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How to put Internal Combustion Engine (I.C.E) Forklift in Storage

Forklifts October 21, 2016

Experience has taught that complications can arise as a result of improper handling of trucks during periods of storage.  The main areas of concern are engines, hydraulic components and truck batteries.  I.C.E powered forklifts can be best protected by being operated for a short period of time each month.

Before placing any forklift in storage, you must choose an area which is clean, dry and free from airborne contaminates. Trucks powered by I.C.E must be started and run at 700 ROM until normal operating temperature is reached.  This will coat the internal engine components with a film of oil and rid the engine of built-up condensations.

! Caution Do not shut down an engine before it reaches operating temperature.  Engine damage can occur.

For Safety and increase usable floor area, remove the forks and tag them with the truck serial number.  Prior to operating a truck each month, make a visual inspection for leaks and or signs of deterioration.  Take corrective action immediately.  Also, check the fluid level in the radiator, hydraulic tank and brake master cylinder.

All hydraulic cylinders must be cycled several times each month to keep the seals active and to coat the interior walls with oil.  Actuate each cylinder, in both directions, until it reaches the stops.  To protect the tilt cylinder rods, park your trucks with the mast tilted fully backward (cylinders retracted).

When parked with the power off, actuate each control handle to relieve hydraulic pressure.

! Caution – Mast are to be stored fully lowered to protect cylinder rods.

Coat any exposed portion of all cylinder rods with fresh, high grade SAE 30 or 40 Weight engine oil.  Install blocks, front and rear, at the drive wheels when parked – Do Not Use the Hand Brake

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Buying A Used Forklift

Forklifts October 18, 2016

If you have decided to buy a used forklift, weather it be updating your existing unit, starting a new venture.  There are literally thousands out there in the market place. It can get a bit daunting, but here’s a few tips that might make it easier for you to navigate

Know what you need.

This is simple, there is a wide range of different specifications, you need to be sure of the job you are doing and what you need to do it.  Ie. – Wanting to load and unload containers –  Its pointless trying to drive into a container if you have a 5 000 mm 2 stage mast with a lowered clearance of 2 500mm.

You need a 3 stage 4 500 mm mast, that has a lowered overall height to go into a container.

If you are unsure what you need, try visiting a reputable forklift dealer, and explaining what work your are doing.  They will be able to provide you with some advice you what you will need to do the job. Also browse the stock they have there, you might find a bargain.

Set a budget

Forklifts are just like cars, there are many different makes, and come in very different prices.  Always make sure you know how much money you have got to spend.

Ask for Warranty

The forklift industry is currently unregulated, as such forklift dealers do not need to offer warranty.  Dealers can offer Warranty when they want. You can generally expect anything from 30 to 90 days.  So ask, before you agree on a price.

Beware the liquid overhaul

Weather it be a coat of jam, or a liquid overhaul.  You need to be careful and look pass the visual condition of the forklift and make sure its is mechanically sound.  If need be get a mechanical inspection done, most small 1 x man subcontractors, are wiling to do this type of work,  It might cost you a $100 or so, but it can save you thousands in the future.  Also ask for the service records, if it is a ex rental unit, most Dealers are happy to show you this type of record.

Future maintenance

Unfortunately all machinery brakes down at some stage.  When you are buying a forklift, always make sure you know where to get it serviced down the track.  If you are in the City, its generally no problem, but if you are out in the country, it could be a lot more difficult to get something repaired.  If you are handy enough tot do the work yourself, ask where you get parts from.  Or if you aren’t make sure you ask where you can get them serviced.

This is our top 5 tips for buying a forklift (new or used).  Make sure you get the value you want.

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The Basic Principles of Materials Handling

Forklifts October 16, 2016

The best handling solutions involve the least handling.  Handling adds to the cost but not to the value of the product.  The choice of the right equipment or system to optimize material flow is broadly a definition of MATERIAL HANDLING and includes cranes, conveyors, automated vehicles, tractors, free ranging forklifts, order pickers, stackers and pallet trucks.

The Unit Load

Product, whether they can be cartons, bags, cans bottles, drums or sacks are assembled together to form a load.  The commonly used base on which unit loads are formed are flat wooden (sometimes plastic) pallets, ISO Containers, roll cages and tote bins. Others are stillages, box and cage pallets, bulk containers, for example.

Pallet Handling

Products are often handled without pallets using specialized attachments in place of forks: Bales, white foods, cookers, carpets, tyres, drums, beer kegs, paper rolls and milk crates are just some of the many products where attachments are utilized.

