Lift trucks are utilized to raise, engage and transport palletized loads within warehousing, manufacturing, material handling, construction and mining applications. There are 3 basic kinds of forklifts: a motorized drive, fork truck and manual drive. The load movement or travel is powered manually or by walking at the rear of the machine with manual-drive forklifts.
Motorized-drive model lift trucks are equipped with a motorized drive. In many instances, a protected cab or seat is part of the design in order to keep the operator safe and comfortable. Fork trucks are a different kind which are motorized and consist of features such as cabs and backup alarms. In order to prevent the machine from tipping over, some lift trucks are counterbalanced. Other models consist of safety rails, a rotating element like for example a turntable or other kinds of hand rails.
Essential specifications to take into account when choosing forklifts consist of stroke and lift capacity. Stroke is defined as the difference between the fully-lowered and the fully-raised lift positions. Lift capacity is the supportable, maximum load or forcforce or load. Additional specifications for lift trucks include their tire and type of fuel.
Different fuel options for lift trucks include: liquid propane or LPG, compressed natural gas or CNG, diesel fuel, propane, natural gas and gasoline. There are 2 basic kinds of tires utilized for operating forklifts and fork trucks: pneumatic and solid. Cushion or solid tires require less maintenance compared to pneumatic tires and do not puncture. The cushion or solid tires do offer less shock absorption overall. Air-inflated or pneumatic tires however provide great drive traction and load-cushioning.
There are 7 classes of lift trucks. The first class of lift trucks, Class I, is either seated or stand-up 3 wheeled units that are electric-motor rider trucks. Normally, rider units are counterbalanced and can have either cushion or pneumatic wheels. Class II lift trucks are electric motor units that are used for order picking or stock applications in narrow aisle environments. These models offer extra reach functions or swing mast.
Class III forklifts are either walk-behind or standing-rider operated electric-motor trucks. High lift models and automated pallet lift trucks are often counterbalanced units. Class IV lift trucks have seated controls and cabs. These kinds of forklifts are rider fork trucks with IC or internal combustion engines. In addition, this class uses cushion or solid tires.
Rider fork Trucks are incorporated in Class V. These machines will have cabs and seated controls, pneumatic tires and IC or internal combustion engines. Like Class IV lift trucks, they are normally counterbalanced. Class VI forklifts are tow tractor lifts that are designed for a sit-down rider. This class is supplied with electric or internal combustion or IC engines.
Class VII forklifts are the last classification and include rough terrain forklifts, which are usually utilized in logging, agricultural and construction applications. Class VII lift trucks include all burden carriers and personnel carriers.