Types of Forklift Attachments
Forklift operations often require extra attachments, in place of the regular forks. As forklift trucks are used across a vast range of industries and applications, there are many types of attachments designed to assist specific forklift tasks.
Forklift attachments are made to lift a particular working load limit (W.L.L). The Working Load Limit will be clearly displayed on the forklift attachment or its’ data plate for example 2 Tonne.
Some types of forklift attachments include:
- Blade extensions (or slippers) slide onto the forklift tines to extend their reach. These are common attachments which increase the ability of the forklift to lift larger loads.
- Sideshifters are used to shift the forks right or left. This allows the operator to position or align the load without having to move the whole forklift.
- Fork positioners use hydraulic power to move the forks closer or further apart from one another. This attachment allows for more effective handling of different sized loads.
- Forklift jibs can be custom made to suit a repetitive workplace task. Jibs usually slide onto forklift tynes and have a hook for attaching the load. Extendable forklift jibs are also available, custom made to the required length.
- Carton clamps are designed to handle square shaped loads which are not palletised. This type of attachment applies pressure to the load for lifting and is commonly used in appliance factories for washers/dryers etc.
- Bale clamps work in a similar fashion to carton clamps, however, they are designed for lifting baled products such as cotton, wool, newsprint, metal scrap or synthetics.
- Drum clamps are hydraulic powered and are available in different configurations to handle between one and four drums. Drum clamps are also available in rotation type for tipping and pouring drums. These attachments are often used in the petroleum industry.
- Man cages slide onto the forklift tines and are usually rated for 2-4 people, depending on the forklift capacity. Workers must wear harnesses (link) attached to the railings of the cage for safe hoisting.
- Pole attachments are long spike-style jibs, which are used for lifting and transporting rolls of carpet in warehouses.
Things to consider
When purchasing forklift attachments there are hazards that the potential buyer should consider to ensure safe lifting. Potential overloading of a forklift attachment which adds extra weight, reducing the overall lifting capacity of the truck. The difference in load centre using extendable attachments will change the load centre of the forklift truck, increasing the chance of it tipping. Forklift license holders must be re-trained to safely operate the truck using each new forklift attachment.
The WorkSafe Queensland website states that the design and manufacture of the forklift truck and its associated features must meet Australian Standards AS 2359.1 Powered industrial trucks, and a manufacturer’s data plate is attached. It is also important that forklifts and attachments are regularly inspected by a competent inspector for any deformation or cracked welds.
All Lifting offer an extensive range of Forklift Attachments that can be custom built to suit your application. Check out our online product catalogue on our website