When you buy leaf chain you will probably find that it arrives in a box. When you receive it, you’ll have to sort it out and add other components to it before using it in the production line. You may have to cut it to length and store the rest. It can be quite a complex, time-consuming process locating all the components from different deliveries, and then assembling them ready for production.
When designing lifting or handling equipment such as forklifts and telehandlers, most design engineers would look to comply with the specific standard for the machine they are designing.
For any machine sold in Europe, that’s the Machinery Directive – Directive 2006/42/EC – a standard that is intended to ensure common levels of safety in machinery used throughout Europe.
Leaf chain is a type of chain found most commonly on telehandlers and forklift trucks. In both applications it plays a crucial role. Failure of a leaf chain component can result in catastrophic consequences – leading to a loss of production with associated financial implications or even worse, serious injuries to an operator.
Whatever the role of a leaf chain, it will inevitably wear, and this wear, if unchecked, will lead to failure. It is vital to take steps to prevent as much wear as possible and essential to monitor leaf chain wear so problems can be addressed before a major incident occurs. You should be aware that as well as measuring leaf chain wear to avoid any potential financial loss, it is also a legal requirement.
Although they may seem simple components, leaf chain assemblies play a crucial part in any machinery they are part of. The failure of an anchor bolt in equipment such as forklifts and telehandlers could mean expensive loss of production and potential injuries to personnel.
This means that any component used in a leaf chain assembly, must be produced to a high standard, with consistency and quality being paramount. They also need to be fit for purpose – elements such as chain anchor bolts need to be designed to suit the task they will be used for and the machine they will be used in.
The Machinery Directive, Directive 2006/42/EC, is a European Union directive that is intended to ensure a certain level of safety in machinery and machine parts that are sold in the European Union. The directive, therefore, covers forklift trucks and other similar lifting equipment.
As leaf chain specialists we are often asked to consider how these standards and guidelines apply to leaf chains used in these types of machinery.
We’re excited to announce that FB Chain has been shortlisted in the Wellbeing Initiative category at The Logistics Awards 2019.
The Logistics Awards, organised by SHD Logistics, is an annual celebration to recognise the most impressive achievements in the logistics and supply chain sectors over the last 12 months. This year’s awards will take place on 26 September 2019 at The Vox, Resorts World, Birmingham, where winners will be announced.
A telescopic handler (telehandler) is a widely used and hugely versatile piece of equipment on a job-site.
But just like any other piece of substantial construction equipment, how well a telehandler can do its job is dependent upon the quality of its component parts.
In this blog post we describe six key industrial chain product solutions that each play a role in ensuring the safe operation, consistent performance and long service life of a telehandler boom.
Some applications like drilling rigs, piling rigs and port equipment experience very high temporary loads. These high loads are generated by the harsh environment, dirt and debris. When drilling and piling, an additional factor is the inconsistency of the ground structure that’s being worked through.
When choosing a leaf chain, you should consider a number of other factors in addition to the chain’s strength, as these factors will affect the chain’s durability.
The tensile strength of a leaf chain derives from the number of link plates which are used in the lacing, the more plates there are, the greater the tensile strength.
For example, moving from BL634 to BL644, which is just one extra link plate, will increase the tensile strength from 75.6 kN to 97.9 kN (figures from ISO 4347) a 25% increase.
The harshness of the operating environment in ports or harbours, together with the requirement for long operational shifts, can place huge demands on leaf chain.
And for empty container handlers, which are often required to stack up to eight containers high (or heights of more than 20 metres), the extreme working conditions are some of the most challenging of all.