To a passer-by, all construction zones look the same. They are filled with heavy duty machines and teams of people from different trades. They can more or less identify what machines do what job, like an excavator, cement mixer, and a crane. These are machines have become a common staple being replicated as children’s toys and hobby models. However, anyone in construction knows that many machines are mistaken for another and that there are sub-types that have specialised features. A common mistake would be between a crane and a derrick.
Similarities between the two machines
Marking out the differences between the two machines might be difficult because they mainly do the same job: heavy lifting and transporting. When you look at their definitions, it clearly outlines the grey area between the two.
A crane is a machine that makes use of a hoist rope, wire rope, or chain with a sheave (a pulley system) to lift heavy objects. A derrick is a machine that makes use of a least one guyed mast or self-supporting tower and a boom. To lift objects, it adjusts the guy wires.
Both are machines that have a history that spans as far back as ancient times. Their designs have worked by making use of human and animal effort and transitioned to technological advancements such as the steam engine or hydraulics. Their size determines how much weight they can carry. They are both seen in industrialised areas.
Features that are unique to the derrick
The main differences between the two machines come down to movement and set-up. A derrick is typically set in a fixed place. It transports objects from side to side by manipulating the guy wires. There are different kinds of setups that play around with the position of the mast and the boom as well as the number of masts and booms. A quick list of different kinds of derricks would include the guy, shearleg, stiffleg, and gin pole. A derrick is most commonly seen on oil rigs or cargo ships and at ports.
Features that are unique to the crane
Essentially, the crane’s job is to lift; their movement is up and down. There are two categories for cranes: mobile and fixed. These categories account for the other features of the crane. They can transport items via a pick and carry method for mobile types. Even fixed cranes, which have given up their mobility to be able to handle heavier loads, have their way of transporting material by adjusting the length of the boom. Compared to the derrick, the crane is more mobile. You might have seen them cruising down the highway to their next job. Check out crane hire Peterborough companies offer, to have a better understanding of how cranes work.
There is one case where the derrick and crane can work in tandem. It is when a crane, a pulley system, is fitted to a derrick that allows the machine to lift and carry. At a distance, both may look alike with the tall steel frames that stretch out. However, up close you’ll notice the difference immediately, even though a fixed crane and a derrick accomplish the same job through different means.