How To Decide If A Vacuum Tube Lifter Is Right For You

1. Nature of the goods

One important factor when selecting handling equipment is to ensure that it is suitable for managing the load. Vacuum tube lifters are a popular choice for lifting certain products, like sheets, bags, and boxes. If you are thinking about choosing a vacuum tube lifter, consider the following questions:

  1. What is your application?
  2. What material are you lifting?
  3. What type of surface does your product have?
  4. What is the weight of your load?

Vacuum tube lifters have some limitations, especially regarding what they can lift because they are highly sensitive to load capacity. The weight capacity for vacuum lifters is between 35 and 270kg. If your product’s weight is outside of this range, you will need to explore alternatives.

You can read a full blog on the 5 questions you need to answer when buying a vacuum tube lifter.

2. Worker Safety

Ensuring workers are safe, healthy, and happy is a fundamental principle for all businesses. Your choice of handling equipment will be key to reducing long-term health and safety risks whilst ensuring productivity.

Mechanical handling can help you minimise the risks associated with laborious tasks, and vacuum tube lifters are an effective option. However, it is vital for your workers to be trained to handle this equipment correctly and to ensure it is maintained regularly, to minimise the risk of breakdowns and accidents. 

3. Space Requirements

Materials handling equipment should fit seamlessly into your workspace and workflow. If you are planning a new factory layout, think about what your handling requirements will be. You could explore mobile and stationary solutions, but you will need to evaluate the space available to understand how best to use it.

Vacuum tube lifters are suspended from overhead lifting devices, such as a jib cranes or overhead rail systems. These have their own space, height, and width restrictions to accommodate reach and manoeuvrability. You will need to define your minimum and maximum lifting height to decide which solution is right for your application. If you need to lift over 180cm, a vacuum tube lifter is unlikely to be the best choice for your handling needs, so exploring other options will be necessary.

4. The Lifting Application

How must your product be manipulated? Vacuum tube lifters grip, support, lift and lower the load with single operator control. However, if your load needs to be rotated for further manipulation, an industrial manipulator may be more suitable.

Vacuum tube lifters are quick, smooth, and ergonomic. They are ideal for repetitive handling tasks because they provide short cycle times, which increases productivity, enabling operators to lift heavy loads effortlessly and safely.

Pick and place applications, such as placing a product into its cardboard packaging or moving materials from a pallet to a conveyor, are common scenarios where a vacuum tube lifter is an ideal choice. 

Choosing Your Handling Equipment

Detailed planning is essential and will help you make a well-informed decision. You can make a targeted investment tailored to your business, which will enable you to measure productivity, cost, and safety.

Vacuum tube lifters are ideal for pick and place application as they can easily raise and lower the load. This motion feels effortless or is described as a ‘weightless’ experience for the operator and provides a cost effective and efficient materials handling solution.

If you are considering a vacuum tube lifter, or need advice to help you decide, contact Handling Concepts today. You can rely on over 25 years’ experience of providing materials handling equipment for businesses in a range of industries to help you accurately pinpoint the most efficient, safe, and cost-effective solution for your lifting needs.

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