1. How can I find out about a dealer in my country?
To find out about your nearest Cat® lift truck dealer, please visit our global dealer locator and then select your country and language.
2. What do you mean by ‘dealer network’?
Our dealer network, refers to the official importers in each region that are committed to providing Cat products and support.
3. What are the different types of forklift trucks within the industry and their primary uses?
The basic fork lift truck has proved so useful to a range of industries that it has evolved into a wide range of configurations and designs each with specific benefits and abilities. We offer the following trucks:
A counterbalance forklift truck operates a counterbalance weight design with a weight at the rear of the truck, off-setting the load to be lifted at the front. These trucks are used in many storage, warehouse and distribution systems where they carry out loading, stacking and horizontal transport functions. Ideal for use where stock is transported on pallets as the forks extend from the front of the counterbalance trucks, meaning the truck can be driven up to the exact location of the load. This makes their operation straightforward and less challenging.
5. What is a hand pallet truck?
The hand pallet truck is without any doubt the most basic, yet essential, tool in materials handling. Also known as a pallet jack or jigger they are used to lift and move pallets and are simple to operate. The front wheels are mounted inside the end of the forks and as the hydraulic jack is raised, the forks are separated vertically from the front wheels forcing the load upward until it clears the floor, enabling the truck and its load to be moved. There are various types of hand pallet trucks available for all types of applications and they are used widely in warehouses, shops and industry.
6. What are power pallet trucks?
Power pallet trucks, also known as electric pallet trucks or powered pallet jacks are power-driven to allow lifting and moving of heavier and stacked pallets over longer distances. Power pallet trucks are used essentially for horizontal movement of pallet-loads which makes them ideal for large spaces and warehouses. They are easy to manoeuvre, safe, and simple to operate and require little maintenance. They operate in a similar manner to hand pallet trucks, the operator slides the forks into the pallet to allow for load bearing. The difference being that the lifting of the load and full truck movement is powered by an electric AC motor which is located within the machine itself. Several power pallet truck models offer a platform for the user to stand on, either as a fold down or permanent feature. Others feature an automatic cut off switch rather than a brake to stop the machine should the user need to stop quickly or leave the machine while it is in use.
7. What are stacker trucks?
Stackers are very similar in look and construction to power pallet trucks but with the addition of a mast which allows the load to be moved vertically to greater heights. They are used for horizontal movement of pallet-loads and for vertical stacking. Stacker trucks have three basic movements – luffing (vertical movement using a mast powered by hydraulic cylinders); travelling distances and slewing (rotation of the stacker around its central axis to align or place the stockpile where required.) We offer a complete range of pedestrian, platform, stand-on and sit-on stackers, with travel distances from 10 to 50 meters plus, lifting capacities up to 2.0 tonnes, and up to 6.5m high.
8. What are order pickers?
Order pickers are available in low and high level formats. Low level order pickers are used for picking at floor and low racking level heights whereas high level order pickers generally work from heights of 6.5m up to 12m. With a centralised standing platform the operator can move around the area quickly and efficiently retrieving goods. Order picking machines are normally used in narrow aisle applications which have very high storage density. We supply order pickers for every single warehouse application and they are specifically designed with operator comfort and safety in mind.
9. What are reach trucks?
Reach trucks are one of the most popular warehouse forklifts and are used in any warehouse application where large storage density or fast storage and retrieval of goods are required. Reach trucks have a moving mast and narrow chassis and are specifically designed for pallet storage and working in narrow warehouse aisles. The mast extends away from the forklift body, usually using a scissor mechanism, and has the capacity to reach out beyond the stabilising legs, meaning they can reach easily into the racking and lift up to great heights within the warehouse environment. The load is carried partly within the footprint/body of the reach forklift while being transported, which is why they are able to work in narrower aisles than counterbalance machines. Reach forklift trucks are generally fitted with high capacity batteries so they are capable of intensive use in various applications. Along with the great lift heights, a reach truck can offer increased storage capacity and will also take greater weights to height than an equivalent capacity counterbalance truck.
10. What are multi-way reach trucks?
Multi-way reach trucks are similar to normal reach trucks but are highly specialised and designed to offer the ultimate in warehouse flexibility and tackle the problem of handling long loads - such as pipes or timber - in very narrow aisles or other confined spaces. Multi-way reach trucks feature a four-wheel steering system - forward, backward, sideways, diagonal or rotational, as well as up and down. Together with convenient controls and full 360° turning of each wheel, this allows infinitely precise steering of the multi-way reach truck and pinpoint positioning of the load. Rapid lift and lower speeds increase productivity.
