Chain hoists are simple devices that give you a massive mechanical advantage. By leveraging small force over a long distance and transforming it to large force over a short distance, chain hoists are able to accomplish heavy lifts and pulls that would otherwise be impossible for a person to accomplish alone.
Chain hoists can be either electric or manual, and there are advantages and disadvantages to both. In this post, we will focus on manual chain hoists.
Manual Chain Hoist Advantages
While manual chain hoists won’t lift quite as fast and effortlessly as electric hoists, there are many advantages to owning a manual chain hoist.
1. Manual chain hoists don’t require any electricity or power source. This makes them much more portable compared to electric hoists.
2. Manual hoists are more cost-efficient compared to electric or hydraulic hoists. Not only do electric hoists cost more initially, but they also raise electricity bills.
3. The simple design of manual hoists makes them easier to repair and maintain. No complex motors, wires, or electrical/hydraulic systems.
Although electric chain hoists are able to lift heavier loads, manual hoists can still have working load limits (WLL) up to 20 tons. As long as what your lifting is below that, there’s no reason not to opt for a manual hoist.
There are two main styles of manual chain hoists to choose from: hand hoists and lever hoists.
Hand Chain Hoists
Hand hoists have a simplistic design and are easy to operate and maintain.
Hand hoists require the use of both your hands to operate. As you pull one chain, a wheel turns a series of cogs, axles, gears, and sprockets and in turn rotates the second load chain to lift or pull your load. The lifting mechanism is designed to do most of the work for you. To ensure your safety and the safety of the load, many chain hoists have a braking system that prevents the load from slipping back. Unlike lever hoists, hand hoists are ideal for high vertical loads. You can continue to operate the pulling chain from the ground even when the hoist is positioned up high.
US Cargo Control sells both Columbus McKinnon hand hoists and Coffing hand hoists.
Columbus McKinnon Manual Hand Hoist Models
- CM 622 Hoist – a construction-grade hand hoist with low headroom and easy installation. 1/2 ton to 5 ton WLL.
- CM Hurricane 360 Hoist – this hand hoist has a chain cover that rotates 360° so loads can be lifted, pulled, and positioned from nearly any angle. WLL ranges from 1/2 ton to 10 tons.
- CM Cyclone Hoist – a high-quality, rigorously tested hand hoist that is 100% American made. Choose from 1/4 ton to 10 ton WLL.
Coffing Manual Hand Hoists Models
- Coffing LHH Hoist – the compact design of this hand hoist makes it portable and easy to inspect and maintain. It also has low headroom and a WLL range of 1/2 ton to 20 tons.
Lever Chain Hoists
Lever hoists are also quite easy to operate and maintain. To operate them, you simply crank a side lever that is attached directly to the lifting mechanism. Unlike hand hoists, lever hoists can be operated using just one hand. This makes them ideal for horizontal, angled, and low vertical loads. Because the lever handle is located up next to the lifting mechanism, you must be close to the point of hook-up to operate.
US Cargo Control sells quality Columbus McKinnon (CM) lever hoists and Coffing lever hoists.
CM Lever Chain Hoists
- CM 653 Hoist – this is a construction-grade lever hoist with a very short handle. Ideal for working in small spaces. WLL range from 3/4 ton up to 6 tons.
- CM Bandit Hoist– this durable hoist is assembled in the USA with American made hooks and chain. Extremely portable and versatile with a 360° rotating handle. 3/4 ton to 6 ton WLL.
- CM Tornado 360 Hoist – has a unique sidewinder lever handle that improves both lifting and pulling efficiency. Ergonomic design increases safety. Choose among 3/4 ton WLL to 6 tons, with load limiters as an option.
- CM Mini Series 602 Hoist – this is the most compact lever chain hoist available. Extremely portable as it weighs only 6 to 7 pounds. Quick to load with a 1/4 ton working load limit.
- CM Mini Series 603 Hoist – another extremely compact and portable chain hoist that features quick load attachment. Not quite as light but has a 1/2 ton working load limit.
Coffing Chain Hoists
- Coffing LSB Hoist – this lever hoist features a through-hardened load chain and lifetime lubricated gears. 360° rotating handle for versatile rigging options. WLL ranges from 3/4 ton up to 6 tons.
Chain Hoist Video
Lacy has more information on the chain hoists we sell in the video below.