From Ancient Greco-Roman Cranes to Cranes for Hire: Cranes Throughout the Ages

It’s hard to imagine life without one of the most important construction equipment ever conceived. The crane is easily acquired these days through crane hire companies that rent or lease out cranes for hire. These companies have whatever size you need for every purpose imaginable.

The crane is but one of many large construction machineries used every day, although one that don’t usually earn a second look from people. Yet this piece of heavy equipment is as vital to modern society as the basic bolt and nut. A crane is used in places and situations where there is a need to lift heavy objects using mechanical power.

The History of the Crane

Humankind has always been fascinated with manipulating and working with objects and figures larger than them. From the massive stone monoliths of Stonehenge to the ancient pyramids of Egypt, people have always been trying to move things much larger in size and heavier in mass. With the average human being so little compared to those giant monuments, how did man ever get around the problem of size? By using the one advantage he has that has brought human achievements all throughout history: the human mind. The human mind realized that size and mass could be negated if you multiplied the power you exerted.

It is believed that the Greeks were the first civilization to use the crane. According to J. Coulton’s book, “Lifting in Early Greek Architecture,” the earliest known crane artifacts were discovered in Greek temples as early as 515 B.C. They found cuttings for specific crane components bored through the massive stones used as building blocks in the ancient temples. While ancient Egyptian builders used ramps for pulling large slabs of stones and similar materials, the Greeks developed the earliest version of modern cranes for hire. They used these to build such admired monuments as the Parthenon.

The Evolution of the Crane

The crane was eventually discovered by the ancient Romans who not only used the Greeks original idea but developed it even further. One prime example of the simplicity and effectiveness on these new Roman designs was the tripastos. This crane consisted of a jib (a tilted strut), rope, a winch, and a block that had three pulleys. A man operating this device would have a three-to-one mechanical advantage, an average person will be able to lift 150kg over an extended period of time.

The Modern Crane

Modern builders, dockyard workers, and people who just really need to lift heavy things now do not need to come up with their own lifting devices, like what the Greeks and Romans did. All they have to do is look up crane hire companies on the web, companies that offer all types of cranes for hire. These range from mobile truck-mounted cranes to massive self-erecting crane platforms. These are powered by technology such as advanced diesel-hydraulic or diesel-electric systems.

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