11. What is a tow truck?
Tow trucks are designed to pull or tow heavy cargo rather than lift it. Having many applications in a wide variety of situations both warehouse and industrial, the tow trucks pull products to their destination for manual placing onto racks, and are not used to load trucks.
12. What power type should I use for my forklift truck?
Our counterbalance forklift trucks can be powered by diesel, LP Gas or Electric.
Diesel powered Counterbalance forklift trucks
Powered by a fuel that is both easy to get hold of and straightforward to use, diesel forklift trucks are ideal for heavy duty applications and highly productive environments. Unlike some other lift trucks, diesel counterbalance forklifts come in a wide range of sizes and lift capacities, which make them capable of carrying everything from small pallet loads to individual components weighing several tonnes. Furthermore they are essentially for outdoor use due to their exhaust fumes and emissions. Diesel trucks are fuel efficient when compared to other types of forklifts such as petrol or LPG, and have a low operating cost – diesel is the cheapest fuel option for internal combustion fork lifts. Other advantages include their speed at refueling – they can be refueled on site and ready immediately.
LP Gas powered counterbalance forklift trucks Gas powered counterbalance forklift trucks are user friendly and offer an excellent alternative to both fuel and electric trucks for a wide range of materials handling applications. Due to the environmentally friendly nature of gas, the trucks can be used both indoors and outside and provide a consistent, reliable performance whilst being clean and quiet to run. They tend to be less expensive than other fuel types, simple and quick to refuel and are easily distinguished by the tank that sits on the back of the truck. The machines can also be topped up using a gas pump or the fuel canister can be simply replaced making them ideal for working in remote locations and carrying out almost any handling task. Variants are available to handle steep and rough terrains and capable of handling large loads or for towing loads.
Electric powered counterbalance forklift trucks
Designed primarily for indoor use or outdoors in dry conditions, electric powered forklift trucks are the perfect choice for many handling applications from lifting goods in and out of racking to moving goods around at ground level. They are quiet, environmentally friendly with no exhaust emissions and can handle a wide range of unit loads including pallets, pallet boxes and stillages. Powered by large, powerful heavy lead-acid batteries, electric forklift trucks have no fuel storage requirements and tend to be more manoeuvrable than engine powered trucks due to the battery weight acting as an effective counterbalance. As well as having a longer life span, the general maintenance and servicing costs of electric trucks tend to be less than engine powered trucks due to fewer moving parts and use in cleaner environments. The trucks’ batteries can hold up to 6 hours of usage before needing to be recharged but the biggest drawback is the battery downtime, as charging a battery takes between 8-12 hours.
13. What are the varying types of forklift truck mast available? (Simplex/duplex/triplex/quad)?
Forklift trucks come with varying masts depending on what height is needed to be reached. If the primary use for the fork lift is loading and unloading transportation, then the truck may not need much height at all; however if within a warehouse the shelves are of a certain height, e.g. 5m, the reach of the lift required will be 5m.
Masts come in various configurations as follows:
Simplex mast – A simplex mast is a single stage mast with a single channel. The mast and carriage rise simultaneously. It is built in different sizes to meet various lift heights.
Duplex mast – A duplex mast has two channels, is a two stage mast consisting of a simplex mast and a free lift cylinder. The free lift cylinder is the first stage, raising the carriage 940 to 1570mm before the inner mast channel extends. When fully extended the main lift cylinders raise the inner mast channels.
Triplex mast – A triplex mast has three stages, with two inner mast channels and a free lift cylinder. The advantage of this mast is reduced overall lowered heights with increased maximum fork heights. They are one of the most popular mast types, simply because they can perform a variety of functions like loading and unloading vehicles in addition to lifting to higher lift heights.
Quad mast - A quad mast has four stages with three inner mast channels and a free lift cylinder. Quad masts are built for the same reasons as triplex masts.
14. What wear is acceptable on forks and how can that wear be measured?
15. What does the term ‘Container Specification’ mean?
Container specification simply refers to the forklift truck's ability to operate in standard shipping containers. It means that the mast for the truck is, when lowered beneath the height of the overhead guard and that the truck operates a full-free-lift mast. Therefore a load can be picked up when in the container without the height-restriction of the container roof being a concern.
16. Where can I get my Cat forklift truck repaired or serviced?
To find out the nearest place to you to get your forklift truck repaired or serviced please contact your Cat lift truck dealer by visiting our global dealer locator.
17. Do you supply accessories for forklift trucks?