Lifting clamps 2.0 – For Safer and More Efficient Wind Operations

With the unique challenges that the wind industry is facing, The Crosby Group helps to solve key problems through lifting clamp innovation.

The wind industry is one of the world’s most demanding industries with unique challenges the face those involved with manufacturing and installing towers, monopiles and transition pieces.  However, there are common elements with many other end markets: heavy materials to lift from various angles, concern about equipment damage during handling, and a top focus on safe lifting and rigging operations. 

As a leading manufacturer of rigging, lifting, and load securement hardware, The Crosby Group works to provide solutions that directly address these concerns of the wind industry.  Their extensive portfolio for the renewables market includes a range of vertical and horizontal lifting clamps and pipe hooks specifically designed for the demands of wind energy applications. A standout special feature of CrosbyIP-branded standard and custom clamps is the availability of minimal-marring camsegments and pivots, the clamping pieces of a clamp.

Kees Gillesse, product marketing manager at The Crosby Group, said: “When handling steel plates with lifting clamps, the clamping camsegment and pivot usually leave an indentation in the material surface—known as marring. Because of the high standards in the wind energy industry, these indentations have to be ground away from the surface. This rework costs time and money. By reducing the height of the teeth of the camsegment and pivot, the pitch between the teeth can be decreased and more teeth can be in contact with the material surface, reducing the depth of the indentations.”

CrosbyIP vertical lifting clamps feature welded alloy steel bodies to minimize size but increase strength. Alloy components are forged, where required. The lock open, lock close function has a latch for pretension and release of material. Each product has its own serial number and proof load test (to two times working load limit), date stamped on the body, and user manual with test certificate included with each clamp. Manufactured at an ISO 9001 certified facility, all sizes are also RFID equipped.

Practical Solutions for Specific Problems

CrosbyIP is also renowned for the manufacture of special clamps where there might be a requirement beyond the capabilities of the standard range.

Gillesse said: “The Crosby Group develops practical solutions for specific problems. Our mission is to be the innovative and quality leader in the field of lifting clamps by manufacturing products of uncompromising quality and providing solutions for specific lifting situations. If our standard product range may not meet the client’s specific needs, CrosbyIP-branded lifting clamps can offer an extensive range of custom or bespoke options.”

A recent example of custom manufacturing is the 22.5t capacity special universal vertical clamp (model IPU10X3). The clamp, which was designed for a German wind energy manufacturer, features an extra-wide camsegment and three pivots for less surface pressure to further reduce indentations. A deep jaw, meanwhile, allows for lifting beveled plates and constructions. Lifting brackets make positioning easy when the lifting clamp is in the horizontal position. The universal lifting eye permits lifting from every direction.

Another special product is the 6t capacity universal horizontal clamp (model IPHGUX1), which presents many of the same benefits to the end user and is ideal for rolling larger plates. This is a new high-tonnage addition to the universal horizontal lifting clamp range. Finally, the 70t capacity pipe hook (model IPPH) has been designed for 5,700mm to 7,000mm diameter pipe, up to a thickness of 100mm. It features soft steel replaceable inserts and is equipped with 40t capacity G-2140 shackles. With both the universal horizontal clamp and pipe hook, other capacities and jaw-openings are available on request.

Gillesse, who is based in Arnhem-Utrecht, The Netherlands, said: “A common problem is that most of the standard pipe hooks can damage the pipe surface when lifting. A general solution is to have aluminum inserts to prevent marring of the surface of the pipe. However, with aluminum, there can be contamination with the steel of the pipe, compromising quality of the weld when welding pipe sections together. The replaceable inserts of the CrosbyIP pipe hook are made from soft steel to prevent such contamination and marring.”

With vertical and horizontal lifting clamps and pipe hooks developed and manufactured specifically for key manufacturers of towers, monopiles and transition pieces, The Crosby Group is eager to help solve problems for the wind industry and contribute to its continued growth.

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