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Two black and white drawings of old steam powered cranes showing the basic cog winch systems and a very early, rail-mounted steam crane with operator

A Brief History of the Crane

The modern crane is the result of a very long story of evolution and development. Original manual cranes were basically simple lifting arms designed to carry and manoeuvre loads.

These ancient inventions were used by the Greeks, Egyptians and Chinese for building construction. Early cranes were a combination of a lifting and lowering mechanism with a high load capacity. The manual crane in various forms was used to build the Pyramids, Parthenon and many other well-known buildings throughout the ancient era, including many Roman buildings.

The First Modern Cranes

The first modern cranes were steam-powered cranes, which were made popular in the 19th-century steam. In the 20th century, the steam cranes were replaced with the more modern internal combustion engine, electric and hydraulic crane systems. In the early 20th century, cranes were used to build the iconic pre-war New York skyscrapers and became universal in the post-war period.

Mobile Cranes

The post-war period was also the beginning of the development of modern mobile cranes. During the war, engineers used the various forms of mobile cranes to manage heavy military equipment, demolition and clearance work, and in many other roles.

These mobile cranes were so useful and so efficient that in the post-war building boom, the first recognisable ancestors of modern mobile cranes were developed.

These cranes were able to greatly simplify and speed up construction of housing and commercial buildings, allowing for greatly improved construction costs. At the same time, mobile cranes were also introduced into the shipping, warehousing and transport industries – these cost efficient solutions were ideal for managing very high volumes of materials and goods.

The Current Generation of Mobile Cranes

The same general principles of cost-benefits and efficiency have applied to the evolution of mobile cranes ever since that time. The new generation of mobile cranes is a combination of highly specialised vehicles, multitasking vehicles, and the standout class of all-terrain cranes in universal use around the world.

The adaptability and versatility of mobile cranes make them indispensable in just about any heavy lifting scenario, particularly where on-site mobility is essential. Unlike their distant relatives, the giant construction cranes, mobile cranes are able to provide multiple operational functions and move materials around very efficiently.

One of the most noticeable things about modern mobile cranes is their vast range of different models and versatility. The current generation of mobile cranes is able to work in multiple roles, providing direct cost benefits to bottom line operations, while also providing the very high level of efficiency required for managing productivity and workflow.

Mobile cranes can be selected for any work environment, from small track-mounted cranes for building operations through to large articulated cranes able to manage huge volumes. Like their ancestors, modern cranes are the workhorses of the industrial world.

If you’re looking for some help finding the right mobile crane for your business in Brisbane or on the Gold Coast, call Surf City Cranes. Take your pick from the large range of different types of mobile cranes available and get all the friendly help and advice you need.

 


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