Tag: hoist

Summer Concert Series: Where is your CM Hoist?

Summer Concert Series: Where is your CM Hoist?

Who doesn’t love the summer time and seeing a great concert with your favorite band from the past or present? A few of our fans recently shared CM Hoist photos from summer concerts they’ve attended, which included a snapshot of our #CMLodestar motors.

For King and Country, CM Hoist
For King and Country performing at the Carowinds Paladium Ampitheatre in Charlotte, North Carolina.
CMA Music Festival, CM Hoist
CMA Music Festival in Nashville, Tennessee (Thank you Mountain Productions!)
CM Lodestar motors in Lisbon, Portugal, CM Hoist
Martin Audio’s MLA rig on world stage at Rock Festival in Lisbon, Portugal. (Thank you Tracy!)

Like us, they love seeing CM Hoist products in action!

We know that many of you have great things planned for this summer, so we are continuing our tradition of starting a 2016 photo album on Facebook to capture your photos of Columbus McKinnon products working hard at concerts and events around the world.

If you spot them being used, please snap a photo and share it with us on social media. We will post your pictures on our Facebook photo album and, each month, our fans (through likes!) will choose a lucky winner who will receive a box of some great CM promotional items!

There are many ways you can share your CM Hoist photos with us – choose your favorite channel!
Facebook
Instagram
Twitter: Industrial
Twitter: CM-Entertainment
Google+

Use the hashtags #CMLodestar and #wheresyourCM to join the conversation!

We look forward to seeing all of the wonderful concerts and places you will visit this summer!

Gisela Clark
Gisela Clark is an eMarketing Specialist for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
Top 7 Benefits of Using Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) to Control Your Crane or Hoist

Top 7 Benefits of Using Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs) to Control Your Crane or Hoist

Variable Frequency DrivesVariable frequency drives, or VFDs, are a type of AC motor controller that drive an electric motor by varying the frequency and voltage supplied to it. VFDs are also commonly known as variable speed or adjustable speed drives, AC drives, micro-drives or inverters – depending on the industry or application.

In the material handling industry, variable frequency drive controls are often used in electric hoists as well as in overhead cranes and lifting systems. Drives are designed around a microprocessor, which allows for the creation of programmable functions for specific applications.

So, what are the benefits of using a VFD to control your hoist or crane?

1. Greater Speed Adjustment: VFD controls let you choose from multiple speeds, allowing you to customize your hoist controls to your application.

2. Improved Load Control: Positioning a load using a single-speed hoist may cause shock loading or load swings. A VFD allows for smooth operation by gradually slowing down a load. Variable frequency drives also allow for smooth acceleration to prevent load swings in the traverse motions.

3. Duty Cycles: CMAA Class A-F. A VFD is concisely matched with a braking resistor, depending on the duty cycle of the motion. A regenerative drive may also be used, which is not dependent on duty cycle.

4. Efficiency: A VFD will only consume the power that’s needed, thus saving energy compared to contactors and soft-starters.

5. Increased Hoist Life: Some variable frequency drives provide thermal overload and overcurrent protection for the hoist motor, prolonging its life. VFDs also utilize a ramp-down-to-stop method of braking rather than using brake shoes to slow down. The brake is only used for parking and emergency situations, which prolongs brake life.

6. Regenerative Energy: Deceleration and lowering of a hoist creates regenerative energy produced by the motor. This energy can be transformed into heat using a braking resistor or conditioned and send back to the source, thus netting energy savings. An AC regenerative drive will redistribute that energy, which would otherwise be wasted when converted to heat with a braking resistor.

7. Digital Diagnostics: Aid in maintenance and troubleshooting on the machine or remotely.

Magnetek VFDs are designed for crane and hoist applications with various performance and safety features. A few of these features include:

1. Safe Torque Off: Provides a redundant hardware safety circuit that guarantees motor and brake power are removed when an E-STOP switch or safety controller opens the drive input, eliminating the need for external disconnects.

2. Torque Proving: The motor is pre-torqued to guarantee that the load can be held before opening the brake.

3. Load Check: Continuously checks for hoist overloads and prevents the hoist from lifting when an overload condition is detected.

4. Brake Checks: Monitors the opening and closing of a brake to ensure that it is safe and healthy.

5. Micro-Speed: Allows the operator to make slow, precise movements.

6. Electronic Programmable Limit Switches: Allows slow down and stop limits without physically geared limit switches.

To learn more about variable frequency drives, watch our safety webinar.

Casey Cummins
Casey Cummins is a Controls Product Manager for Magnetek — a Columbus McKinnon company.
Answers to Your Top 7 Crane and Hoist Questions

Answers to Your Top 7 Crane and Hoist Questions

cranecrane

During the hundreds of classes Columbus McKinnon’s training team has conducted over the years, there are a variety of questions that arise regarding the use, maintenance and inspection of overhead cranes and hoists. So, I wanted to take this opportunity to outline seven of the most common concerns, myths and misconceptions we’ve received from crane and hoist operators and technicians during our classes.

