A Eurobloc VM3 Essential electric wire-rope hoist and crane kit from Verlinde is providing a boost to operations at an injection-moulding shop in the UK.
Offering 10-tonne capacity and 9m height of lift, the hoist
is helping Cannock-headquartered Goodfish Ltd to lift mould tools into the company’s various injection
moulding machines with an efficiency that serves to maximise production uptime. The hoist is part of a crane
system with a span beam measuring 19m and an installed height of 4.3m. It was designed, manufactured and installed by Verlinde’s UK distributor, Pelloby.
“The crane is a major asset introduction for Goodfish, probably the biggest we have undertaken to date,”
states Senior Technical Manager Kevin Turner. “The original method of changing tools involved lifting split
tools into our injection moulding machines using a 3-tonne A-frame gantry, but this was a very slow and
A choice of two traversing speed (20 and 5m/min) and two hoisting speeds (5 and 0.83m/min) on the
Eurobloc VM3 Essential installed at Goodfish helps the company to optimise its production process. Indeed,
the new crane and hoist will allow for optimum tool change times with the assistance of methodologies such
as SMED (single minute exchange of dies).
“Production up-time will increase as a matter of course, but better still – the increased 10-tonne lifting
capacity offered by the Verlinde hoist will open the door to new business opportunities and potential new
customers,” says Mr Turner.
A further benefit of the new hoist relates to safety. Mr Turner says that the company’s previous method of
lifting with a 3-tonne A-frame was “not without its safety risks”. However, by investing in the new crane
system with Verlinde hoist, these issues are a thing of the past. For instance, not only does the Eurobloc
VM3 Essential hoist utilize an LED floodlight for added visibility, it features an electro-mecanical load limiter
as standard, a hoisting limit switch, high safety factor galvanized wire rope, IP54 protection for the electrical
cabinet, low-voltage control and a rotating hook with safety latch.
Maintenance requirements are also much reduced thanks to a number of special features on the Verlinde
Eurobloc VM3 Essential. For instance, not only are the lifting gearbox and traversing gearbox lubricated for
life, but the lifting brake is designed to function for the lifetime of the unit in normal operation. Furthermore,
the rope guide is built in a way that it can be easily replaced during routine maintenance, while a very high
wire rope/drum diameter ratio increases the longevity of the wire rope.
The entire system, which is operated via a handheld radio-controlled remote, was not without its installation
challenges. For instance, to maximise the lift height, the crane was based on a ‘stooled-up’ design, which
means its legs are higher than those of most cranes. Although this height could have been achieved with
taller free-standing columns, because 18 of them were required to support the weight of the crane (plus a
potential lift capacity of up to 10 tonnes), this would have meant using considerably more steel and ultimately
been less cost effective. Instead, shorter columns with reinforced, wider baseplates were deployed, which
also helped reduce the crane’s over-turning point.
“I was very happy with Pelloby in all areas of the project,” says Mr Turner. “The installation went as
smoothly as possible, with RAMS [risk assessments and method statements] being received early, which
allowed us to assess potential hazards in advance and audit the entire installation. The teams at Goodfish
and Pelloby worked efficiently together over a two-week period covering both preparation and installation,
resulting in very little disruption to production requirements.”