Mobile Crane Hire: The Reaching Capacity of a Mobile Crane

10 July 2023

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Mobile cranes are powerful and versatile machines in various industries, including construction, infrastructure development, and heavy-lifting operations. One critical aspect to consider when operating a mobile crane is its reaching capacity. In this article, we will delve into the reaching capacity concept, its importance, factors influencing it, calculation methods, safety considerations, applications, maintenance, and more.

Understanding the Reaching Capacity of a Mobile Crane

The reaching capacity of a mobile crane refers to its ability to lift loads at specific distances and heights. It determines the maximum weight a crane can safely handle when fully extended. Understanding the reaching capacity is crucial for ensuring safe and efficient operations on construction sites and other lifting projects.

Definition and Importance

The reaching capacity of a mobile crane is a vital specification that indicates the crane’s capabilities in load lifting and extension. It helps operators and project managers assess whether a particular crane is suitable for a specific task based on its lifting capacity at different distances from the centre of rotation.

By knowing the reaching capacity, operators can determine if the crane can safely reach the desired area and handle the intended load without exceeding its operational limits. This knowledge is fundamental for maintaining worksite safety, preventing accidents, and optimising productivity.

Factors Influencing Reaching Capacity

Several factors influence the reaching capacity of a mobile crane. Understanding these factors is essential for accurate load calculations and safe crane operations.These include:

Crane Configuration

The type and model of the crane play a significant role in determining its reaching capacity. Different crane designs and mechanisms can handle varying loads and reach distances.

Boom Length And Angle

The length and angle of the crane’s boom directly impact its reaching capacity. Longer booms allow for greater extension but may result in reduced lifting capacity at longer distances.

Counterweights And Outriggers

The presence of counterweights and proper deployment of outriggers help stabilise the crane, maintain balance, and enhance its reaching capacity.

Calculating Reaching Capacity

To accurately determine a mobile crane’s reaching capacity, load charts are used. Load charts provide comprehensive information about the crane’s lifting capacities at different boom lengths, angles, and radii.

Load Charts and Their Significance

Load charts are graphical representations that depict the maximum loads a crane can lift under specific operating conditions. They consider boom length, angle, radius, and counterweight configuration factors. By referring to the load chart, operators can ensure that the crane is not overloaded and stays within its safe working limits.

Variables Considered in Calculations

When calculating the reaching capacity, several variables come into play. These variables include the weight of the load being lifted, the distance from the crane’s centre of rotation, the boom length, and the angle of the boom. By accurately measuring and assessing these variables, operators can determine the safe reaching capacity of the crane for a particular lift.

Importance of Proper Load Calculations

Accurate load calculations are vital for preventing overloading, which can lead to crane instability, accidents, and equipment failure. Operators must carefully assess the weight of the load, the distance to be reached, and the crane’s lifting capacity to ensure safe operations.

Adhering to Lifting Capacity Limits

Strictly adhering to the lifting capacity limits specified by the manufacturer and load charts is crucial. Exceeding the crane’s reaching capacity can result in structural failure, tipping, or other dangerous situations. Operators should know the load limitations and communicate with the project team to ensure safe lifting practices.


The reaching capacity of a mobile crane is a critical factor to consider when planning and executing lifting operations. Understanding the factors that influence reaching capacity, using load charts accurately, adhering to safety guidelines, and proper maintenance are crucial for safe and efficient crane operations.

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