Tag: Chain

Resources for Rigging Safety at your Fingertips

Resources for Rigging Safety at your Fingertips

Many of you work with chain and rigging equipment every day; that’s why Columbus McKinnon works hard to promote the safe and proper use of all rigging products regardless of industry or application. Relying on 139 years of experience in the material handling industry, we’re continually striving to expand and improve our comprehensive offering of rigging training and product resources to help you do your job efficiently and safely. These tools are easy to access and available to you whenever you need them, whether you’re in the office or out in the field.

Rigging Catlog

The Ultimate Rigging Resource
Rigging equipment end-users need information on the proper selection, use and care of rigging products, as well as insight on application and industry requirements. We took all of this information and combined it into one world-class resource – the CM Chain and Rigging Attachments Catalog.

This catalog was a major collaborative effort between our product, application, industry and training teams with feedback from a number of our Channel Partners and end users. It’s more than just a product catalog; it’s the ultimate rigging resource.

To order copies of our new Chain and Rigging Attachments Catalog, fill out our online form or contact CMCO customer service at 1-800-888-0985. You can also download a copy of the new catalog on our website.

Free Safety Webinars
Since their inception in early 2014, our monthly safety webinars have been a tremendous success. These webinars are not sales pitches. These 1/2 hour educational webinars cover safety best practices that you can use everyday. From pre-operational hoist inspection to determining the center of gravity when rigging a load, these free webinars have something for everyone.

Some of our most popular rigging safety webinars include:

If you ever miss one, don’t worry they’re recorded and available online on our YouTube Channel.

Classroom & Hands-On Safety Training

CMCO Training Class

Columbus McKinnon offers classroom and hands-on rigging training from basic to advanced. Our team of full-time instructors are material handling product and safety professionals with more than 100 years of combined experience in the industry. Like our safety webinars, these courses are not sales pitches; they are intense learning experiences that leave attendees with the knowledge and experience they need to safely select, use, inspect and repair overhead cranes, hoists and rigging equipment on a day-to-day basis.

Visit us at www.cmworks.com/training for more information and a complete training schedule.

In-Stock Guarantee (ISG)
In addition to training, we also work hard to ensure our rigging products get to you fast, so you have them when you need them. With that in mind, we are continually expanding our In-Stock Guarantee to ensure shipment of our most popular hoists, chain and rigging products in three days or less. Currently more than 275 products are available through our In-Stock Guarantee.

Product Improvements
We have also made a number of significant product improvements to our rigging portfolio. For example, our shackles now have enhanced markings as well as a new pin design for increased operator safety. We have also expanded our selection of dual-rated rigging products to help customers reduce and better manage their inventory.

Professional riggers, maintenance workers, plant engineers and safety specialists rely on us for knowledge and expertise on material handling products and use – and we hope you do too, using the variety of resources made available to you by Columbus McKinnon.

This article was originally published on June 6, 2013 and was updated with new content on September 26, 2014.

Know your Transport Binder Chain Assemblies and Load Binders

Know your Transport Binder Chain Assemblies and Load Binders

Binder Chain AssemblyDo you know the origin of your Transport Binder Chain Assemblies and Load Binders? If you’re comparing costs and quality, or trying to meet domestic-only product requirements for a project, it’s important that you know the country of origin.

In fact, there are a number of things to consider when buying and selling Transport Binder Chain Assemblies and Load Binders. I will highlight a few things you should look for to ensure you are comparing apples to apples and getting the product that best meets your needs.

CM Offers 3 Types of Binder Chain Assemblies

Short Link Chain Assemblies with Domestic Hooks are our premium, 100% American-made Chain Assemblies that feature US-made short link chain and US-made hooks. CM is the only manufacturer of short link chain and set the standard for it years ago with the introduction of Gold Standard (gold chromate) chain. The smaller dimension of the short link chain is preferred by users because it allows for easier take up and better cornering. This means that the chain links are less likely to bend when they go around a corner.

Standard Link Chain Assemblies with Domestic Hooks, like our short link assemblies, feature US-made chain and US-made hooks manufactured and assembled at our Tennessee facilities. The longer pitch of the standard link chain translates into less overall weight. Standard link chain is common in most US-made assemblies.

