A forklift is any vehicle with a mechanical device attached to the front that is designed to lift and lower objects of various sizes. The most common forklifts are single-seat, electrically powered units that can lift more than a literal ton of weight, up to over 100,000 pounds on some models. The fork design of the lift provides a wide base to support a large selection of loads while conveniently sliding into the holes in the bottom of packing pallets for increased security while moving awkward, heavy, or valuable containers. The lift is usually operated through a series of pneumatic valves for smooth and steady transitioning that can remain stable under load.
How Does a Forklift Operate?
A single-seater forklift operates much like other forms of heavy equipment like tractors or man lifts. The driver has controls that manage both the automotive functions that let the forklift get around and the lift functions that give the equipment its name. Every make and model of forklift will have its own particular cockpit configuration, but they should generally be easily understood with a brief introductory lesson on the various controls under the guide of a skilled operator. The lift portions will typically only be controlled by piloting the forklift forwards and backwards in lieu of any extending mechanisms.
What Uses Does a Forklift Have?
Forklifts see extensive use in transportation, storage, manufacturing, and construction. In all cases, the forklift can move valuable items while limiting the amount of jostling they undergo when compared to manually transferring the items from one resting place to several intermediary positions before finally being slammed into the final location.
Inside of a warehouse, a forklift can reach bulky and cumbersome pallets that are sitting far above the heads of the workers in a safe and expedient manner. Construction uses include lifting up pallets of materials to higher portions of the building when cranes or larger equipment would be unnecessary or difficult to use.