The Application

It is essential to consider all aspects of an application in order to ensure that the most suitable equipment is specified and the best handling solution selected,  Important factors are :

The load and the Pallet of other load base type

a) Pallet details

    Length, width, depth; type ie any base boards; pallet under hang under forks; are the base boards chamfered ? two or four way access ?

b) Load details

   Weight; length when stacked on pallet; width when stacked on pallet; overall height of load and pallet; type of load; cartons, bags, sacks e.t.c; is the load shrink wrapped ?

Type of storage

Block stack, fixed racking, mobile racking and so on.

Stack Height

What is the maximum top shelf height onto which loads must be lifted ? This will determine height of lift and define nominal and residual capacities.  The forks have to lift the pallet above the top shelf with sufficient under clearance to place the load on the top shelf (mast defections must also be taken into account).

Overhead Obstructions

Is there sufficient clear headroom over the stacking area with the mast fully raised ?

Note any overhead obstructions either in the aisle or on the travelling route.  This will determine whether free lift or triplex masts are necessary.

Allow for possible future changes to the application.

Distances

To determine whether pedestrian or rider equipment is required the average and maximum distances covered in a typical work cycle need to be established. Sometimes a tractor/trailer system may be the preferable method.

Surfaces/gradients

The Length of any gradient is important as well as its surface and slope.  This determines the truck and battery capacity and sometimes, the type of wheel/tyre equipment.  It is also very pertinent to record the types of surfaces on the level areas.

Working area and duty

Inside or outside, order picking, lorry loading/unloading, loading docks, containers stuffing, public roads.

Careful study and definition is needed.

Environment

Operating in a cold store ? Ambient temperature ? Abrasive /Dusty atmosphere? Hazardous material? Brine or salty conditions ? Chemicals ?

Other Factors

  • Hours per shift and number of shifts
  • Numbers of pallets in and pallets out per shift
  • Any Peak periods ? If so when.
  • Electricity supply, ie. Single phase, three phase .
  • Delivery Access: ground level/loading dock.
  • How Many loading docks.

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Baoli Forklift – Are they Really Worth It.

Forklifts October 16, 2016

We have written about this many times, the rise of the Chinese made forklift in the Australian Materials Handling Market.  It is no longer just Chinese manufacturers like HangCha or Sany that are pushing their way into the forklift market.

Now all mainstream forklift manufacturers like Jungheinrich and Linde are going to China to get their forklift product made.

Linde have taken it further than most other forklift producers, and are now bringing in their own Chinese forklift brand to cater for the low utilisation and low cost niche forklift market.  Linde are bringing in the Baoli range of forklifts.

Starting at 1.8T through to 10T with different mast heights and attachments available, the Baoli forklift is made in China and imported into Australia, and is distributed through the Linde branch network.

The smaller range of forklifts will come with an  Isuzu C240 Diesel engine or the standard K21 or K25 LPG Nissan engine.

The 4Ton – 5Ton forklifts come with Yanmar diesels engines the 7Ton range come with Mitsubishi S6S diesel engine and the 8T – 10T come with Isuzu diesel engines.

The Baoli Forklift Standard

The standard of the Baoli forklift manufacture is very typical of Chinese manufacturing.  These forklifts are a standard torque convertor forklift and are worlds apart from the Linde Hydrostatic transmission forklift.  The support and backup you can expect is again very typical of Linde in Australia.

How Long Have Baoli Forklift been Around ?

Baoli have been manufacturing the range of forklifts for over 8 years, and have only been part of the Kion group since 2009.  The Kion group also own the Linde forklift brand.  So as far as length of time in the Australian Market not very long.

Chinese brands like the EP range of forklifts have been imported and supported for much longer in the Australian Materials Handling Market.

How do they Stack up Price wise ?

To be honest, whilst Chinese manufactured forklifts have a place in the market. They squarely fill the more budget conscious end of the market.  The Baoli Forklifts are in the upper end of the price range when comparing other Chinese imported forklifts.  This has more to do with the Linde business then the actual forklift itself.

The Wash up

There is clearly a market requirement for Chinese Forklifts in the Australian market.  The Baoli forklift range certainly fits into that category. But make sure you compare with other forklifts a EP CPQD25N has a Nissan K21 Engine and a Baoli CPQD25 also has a Nissan K21 Engine, but the prices you might be paying are vastly different.

