Lift trucks are mobile machines which utilize 2 prongs or forks to be able to place cargo into positions that would typically be difficult to reach. Normally, lift trucks fall into 2 main categories: industrial and rough-terrain.
Industrial lift trucks are most commonly utilized around train and truck loading docks in addition to lots of warehouse applications. These machinery have smaller tires that are designed to run on smooth surfaces. Typically, industrial lift trucks are powered by an internal gasoline engine running on diesel fuel or propane.
Smaller forklifts may run off an internal battery charging an electric motor. And as the name implies, the rough terrain forklift is engineered to be operated on unpaved and rough surfaces. Commonly, they are the ideal alternative for military and construction applications. Rough terrain forklifts generally have large pneumatic tires which are generally powered by internal industrial engines that run on propane, diesel or propane fuel. These lift truck units can have a telescoping boom, capable of carrying cargo up and out from the base of the equipment or they can use a vertical tower, which is responsible for lifting loads straight up.
The rough terrain forklift emerged in 1946, after a 2 pronged lift attachment was attached to a tractor chassis or a power buggy. This first machine was utilized around construction sites and was able to raise to a height of 76 centimeters or 30 inches and had a lifting capacity could lift 454 kg or 1000 pounds. Vertical tower forklifts were quickly developed for industrial application and rough terrain forklifts became popular too. By the time the 1950s came around, there were available units which could lift up to heights of 30 feet or 9 meters and had lift capacities of 2500 pounds or 1135 kg.
The original 4-wheel drive rough terrain forklift was introduced during 1958. It offered a capacity of 6000 lbs. or 2724 kg and had a lift height of 22.5 feet or 7 meters or 3000 lbs. or 1362 kg and 35 feet or 11 meters. The very first telescoping boom rough terrain forklift emerged on the market during 1962. This unit enabled cargo to be placed out from the equipment's base both below and above grade.