a pair of hoists that seemed ready to give up the ghost.


The Solution:

CraneWerks replaced the crane’s old end trucks with entirely new ones. We refurbished the entire crane: girder, all parts (including hoists) and particularly the flange, which was especially deteriorated. We also replaced the old controller with a new VFD (Variable Frequency Drive) unit, which offers improved load control, greater efficiency and increased hoist life.


The Results:

Customer received a completely rejuvenated 10-ton, single-girder crane for a fraction of the price of total replacement; a crane ready to face the rigors of day-to-day duty in this particularly challenging and caustic work environment.


Case Study 4: 30-Liter Genset Lifter

The client, a major national manufacturer of diesel engines, needed a below-hook lifting device to safely pick up a fully assembled engine and generator. Oh, and it needed to be battery-powered, too, for mobile operation. That’s no mean feat, but Harriman Material Handling and CraneWerks were more than up to the task.


The Application:

Customer: (major national diesel engine manufacturer)
Dealer: Harriman Material Handling
Below-hook device designer/manufacturer/installer: CraneWerks, Inc.
Engine manufacturer: Cummins, Inc.
Generator/power systems manufacturer: Fridley Minnesota

The customer was a Columbus, Indiana company that makes diesel engines for commercial vehicles. They needed a below-hook lifting device to pick up a fully assembled commercial diesel engine with 30-liter Fridley diesel generator.


The Challenge:

Customer needed a lifting device to pick up their fully assembled 9 ton engine and generator. This fixture needed to be able to locate around a large engine and onto the supporting frame. There were limited locations that would allow the fixture to lift the engine assembly safely with no damage to the supporting frame. Fixture needed to be battery-powered, while still providing enough power to operate.


The Solution:

CraneWerks provided a custom grab-lifting device – a carefully engineered solution that doesn’t damage the engine or its supporting frame. This fixture is large enough to locate around the engine while providing enough travel to safely close around the entire assembly and lift its nine tons. The device includes a redundant locking mechanism that automatically provides a mechanical lock when in the locked position. An indicator light displays lights to the operator to inform when the fixture is locked and ready to lift. A battery-operated system provides abundant power to operate the fixture’s many moving parts, along with a remote to control operation.


The Results:

Customer received a custom, affordable design to safely lift their engine assemblies, one that’s much more efficient and safer than previously-used equipment. Their new CraneWerks fixture perfectly balances the engine assembly while providing a convenient power source for mobile operation.



Case Study 3: U.S. Gypsum Mine

A 20 ton capacity overhead crane and hoist from R&M Materials Handling Inc., sold by Harriman Material Handling (HMH), has been built and installed by CraneWerks 400 ft beneath the surface at the U.S. Gypsum Company Shoals Mine in Indiana.


The Application:

The top running double girder crane, principally chosen based on the short lead time offered by R&M and its Indiana-based distributor, CraneWerks, is being used to assemble and maintain equipment for the mine underground. It spans 35 ft and travels on a 62 ft long runway.

CraneWerks is a Master Distributor for R&M components, who builds cranes that are sold through distributors nationwide. They offer cranes that are pre-engineered, which makes building and shipping them fast.


The Challenge:

Harriman Material Handling, a distributor for both R&M Materials Handling and CraneWerks, came to the team with a unique opportunity.

Challenges were encountered both on the surface and below ground. For instance, the shaft used to get equipment into the mine was much smaller than most of the machinery used below. A 35 ft bridge beam was too long to go down the shaft in one piece. HMH and CraneWerks had to find a way to get the crane components and steel underground.

U.S. Gypsum said: “Being underground is its own challenge. Everything from pouring concrete to lifting the beams is difficult because you don’t have access to a lot of the equipment you would normally think of using. It’s constant problem solving.”


The Solution:

CraneWerks designed a bridge that was built in two pieces so it could fit down the narrow mine shaft before it was welded together at the bottom.

The crane provides a lifting solution on a daily basis, raising mobile equipment components, typically weighing approximately 10 tons, around the area. U.S. Gypsum explained that loads are normally large pieces of fabricated steel components of a larger machine.


