Industrial trucks are wheel material handling equipment in many industrial applications, including transporting bulk materials and goods. They can be either manually or power-operated. You’ll find a few different types of platform trucks suitable for specific applications, including foldable platform hand truck models, lift trucks, pallet trucks, cage trucks, tilt trucks and A-frame trucks. Industrial trucks are a great way to improve efficiency and reduce strain on your workers. Understanding what the purpose of each type is should be every buyer’s first step towards choosing the ideal unit.
Hand trucks are two-wheeled pieces of material handling equipment that feature a toe or nose plate at the front which slides under the load being handled, and a frame that supports the load. Some of the key specifications to look out for in this type of trucks include the load capacity and what it’s meant for. For example, some models are specifically designed for handling cylinders or drums, and they can also be fitted with casters to assist in stabilising loads and making transport easier. Appliance hand trucks often come with ratcheted straps to hold loads securely and are equipped with stair climbers to help to move the loads up and downstairs.
These material handling trucks are used to lift palletised loads and pallets in general for transport through grocery stores, warehouses, etc. The key specifications to look out for are the intended application, load capacity, lift range, power source, type of truck and dimensions. Pallet trucks can also be used for loading and unloading trailers and moving loads around warehouses. The forks slide under the pallets and a hydraulic or electric-powered jack raises it off the floor for transport. These trucks can be either manually, electric or gas-powered.
Platform trucks feature large platform on casters or wheels and they can either be pulled or pushed by a single person and are used for moving equipment or stock from one location to another. There are fixed and foldable platform hand truck models and they usually have swivelling wheels or handles on the ends for easier maneuvering. The key specifications to look for include load capacity and size of the platform. These trucks are a common sight in warehouses, factories, home improvement centres, etc.
A-Frame and Panel Trucks
These tracks are mainly used for transporting large panels or sheets. They feature a flatbed that can include vertical dividers between or upon which the panels or sheets are stood on the edges or laid flat. The name of A-frame trucks derives from their A-shaped supports on both ends, which hold the shelves or racks, depending on whether you’re carrying pipes and bars, or other objects. The key specifications to pay attention to are the type of loads being transported, type of truck or cart, and load capacity. These types of trucks can be commonly found in warehouses as well as home improvement centres, and are often used to transport materials like lumber, plywood, drywall and other bulky construction supplies.
Cage and Security Trucks
These material handling trucks are manually powered and compact enough to be pulled or pushed by one operator. Security trucks typically have four casters, a platform, and one or multiple shelves. It’s enclosed by a fabricated cage or a see-through mesh on three sides, and the fourth side is open for loading. It’s generally equipped with hinged doors on the open side to provide total enclosure. The key specifications to look out for include load capacity, enclosure configuration, enclosure construction and dimensions. These trucks are mainly used for commercial and industrial transport of materials or products over smaller distances. Security trucks, in particular, are used in applications where the products need to be completely contained.
Tilt trucks consist of balanced copper-like containers for easy emptying, and they’re mainly used for collecting scrap or refuse. The key specifications when buying such a truck include materials transported, intended application and volume or load capacity. These trucks are used in cleaning and manufacturing applications for the aforementioned purposes. They’re usually wheeled and their container can be made of polyethylene, steel or HDPE. Conventional applications include garbage, coal or waste disposal, or general janitorial tasks.
As with buying any type of industrial equipment, it’s important for the truck to be in compliance with the country’s regulations. Many trucks are general purpose, and while specialised models exist for specific applications, they are usually more expensive as they come with more features for helping you handle the particular type of products. The most important thing to pay attention to when buying any type of truck is the load capacity and the raised and lowered height. Only then will you be able to pick the most suitable truck for your needs.