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Lift Chains

The life of the lift truck lift chains can be lengthened with correct maintenance and care. Lubricating properly is actually an excellent technique to extend the capability of this lift truck component. It is vital to apply oil periodically with a brush or other lube application tool. The volume and frequency of oil application should be enough to be able to prevent any rust discoloration of oil in the joints. This reddish brown discoloration generally signals that the lift chains have not been correctly lubricated. If this particular condition has happened, it is very important to lubricate the lift chains right away.

It is typical for a few metal to metal contact to occur throughout lift chain operation. This could lead to parts to wear out sooner or later. The industry standard considers a lift chain to be worn out if 3% elongation has occurred. In order to prevent the scary likelihood of a catastrophic lift chain failure from occurring, the maker very much suggests that the lift chain be replaced before it reaches three percent elongation. The lift chain lengthens due to progressive joint wear which elongates the chain pitch. This elongation is capable of being measured by placing a certain number of pitches under tension.

To ensure proper lift chain maintenance, another factor to consider is to check the clevis pins on the lift chain for indications of wearing. Lift chains are assembled so that the clevis pins have their tapered faces lined up with each other. Usually, rotation of the clevis pins is commonly caused by shock loading. Shock loading takes place if the chain is loose and then all of a sudden a load is applied. This causes the chain to go through a shock as it 'snaps' under the load tension. With no correct lubrication, in this case, the pins could rotate in the chain's link. If this particular scenario takes place, the lift chains must be replaced at once. It is imperative to always replace the lift chains in pairs to be able to ensure even wear.

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