Standard Link Chain Assemblies with Imported Hooks are competitively priced assemblies that feature domestic-made chain with imported hooks. This type of assembly is very common in the industry and is made by many competitors domestically.

View a comparison chart of our three types of binder chain assemblies.

Does your job require proof that your equipment was made in America?

Whether Binder Chain Assemblies or Load Binders, you should be able to find the name of the country of origin printed or embossed right on the unit. All CM domestic products will have a forged “USA” clearly visible. Binder Chain Assemblies

Competitors may put their markings in inconspicuous places where it is less likely to be seen. On some competitors’ ratchet load binders you need to really look to find “China” discreetly hidden on the side of the thumb switch. Always check your Ratchet and Lever Load Binders thoroughly to make sure they’re made in the USA.

For domestic chain and hooks, Columbus McKinnon goes one step further by featuring trace codes. These trace codes allow you to not only trace the steel that was used to make the product, but also the date of manufacture and the processes used in manufacturing the product.

Lastly, CM offers full disclosure with a Certificate of Conformity (COC) and a Certificate of Origin (COO) on all of our Transport Binder Chain Assemblies, Ratchet Load Binders and Lever Load Binders. These COCs and COOs are available for download on our Distributor website or by request from a Columbus McKinnon customer service representative.

Meeting Industry Standards

The transportation industry uses a large assortment of Binder Chain Assemblies that come from all over the world. Some of these products meet multiple recognized standards while others do not meet any specifications at all. It’s truly “buyer beware.”

However, Columbus McKinnon transport binder chains and assemblies meet all regulatory requirements for transportation in North America, including NACM 2014, ASTM A413 and D.O.T. requirements.

Comparing Costs: Apples to Apples

When comparing CM products and pricing to the competition, it is important to make sure that you are comparing equivalent products.

The majority of our competitors offer assemblies with domestic-made chain and imported hooks. These mixed assemblies are designed to be economical, and our Standard Link Chain Assemblies with Imported Hooks match up nicely in price and quality. Assemblies that use components with mixed countries of origin are fine for applications where domestic-made products are not required.

In contrast, you can’t compare CM Standard Link Chain Assemblies and Short Link Chain Assemblies that feature domestic hooks to the competition that uses imported components. Our 100% US-made assemblies are premium, high-quality products proudly manufactured in Tennessee. Comparing these premium units to imported products (whether fully imported or made with imported components) would be comparing apples to oranges.

So, there’s a lot to consider before you buy or sell your next load binder or binder chain assembly. For more information, contact a Columbus McKinnon Sales Representative at 800-888-0985. If you’re interested in getting professional, hands-on Load Securement Training click here.

Advantages of Lifting with Chain Slings vs. Synthetic Slings

Advantages of Lifting with Chain Slings vs. Synthetic Slings

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Overhead Lifting Slings are generally used in conjunction with a crane, powered hoist, manual or lever hoist or some type of lifting device. There are numerous types of materials used for building overhead lifting slings – each with specific advantages and disadvantages – including:

  • Chain
  • Wire rope
  • Synthetics
  • Metal mesh.

Understand the Application Before You Spec a Sling
Before you select a sling it is important to fully understand the application and gather specific information on how the sling will be used. When choosing a sling, you must know the weight, center of gravity, number of attachment points for a balanced lift, sling angles, reach, upper and lower fittings and ambient conditions. Communicate or obtain as much background information as you can about the load being lifted, then decide what type of sling works best. This will help ensure you choose the right sling material and configuration for the task at hand.

Alloy Steel Chain: Recommended by ASME, NACM & OHSA
When using chain slings, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), the National Association of Chain Manufacturers (NACM), and the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) recommend only the use of alloy steel chain for overhead lifting. Grades 63, 80 and 100 are the alloy steel chains used throughout the industry. They contain elements that give them their unique strength, abrasion resistance, durability and toughness. Per ASTM Standards, alloy chain slings must have the ability to elongate at least 20% when overloaded in order to have a visual indicator to the rigger that the sling is overloaded. Once any stretch is discovered, the chain sling must be removed from service. Synthetics do not have any such indicators as standard.

