Rigging forklifts aren’t really the same as what you might find in a forklift for just general factory use. Frequently, rigger forklifts have removable counterweights as well as a boom. Some factories will, however, buy them for die handling or if they move machines a lot. The boom is used for those long reach challenges or where the fork truck just can’t get it’s forks under a machine. Or it just doesn’t make sense to raise it from the bottom. Usually the machine is chained or rigged with nylon straps, then hooked to the boom.
Rigger forklifts may have a manual or hydraulic boom. Hydraulic booms are much more desirable because they are so easy to use. They are handy in order to extend for further reach or, in some cases, raise for extra vertical reach. For example, Versa-Lift forklifts can have both horizontal and vertical hydraulic systems for that very purpose. Of course, a boom isn’t always wanted. In this case, many boom manufactures now provide a boom stand. This is nice because, in the old days, it wasn’t uncommon to just lay the boom down somewhere when not in use. This means another forklift or overhead crane was needed to raise and install the boom. With a boom stand, the rigger can just drive up to the boom and attach it without a second forklift or piece of equipment.
Another feature of modern rigger forklifts is remote control. Here’s why this is so useful. If you have a 40/60 Hoist or Versa-Lift, for example, you’ll notice that it’s hard to see through the front lift assembly. This means a lot of blind spots. Blind spots make it hard to see what you’re doing and can increase the risk of hurting someone by accident. Usually, a second person is used to relay directions when the forklift operator can’t see what he’s doing. This whole thing can be avoided by using a remote control. Plus, this means the rigger can do the same job with one less employee. Using a remote control, the operator can go anywhere he needs to be in order to see what’s happening. Another feature that forklift companies like Bristol and Taylor use is video. Video definitely helps. Both front facing and rear facing. For example, when several large propane fuel tanks are mounted behind the operator, it’s hard to see when going in reverse. Video cameras help just like the reverse camera in a car. Not only does this make for potentially safer operation, but also saves the paint from getting tore up! If you’re looking at a Taylor 80,000lb machine, you can see that it has a pretty long backend. This means hitting things by accident is all the more easy and why a video system is good.
Versa-Lift Forklifts: http://www.versa-lift.com/Models/60-80/index.php