Some items and materials pose a more complex lifting challenge than others. Take glass panes and sheet metal, for example. These items are fragile, heavy, cumbersome, smooth on the face yet sharp on the edges. All these characteristics make them particularly tricky, and potentially dangerous, to lift and shift.
Unless, that is, you have a vacuum lift system. These suction cup lifting devices allow you to move a huge array of otherwise challenging items quickly and easily.
And in the process they can make your business a far safer place to work for your team.
What are vacuum lift systems?
Vacuum lift systems, or simply vacuum lifters, are pieces of lifting equipment that use the unique properties of low pressure air to secure, lift and shift loads. The effect is the same as the one you feel when you place your hand over the end of a vacuum cleaner, though vacuum lifters secure loads via large suction pads.
These machines can be incredibly strong – some Stratalign battery powered vacuum lifters can pick up 50 tonnes – and can be used on a surprisingly wide range of items. While a vacuum lifting device for sheet metal or glass is a common example, different suction pads allow them to pick up concrete, cardboard, flexible plastic bags, and even items with curved surfaces, like barrels and kegs.
How do vacuum hoist lifting systems make workplaces safer?
The unique properties of vacuum lifters mean that they can make a number of lifting tasks safer and more efficient.
The ability to lift otherwise tricky materials
Vacuum lift systems excel at moving the items that other lifting equipment traditionally struggles with. Take glass: a heavy yet fragile, smooth yet sharp material that can be very difficult to grip, lift and shift with traditional strapping and rigging equipment. A vacuum lifter simply suctions on, and in mere moments you have a secure grip that won’t damage the glass or make workers unsafe.
Reduced physical strain on workers
The difficulty of picking up things like sheet metal, glass and kegs means that workers may be tempted to move these things manually, which significantly increases the risk of an on-site injury. But the simplicity, speed and effectiveness of a vacuum lifter removes this temptation entirely.
Minimal risk of accidents
When used correctly, vacuum lifters are exceptionally safe examples of lifting equipment. Vacuum lifting best practice sees an item lifted off the ground a couple of centimetres and the levels of suction checked before a lift is completed, ensuring all loads are fully secure. The process of actually moving the load couldn’t be simpler, whether guided by tracks or machine operated via a control panel.
Enhanced precision in material placement
The control of movement afforded by vacuum lifters also means that the load can be safely navigated around obstacles and placed exactly where it needs to be. Vacuum lifters are super gentle, with the weight of the material spread out across the area of the suction pads, to ensure even flexible, brittle and otherwise fragile materials make it to their destination undamaged.
ENABLING NEW ZEALAND BUSINESSES TO WORK SMARTER, QUICKER AND SAFER
Vacuum lift systems are unique pieces of lifting equipment that can prove transformational to the businesses that need them, not just in terms of safety, but in efficiency and productivity too. But is the technology right for you?
At Stratalign we’ve spent years helping Kiwi businesses identify whether a vacuum lifting solution will help them to work smarter, faster and safer. If you’re looking to enhance your operations and are wondering whether a vacuum lifter is the right choice for you, our expert team is ready to offer the guidance you need.