Introduction to Gantry Cranes

A gantry crane is a type of overhead crane supported by one or two legs running on either wheels or along a track/rail line and comes in a single or double girder arrangement. Gantry cranes do not require being incorporated into a building’s structure and are commonly considered when adding an overhead runway structure is not practical. This piece of equipment is essential for many types of industrial applications. Although there are several different types of overhead cranes on the market, Gantry cranes have certain benefits that set them apart. This blog post will discuss how these cranes work, their applications, and their benefits.

What are Gantry Cranes Used For?

Gantry cranes are used where items or equipment need to be frequently elevated and moved between different locations. The crane’s applications range from small workshops and warehouses to large rail and shipping yards. An important benefit of Gantry cranes is their ability to function both indoors and outdoors. Small Gantry cranes are typically portable, whereas larger variations may be fixed. For demonstration videos, please follow this link. Here is a more detailed list of possible uses:


Small (Portable) Gantry Cranes
Mechanic’s Shops
Loading and unloading of light vehicles

Large Gantry Cranes

Large scale manufacturing operations
Timber Industry
Heavy equipment repair
Railyards and shipyards

Gantry Cranes vs. Overhead Cranes

Overhead cranes all work on similar principles. Gantry cranes have a few features that make them unique, namely, their portability. Other types of cranes usually require being secured to the structure where they are kept. On the other hand, Gantry cranes have their own support structure and can be moved around your workplace. They can also be rapidly assembled and disassembled, which is beneficial for growing businesses that may need to shift equipment around in their warehouses. There are three main types of designs of Gantry cranes.

  • Fixed Height Gantries – Constructed to a specific height needed for a specific application.
  • Adjustable Gantries – Height can be adjusted based on needs.
  • Portable Gantries – Used in repair and maintenance applications where heavy equipment must be worked on. They can be deconstructed, moved, and rebuilt with minimal manpower.

How Does a Gantry Crane Work?

Gantry cranes typically have either one or two inverted V-shaped legs and a cross-beam connecting them. The cross beam at the top of the crane can incorporate a variety of lifting devices. In larger models, the lifting device can move back and forth on the top cross-beam to change positions. Many versions of the Gantry crane also have either wheels or a track/rail system. This allows the crane to move items in three dimensions.

What is Gantry in Construction?

The term Gantry does not only apply to Gantry cranes. In construction, a Gantry is any structure with two legs and a cross beam that suspends an item by straddling it on said cross beam. Gantries can be small and used in a home to support the display of household items. They can be medium-sized and used for holding up decorations for events. They can be large and used in such applications as road signs, railway signs, power infrastructure, and, of course, cranes.

Gantry Crane Benefits and Applications

Gantry cranes have several benefits to consider. They are very robust and can be used in a wide variety of applications. Most other types of overhead cranes require an independent support structure, such as concrete foundations, or must be somehow tied into the building’s structure that houses it. This can often be costly and limits the crane to indoor operations. Gantry cranes do not require special support structures because they can support themselves. This saves the owners time and money immediately when installing it and down the road if it ever must be removed.

One of the great benefits of a Gantry crane is its versatility. They come in a large range of sizes and can be operated indoors and outdoors. Ease of use is also an important consideration. These cranes can be operated both remotely and manually, offering flexibility to workers on the ground. Due to their simple design, maintenance is minimal, saving the owners time and money. It should also be noted that Gantry cranes are energy efficient, helping users achieve more sustainable business operations.

Whether you are a small business owner simply in need of a robust crane around your workshop, or a major shipyard, there is a Gantry crane out there for you. To get guidance on what crane best suits your needs, please contact our offices at (860) 523-4205 or fill out the contact form.

About Us

Welcome to Materials Handling Systems, Inc., serving Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and New York. We offer the products you need with great pricing and service to match!