a wheeled, intermittent-operation loader powered by a storage battery. General-purpose electric loaders are designed for use inside buildings and railroad cars and in open areas with a hard, level surface.
The basic load-handling component of an electric loader is the forklift. A forklift consists of a vertical frame, or mast, within which a slide to which forks are attached moves on a chain controlled with a hydraulic cylinder. The frame is hinged to the chassis of the loader and, by means of another hydraulic cylinder, may be tilted 3°–5° forward for picking up or setting down a load and 8°–15° backward for transporting it. In addition to forks, a loader may be equipped with a rod attachment for handling loads of toroidal shape (for example, automobile tires, coiled cables, and reeled wire) or with clamps that have flat or semicircular jaws for gripping barrels, rolls, and boxes. An electric loader may be equipped with a pushing device that facilitates stacking operations or it may have a lifting platform from which a person can service or repair objects in high places.
The chassis of an electric loader is designed to rest on three or four pneumatic or solid-rubber tires. All the electrical equipment, including the loader’s traction motor and the motor that drives the loader’s pumps, operates on direct current, with voltage ranging from 24 to 50 volts. Electric forklift loaders have a lifting capacity of 0.5–5 tons and a maximum elevation of forks of 4.5 m. Maximum lifting speed is 12 m/min, and maximum vehicular speed for a loaded vehicle is 12 km/hr. The lifting capacity of special-purpose electric loaders may exceed 40 tons.
Various types of special-purpose electric loaders are widely used. In addition to electric stackers, they include electric loaders with a detachable, side-mounted lifting platform for carrying long objects.
E. M. STARIKOV