01527 894 825 info@agcranes.com

Which crane is suitable for a factory?

Customers often ask us what is the most suitable crane for a factory, workshop or indoor use? The best option with the most coverage, is an overhead gantry crane. This is because they can lift heavy loads up, as well as move and lower them back down in all 3 axis (X,Y, Z axis) throughout the entire workspace.  *See “the crane envelope” described below.

An overhead gantry crane is like the Queen in chess, able to move across, up and down and diagonally over the whole area. See photo below.

Overhead Crane Examples

Overhead Crane Examples

Crane Envelope: “What is the crane envelope, or hook coverage?”

There is something referred to in the crane trade as the “crane envelope” or “hook coverage” which is the actual area the crane can operate in without side pulling, or performing dangerous lifting and lowering practices.

If an industrial crane in a warehouse covers an area of say 10 meters wide (span) by 18 meters down shop the hook typically will cover 9 x 17 meters. This can vary with the length of end carriages chosen and hoist type. Chain hoists being narrower than wire rope hoists.

another recent example of a clients factory workspace was 20 metres by 12 metres. The actual area the crane could work in was 19 metres by 11.4 for example.

Here you can see some images taken from the detailed drawings we submit to the customer prior to installation.

Crane Envelope

Crane envelope (Hook Coverage) is the shaded area.

Crane Hook Coverage.

The 2 diagrams above illustrate that although you can safely lift and move heavy items throughout virtually all of your factory/yard/warehouse/loading bay etc, the very outer edges are not reachable.



Jib Cranes.

Also very popular are “Swing Jib” cranes however they are fixed in one position, typically in a loading area. Similar to a lamppost with an arm that swings through an arc of generally 240 – 290 degrees. They can only lift and move things within that arc so are a little limited. See photo below.

Jib cranes are are also known as pillar jib cranes, swing jibs, floor mounted jibs, swinging arm cranes or even boom cranes. Very occasionally client request a power slewing arm, or 360 degrees slew but the cost of these can be prohibitive.

For more information on jib cranes for sale, see here.

Jib Crane Examples

Jib Crane Examples

Wheeled A Frame Gantries or Monorail cranes.

A frames gantry cranes are used inside factories but cannot be moved under load, and are limited to one axis, as are monorail or goalpost cranes.

Wheeled A frame cranes

Wheeled A frame cranes


Monorail Crane

Monorail Crane



People Also Ask; How do I choose a crane for my factory?

Choosing a crane is an important decision and here at AG Cranes we have many years of real-world experience helping our clients get the best crane to meet their needs.

Even second-hand cranes can be a major expense for your business, so it is important that you choose something that is ideally suited for the work you need it to do.


You need to be sure that you operate a safe working environment, with only trained staff operating the crane.

Maximum Load

What is the maximum working weight you’ll need it to lift? Safety is the always the first concern when it comes to this.

However, there is no point going way over the top buying a crane capable of lifting 30 tonnes if it is never going to lift more than 3 for instance.

What will the crane be lifting?

There are many things to consider based on this. Is the load liquid filled barrels or solid items?

Lift Height

The height of the potential lift is as important as the max weight.

Area covered

After max load, type of load, and height, comes the size of the area of your factory /workshop.


After assessing all the requirements, what’s the cost for such a crane that will meet your needs fully.

AG cranes offers a full range of brand new and second-hand options that can work with most budgets.

We are happy to discuss your lifting requirements, so call us today or visit our large crane stock page.


Recent Installations

Below are some details of the latest gantry crane installations from AG Cranes.

Tong Engineering Ltd

Based in Spilsby, Lincolnshire Tong engineering are one of the UK’s leading suppliers of equipment for the vegetable market. They sell new and used machinery for washing and grading potatoes, carrots, onions and broccoli.

They needed to be able to move the machinery around the warehouse safely, efficiently and quickly.

Below are a couple of images of us undertaking the crane installation process in their new factory unit and a short video.

Crane Installation

Overhead gantry crane being lifted into place.


New Factory Crane being fitted

Construction of the factory unit coming along, and crane installation nearing completion.


Tidyco Ltd

Based in Derby Tidyco Ltd founded in 1973, are Hydraulic & pneumatic suppliers for the rail industry.

Crane for a warehouse

Tidyco Ltd Based in Derby


Activ Design Ltd

Based in North Yorkshire, Activ specialise in the making and fitting marble, granite and quartz items into kitchens and bathrooms etc. Everything is done in-house by their own staff from surveying to fitting. As you know granite is extremely heavy and when you move the sort of quantities around that Activ Design do, then you can understand why they needed our help.

Activ Design Ltd

Activ Design Ltd


Factory Crane, Summary

So if you’re looking for the best type of crane to use in a factory or warehouse, we would suggest that an overhead gantry crane is the most versatile, productive and value for money. However we are happy to talk to you, without obligation, about your specific lifting requirements and we can work with you to come up with the best possible solution within your budget. View our large crane stock.

Please call us today on 01527 894825, our advice is free of charge. All areas of the United Kingdom and Ireland covered.