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Forklifts come in several shapes and sizes. No matter the variety you choose, they are a vital component of any material handling website. At the same time, it is well worth familiarizing yourself with the different types of forklifts, as each offers singular advantages. Obviously, the most common forklifts are counterbalance ones, which are especially large and powerful. While every warehouse needs to have counterbalance forklifts, it is well worth looking into reach truck forklifts; in this post, we review the usefulness of this forklift and why you should consider it.
Anatomy of the reach truck forklift: Narrow profile
Reach truck forklifts are distinguished by their narrow frame, which makes them ideal for warehouses with narrow aisles. They have two outer ledges that distribute the load weight. Perhaps the greatest difference between the reach truck forklift and the counterbalance one is that on the reach truck forklift, the driver sits sideways, with the drive wheel located under the operator’s seat. Even though the wheelbase is the same as with a counterbalance forklift, the body is considerably more condensed than with the more traditional, bulkier-framed counterbalance vehicle. One of the great advantages of the reach truck forklift is that by virtue of the slender frame, they reduce the turning radius by 35%.
Types of reach truck forklifts
There are two main types of reach truck forklifts: the pantograph reach truck and the moving mast reach truck. The pantograph is distinguished by its special reaching device, which lifts the fork forward. Pantograph reach trucks offer the highest lifting capacity. Meanwhile, the moving mast reach truck has a hydraulic system; it has larger wheels that give it greater ground clearance, and they are well-suited for docksides, in addition to narrow aisles.
When considering a reach truck forklift, it is important to remember that they are electric. As such, they are battery-operated and most suitable for warehouses. It is possible to use them outside, but as with all other electric forklifts, one must bear in mind that they are not capable for use in the rain. In addition, because the clearance is generally much lower than with a counterbalance forklift, reach trucks have a difficult time with uneven surfaces. For this reason, they should only be used outdoors with pavement or other very even floor surfaces.
The reach truck distinguishes itself with superlative maneuverability and reaching capacity. In particular, warehouses with narrow aisles should strongly consider this most nimble member of the forklift family.