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Efficient steel warehousing in five steps

January 3, 2018

Lifting technology plays a critical role throughout the entire steel production process, from front to back. Here are five factors to consider when selecting a crane.

From gantry and bridge cranes to wall console and jib cranes, steel warehousing relies on a variety of lifting equipment. Safety, reliability and efficiency are key: These machines must be able to withstand the pressure of moving hundreds of tons of product, whether it’s 27-meter-long plates, 80-ton coils or 50 mm structural tubing.

For operators of steel warehousing facilities, here are the key points to consider when deciding on the right lifting equipment.

1. Assess your lifting needs

The first step in researching cranes is to study what your requirements are today along with what your business might look like down the line. Start by examining your process, then review your warehouse’s environment thoroughly. Taking care of these will help you focus on the equipment that is the best fit for your facility.

2. Determine your duty classification

All overhead cranes are classified according to the intensity of the load as well as the number of cycles the machine completes in a given period of time. A crane’s classification will range from infrequent service to continuous severe service. Use the information collected in the first step to figure out your crane’s classification based on guidelines of the Crane Manufacturer Association of America (CMAA), International Organization for Standardization (ISO), European Federation Standard (FEM), Hoist Manufacturers Institute (HMI) or European Standard (EN).

3. Explore your technology options

A range of technological advancements can be added to warehousing cranes to increase safety and productivity. Konecranes Smart Features such as Sway Control, Target Positioning, Snag Prevention and Hook Centering are especially useful in steel warehousing. Automation and Konecranes TRUCONNECT Remote Monitoring are also worth looking at.

4. Decide on hook attachments

Imperfect attachment and load pairings can cause dangerous, not to mention costly, errors. Fortunately, most  overhead cranes can accommodate several types of lifting attachments. For optimal performance, hook attachments must fit the crane correctly and should not exceed the crane’s capacity.

5. Look beyond the crane

What’s not on the crane also matters. An effective preventive maintenance and parts program allows operators to address potential maintenance and safety concerns before they become critical and affect employee safety, productivity and revenue.


Text: Gino de la Paz