Texas, USA-based Big B Crane and sister company Basden Steel Corporation teamed up with Deem Structural Services of Longview for a 290,000 square foot (26,942 square metre), 2,100 ton (1,905 tonne) building expansion project for a leading global aerospace company.
The contract included a tight schedule for steel and building slab erection of the two storey structure. Big B Crane provided the lifting services for the eight-week pick plan. “We had to complete 1,300 picks within a very short time period,” explained Daniel Basden, Big B Crane president, “and 120 picks included objects weighing 11,000 pounds (5 tonnes) or greater.”
Ben McGregor, vice president at Basden Steel’s Oklahoma division, added, “We set a lofty goal of lifting 50 pieces a day to make the schedule.”
In the original plan for this project, two 150 ton (136 tonne) capacity class cranes were going to be used to lift the smaller pieces. When it came time to lift and position the heavy structural pieces, of which the heaviest weighed 12,500 pounds (5.7 tonne), then both cranes would be used in a tandem lift. This plan would have been a challenge for Big B Crane to stay on schedule so another solution had to be found.
The solution was a Terex HC 285 lattice boom crawler crane with a 285 US ton (272 tonne) capacity. It has a maximum system length of 376 feet (114.6 metres) and a maximum 103.5 ton (94 tonne) upper and 28 ton (25.4 tonne) car body counterweight package that offers 285 ton (258.5 tonne) lift capacity at a 4.9 m radius. While the crane’s lift chart rivals that of 300 ton (272 tonne) cranes, its compact carrier can be transported in a single load, Terex said.
McGregor explained that there weren’t any significant challenges when it came to the individual lifts. The major hurdle was sticking to the extremely short lifting schedule, so the frame construction phase could be finished on time. “We planned to lift 50 pieces a day, and we started lifting three days behind schedule,” he said. “Three weeks into the lifting phase, we were 164 pieces, or three days, ahead of schedule by using the HC 285 crane. We finished hanging our last piece of steel about one week ahead of schedule.”
In about seven weeks, the trio of Big B Crane, Basden Steel and Deem Structural lifted and placed 2,100 tons (1,900 tonnes) of steel. “The crane gave us the combination of excellent reach and capacity, exactly what was needed for this project,” said Basden.