4 ways to increase your counterbalanced forklifts’ versatility

Nov. 18, 2020
With those tips in mind, your operation can do multiple disparate jobs with only one truck, truly optimizing your operation.

Tim Rice, Product Manager, Counterbalanced Lift Trucks, The Raymond Corporation

Counterbalanced trucks are known for versatility. You can level up on capacity, add an attachment, configure the hydraulics and option up to maximize performance and operator confidence, effectively turning your one truck into the equivalent of three. Here are four ways you can increase the versatility of your counterbalanced forklift:

  1. Greater capacity. An industry newcomer might ask: “Why would a truck need 6,500 pounds lifting capacity when the industry average load weight is 2,500 pounds?” The answer: Greater lifting capacity is needed in certain specialized applications that require forklift attachments. This heavier capacity offsets an extended load center of gravity. For example, the food and beverage industry regularly uses multiple load handlers, print and paper industries work with paper roll clamps, and distribution centers supporting supermarkets utilize layer pickers. You need a higher capacity for these attachments because standard load center of gravity is 24 inches, but when you hang an attachment on the front of the carriage, the load center moves forward and reduces the capacity the truck can lift. Therefore, you need more weight to counter the load.
  2. Increased productivity. A multiple load handler (MLH) attachment can toggle between a set of two forks and a set of four forks, ultimately doubling productivity when unloading a trailer and transporting product to pickup and drop-off locations. Similarly, a sideshifting fork positioner (SSFP) can double the capability of popular productivity carriage options. The SSFP allows an operator to remain on the truck while quickly toggling fork widths to easily access various-sized pallets and sideshift features, which decreases the time necessary to line up forks to access pallets. In addition to a variety of traditional attachments, suppliers like The Raymond Corporation can install custom attachment solutions.
  3. Hang-on or integral attachment. If you need a versatile truck, then you want the hang-on solution with quick disconnect hydraulics. If you can dedicate your lift truck to an attachment, then an integral attachment may yield higher residual capacity. Again, this difference has to do with the load center with integral vs. hang-on attachments. But hang-on attachments with quick disconnects give you the most versatility to switch between forks and attachments.
  4. Operator assist features. When looking for a high-performance versatile truck, considering operator assist features and options is crucial. A load weight display gives your operator confidence that their truck can lift the load based on the stated capacity specification of the truck. Additionally, tools like carriage-mounted fork-tip cameras provide operators high-definition visibility, allowing them to confidently access pallets at height. Opt for a quad mast and you can take your load from dock to stock at over 300 inches.

There are countless ways to level up the versatility of your counterbalanced truck. You can increase capacity, add an attachment and maximize performance with operator assist features. With those tips in mind, your operation can do multiple disparate jobs with only one truck, truly optimizing your operation.

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