“We have trained around 10 people on how to use the crane. About four or five of them use it on a daily basis,” they added.


A top running crane was chosen because it offers the same hook height as a single girder crane, which would require a higher ceiling. The height available is important because the hoist and trolley ride on top of the bridge girders rather than being suspended beneath the bridge girder. This gives the best hook height of any overhead bridge crane option, giving users the maximum amount of lift (distance that the hook can be raised above the floor below) available.


The Results:

U.S. Gypsum said: “We needed a crane capable of moving large pieces around for assembly of equipment in the mine, and the results suggest we found a solution. We could have acquired a few telehandlers that had the necessary weight capacities, but the EOT (electric overhead traveling) crane was the preferred option.”

The crane has been installed at the south end of the mine. The plan is to relocate the site’s maintenance facility to this location in the future.

Case Study 2: Kimura Foundry America

Six R&M Materials Handling Inc. overhead crane systems were installed in just three weeks at the newly constructed Kimura Foundry America Inc. factory in Shelbyville, Indiana. The facility is the company’s first venture outside its native Japan, where it provides rapid prototype (RP) castings and small lot production services.


The Application:

Six R&M Materials Handling Inc. overhead crane systems were installed in just three weeks at the newly constructed Kimura Foundry America Inc. factory in Shelbyville, Indiana. The facility is the company’s first venture outside its native Japan, where it provides rapid prototype (RP) castings and small lot production services. Service Crane Co., which provides industrial cranes, workstation cranes and hoist systems, installed the R&M crane components in Kimura’s new 45,000 sq. ft. facility.

Cody White, Environmental Health and Safety Coordinator at the Shelbyville site, said: “Before a new part, component, or product hits the market, extensive research, development, and testing must take place. Here at Kimura, we are responsible for manufacturing those items prior to mass production. We employ the latest information technology to increase productivity. As a result, we can provide more value-added RP castings and small lot production services to our customers.”

With Kimura’s processes, they shorten industry-standard lead times by months, delivering final products to customers within five to seven days.


The Challenge: 

With the goal of becoming the ‘world’s number one clean foundry’, the factory was a pioneer in factory operation based on ‘5S’: sort, set in order, shine, standardize, and sustain. White, who oversaw installation of the cranes and conducted operator training, said Kimura’s automated systems are recognized for an ability to reduce performance variation and increase safe operation, as well as to improve productivity. Its clean factory operation effectively reduces workplace accidents and risks.

Due to Kimura’s extremely short lead times, they rely on crane components and parts that are readily available, easily serviced, and provide dependability, all while keeping a safe working environment.

That’s when Service Crane turned to R&M for a solution.


The Solution: 

Mark Drake, Territory Sales at Service Crane Co., explained that originally only five top-running cranes were required—two 3 ton and three 2 ton—but the end user requested an additional 3 ton unit when the others were already installed. The larger ones all have a bridge span of 63.1 ft.


The Results: 

Drake added: “We continue to embrace the varied material handling challenges of Kimura, which has already involved supplying below-the-hook equipment to connect our lifting machinery to the facility’s varied loads.”


Photo Gallery: 

Case Study 1: Wheel Lifter

CraneWerks’ originally engineered below-hook wheel lifter


A semi-truck manufacturer requested a specialized solution for installing wheels onto their trucks. Their current lift assistance device was getting jammed up on floor debris; also, tires were oftentimes falling off the fixture, and the balance was frequently off. This made rotating wheels to install them onto the truck difficult and time-consuming for the operator.


CraneWerks presented an engineered solution that addressed the many issues the customer was having with their current fixture. Our low-profile design allowed the Wheel Lifter to sit as low to the ground as possible, correctly positioning it for even their lowest chassis. Tapered heavy-duty rollers keep the wheel centered and upright when rotating the lug into position and prevent the wheel from falling off the fixture. High-performance casters were added that absorbed floor debris and contributed to the long life of the fixture. Our custom design allowed for the fixture to reach around the truck, eliminating the need for heavy counterweights. The lifter was designed with a high capacity-to-weight ratio, thus allowing for the lifting heavy wheels such as super singles (typically 80-100 lbs. for semi-truck wheels), while still allowing compatibility with the customer’s current hoist setup.

