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Understanding Hydraulic Lifting & Rigging Services

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Across a number of industries, there is a need for a specialised solution when moving particularly heavy, bulky or delicate equipment that ensures that assets can be positioned and transported safely to their destinations.

As you would expect, each type of asset, particularly those that are excessive in weight and size, presents their own unique challenges and considerations wherever they need to be lifted.

This needs to be done safely, effectively, in an efficient manner and at a viable cost, which can make finding a solution that checks all these boxes a little difficult to source, for some.

Fortunately, there is a solution that has, over many years, been designed and perfected to meet the abovementioned needs amicably. That solution is hydraulic lifting and rigging.

These services are typically offered to the commercial and industrial sectors where specialised assets and equipment can be found in abundance.

So, if you are in the market for these services, and would like to know more about what to expect from them, we have a metric ton of information for you that you might find helpful in this regard.

We will begin this discussion by explaining what exactly hydraulic lifting and rigging services are; what riggers, as professional personnel, are expected to do; which industries rely the most on these services; the types of items best left to riggers when they need lifting; and the benefits of hiring an experienced rigger for the job.

So, let’s get started with a brief explanation of exactly what these services entail:

What is Hydraulic Lifting & Rigging?

Rigging and lifting is a necessary task for transporting abnormal-sized loads.

This may be for long or short distance transports and makes use of hydraulically powered heavy-duty machinery such as crane trucks to lift exceptional loads, that can sometimes be in excess of 80 tons.

Considering the weight that these rigs are built to handle, it stands to reason that they are typically used to lift specialised, industrial machinery such as printing presses and generators.

These services are also targeted to the transportation of delicate equipment such as central data servers which are not only cumbersome to handle through other means but are also fragile by their very nature, and so need a specialised approach when being moved.

It is important to remember that rigging isn’t something that the layman can simply pick up and do, getting it right requires a keen understanding of how to operate hydraulic lifts and rigs safely and effectively, which is generally the result of years of experience and training.

Because of this, these services are generally highly specialised, and best approached by outsourcing tasks to experienced professional rigging crews.

This brings us to our next point of conversation. What are riggers (in terms of the profession), and what are their responsibilities in their areas of expertise?

Let’s take a closer look at the responsibilities of certified riggers:

What do Riggers Do?

A rigger is responsible for a great deal when it comes to the process.

Through years of training and experience, these specialised professionals are in charge of setting up rigging equipment effectively and safely; ensuring that loads are properly secured and safe for transport.

To this end, they are responsible for manipulating rigging lines, hoists and other gear to ensure that materials are moved properly.

They are also responsible for properly cleaning and maintaining rigging equipment and components to ensure that they can be used consistently and reliably to move specialised loads.

Of course, this is a fairly simplified account of what they do, and the importance of their responsibilities with regards to the success of each job and on-site safety when transporting assets and materials.

Since the industries that rely on these services are often characterised by tight deadlines, a need for quick turnaround times and excessively costly assets, there is a lot of pressure on rigging companies to operate flawlessly.

Let’s take a closer look at who these industries are, and why they are fairly reliant on reliable hydraulic lifting and rigging services:

Industries that Rely on Hydraulic Lifting & Rigging Services

While rigging services have their place wherever heavy-duty assets and materials need to be transported, there are certain industries which are all but reliant on these services.

These industries include the petrochemical, construction, telecommunications and mining sectors:

The Petrochemical Industry

Petrochemical plants make use of excessively large and delicate machines that need to be transported with exceptional care.

This might be due to their size and weight or could be due to their delicate nature; but in all instances, the cost of investment for petrochemical machines means that there is no room for error when transporting them.

These machines may include but are not limited to benchtop centrifuges, catalytic combustion analysers, gas absorbers, chromatographic scanners and dewatering equipment.

The Construction Industry

The construction industry also makes use of exceptionally heavy assets and materials that may need hydraulic lifting and rigging services to be moved or transported safely and effectively.

These machines and materials also come at quite an investment, and mistakes or damages will ultimately result in a lengthening of the time a project takes to be completed, while also pushing up the overall cost of the project.

For these reasons, rigging and lifting services need to be conducted on-site, very carefully.

The equipment used in construction is often highly specialised and also forms a diverse collection of potential assets, including excavators, dragline excavators, graders, trenchers, loaders and more.

Telecommunications & Data Storage

The telecommunications and data storage industries are unique in the equipment they make use of, and while this equipment doesn’t always weigh in the tens of tons, this type of equipment is generally quite sensitive, delicate and easy to break during transport.

This doesn’t, of course, take away from the sheer cost of investing in this equipment, or the losses that can be sustained when they are damaged.