1. Question: Do monorails need to be labeled with their rated load?

Answer: According to ASME B30.11, rated load markings are not required on monorails but are recommended. Before marking the monorail, a qualified person must determine the rated load on the monorail beam. Once the monorail is marked, the rating should be legible from the ground floor. ASME’s recommendation also applies to marking the rated loads of hoists on the monorail. For more information on hoist marking guidelines, see ASME B30.16.

2. Question: Can rated loads for hoists and trolleys be different from the crane’s rated load?

Answer: The short answer to your question is “yes.” However, ASME B30.16 stipulates that when a system is comprised of components with different rated capacities, the rated load of the “system” shall be based on the lowest rated individual component.
System is defined as the combination of Monorail, Hoist and Trolley in the case of a Monorail and Crane; Hoist and Trolley in the case of an Underhung Crane.

ASME B30.16-1.3.2 states that the supporting structure, including trolleys, monorail, or crane, shall be designed to withstand the loads and forces imposed by the hoist for the rated load.

3. Question: Are yearly load tests required on a hoist and crane?

Answer: There is no specific time period during which load tests must be performed once the initial installation is inspected and load tested. Some states require operators to load test hoists and cranes every four years, but, in most cases, if the hoist is not altered, repaired or modified, it can remain in service indefinitely without a load test being required.

4. Question: Are monthly records of inspection required for hoists, wire rope, chain and hooks?

Answer: This depends on the type of crane. OSHA regulation 1910.179 applies to top-running overhead and gantry cranes with top-running trolley hoists. For these types of cranes, monthly inspections of the hoist’s chain, wire rope and hooks are required with a recorded certification. This certification record must include the signature of the person who performed the inspection and the identifier of the chain, wire and hook that was inspected. If a hoist and trolley are underhung, frequent inspections are required, but written documentation is not.

5. Question: Do you have to be certified to inspect and repair hoists and cranes?

Answer: According to ASME standards, you must be a “qualified person” to inspect and repair cranes and hoists. A “qualified person” is a person who, by possession of a recognized degree or certificate of professional standing, or who, by extensive knowledge, training and experience, has successfully demonstrated the ability to solve or resolve problems relating to the subject matter and work. These individuals do not have to be professional engineers.

6. Question: Do you need to disassemble hoists for yearly inspections?

Answer: Hoist disassembly is not always required for yearly inspections. What is found during the inspection typically determines how far you need to break down the hoist. Be sure to reference the manufacturer’s OEM manual when disassembling any hoist.

7. Question: Do chain slings require latches on hooks?

Answer: According to OSHA 1910.184 and ASME B30.9, slings do not require latches on the hooks, unlike hoist and crane hooks where latches are required unless they constitute a hazard.

To learn more, check out our Safety Webinar covering these same questions. I hope you find this information useful when using, repairing or inspecting overhead hoists and cranes.

Christie Lagowski
Christie Lagowski is a Communications Specialist for Columbus McKinnon Corporation.
CM ShopStar Brings Speed and Safety to Stewart-Haas Racing Team

CM ShopStar Brings Speed and Safety to Stewart-Haas Racing Team

If you follow NASCAR then there’s no doubt you are familiar with Stewart-Haas Racing – the title-winning NASCAR Spring Cup Series team made up of Tony Stewart, Ryan Newman and Danica Patrick.

But did you know that Stewart-Haas Racing relies on CM ShopStar electric chain hoists to build and repair their cars? To find out more about how they’re using the ShopStar, Ken Tilson, CMCO Product Manager – Powered Chain Hoists, and I took a trip to their headquarters in Kannapolis, North Carolina.

Stewart-Haas Racing utilizes an overhead crane system featuring six CM ShopStar electric chain hoists that are paired over three car-assembly areas to position NASCAR design templates onto cars under construction in their primary garage. An additional single CM ShopStar with 500 lb. capacity is used in their Research and Development Area.1-ShopStar

Why did they choose the CM ShopStar?
In the past, the Stewart-Haas crew used a common electric wire rope winch mounted to a mobile A-frame gantry to lift and position their car design templates. That system had slow lifting speeds and an unreliable brake that made this process both tedious and dangerous for the crew. The team converted to the CM ShopStar for its speed, dependability and dual braking system to make the process more efficient and safe.

To learn more about CM’s involvement with Stewart-Haas Racing, check out the full case study or view our video online.

Special thanks to the entire team at Stewart-Haas Racing for the opportunity to tour their facility and the time they took to show us how they are using our product.
Gary Krypel
Gary Krypel is the Marketing Communications Manager for Columbus McKinnon.