How Are Boom Trucks Used?
Boom trucks are similar to flatbed trucks equipped with booms and transport units. The National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO) defines the boom truck as a type of crane with a rotating superstructure and a fixed or telescopic boom. Here is some important background information about boom trucks:
Who Uses Boom Trucks?
Boom trucks have hauling capacity and can lift, lower and swing loads. They include one or more operating stations mounted on a frame connected to a commercial truck chassis. Of all the industries that rely on boom trucks, the utility industry comes in first, and usage is expected to continue to grow significantly in the next decade. The same goes for the second-most frequent user of boom trucks, the construction industry. Growth within both the utility and construction industries has stimulated demand for specialized equipment. Boom trucks are also used commonly in the telecommunications and forestry industries. A common usage in residential neighborhoods is for tree trimming.
Different Types and Features
Types of boom trucks vary depending on the needs of particular projects. For residential projects, a single axel truck is generally used due to its lighter gross weight and shorter wheel base, which reduces the risk of damaging someone's property. Tandem axle trucks are more appropriate for commercial projects and for projects that require heavy lifting and hauling power.
Manufacturers of booms trucks regularly add new features that expand the number of applications for which these cranes can be used. For example, more versatility can be added to a boom truck with a jib, which provides extra boom length, and a front stabilizer can provide better stability and easier handling. A man-basket is a common option that adds further capabilities.
Every boom truck features a boom lift, which comes in two different types: articulating and telescopic. An articulating boom, sometimes called a knuckle boom, is an aerial work platform with multiple hinges. These cranes provide a versatile solution if you need to access an area surrounded by obstructions. Their four-wheel drive also makes them ideal for rough terrain projects.
A telescopic boom, also known as stick boom, is an aerial platform with a boom that extends like a telescope. Where the articulating boom extends vertical reach, the telescopic boom extends horizontal reach. These trucks are used to build roads, bridges, and other public construction projects. They are very reliable and efficient to set up.
One of the most important factors to consider when choosing between different types of boom trucks is boom length. Shorter booms, which take up less outrigger space, are more appropriate for light duty work and easy operations. Long booms require a wider footprint and provide less lifting capacity, but they also allow for increased reach and height.
As you begin construction work, you will find a wide variety of cranes available for rental or purchase. As you explore your options for boom trucks, it is important to assess your project first so that you understand your precise needs. Understanding the different features and capabilities of specific types of boom trucks will help you determine which machine is best for your project. Ask a rigging expert at Southwest Industrial Rigging for more information at 602.278.6281.