Managers operating in power stations and refineries can now put an end to the manual handling of difficult materials thanks to the flexibility of Cat® Lift Trucks.
Lincolnshire-based JC Plant Limited has manufactured a new range of machines using Cat Lift Trucks supplied by the UK’s national Cat® Lift Truck distributor and service provider, Briggs Equipment.
JC Plant, which specialises in designing and manufacturing bespoke materials handling solutions, has developed the ‘Skyhook® 3.3’. It is specifically designed to work in hazardous environments and confined spaces whilst providing optimum safety for the operator and bystanders. It reduces the risks associated with using multiple equipment and manpower for certain jobs by rolling many features into one machine.
"We identified that some of our customers were having difficulty handling smaller loads in restricted areas and in some cases were manually handling items when machinery should have been used. We therefore designed and built the ‘Skyhook® 3.3’ to assist with the handling of such items as:- motors, pumps and valves etc. Thus reducing the risk of manual handling injuries," explains Jamie Cooper, managing director at JC Plant.
"As a basis we needed flexible and durable forklift trucks for this operation; ones that could easily adapt to bespoke modifications yet maintain the highest levels of safety and reliability. After researching the market, we found that the high-quality standard and flexibility of Cat® Lift Trucks were ideal machines for the job," Jamie continued.
Briggs supplied Cat diesel models to JC Plant. Then each one had its chassis and hydraulic systems re-engineered to accept a specially designed sub-frame and stabiliser structure, onto which JC Plant then mount a compact lifting arm.
The Skyhook® 3.3 is able to ‘pick and carry’ over 1000kgs at 1.5m within a 90° restricted slewing arc over the front of the machine, and with the stabilisers in place, this can be increased to 520kgs at 6m, all while keeping the working head room down to 2.5m.
With only three extra levers, they are simple and easy to use; nevertheless, careful attention was given to the required levels of training. JC Plant worked with ITSSAR, (a national training association) and WR Training Services (a local training centre) to design a training course to suit both the machine and user.
JC Plant is currently hiring the Skyhooks® out on contracts nationwide. After generating interest overseas in Europe, the company hopes to expand its influence abroad.