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Basis of Rating for a 2.5T Forklift

Forklifts October 15, 2016

The BASIS OF RATING for a conventional 2.5T forklift is simple, and something that forklifts operators should have a basic understanding of.  The basis of rated and alternative capacities of a truck shall be the strength of its various components and stability in accordance with the requirements at the time of manufacture.

Where operating conditions differ from normal (e.g. different attachment, abnormal movement, inclined or rough surfaces, position or attitude of the truck or part of the truck when required to handle a load), it may be necessary to use either a truck with a greater rated capacity or a specially designed truck as appropriate to the special conditions.

All forklift capacities must be given by the manufacturer of the Forklift, and different things can added to or changed on the forklift can drastically change the RATED Capacity.

 If you are unsure of what your rated capacity is of your forklift, just check the rating plate that is fitted to the forklift.  If the rating plate is not visible, contact the manufacturer of the forklift and ask for a rating plate (you will pay a fee for this).  They will ask you for the specifications of the forklift calculate the rated capacity and give you a stamped rating plate.

forklift-rated-capacity

 

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Is a Cheap Forklift The Best option

Forklifts October 15, 2016

When you say the word cheap, it can mean a lot of things to a lot of different people. For some it can mean costing very little, or something is very low priced, it can even mean shoddy workmanship, as in that was cheap workmanship. But when it comes to a cheap forklift, you really need to give it some thought. The old adage is true ” You Get what You Pay For”.

At the end of the day, forklifts are mechanical, they will age, and parts will wear out due to wear and tear, they will break down.

Businesses that have a need to move materials will have a forklift to move their product from A to B.  There are several factors to consider when it comes to choosing the right forklift and whether it is cheap or not.

Own V’s Rent

Whether a business owns or rents their forklifts, is very specific to their own requirements. But whether it’s a cheap forklift or not takes a little bit more examination.

Purchase New or Used

Owning a forklift, there are two choices, NEW or USED. A New 2.5T forklift can range anywhere from low $20 000 up to mid $40 000. A used 2.5T forklift can range from less than $5000 up to $20 000.

While the price can range widely, they will all lift 2500 kgs. But things like age, features and benefits, condition, hours of utilisation, environment that it will work in. Are all factors that need to be considered, when making the choice on New or Used.

Buying a “Cheap Forklift” for $5000 that is put to work in a harsh environment working 40 hours a week. Might be cheap initially, but not to far down the track it is bound to cost you plenty.

Rent

If your business decides to rent, a 2.5T forklift can rent anywhere in the market from $100 per week to $200 per week. Again factors that will affect the rental rate are things like, hours of utilization, environment it is working, tyres being included or not being included in the rate.

A cheap forklift rental rate is fine, but the things that really matter here are can the forklift company that is renting you the forklift able to support and back up a cheap rate. The first time that your rental forklift breaks down, and you call the forklift company and they take forever to respond or repair the forklift. A cheap rental forklift can end up causing you a lot more in lost production time, because you don’t have a forklift to move your product.

Maintenance

Whether you buy or rent your cheap forklift, it can cost a lot when it breaks down. Maintenance is the one thing that business need to consider making any ownership decision about they forklifts.

When it comes to a cheap forklift, you need to do your research and consider your options fully, it can make a lot of difference between getting a bargain that is cheap and getting a cheap bargain that will cost you.

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Are All Forklifts Created Equal ?

Forklifts October 15, 2016

At the end of the day forklifts are a tool. Where they are generally used in businesses or in places where there is a need to pick up a load (pallet) and carry it from A to B.  So the question really is, are all forklifts created equal ?  We’ve covered this a few times now, in the last 5 years in Australia, there has been a huge influx of Chinese made forklifts in the Australian market (Almost 25% of the forklift market).

So if you were looking at a replacing an existing 2.5T forklift with a new 2.5T forklift, does it really matter what it is if they both lift 2500 kgs to 4 meters. ?

Well there are certain things you need to  consider when looking to purchase any forklift, that will make the world of difference :

Utilization

One of the first things to consider is how many hours a week are you doing with it.

Or would you consider a Chinese model that like a HangCha H25XF  that you could purchase for $25 000 depending on the specifications.

Environment

The environment is a crucial part of the decision making process when you start thinking about forklifts.

  • Is it dusty,  is it clean, are there ramps, is it operating outside, or inside, in a freezer.

The environment that you operate your forklift in can tell you a lot about what forklift you need to choose.

Application

Whats the forklift doing ?, is it unloading trucks and carting a pallet into a warehouse and in to racking.  Well you might need to consider either a reach truck or a standard counterbalanced forklift.

  • How high is the racking, does it go through low doors,

Budget

How much budget do you really have ?

