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Cranes are large industrial machines that allow for various objects and materials to be vertically lifted and lowered, and moved horizontally, through the use of hoist cables and sheaves, which are attached to booms and operated by hydraulic systems. A crane boom is typically either held in place by a tower that stems from a permanent base or securely fixed on a mobile vehicle, such as commercial trucks or tread crawlers. Often, a crane's boom is lengthened by a jib extension, which allows for higher lifting and more versatile movement. Cranes are most commonly used in construction, cargo loading, and the assembly of heavy machines. New and used cranes for sale on Equipment Trader are manufactured by companies including Broderson, Grove, Liebherr, Link Belt, Manitowoc, Potain, and Terex.
The earliest cranes, used by the Ancient Egyptians and Greeks thousands of years ago, were wooden machines powered by laborers or livestock. Today's cranes are most often made of steel and are powered by engines, motors, and hydraulic systems. An effective crane design is able to lift its load while remaining upright and structurally secure. Cranes are controlled by operators who are in a cab that travels with the crane, or who utilize pendant or radio control systems. Crane operators are responsible for their own safety, as well as the safety of the crane, the worksite, and their fellow crew-members on the worksite. Operators have to pass certified training and tests, and cranes themselves should be inspected each shift before operation, with more rigorous evaluation of the motor and other major components occurring monthly.
Cranes are, by far, one of the most diverse categories of heavy equipment. These machines are typically distinguished between tower cranes, which stay in one place for long periods of time, and mobile cranes, which are mounted onto commercial trucks, crawlers, or other rough-terrain vehicles. Support for cranes is often supplemented by outriggers, depending on the crane and the job at-hand. Before buying a crane, it's important to consider the current job, future uses for the crane, the jobsite where the crane will be used, the controls your operator is familiar with, potential maintenance and repairs, and the availability of support services in your area. Before use, a crane should pass a certified inspection.