Why Modernize?

As businesses evolve and processes change many crane users find that their cranes can no longer keep up with the demands being placed on them. Modernizations are typically carried out to address the following issues:

  • Modernizations provide cost effective solutions to ongoing maintenance issues vs. the costs associated with the continuous installation of replacement parts.
  • Typically crane modernizations are significantly less expensive than replacing an existing crane.
  • New technologies provide more reliable, better handling cranes and solve the dilemma of
    sourcing spare parts for obsolete equipment.
  • Changes in your processes may require higher crane and hoist capacities.
  • Modernizations can help to prevent dangerous overloads that can lead to serious worker injury and/or damage to lifting and plant equipment.
  • Worker safety and ergonomics can be upgraded to suit current codes and standards.
  • Modernizations help you avoid the high margins and long deliveries associated with “proprietary” motor and gearbox designs by upgrading to readily available, standard –“off the shelf” crane and hoist components.
  • Upgrading your cranes can help you to utilize your company’s preferred equipment brands, taking advantage of your in-house parts inventory and maintenance training programs.

Control Upgrades

An increased focus on worker safety is a major driving force behind many customers’ decisions to modernize their cranes. Load Limiting and Load Display systems help to prevent dangerous overloads, Radio Controls keep operators at a safe distance from the loads and Collision Avoidance systems prevent unwanted impacts between cranes.

Antiquated control systems are often load dependent and require constant adjustment or “tuning”. Parts for these systems are difficult to source, costly and when available, typically have extremely long delivery lead times.

CRANeIUM can update your crane with modern Variable Frequency Controls that will provide for improved load positioning, smoother operation, reduced maintenance costs, lower operating costs and increased reliability. Crane and hoist synchronization and automation can be greatly improved using variable frequency control technology. Bucket/Grapple Control Software, Reverse Plug Simulation, Stall Prevention, Sway Control, Micro-positioning,Inching Control and “Static Stepless Simulation” Software are all available options.With recent advancements in drive technologies, rising energy prices and an increased awareness of the impacts of industry on the environment, Regenerative Variable Frequency Controls are becoming increasingly popular for high cycling cranes.Costly wound rotor motors and speed control resistor banks are eliminated further reducing your cranes’ maintenance requirements.

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Radio Controls

Installation of a Radio Control System can help to increase worker safety by enabling them to keep a safe distance from the load.

For cab operated cranes this can also keep the operator safely on the ground, eliminating the need to have rescue workers and rescue plans in place should an event arise where the operator becomes trapped or incapacitated.

Load Display System

Knowing the weights of objects that are being lifted and preventing the overloading of a hoist and its supporting structure are critical to the safe operation of a crane. In most areas, legislation makes it mandatory to provide this information to all workers involved in hoisting operations (see below for segment from WorkSafeBC BC Part 14 Cranes and hoists).

14.36 Load weight

  1. The weight of each load to be hoisted by a crane or hoist must be determined and communicated to the equipment operator and to any person rigging the load.
  2. If the weight of a load to be lifted cannot be accurately determined, the crane or hoist to be used for the lift must have a load weight indicator or an overload prevention system.

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Capacity Up-Rates

Along with an increased demand for safety and reliability, many crane users find that the lifting capacity of their older cranes no longer meets the demands of their changing workplace. Structural reinforcements, lighter weight materials, modern components and higher strength wire ropes can all be combined to increase the safe lifting capacity of older cranes while maintaining much of the existing structure.

Older cranes were often built with excess mechanical and structural capacity enabling their capacity to be increased with minimal change. Older trolleys with their cast iron frames, bull gears, drums, gearcases and other heavy components can be replaced with new lighter weight hoist/trolleys and in many cases this will permit an increase in the capacity of the crane due to the reduction of the trolley weight alone.

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Mechanical Upgrades

Bridge travel drive upgrades, modern braking systems, wheel cube and end-truck installations, gear reducer overhauls and hoist replacements are just a few of the mechanical upgrades that CRANeIUM can undertake as individual projects or as part of a complete crane refurbishment period.Many hoists installed on older cranes are equipped with Mechanical Load Brakes. These brakes are a constant wear item and their replacement is both costly and time consuming. In many cases, replacement brakes or brake parts are no longer available, resulting in the need to have parts custom manufactured.

A CRANeIUM installed hoisting motion variable frequency drive can be used to replace the functionality of an obsolete or non-functional load brake providing safe load handling while reducing costly downtime.

Types of Modernizations

CRANeIUM modernizations are available both as fully engineered Turn-key Projects and Pre- engineered Service Modernizations.

CRANeIUM also offers our “ Mod in a Box” program, providing all of the same engineering and expertise as our Turn-key and Service Modernizations but with labour supplied from the customer’s in-house maintenance staff, supported if and as necessary by one of our field technical staff.

CRANeIUM modernizations are completed using the industry’s leading suppliers of Motors, Brakes, Variable Frequency Drives and Radio Control Systems. Each of these products is available through a vast distribution network, protecting our customers’ future interests by ensuring that parts will be available from a wide range of suppliers and at a fair market price.

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