Classification of Forklift Trucks
For less than a century, the forklift truck has been working its magic. Even today, this particular kind of machinery is found in each and every warehouse operation throughout the world.
The first forklifts were made as a result of manpower shortages which were caused by WWI. Businesses such as Yale & Town and Clark introduced the material handling equipment which utilized powered lift tractors in their plants. In 1918, Clark saw the potential for these equipment and started selling them.
It was in the 1920s that the forklift design changed from a tractor with an attachment to a dedicated machinery which was equipped with a vertical lifting mast. The forklift developed and became more sophisticated with World War II. The forklift played an essential role during this time in the handling of supplies for various armies all around the globe. It was also at this time that wooden pallets were introduced that proved the need for the lift truck within the material handling industry.
Lift trucks gained momentum and continued to develop when the Second World War ended. In the 1950s, battery operated forklifts made an appearance. There were other more specialized kinds of forklifts introduced like for example the Narrow Aisle Reach truck. This particular type was made by the Raymond Corporation. During the 1960s and 1970s, improvements were made in the electronic controls area. This made forklifts a lot more versatile and companies were able to look at warehouse efficiency.
There are many options you could use to power a forklift these days. These include diesel, electrical battery, compressed natural gas or CNG, gasoline, liquid propane gas or LPG. The first hybrid forklift was developed by Mitsubishi. It now operates on diesel battery and lithium ion. This kind uses thirty nine percent less fuel than existing models. Statistics show that its carbon dioxide emissions are about 14.6 tons less compared to those kinds of forklifts which are powered by IC or internal combustion engines.