Offering the Perfect Overhead Traveling Crane for the Job

Since 1997, Cranewerks has been providing unique and innovative material handling solutions to industrial workers nationwide. We manufacture and service industrial bridge cranes, and we provide inspection services. Our dealers operate all across the United States and seek to surpass safety standards by providing weekly, monthly, and annual inspections for every single one of our clients. If you require an overhead traveling crane, or need us to come inspect it to ensure it is still doing a satisfactory job, we can provide affordable services.

The Small Business Advantage
Although we have a network of manufacturers and dealers that reaches all across the nation, we also believe in the importance of maintaining a personal and close relationship with each of our clients. We are simultaneously small enough to provide immediate customer support and customized service, and large enough to encompass a wide range of services and skills. We employ expert manufacturers, and companies rely on us for everything from manufacturing, servicing, and inspecting.

Overhead Traveling Crane Customization
Customization is one of the most effective ways of ensuring that a company is satisfied with their overhead traveling crane. Having a customized product at their fingertips allows them to feel more in control. We provide cost-effective re-manufacturing services and customization so that you can get back to doing what you do best, instead of losing valuable working hours by trying to repair or re-manufacture a crane yourself.

Reliable Service
Problems arising from a damaged or malfunctioned bridge crane can be disastrous, both to your employees’ safety and your company’s productivity. At Cranewerks, we seek to eliminate unnecessary stress by providing 24/7 service to customers who need our assistance. No matter what type of help you might need, we always have a skilled manufacturer on hand to help you service your overhead traveling crane, or whichever type of bridge crane you might use.

We have a long history of providing up-to-the-minute servicing, inspecting, and re-manufacturing assistance to customers during technical or sales crises. Since it is essential for companies to remain within the industry standards set forth by the OSHA, we are dedicated to ensure you can get back to work—safely, cheaply, and without hassle.

Industrial Overhead Crane – A Great Addition for Heavy Lifting and Lasting Performance

An industrial overhead crane, or bridge crane, is a piece of equipment mainly used for material handling and heavy lifting. This type of crane system offers a safe and effective means of moving materials across the shop, while also offering the versatility and adaptability needed in an industrial environment. At CraneWerks, we offer a range of overhead crane systems.

How an Overhead Crane Can Benefit Your Operations

This type of crane is commonly used in an environment such as manufacturing as well as in maintenance jobs where time and efficiency are priorities. This type of crane is recommended for use in where there are low headroom issues that require more space than other shops. Industrial cranes are typically used to handle raw materials, steel, as well as other heavy components that are used in the steel refinement process or for handling large parts in the automotive industry.

An overhead crane system is comprised of three major components, including a bridge crane that runs across the runway, a hoist and trolley that traverses across the bridge while also lifting up and down, and a runway that is attached to the bridge structure. Our overhead cranes are built to sustain a variety of work environments. They are designed to be used for a large range of lifting and hoisting applications and can carry heavier loads to increase productivity.

Overhead cranes also do not require you to clear pathways because the crane can easily maneuver around obstructions. They also offer versatility with the ability to accommodate various below the hook accessories such as spreader bars and can be purchased in manual operation reducing energy costs. In addition to the ease of use, an overhead crane can be rigged and controlled by the operator from a safe distance, reducing the risk of workplace accidents in the event that the lift would fail.

Variety of Crane Systems to Meet Your Applications

An industrial overhead crane can be manufactured and customized to fit a variety of shops and applications. We currently carry top running single and double girder cranes, in manual or motor driven. Our single girder motor driven cranes are great for mold handling and metal storage, while our double girder cranes handle paper rolls and forge operations with ease.

Runway Crane Systems for Safe and Efficient Lifting

Runway crane systems work are compatible with a variety of cranes and utilize an overhead runway to haul material from end of the shop to another. CraneWerks carry a variety of runway systems that can handle heavy loads and can also accommodate more than one overhead crane for maximum efficiency. These types of runway systems are great in utilizing the space your shop has to offer.

