Pentalift Blog - May 2018

Are Low Profile Dock Lifts always ordered with wear plates and retaining cradles?

Not all Low Profile Dock Lifts are ordered with wear plates and retaining cradles but the majority definitely are. Conventional Dock Lifts have a lower steel frame assembly. This steel frame assembly serves a number of functions, 2 of which are the scissor lift leg rollers run back and forth on this steel frame when cycled and the steel frame has provision for lag bolting the dock lift into position during the installation process. To achieve the low profile dock lift feature one of the components deleted is the lower steel frame assembly. In this case the scissor lifts leg rollers would run back and forth on concrete when the dock lift is cycled eventually causing excessive wear to the concrete and leg rollers and a potentially creating a non-level platform. Wear plates are commonly ordered and lag bolted into position at time of installation and the leg rollers run on this steel surface for prolonged operation. Retaining cradles offer 2 benefits, retaining cradles not only lock the dock lift in position when installed but locking in position also increases the end load capacity by 50%. The only practical application for ordering a low profile dock lift without these optional extras is in a portable application.

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What limitations are there on Self Leveling Lift Tables in a Palletizing Application?

Self leveling lift tables are very common in palletizing or de-palletizing applications. When empty self leveling lift tables store in the raised position, in a palletizing application first an empty pallet is placed on the platform. As product is moved onto the pallet the increased weight automatically lowers the lift table keeping the operators work height at an ergonomically correct position. When the lift table is fully lowered the pallet is full. A lift truck is then required to engage the pallet and lift it above and clear of the self leveling platform, the self leveler will raise with the pallet to the empty, raised stored position. The process begins again. In this application either a lift truck or a “straddle” lift truck is required, without this equipment being available is the limitation to this product selection.

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What is Auto Return on a dock leveler?

Auto Return is only available on hydraulic dock levelers. When the truck is backed into position and the trailer doors are open the dock attendant cycles the dock leveler. The dock leveler deck raises, the lip extends, the dock leveler is then lowered and the extended lip is positioned on the truck bed. When the truck is loaded / unloaded typically the dock attendant would cycle the dock leveler into the closed, stored position. If there is no dock attendant available the truck driver departs, the dock leveler deck and extended lip lowers to the bottom position. The hydraulic lip begins to retract and an under deck electric limit switch is then activated. The dock leveler deck automatically raises approximately 6” – 8” above the dock height, the lift motor timer shuts off and the dock leveler returns to the stored position. When the truck departed the dock leveler was automatically returned to the closed, stored position.

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What are the advantages of a vertical storing dock leveler?

Although vertical storing dock levelers are initially more expensive they can actually be more cost effective in the long run depending on the application. Vertical storing dock levelers are more energy efficient because when they are in the stored position with the overhead door closed the chance of energy loss is minimized. Vertical storing dock levelers also reduce the risk of vermin entry which is very important in any food industry. Dock seals definitely help eliminate energy loss but cannot eliminate the gaps that surround the platform of conventional pit installed dock equipment, this concern is eliminated by choosing vertical storing dock levelers. As standard vertical storing dock levelers are available in capacities ranging from 25,000 lbs to 50,000 lbs.

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What is Pentalift LTNI?

LTNI stands for “Lift and Tilt Non-Intrusive”. Components are often shipped in bins and during the loading and unloading process a combination of a lift table and a tilter positions the bin in the most ergonomically correct position for the operator. Conventional tilters force the operator to step back when the bin is tilted towards them. In many applications where there are no space restrictions this model of lift and tilt works well. The Pentalift LTNI is a combination of a lift and tilt that does not force the operator to step backwards through its unique design. This model of lift and tilt is ideally suited for working in tight congested areas where space is premium.

Contact a Pentalift Sales Representative for more information and click here to view LTNI in operation.

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