Advantages of Chain slings versus Synthetic slings

Durability:

  • Resists impact, cuts and abrasions
  • Resistant to chemicals and UV radiation
  • Can be used in oily or dirty environments
  • Can be used at higher temperatures range -40oF thru 400oF with not reduction of WLL (synthetic slings can be used in temperatures no higher than 194oF)
  • Minimum elongation when lifting or tensioning
  • Long service life compared to synthetic slings

Versatility:

  • Easily adjustable (synthetic slings cannot be adjusted and therefore are often used incorrectly)
  • Can be constructed in the field

Inspection & Maintenance:

  • Easy to inspect
  • Completely reparable (cannot repair load bearing fibers in synthetic slings)

139 Years of Chain & Forging Know-How
Columbus McKinnon’s chain manufacturing roots date back to the 1800’s. We hold patents for chain and chain link design as well as the chain manufacturing processes, which help ensure our chain is the strongest and most reliable chain on the market today. We also invented the first alloy chain in 1933 – the forerunner to our industry-changing Herc-Alloy® 800 and 100 chains. In addition to chain, we also manufacture a variety of dual-rated hooks, links, sub-assemblies and other attachments that complement our chain offering.

For additional information on the safe and proper use of chain slings, check out our Safety Webinar on Chain Sling Inspection.

In-Stock Guarantee Sets New Industry Standard

In-Stock Guarantee Sets New Industry Standard

We are changing the way we do business.
Changes that not only affect Columbus McKinnon and our Channel Partners, but the entire material handling industry.

We are committed, and now prepared, to ship our most popular chain and forged attachment products in 3 days – and we guarantee it. This is our In-Stock Guarantee (ISG). This is not a promotion, but a new industry-changing way of doing business.

The ISG business model has been developed from the top down, with a focus on providing best-in-class service and the most popular chain and forged attachment products that our end-users use every day. For our Channel Partners and distributors, it means that they can reduce their inventory while increasing their cash flow. It also means that they’ll be able to deliver products to their customers on time, every time.

Made-USACurrently, Columbus McKinnon offers more than 135 chain and rigging products that are guaranteed to be in stock and ready to ship — and made in America.

Watch our video to learn more about the In-Stock Guarantee, and meet some of the hard-working CMCO Associates who are committed to ship in 3 days.

What Is The Working Load Limit Of A 2-legged Chain Sling?

What Is The Working Load Limit Of A 2-legged Chain Sling?

2-legged chain sling Richard asks:

What is the working load limit of a ½ “ – G80 2-legged chain sling when both legs are used in a choke?

 

Peter answers:

The first thing that you want to do is to look at how the choke is rigged or rendered.  Working load limits shown on charts or tags for vertical chokes are based on the angle of choke being 120 degrees or greater.  If there is less than a 120-degree angle of choke, the choke rating must be reduced further. Once we determine the correct choke rating, we can take into account the angle of loading.

2-legged chain sling

First, you take the choke rating and multiply it by the SIN of the angle x 2 = Rating of a two leg sling used in a choke.

Example:
Our charts show that ½” grade 80 chain is good for 9,600 lbs when pulled vertically with a choke hitch of 120 degrees or greater.   Let’s assume when this double sling is rigged at a 60-degree angle it has a choke hitch of 120 degrees or greater.   Our working load limit for this sling is 9600 lbs x .866 ( sin of 60 degrees) = 8314 lbs x 2 legs = 16628 lbs.

Another way is to take the rating of the sling at a 60-degree angle and reduce it by 20%. Again assuming 120-degree angle of choke, ½” Grade 80 double sling chain is good for 20,800 lbs (at a 60-degree angle) x .8 (20% reduction):  rating: 16640 lbs.

Our first example is a little more conservative.

If you want to learn more about rigging, check out our rigging training.

The Low-down on Chain Tie-Downs

The Low-down on Chain Tie-Downs

Chain Tie-Downs
Chain has been used by people to pull, fasten and pick things up for over 2000 years. The form of chain has not changed much over the years, whereas the manufacturing of chain has. With the modern advances in metallurgy and manufacturing techniques, chain is a much better quality today. During these advances we have come to realize that we can control the quality of chain. Even though all chain has the basic same shape it does not mean all chain has the same properties. For example, we have several grades of chain; 30, 43, 70, 80 & 100. Each grade has different properties.

