Classification of Forklift Trucks
Forklift trucks have been working its magic for approximately 100 years now. Even today, this particular type of machine is found in each and every warehouse operation all around the world.
The first forklifts were built as a result of manpower shortages which were caused by World War I. Businesses such as Clark and Yale & Town introduced the material handling machine which utilized powered lift tractors inside their factories. During 1918, Clark saw the potential for these machines and began selling them.
From a basic tractor with an attachment, the forklift design evolved in the 1920s, to a dedicated machine equipped with a vertical lifting mast. The forklift developed and became more advanced with WWII. The forklift played a key part during this time in the handling of materials for different armies throughout the world. It was also during this time that wooden pallets were introduced that solidified the need for the lift truck in the material handling industry.
As soon as World War II ended, the forklift gained momentum and continued to develop. During the 1950s, forklifts that use batteries made an appearance. There were other more specialized forklift models introduced like for example the Narrow Aisle Reach truck. This type was made by the Raymond Corporation. In the 1960s and 1970s, improvements were made within the electronic controls area. This made forklifts a lot more versatile and companies were able to look at warehouse efficiency.
These days, the forklift can be powered by numerous fuel options like electric battery, diesel, compressed natural gas or CNG, gasoline, liquid propane gas or LPG. The first hybrid forklift was developed by Mitsubishi. It now runs on lithium ion and diesel battery. This particular type uses 39% less fuel than existing models. Statistics show that its carbon dioxide emissions are about 14.6 tons less than those types of forklifts that are powered by IC or internal combustion engines.