Sunday, November 08, 2009

My Kinda Load

Is the kind where I don't have to unload or help unload - I'm kinda fat and lazy thataway. The heavier cranes are almost always rigged with two lines, so it is possible for them to unload and stand a tank straight from the trailer. If they only have one line rigged, the crew has to use straps to pick the tank (using the lift lugs built into the sides of the tank) from the trailer, set it on the ground, then stand it up on the ground. Or, as is more often the case - I'll set up my tractor next to the trailer, hook up to the side eye near the bottom, and "tail" the tank off. The crane gradually picks up one end, and me the other. When the tank is high enough, I start dropping it and moving "under" the other crane while it's operator starts moving to get "over" me. Putting the tank on the ground is an extra step that can have problems that using two cranes or one with two lines avoids.

My compadre's truck is nosed directly in line with the crane boom. If the tank is at an angle to the boom, the cables can twist and jump out of the sheaves on the crane, which would be a very, very bad thing. So, any dual line lifts by necessity are lined up with the boom. The outer line is the lighter line, so the operator wanted us to nose our trucks in - he could use his heavy block of sheaves to pick up the top and use his lighter line on the bottom of the tank.

Now the operator swings the tank to the side of the truck and trailer, allowing it to leave the drop zone.

The operator is now able to lift his main line and lower his lighter line.

Now he can continue dropping the lighter line, unhook it, and swing the tank into position within the containment walls with the other tanks on the left.

It was at this point I had to get back to work - unstrapping the tank I hauled, and getting my truck into position.

That tank is a 12'x30' - about 25k gallons, or in oilfield terms - a six hundred barrel tank. These tanks are for ag usage - a very heavy fertilizer blend. Regular FRP tanks wouldn't be strong enough - thus these are steel.

I've gone on in the past about how we manufacture and sell liquid storage vessels - but we don't always sell directly to the end user. There are several ag supply companies that peddle our tanks. They integrate our products into a complete solution for ag companies - something we do not do. We don't sell the plumbing, the containment walls, the field application equipment or anything else. Just large tanks. Not the plastic portable variety, nor the huge build in place kind, either.

So, these supply companies have negotiated a standard design - sized fittings and their placement, sight gauges, tie down lugs and so on for a reduced price from us. We of course will customize those basic designs. Sometimes it is a better deal for customers to buy from the resellers because of the other things they offer - they have complete setups available - so it's more convenient. One stop shopping, as it were. Plus, we stand by these tanks the same as any others - that is something I've heard from about all our customers - they are very happy about how we stand behind our product.

Have I said lately I do like my job?

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