Understanding the Different Grades of Chain

Grade 80 & 100 chains are manufactured with alloys that allow them to stretch or elongate. This visible deformation alerts the operator that the chain must be removed from service. Alloy chains are designed for overhead lifting. The lower grades (30, 43 & 70) are carbon chain designed for pulling, agricultural & load securement applications. These grades are not designed for overhead lifting.

Determining a Chain’s Grade, Size and WLL

The best way to know what grade of chain you have is to look on the links themselves. Each chain link should be embossed with the grade, size & manufacturer’s name. All manufactured chain should have these markings, which will allow the user to determine the working load limit (WLL) of the chain.
WLL charts are available from the US D.O.T. or the chain manufacturer. Columbus McKinnon offers an online WLL calculator here.

Chain Tie-Downs

Using Chain as Tie-Downs

The one thing all of these chains have in common is that all can be used as tie-downs. The majority of chain used for tie-downs is Grade 70, also known as transport chain. It is easily recognized because of the gold colored plating which distinguishes it from other chains; however, we recommend that the operator verify the grade by its embossed identification.

A Typical Application for Chain Tie-Downs

Let’s say Phil picks up a load and uses the tie-downs he has had on his truck for years. When he purchased them new they were Grade 70, 3/8” chain with a WLL of 6,600lbs. Over time the plating has worn off and the embossing has become illegible, but Phil knows what the tie-downs are. So Phil finishes securing his load and starts down the highway. He drives for a few hundred miles and pulls into a truck inspection station, confident he has the proper size and number of tie-downs for the load he is carrying.

The inspection is going well until the inspector starts looking at the load and the securement. The markings on the chain are not legible so he uses the Grade 30 WLL rating for 3/8” chain. This is less than half of what Grade 70 3/8” chain is rated for. Phil argues that the chains are Grade 70 but the inspector can only go by what he has in front of him and has to grade them as Grade 30. Citing it as a lower grade chain reduces the WLL below what is required for Phil’s load.

According to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) 393.108d, if the marks are not visible or not legible the inspector will consider this tie-down to be the lowest grade (Grade 30). This reduction in grade can result in taking you out of service and possibly a citation.

When it’s all said and done, let’s be safe.

Make sure that the tie-downs you are using are the proper size and grade for your load, are clearly identified as such, and are not damaged or deformed. After all the tie-downs do not belong to your customer, they belong to you. If you’re not sure whether to use 4 or 5 tie-downs, use 5 — the worst case scenario is that you’ll have more rather than less.

It’s Always Good to Get Trained

Whether you’re a road-hardened veteran or new to the industry, we encourage you to get properly trained on how to use & inspect load securement equipment, and stay up to date on regulations and requirements. As an additional resource, check out our Load Securement Safety Webinar.

The 3 Most Asked Questions from our CM-ET Motor (Hoist) Schools

The 3 Most Asked Questions from our CM-ET Motor (Hoist) Schools

During our CM-ET training classes we receive many questions, especially about chain and proper lubrication. In my opinion, the chain is the most abused and neglected part of the motor. It is almost rare to find chain in the field that does not need to be lubricated unless it has just come from the factory. So here they are, your three most frequently asked questions along with our answers:

1. How do I know when the chain needs to be lubricated?

The easiest way to know if your load chain needs lubrication is by watching it as it goes into the chain bag. If it is stacking up on one side as it enters the bag, it is a sure indication that you are lacking proper lubrication.

In past years when riggers were using the old Klein type bags with the single hook connecting to the side of the hoist, the question would come up: How do I avoid the chain coming out of the bag?  When the chain is dry and it stacks up, it eventually comes out over the top of the bag.

If the chain is properly lubricated, it will flow evenly and disperse into the bag like water.

Another sure sign of a lack of lubrication is when you have a full load and you hear that “tell all” creaking sound as the chain is running over the lift wheel. What you hear is the chain actually wearing itself out by friction welding the links together and breaking that weld because there is no lube between the them. This is where you get chain wear.

