RAM Spreaders has secured an order for five newly designed 2750 heavy-duty mobile harbour crane (MHC) spreaders from Angolan terminal operator Sogester.
The units, capable of lifting 1 x 45 tonnes or 2 x 32.5 tonnes, were ordered after previous units suffered heavy impacts at the terminal.
The terminal’s engineering manager liaised with the manufacturer, which led to RAM’s technical manager for Africa Louis Du Plessis and his team developing a new design for the 2750 model heavy-duty MHC spreader.
Du Plessis stated: “Listening to customers only allows us to develop a good relationship with our customer but also our products, ensuring the customer gets the best possible product and after-sales service support.”
Although traditionally, MHCs were mainly considered for smaller ports with lower lifting capacity and speeds, the advent of large units such as the LHM 800 has led some larger container terminals to use these cranes.
As terminals are now able to work vessels harder and faster, the traditional designs of the MHC spreader are becoming less suitable, noted RAM.
The new design aims to maximise uptime and reduce maintenance costs through a number of features including a structural design upgrade to increase reliability and meet demanding conditions.
Heavy-duty thicker profile telescopic arms are being used for higher lifting capacity, achieved with vertically increasing the centre body section.
Meanwhile, stainless steel hydraulic cylinder rods provide corrosion resistance to increase the lifespan of the hydraulic centre of gravity mechanism.
RAM ‘ShockAbsorb’ has also been implemented, designed to absorb the high energy from the impact of the force of the spreader landing on a container.
It enables the spreader to land fast on containers while reducing noise and mitigating potential damage on the spreader. In turn, the shock absorber looks to improve operational efficiency and extend the component’s life.
The spreader has a wireless diagnostic system that can be remotely accessed by an iPad or tablet, allowing maintenance staff to quickly identify the fault to minimise spreader downtime.
Additionally, the unit features bigger bash/slide plates to outer impact zones of the spreader twistlock housings on the end beams, designed after the consultation with Sogester revealed that side impacts occur by overswinging during high volume loading operations.
Electric and hydraulic protection plates are also been used to minimise the damage to both hydraulic and electrical equipment on the spreader.