Axle weights and why they matter in container handling equipment

Axle weights and why they matter in container handling equipment

The outstanding feature of the Mobicon Straddle Carrier range is the eight-wheel configuration. Most industrial yards are designed for trucks and 5 Tonne forklifts not the big lifts and reach stackers available on the market for end user container handling . Because the wheel weights of a Mobicon are by far the lowest in the world, users can now handle containers on yard surfaces that other container handles will damage with their large wheel weights.

With all of the Mobicon products, the weight of the container is evenly spread out over the 8 wheels (4 axles) of the Straddle Carrier, resulting in a very low wheel weight. unlike forklifts or reach stackers. This is quite different from Reach Stackers and Forklifts, where all the weight is balancing on one axle.

Often, when we speak about wheel weights, the term is confused with wheel pressure. Weight is the total number of kilograms and pressure is the kilograms per square centimetre. A machine with less wheels may have larger tyres to reduce the pressure the wheels put on the ground surface, but the wheel weight is still very high. This may explain why Road Authorities are always very concerned about wheel, or axle weights, as it is the axle weight that will damage a bridge, and not the pressure.

Another simple way of explaining the difference is as follows:

A person weighing 80kg stands on a plank over a stream. If the plank breaks under a load of 50kg, it does not matter if the person stands on the plank with one foot (high pressure) or with both feet (low pressure) as they are still putting all of their weight onto the same area of the plank. Unfortunately, regardless of the way the person stands, the plank will break and the person will fall into the water. Exactly the same principle applies with tyres on a road surface. High weight means that a concrete slab, or bitumen structure will get damaged, independent of whether the pressure is high or low. It is the weight that matters.

By distributing the weight over 8 wheels and separate axels the pressure in each spot touched by a wheel of the Mobicon Straddle Carrier is drastically reduced.

Some Mini Straddle Carriers on the market have four wheels, some even have three wheels. Mobicon Systems recognised the importance of having low wheel weights, and therefore their whole range all have eight wheels each.  The distribution of weight and the eight wheel configuration have an added bonus in that the Mobicon Straddle Carriers are extremely stable when carrying a container.

Wheel weights matter to us, and they should matter to you too.


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