In the case of data storage, damaged equipment can result in substantial losses when essential information or media becomes inaccessible due to damage.

Where telecommunications are concerned, damaged or lost equipment could mean a communication blackout for businesses, or even entire areas, which can have devastating wide-spread implications for anyone, or any business reliant on those services.

Because of the delicate nature of these assets, hydraulic lifting and rigging services are often necessary.

The Mining Sector

The mining sector makes use of excessively large, immobile and heavy machinery of a range of types. On top of this, they can also be delicate, especially during transport.

The mining industry often also faces the challenge of treacherous terrain and confined spaces, which makes moving heavy-duty assets all the more difficult, but these difficulties are generally easily overcome by rigging services.

These assets may include but are by no means limited to, highwall miners, blast hole drills, bulldozers, graders, pumps, excavators, hydraulic shovels, power generators and more.

Items Commonly Moved Using Rigging & Lifting

While it’s relatively easy to point to the industries that make the best use of rigging equipment and services to transport specialised equipment and assets, there are a number of types of items that, having a place in nearly all industries, may still require the use of rigs to be transported.

Some of these devices can be found in everyday life, while others have fairly specialised applications and can only be found in certain industries; all of them present a fairly large challenge with regards to transport.

These items include HVAC units, high capacity power generators, printing presses and even safes:

HVAC Units

HVAC units can be found just about everywhere; in homes, in offices and on high-rise buildings to name a few. They are, by their very nature, particularly cumbersome and heavy, which makes transportation a challenge.

They also contain a lot of moving parts, which makes it difficult to move them safely through conventional means.

This makes HVAC units an object that may need specialised hydraulic lifting and rigging services in order to be moved, regardless of what environment they are situated in.


Let’s for a moment, forget about those small home generators that generally have the benefit of mobility, and concentrate on those that are used to provide power to entire facilities and offices. This is a particular concern for South African businesses that are often at the mercy of our unreliable public power grid.

This type of infrastructure is generally highly delicate, immensely heavy and large, and is also often the backbone of factories and plants, particularly those that produce goods on a round-the-clock basis.

Printing Presses

Printing presses, while still an essential part of the related medium, are not as frequently seen today as they used to be. Unlike their digital counterparts, manual printing presses are made up of an assortment of delicate, mechanical components.

On top of this, their incredibly substantial weight is only outdone by the near ridiculous cost of investing in and maintaining them (if those models can even be found, many types of printing presses are no longer in production, even though they are still widely used).

For these reasons, a specialised solution is needed whenever they need to be transported, and hydraulic lifting and rigging offers the ideal approach.

Safes & Vaults

This one is often unspoken, but safes, particularly those used more as vaults in banks and reserves, may need to be moved, installed, replaced, repaired or maintained from time to time. When this happens, their owners may need to have them transported off-site or may need to have them delivered.

Now, we aren’t talking about those standard fire-proof safes you often see in offices and homes. We are talking about large, walk-in safes, where just the doors of which can weigh anything up to 23 tons.

This is no surprise when you consider their excessive dimensions, the fact that these doors can sometimes be as thick at 3 inches, and are generally made up mostly of extremely heavy, cast iron or steel.

So, it stands to reason that moving these types of vaults, or even their doors, is enviable, if not practically impossible, by any conventional means. They require, not only for their protection but also for sheer ability, to be moved using hydraulic lifting and rigging solutions.

Benefits of Hiring Hydraulic Lifting & Rigging Services

If any of the above points have you wondering whether or not you need to opt for a rigging service, you may be wondering what benefits you can gain from hiring a service provider for hydraulic lifts in South Africa.

Aside from the sheer practicality of doing so, there are a number of other advantages to be gleaned. Let’s take a closer look at them here:

Ensured Safety & Protection

Making use of rigging services goes that little bit further to protect both on-site personnel (who can be injured through manual lifting or accidents), as well as the asset being moved as well.

Effectiveness through Experience

Are you a rigger, lifter or dogman? Probably not if you are reading this article about the services they offer. Becoming one is not exactly easy, and their effectiveness is the result of experience and extensive training. By hiring a service, you can take advantage of these skills.

Covering Items in Transit

Many rigging services go above and beyond to protect themselves and their clients in the event that an accident should occur and result in a loss of assets or materials being transported.

They will likely offer some form of insurance to do this, ensuring that any losses sustained in an unfortunate event during rigging, can be reclaimed.

Contact Machine Moving & engineering for Details

If you would like to know more about our specialised hydraulic lifting and rigging services, be sure to get into contact with a representative from Machine Moving & Engineering today, or visit our website for additional information on our offers.

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