Seven Signs You Should Rent a Spreader Beam

Spreader beams are an item that receives a lot of attention but are still not always seen for their full potential. While there are limitations to modular spreader beams, there are various times that a spreader is your best bet on your project. Here are seven signs you should rent a spreader beam.

  • You have multiple pick points that require an even share of the load and the load must remain level and are limited by available crane capacity. 
    • In some rare cases, the rigging hardware or lifting points on a load leave little choice but to get creative with your rigging. When that odd lift comes along in which your load dictates all pick points must remain vertical with equal share of the load and the headroom requirements put the load near capacity, spreader beams are likely your only option. 
    • Running any variety of multiple spreader bar setups will keep your rigging weight manageable and within the limit of the crane while also being able to handle the load safely. 
  • You or your crew are looking for more manageable rigging  
    • Whether due to constraints on available logistics or cargo space limitations, using a spreader beam is considerably lighter than a similarly sized beam and requires less space or capital to transport the equipment. It can also be moved on site by a single person without the use of additional equipment. 
  • You require a high-capacity lift while keeping rigging weight down 
    • Modular spreader beams allow you to lift heavier loads for a fraction of the rigging weight. For example, lifting 100-tons, even with a span of 40 feet, would require massive lifting beam weighing considerably more than 10,000 pounds where an equivalent spreader bar would weigh in at less than 4,000 pounds 
  • Needing to keep a load level during the lift when it has an offset center of gravity. 
    • While there are some lifting beams that can achieve the same results, working with a spreader bar allows for independent adjustability. Through the use of mechanical adjustments to the top rigging – from turnbuckles, additional rigging hardware or hoists – each side can be adjusted to the appropriate length to keep the load level compared to a centerpick beam that has only one lifting point, for a fraction of the rigging weight. 
  • If horizontal forces would cause damage or worse to the load being lifted. 
    • Spreader bars are used specifically to spread the load across the length of the bar using compressive forces to negate the horizontal force, but they also create two pick points – or more when run in a cascading/Christmas tree setup – that can maintain vertical or near-vertical lifting on the load’s lifting points. For loads with eye bolts as a lifting point, for example, the difference between using a spreader or connecting the rigging directly from the load to the hook can be the difference between a successful or failed lift. 
  • When job site space is at a premium 
    • Sometimes, a steel lifting beam can be a per

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