So are all forklifts created equal ?l, the simple answer is no, there is a forklift for every requirement you might have.

Additional things you might want to consider are things like :

Service intervals

They can range form 250 hours to 1000 hours on the same capacity forklift

Parts availability

With the Chinese forklift market developing in Australia, there are now plenty of places to buy parts from.  But it always pays to check before moving forward with a purchase, there are some brands on the market with no local back up or support.

Service cost

This really does go hand in hand with the parts availability, how much does it cost to service ?. With a lot of the more modern forklifts, they now need trained technicians that can use a laptop for diagnosing any issue the unit might be having.

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Do you need to buy a forklift.

buying October 13, 2016

buying forklifts

If you have a business where you are moving products on a pallet, there is more than a fair chance you need a forklift to help you.  Whether you already have a forklift or are looking at getting one.  You might want to be looking at needing to buy a forklift.

How to buy Forklifts

These days there are plenty of forklift brands and models on the market.  When you go looking to buy forklifts, buyers will tend to focus more on the engine, transmission, mast, make and model then they do on how to buy forklift.

Once you narrow your decision down on what forklift you are going to buy. The next step is how to buy the forklift, and you have a few different choices.

Purchase outright

If your are lucky enough to have the capital sitting in your bank account.  You can purchase it outright.

Rent to Buy

This has become a very popular way to buy forklifts.  You are able to rent the forklift over a fixed period of time, with either a zero payout or a small payout figure at the end of term.  Usually the business renting the forklift is still responsible for maintenance by either paying for it as they go, or a preventative maintenance agreement, with the forklift dealer that they bought the forklift through.

Finance – Lease

This type of arrangement is very similar to the rent to buy scheme, but it is purely a finance arrangement with either a finance lending business or the bank.  The maintenance can be done by any reputable forklift or mechanical business.

Fully Maintained Operating Lease

A different version of a rental agreement, but it is usually done directly through the finance company where the forklift dealer will bill the finance company every month. The business that rents the forklift ring the forklift dealer directly to arrange maintenance issues when they arise.

Rental

Very similar to the FMOL arrangement above, The Business rents the forklift direct from a forklift dealer.  The forklift business will invoice the business renting the forklift directly,  and all maintenance requirements are done directly between the business renting the forklift and the forklift dealer.

If a business has a need or a requirement for a forklift, there are many different ways that you can buy a forklift, and there certainly are different advantages and disadvantages to any way you want to do it. The best thing to do with talk to your accountant first before making a decision on financing or leasing a forklift.  Then talk to your local forklift dealer about what options they can provide you.

New or Used forklifts are also something worth considering for any business, any of the above methods of buying forklifts can apply to new or used. But the older the forklift the more restricted you might be with what you can do.

A final tip, if you do decide to purchase it out right with your own capital, make sure you discuss any warranty that might apply.

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Selling a USED FORKLIFT

Selling October 12, 2016

If you have decided its time to sell your forklift, weather its to upgrade your forklift, or maybe your business needs have changed.  There are many ways you can sell your used forklift., it can get a bit daunting, but here’s a few tips that might make it easier for you to navigate.

Know what its worth

Its simple, everything has a value, but it is pointless if you are trying to sell a Hyster H2.50DX for $20 000 when they are being advertised for sale as a used forklift for $10 000 in your area.

To get a gauge of what its worth, you can visit our listing page and search for similar makes and models of equipment, or even talk to your local dealer to get an idea.

Set a budget for selling

Forklifts sell just like cars, but you will need to spend a little bit of money of either getting it in shape for sale or possibly cost of advertising.  Weather it be an online portal such as ForkliftMarket , or through conventional sales methods such as newspapers, so make  sure you set a dollar value you are prepared to spend, you don’t want to spend $1000 in advertising, where you might get better value for $60 in an online ad.

What condition are you selling it in

As a private sale you really don’t need to worry about selling with terms, other then As is where is (make sure all safety features work – as a minimum condition) , but if you are a dealer, you really need to consider do you offer warranty,

Make sure you get the money

Its just like anything, when you sell, make sure you get the money of the purchaser.  At a minimum make sure you are sure if you are repairing it, to what condition you are repairing it to.  Do all safety features work, ie horn, lights seat belts, beepers.

Service records

Its all ways a good idea to give the buyer a copy of your service records, It can generate trust and show your not hiding anything that might be majorly wrong with your forklift.

So there they are the top 5 tips for selling your forklift, remember do your research and make sure you get the value you want.

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