What Types of Construction Cranes Are There?

Blog, Cranes


Not all cranes are the same. Several different types of cranes are used in construction. Before we get into these seven different types of construction cranes, it’s important to know the difference between static cranes and mobile cranes.

Static cranes are either permanent or semi-permanent structures that are fixed to the ground or a building. They lift and move things along a fixed path. On the other hand, mobile cranes are essentially the opposite. They are mounted on wheels or treads, allowing them to easily be moved both in any direction and to any job site.

What types of construction cranes are there?

Static Cranes

Overhead cranes

Overhead cranes are sometimes referred to as bridge cranes due to their shape. They are mostly found in industrial areas. There are two types of overhead cranes—gantry and jib cranes. Gantry cranes are typically built on a track and are mostly used in lifting cargo off ships. Job cranes are permanent installations over a workstation and are mostly used for repetitive tasks.

Tower cranes

These are most commonly used in the construction of tall buildings, as they offer the best lifting capabilities. They’re built along with the building and grow as the building grows. Once the building is complete, the reverse happens, and the crane is removed. There are three different types of tower cranes: hammerhead cranes, luffing tower cranes, and self-erecting tower cranes.

Mobile Cranes

Carry deck cranes

They are small and consist of four wheels that can rotate 360 degrees. Carry deck cranes are much more portable than other types of cranes, and they can navigate through confined spaces much better.

Crawler cranes

Crawler cranes don’t have wheels. Instead, they have undercarriage-fitted tracks, which is why this crane works well on soft ground. These cranes do involve a special setup, have to be transported from job site to job site, and are very bulky, which is why they’re best used for long-term projects.

Rough-terrain cranes

The name says it all—these cranes are for job sites that are on rough terrain or off-road. Rough terrain cranes have four large rubber tires that have four-wheel drive.

All-terrain cranes

These cranes can travel both on the regular road and on most off-road terrains. They also can lift much more than rough terrain cranes can, but they don’t navigate as well in rough or confined areas.

Truck cranes

As the name implies, these cranes are attached to a truck. This makes it easy to travel on the road, just like a regular truck would. There are different versions of truck cranes, and a lot of them are used for the maintenance, inspection, and building of bridges.

If you’re interested in getting your crane operator certificate now that you know what types of construction cranes there are, give us a call today. At West Coast Training, we offer various training seminars and certifications.