There are many types of hand truck or trolley available to the industrial sector today and many of them have names that we have all heard of before: flatbed truck, rough terrain truck, platform truck, hand trailer, warehouse truck etc. Sometimes they seem to be referred to as trucks and sometimes as trolleys. What`s the difference? To be honest I`m not quite sure anybody really knows! Certainly Wikipedia seems to struggle with that.
Well as far as we are concerned the humble turntable truck has been around for just about forever!
It is called a turntable truck because it has one, a turntable that is. The size and complexity of the turntable varies tremendously, but principally they all do the same job in turning the wheels of the truck through anything up to about 170 degrees, depending on the design of the trucks framework.
The turntable is mounted under the platform of the truck between the two front wheels. The wheels are attached to the turntable by an axle and the whole `turning` motion enables the two wheels to turn in unison to facilitate the change of direction of travel of the truck. The `turning` motion can be activated manually by a person pulling the turntable around by a pull/draw handle or it can initiated by the force exerted by a pull truck (fork truck or tug).
The back wheels of the truck are usually fixed in position and their direction of travel will just follow the direction of the front wheels. Although sometimes a link bar can be fitted between a double set of turntables to make all 4 wheels able to turn.
Turntable trucks are normally fitted with a flat platform. This can vary in size, capacity and material. Capacities normally run between 500kg – 2000kg with anything above this becoming difficult to manually move.
There are several advantages of using turntable trucks:
1) They are easy to use.
2) They help you to comply with safety at work manual handling regulations.
3) They are easy to manoeuvre and turn.
4) They are relatively cheap.
5) They are easy to load and unload.
6) They can be fitted with wheel types to suit your floor surface.
7) They can be hitched together to form a `train` of trucks.
8) They can be hitched up to a powered vehicle.
9) They are strong, robust and suited for industrial environments.
10) They require little or no maintenance.
11) They can be fitted with box body frames to carry goods that might otherwise fall off in transit.
12) They can be fitted with high quality ball bearing turntables that make movement easier.
13) No training is required in order to use them (unless powered vehicles are being employed).
In short, the turntable truck is and always has been one of the workhorses of the warehouse or factory today and should always be considered as a worthwhile tool to have at your disposal.
Should require any help or advice on choosing the best suited turntable truck for your application please do not hesitate to get in touch with us.