The Hydraulic Crane vs the Crawler Crane: What’s the Difference?

14 Aug 2014, by Anthony in Crane Training News

Hydraulic cranes and crawler cranes are both common pieces of equipment on construction sites. But can you spot the differences and similarities in these two machines? They can often do the same jobs of moving, lifting, and stacking any type of material that is very heavy or larger and unwieldy. Both types of cranes are comprised on the same parts. Typically, this includes tracks, mast, jib, engine, control area, cab for an operator, and tracks if the crane can move on its own. Here, we will explore each of these types of cranes in depth. By the end of this article, you should be able to tell the difference between the two!

The Hydraulic Crane

Hydraulic cranes get their power from two internal hydraulic pumps. Often, these types of cranes are mounted on a truck. The truck can then be mounted and the crane is moved in this way. A truck can be mounted on various types of wheels, or on caterpillar tracks. These cranes have no issue with lifting heavy loads again and again because of the power from the internal hydraulic system. While operating any type of crane, the proper safety precautions should be taken to avoid injury.

The Crawler Crane

With a crawler crane, the track provides all the power. This is known as a track propulsion system. Most crawler cranes are heavier than hydraulic cranes. Because of this, they must be assembled at the site where they are to be used. After the job is over, crawler cranes are usually disassembled before being shipped elsewhere for another job. These cranes can also easily move heavy loads, which is another reason why so many people seem to prefer them at worksites.

Which to Choose? 

So which should you choose to complete a job? Crawler cranes are great for more uneven surfaces, especially those that some consider rough. They can be used in nearly any circumstances. Hydraulic cranes are more ideal for more even terrain. The hydraulic crawler crane combines the features of both these cranes into one. So, if you cannot decide, this might be your best bet. The nature of the job itself, as well as the expected weather and soil conditions may have some bearing on which type of equipment is chosen for use. Also consider the safety precautions needed before choosing either of these cranes.



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