Runway Cranes to Meet a Variety of Lifting or Hauling Applications

Bridge cranes, overhead traveling cranes as well as overhead cranes utilize crane runway systems in order to hoist and transport heavy materials. The main component of an overhead traveling crane runway system is a top running bridge crane, that is either single or double girder, designed with the bridge on top of the runway.

This system is best used for a shop or warehouse where maximum use of overhead space is needed. A system like this also works well in an area where the floor lacks obstructions and debris. This type of system requires strong support and strength for this equipment to work safely and properly for peak performance and productivity. Our experts can assess your building and determine whether or not your building has the strength to accommodate this type of system.

Benefits of Runway Crane Systems

These systems are cost effective to install when done by our experts because we are able to cut down on steel costs to build the system by installing and attaching the runway and support columns directly to the existing building’s structure. By building the system into the existing structure, it eliminates the need for some of the steel that is commonly used when producing an overhead crane system.

In addition to being cost effective, a runway crane system is also versatile in how it can accommodate hand geared, push/pull, as well as motorize single girder and  double girder bridge cranes. By being able to handle two separate cranes at a time, this allows the operator to move two different types of loads simultaneously.

This allows your shop to lift double the heavy loads and allows you to increase productivity and movement of goods within the shop. We also offer additions such as load monitoring to ensure your system operates to its full potential, with safety in mind.

In Search of Overhead Cranes for Sale

Are you checking out overhead cranes for sale? If so, you have many options to consider. In fact, a major decision like this can be overwhelming without the right assistance. CraneWerks is here to remove all the guesswork, and help you find the perfect crane for your facility.

Where to Begin

Should you install a single girder or double girder system? Maybe an underhung unit is best for your needs. How about an electric powered or manual operated crane? Does your facility have plenty of headspace for a standard overhead crane? These are all important questions to ask.

You will also need to consider whether you require a freestanding jib crane,or maybe a wall mounted unit. Gantry cranes are another possibility to think about.

CraneWerks Professional Engineering Services

When you come to CraneWerks, you have the benefits of licensed engineers with years of experience. They will analyze your current structures to see what your facility can handle. We have many pre-designed overhead cranes for sale, as well as other crane systems which may be just right for your needs. If those options do not meet your requirements, we can custom design, build, and install the perfect crane system for you.

Remanufacturing and Repair Services

Perhaps you are looking into overhead cranes for sale because your current crane is broken, or worn out. Cranewerks provides repair services, and can completely rebuild your current crane. It will function like new again! Call us today at 1-888-544-2121 for more information.

Do You Have The Right Below The Hook Lifting Device?

If your company or facility is like most, you spend countless hours comparing manufacturers of crane systems so that you choose the one that is best for your needs. You carefully consider costs, scope, scale, and reputation in the industry, as well as the ability of the crane manufacturer to design a system that is perfect for required lifting and moving needs.

These are always important aspects of a lifting solution. However, there is one element that is often under evaluated: below the hook lifting devices. These may well be one of the most important elements of the system to consider.

Use Considerations

Any below the hook lifting device has to be compatible for the specific lifting needs. This includes the ability to lift specific load limits, as well as the ability to withstand particular work environments. This is determined by American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) or by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards.

For example: Stainless steel below the hook lifting device are highly corrosion resistant, and can be a perfect option for clear rooms, food production, pharmaceutical uses, or in areas where there is a high risk of corrosion. These are often the devices used when corrosive chemicals are present, or when there is a need for a wash-down or sterilization process.

Fit with the Load

Not all hook and lifting devices are the correct match for all loads. ASME actually specifies the proper shape-and-capacity fitting is used with each load. The best crane providers will always use ASME and OSHA standards, eliminating any need for the company to evaluate the use of the specific device.

It is important to always maintain and inspect lifting devices. Checking for any signs of wear, stress, or fatigue in the metal will be critical for ongoing safe operation.