Every week I am on a worksite more often than not I will be asked "how do you become a tower crane operator" enquiring on how to enter our closed secret society. At great risk I am going to reveal this secret and I hope my brother tower crane operators will not be to upset. Well... basically you have to be born into it with your father being a crane operator and his father before him, either that or have three tower crane operators vouch for you before entering you districts tower crane lodge, then you go to a meeting arguing your case why you should be a tower crane operator. Lodges differ from district to district with some requiring a majority vote from its members, others a unanimous vote.
Once you are voted in you learn the secrets of the hook ;), our secret handshake and be able to travel the world and be welcomed as a tower crane operator at building sites everywhere. The money and power is great but just remember with this power comes great responsibility,
Building is underway to build more campuses for the ever expanding University of Technology, Sydney. Once seen as a second tier uni compared to UNSW, Sydney University and Macquarie University, it seems it is flush with funds and expanding at incredible pace. It is currently in the progress of building a Frank Gehry designed building near the Ultimo TAFE building, and this site at Broadway which for people who do not know Sydney is just outside of where the city starts.
The crane failed from a fire that weakened the steel causing it to collapse from its own weight, however the interesting thing is that whilst the jib is a total wreck as well as the platform and perhaps the controls, the tower crane mast seems to be intact.
The crane was removed however the mast remained, it was quite interesting an empty mast on a running building site, however it was also disrupting, on the weekend the site would get permits to block off the street and have a couple of large mobile cranes lifting and unfortunately this is the way i go to much work.
We that has come to an end, there is now a new crane in on that mast, I will upgrade with pictures asap, they work very long hours on that site, I imagine they must have a lot of work to catch up on, with all that overtime the crane operator will have no mortgage at the end of this job I imagine, good luck to him :)
the potain MCi 85b-2c
tower crane load chart
An important part of the tower crane is the load chart, really it is essential that the crane operator as well as the crane crew knows the load chart back to front. The chart will tell the crane operator as well as his dogman,and rigger what they can lift at what radius for the configuration the crane is set up in.
Our crane is set up at 50 meters and at the moment it is in 2 part meaning that 2 cables go to the hook block, this crane allows for 2 part and four part (the different configurations allow for different mechenical advantage and alter the lifting capacity of the crane)
From the load chart we know we can lift 1300kgs at 50 meters (the furtherest point) Care must be taken to allow for the weight of the lifting chains and the crane cable weight.
Whilst there are indicators on the control pannel on the crane that tell you how much lifting capacity you have it is important to know the chart as you do not want to pick up a load within capacity and not be able to land it in the required spot due to it being out of lifting capacity.
mobile crane load chart