2. What is the proper lubrication to use?

The oil recommended by Columbus McKinnon is 10R made by Lubriplate. There are many other brands that are available that you can get at your local hardware store. What is important is that the lube you obtain have an “EP” additive. The “EP” is short for extreme pressure. Without that additive you will not be able to keep your lubrication between the links while under a full load. Most chain saw manufacturers produce oil for their saws that contain this additive. Most bar and chain lubrications will work.

3. How do I properly lubricate the chain?

There are many ways to lube your chain but I recommend to drop your chain into a bucket and pour the lube over the pile of chain. It is important that the chain be loose and the links separated at this point. If you spray it on while the chain is hanging you might not be able to get between all the links. After adding the lube, hang it up and let the chain drip dry as long as possible and retain as much of the run off so that you can reuse it.  At this point I recommend taking some dry rags and wiping the chain down to remove as much of the excessive oil as possible. You will not be able to remove it between the links with this process, and between the links is where you want the lubrication. It is ok if the chain appears to be dry as long as the lube is between the links where it is needed.

Again, lubrication is very important and can not be neglected. Keep an eye out for dry chain.

If you have questions about any of the above or are interested in attending a training class,  please feel free to reach us on our new Entertainment Technology website: www.cm-et.com or at our training site  www.cmcodepot.com.

NACM Position on Tagging of Chain Tie-Downs

NACM Position on Tagging of Chain Tie-Downs

IMls

As provided by the NACM Technical Committee on May 2, 2011

The NACM  (National Association of Chain Manufacturers) has been asked to provide its position on the need to add additional tagging to tie-down assemblies due to some apparent confusion in Canada.

The Canadian National Safety Code for Motor Vehicles released Standard 10 – Cargo Securement (September 2010, effective January 1, 2011). There is no requirement for, or even mention of, additional tagging of chain tie-downs. Instead, the opposite is true. The Standard states that “A chain that is marked by the manufacturer in accordance with the table of Working Load Limits under Part 4 – Section 7 has a working load limit equal to the amount shown for the grade and size.” Section 7 lists the NACM Welded Steel Chain Specifications as the reference document, and lists the grade indicators contained in the NACM specification in the table. Excerpts from this standard are included below.

This is also in agreement with the similar United States Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration Part 393 Regulations Subpart I, Protection against shifting and falling cargo,  Sections 393.100 through 393.136. There are no requirements for separate tagging of chain tie-down assemblies.

Based on the above and below references, as well as the complete absence of any specification that requires additional tagging, it is the NACM position that additional tagging is not required for chain tie-down assemblies in either Canada or the United States.

 

Canadian National Safety Code for Motor Vehicles, Standard 10: Cargo Securement, September 2010, Effective 1/1/2011

REFERENCE 1

Part 2 – General Provisions, Division 3 – Requirement for Cargo Securement Systems

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REFERENCE 2

Part 4 – Manufacturing Standards, Section 7 – Chain Assemblies

National Association of Chain Manufacturers, Welded Steel Chain Specifications

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Is it Possible to Mix Chain Grades on a Sling?

Is it Possible to Mix Chain Grades on a Sling?

mixing chain gradesBen from Chicago asked the following question about mixing chain grades:

Is it possible to mix grade 80 chain and grade 100 components on a sling assembly?

Peter answers:

In simple terms, yes –  BUT the assembly can only be rated at the grade 80 WLL.  Here is an example:  A sling is made with grade 100 chain and the hooks used for the sling are grade 80. This sling would need to have a tag with a grade 80 working load limit (WLL) of the weakest component.

For your reference I have provided the following applicable standards:

ASME B30.9, 9-1.5.7

When components of a sling have a lower rated load than the alloy chain with
which it is being used, the sling shall be identified with a rated load consistent
with the lowest load rating of any of the components.

OSHA 1910.184(e)(2)(i)

Hooks, rings, oblong links, pear shaped links, welded or mechanical coupling
links or other attachments shall have a rated capacity at least equal to that of
the alloy steel chain with which they are used or the sling shall not be used
in excess of the rated capacity of the weakest component.