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Most of the time, forklift operators are handling the same type of material: Cases of products stacked onto a standard-sized pallet. But not all pallets are standard. There are smaller pallets for smaller loads, oversized pallets for larger loads, and even heavy-duty, reinforced pallets for extremely heavy loads.
And some materials handled by forklifts aren’t even stacked on pallets at all. Things like carpet rolls, paper rolls, and barrels can’t easily be transported using standard-sized pallets.
Forklift Load Variables
Then there are forklifts that need to carry more than just one pallet at a time. Or maybe the forklift driver needs the ability to unload their pallet faster than the time it would take to drop the forks and back up their vehicle the traditional way.
Because there are so many specialized jobs, there need to be a whole array of specialized forklift attachments. While standard pallets are the most common type of forklift load, they are by no means the only type of load an operator may be carrying.
Types of Forklift Attachments
The types of forklift attachments used by operators in every type of business are too numerous to mention. But some of the most common forklift attachments include:
- Carpet Poles — These forklift feature a long pole that attaches to the forklift’s mast that can be inserted into the inner tube inside heavy carpet rolls, making it easier for operators to move these heavy, bulky loads throughout the warehouse or dock.
- Push/Pull Attachments — In many food processing warehouses, forklift drivers need to be able to dump their loads faster. So instead of using pallets, loads are placed on cardboard or plastic slip sheets. The operator can then use the push/pull forklift attachment to push the load off the vehicle’s forks, speeding up tasks and eliminating the need for most pallets, which reduces costs.
- Rotators — Businesses that use bins filled with materials need to be able to dump contents into another container such as a dumpster easily and conveniently. Rotators can be turned anywhere from 180 degrees to 360 degrees, facilitating simple load dumping.
- Multi-Load Handlers — Some forklift attachments allow operators to lift two, three, or even four pallets simultaneously side-by-side. This can reduce trips, increasing efficiency and cutting costs.
There are nearly as many forklift attachments as there are specialized tasks. Whatever types of materials your business handles, there’s likely a forklift attachment that is specially designed for that purpose.