“It’s supposed to be hard. If it were easy, everyone would do it.”
When Tom Hanks stated that phrase while playing manager Jimmy Dugan in the movie A League of Their Own, he was talking about baseball. However, his words very easily translate to any industry, particularly the lifting and rigging business.
Installing new high-performance ropes on cranes is an intricate process, and a sizeable investment made by your company. When an installation is done by a trained professional, you may think you’re paying too much for something that can be done in-house. However, in the long run, you may be saving your company more money than you think. Plus, you don’t have to worry about damage being done to the ropes when they’re replaced and installed by an experienced professional.
In this article, we will answer the following questions for you:
- Why should you consider a third-party for crane ropes installations?
- What should you consider before conducting in-house installations?
- How do in-house installers discard old crane ropes?
- What can you expect from a crane ropes installation?
Why Is It a Good Idea to Consider a Third-Party Crane Ropes Installation?
Knowledge is what separates the professionals from in-house installers.
Simply put, crane ropes technicians are trained to do this work, all day, every day. They do crane rope installs every day, and they work on all different makes and models of cranes. They’re used to the whole process, and these technicians and their equipment can save you a substantial amount of time and money in the long run.
What Should You Consider Before Conducting In-House Installations?
When Mazzella first started in the crane ropes installation business and offered spooling as a service, our installers heard, “Well, we’ve installed our own ropes for the last 20 years. It’s fine.”
We offer some initial incentive programs to get the customer to see our equipment and see how our installers work. After allowing a professional installer to put new ropes on cranes, our technicians have found that very few people actually decide to install the rope themselves again.
Part of that decision is because installing your own crane ropes is a hassle. It’s a long length of rope, and it requires several people to handle it. You would need mechanics, operators, and others on hand to help with the installation. If you don’t have a spooling truck, you’re likely to need a forklift to get tension off of a piece of pipe and reel.
Also, you would be paying your workers throughout the duration of the installation, which could involve overtime pay depending on the length of the rope and any issues that come up during the process. What you’re paying those several people in the field versus what you’re paying an hourly rate for a professional technician to come out and do the installation could be a significant difference. Trained technicians may be able to complete a crane rope install in two or three hours, while an inexperienced in-house team might need six or seven to do the same work.
How Do In-House Installers Discard Old Crane Ropes?
One of the biggest challenges we’ve seen and heard from customers is in-house crane ropes installers do not have an easy way to dispose of the old rope once it has been removed and replaced.
While scrap companies will take scrap metal, crane ropes are in long lengths. It’s very hard to find a scrap company that will take long lengths of rope because it has a tendency to adversely affect their equipment when they start to break it up. If that proves to be the case, they will have to cut up the crane ropes into small pieces.
If a company does conduct its own crane ropes installations, the discard options for the old ropes include:
- Getting little-to-no money for the rope
- Having it sit in the yard for a long period of time
- Taking time and money to cut it up into smaller pieces and try to sell it to a scrap company
Many customers have said that it’s not worth their time to worry about what to do with the old crane ropes.
Cost and Time Saver
Hiring a third-party installation company eliminates that problem, as they will take the old ropes with them after the install is done. Having that option for a third-party installer to take the rope back and dispose of it properly is an added value for crane companies.
The whole process, from start to finish, makes the install easier for the end-user. With Mazzella, we’re taking a rope from our warehouse, putting it on our truck, and driving out to your location. We have special trucks and trailers that are a little bit different than the normal spooling truck and trailer. We’ve got two A-frames on it, so we’re coming out with an empty reel and the new reel, all on one truck.
There’s no loading and unloading reels. When we arrive at the location of your crane, we:
- Pull the rope off onto an empty reel
- Install a new rope off of the same truck
This allows the customer to get back to work as quickly as possible. From start to finish, it’s a time- and cost-saving experience for the end-user.
What If a Third-Party Inspection Is Too Expensive?
If you calculated the hours that your employees spend on an install, and the money that you’re spending for several people to be out on location for the replacement, the cost for an in-house team to change out the rope would be significant.
If you compare that to what our hourly rate is, it’s usually not a significant difference. Also, if you factor into consideration that if we’re hauling the rope to, and then, from your location, you’re not having to pay freight rates or expedited rates to get the rope out.
The whole program usually ends up saving the customer money as opposed to costing them more than it would be to do it themselves.
Where Can Mazzella Conduct Crane Ropes Installations?
Mazzella has done installations all over the United States. We’ve been covering the central part of the United States for nearly five years, all the way from the Canada border to the Mexico border.
Also, we just designed and had built a brand-new spooling truck and trailer that is based out of Cleveland, OH. This new spooling truck will significantly grow our capabilities for crane ropes installations across the eastern half of the United States.
What Can the Customer Expect from a Mazzella Installation?
The moment our technician(s) arrive on location, they’re going to set up the equipment. Then, they’re going to conduct and discuss the Job Safety Analysis (JSA) with everyone involved in the installation.
Our technicians will dictate how the installation is going to occur, and explain whether we need access to the equipment all day, as well as a rough timeframe for completion of the process. You do need to have a crane operator on site to help with the installation. Also, if the crane requires a mechanic to reset some of the codes and the three-wrap indicators, then they need to be on location, too.
How Can Mazzella Help with Your Crane Ropes Needs?
We hope this article helped you understand more about Mazzella’s process for installing crane ropes, and how it can help minimize your downtime while increasing your productivity.
Mazzella has one of the largest crane ropes inventories in the United States…ready for immediate delivery! We provide wire rope assemblies, and manufacture bridge cables, crane cables, steel mill cables, and thousands of OEM assemblies:
- In sizes from ¼” to 3” diameter and 9mm to 52mm diameter
- Domestic and Non-Domestic
- In stock and ready for same or next-day shipment from one of our many service centers
With our experience and access to all brands of wire rope, Mazzella guarantees we’ll get you the correct rope for your cranes.
In addition to crane ropes installations, Mazzella has the capabilities to do button and OEM socket installations. We have technicians around the country who have been trained to do:
Call us at 800.362.4601 or click here if you need wire rope products or assemblies.
One Brand of Rope Will Not Work on Every Machine!
Mazzella stocks a large inventory of high performance wire ropes available for immediate delivery.
We stock our various high performance ropes at our many locations in sizes from 1/4” to 3” diameter and 9 mm to 52 mm diameter.
We stock both domestic and non-domestic products ready for same or next day shipment from one of our many service centers.
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