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Thread: using a tow truck to pull a steering column?

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    Cranes would be for something REALLY heavy, or a semi hanging over the edge of a bridge. Once, there was an incident where a guy was moving a massive crane and it rolled over on a car on the road crushing the victim. Of course it was a recovery, but that's the type of incident I'm talking about, not the typical car crash. Loaded cement mixers, etc.
    There was a reason for the question. I've RUN cranes.For the types of incidents you just described I would PREFER a machine like the one in Scooby's picture. A crane is designed to only have a hanging load,no side load. A rotating wrecker can endure BOTH side and hanging loads making it much more suitable for the task. PLUS it sets up in a lot less time.Typically it takes a good crane operator a fair amount of time to prepare the machine for lifting. Time we often DO NOT have.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    There was a reason for the question. I've RUN cranes.For the types of incidents you just described I would PREFER a machine like the one in Scooby's picture. A crane is designed to only have a hanging load,no side load. A rotating wrecker can endure BOTH side and hanging loads making it much more suitable for the task. PLUS it sets up in a lot less time.Typically it takes a good crane operator a fair amount of time to prepare the machine for lifting. Time we often DO NOT have.
    I get your point, sometimes those wreckers may not have the reach or capacity needed. It's going to be rare of course. One of the wrecker companies has cranes as well, just depends on what needs done that determines if they'll use them. A guy rolled a mixer just down from my house a few years ago. They used a 50T crane and a wrecker to upright it (company owned). They didn't have one of the wreckers with a rotating boom.

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    I've recovered several mixers. To date haven't used a Crane or a rotator on any of 'em. Just a couple HD and they came up fine.There is a TON of stuff you can do with wreckers, I've set up a "breechers buoy" to recover a vehicle in a block culvert,we've used one for patient extraction over a very steep icy bank.I'm sure you could have done it with ropes,belays,etc but for us it was faster and safer to use the TT. These are tools that are FAMILIAR to me,we use them all the time. Having a crane background, and given the EXTENDED response time for one, we adapted our operations AWAY from crane use. There are VERY few vehicular jobs in my response area that they would be a effective solution on.

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    sorry Ron for not getting back to your question, been busy had the NY chiefs show this weekend and spent fathers day with my son at a ballgame.

    I would like to spend a little time addressing your question Ron, as it needs the appropriate response, with technical data to back it up. For the most part, the days of chaining drums are gone..

    I will try getting a response back to yours and a few others questions tomorrow evening...

    tks, Howie

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    Just for clarification,when I say chain a drum,I'm referring to the NON driven end of the drum.And just to hold the drum in it's normal position on the support rollers. This can be done with a strap if you have one short and rugged enough,we prefer a rated chain.The structure under these rollers is rated for a loaded drum and all you are doing is holding the drum in it's normal transit position so it doesn't twist or leave that structure. If Scooby has a better way,I'd be interested in hearing it.We have used chain successfully(roller end ONLY)for over 25 years,doesn't harm the drum at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    I've recovered several mixers. To date haven't used a Crane or a rotator on any of 'em. Just a couple HD and they came up fine.There is a TON of stuff you can do with wreckers, I've set up a "breechers buoy" to recover a vehicle in a block culvert,we've used one for patient extraction over a very steep icy bank.I'm sure you could have done it with ropes,belays,etc but for us it was faster and safer to use the TT. These are tools that are FAMILIAR to me,we use them all the time. Having a crane background, and given the EXTENDED response time for one, we adapted our operations AWAY from crane use. There are VERY few vehicular jobs in my response area that they would be a effective solution on.
    On the particular incident with the mixer, they didn't have a lot of room to work. Narrow road and it was tar and chip over gravel so the crane and the wrecker put big holes in the road with their stabilizers. Not to mention the ground was saturated. The crane righted the truck and the wrecker pulled it back on the road.

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnsb View Post
    On the particular incident with the mixer, they didn't have a lot of room to work. Narrow road and it was tar and chip over gravel so the crane and the wrecker put big holes in the road with their stabilizers. Not to mention the ground was saturated. The crane righted the truck and the wrecker pulled it back on the road.
    We all have different ways to do things. I'm QUITE familiar with the road type you describe,that's about 50% of our secondary roads.And,so we're on the same page,I'm not saying "my" way is the only/best way,but I CAN assure you it WORKS,and is worthy of you at least taking a look. If for no other reason than that off chance situation where you might not have that well stocked toolbox of yours to operate from.Google my home town sometime,you'll get a better idea of some challenging work enviornments. Scooby is very good at what he does,but in my area there are still way more cable(mechanical) tow trucks than the Rotators he's used too(and YES,he's VERY familiar with mechanicals too)the methods you utilize are different.I can use either but the reality is not many rotaters HERE. Nearest one,like a Crane, is at least an Hr out,sometimes more.So you use what you have available.

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