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Things to Know about Yard Ramps – Part I

When I was a dealer (material handling heavy into casters) I had not read the catalog explanation about yard ramps prior to quoting my first one.  That is a mistake you have all made about some product.  Admit it.  I was able to salvage my credibility and the sale by some quick thinking on my part and big-time help from customer service at Bluff.  It is with that understanding that I offer some very basic information on yard ramps and their use.

By definition a yard ramp would typically be used in the “yard” (dock area, parking lot, etc.). But we know that they are regularly used in the field for agricultural applications like cotton bales or feed loading or unloading  They are used in brick yards and lumber yards and really anywhere that has a need to get something from one level (ground) to another (truck or dock).  How do we know what we need?

Length – can be dictated by the height of the upper level above the ground.  For instance, a truck van is typically around 52″ above the ground.  30′ of incline gives us a gives us a grade of 14.4% which is inside the operating envelope of most propane trucks.  Lower trucks will make grades less and higher more.

Width – as you work a truck, loading or unloading, the back two pallets are the most problem for ramps.  Once they are removed (the pallets) the space they empty up becomes maneuvering room.  So the need for maneuvering room for those two pallets tells us the following;  a ramp in the 80″+ range is necessary for side to side and a flat area at the top (level off) is necessary to allow the forks to be lined up with the pallet.

You just spec’d a 36′ yard ramp 84″ wide with a 6′ level off.  If you take the capacity of the forklift being used and multiply by three….you are finished.  Here is a short (36 second) video of how it works.

Next time we will discuss yard to dock applications.  Write me if you would like to see a topic discussed and we will “get r done”.