I recently went to an expo where lifting equipment manufacturers demonstrated their newest products. I realized at the expo that I did not know lifting equipment as well as I thought. One of the manufacturer representatives asked me: “How many chains are in a chain hoist?” I did not have an answer, which motivated me to do research immediately.
A chain hoist can be powered by hand, with a lever ratchet, or electricity. Electrical chain hoists and lever ratchet chain hoists only have one chain, and it is called a lift chain. A manual chain hoist has two chains, the lift chain, and the pull chain. A lift chain must be of lifting grade.
People can easily be confused with the number of chains in a chain hoist because of how a chain hoist is designed. I saw videos where experts do restorations on different chain hoists, and it is amazing to see the engineering that goes into a chain hoist. I will share what I learned about how many chains are inside a chain hoist.
How Many Chains Go Into A Chain Hoist?
The amount of chains that go into a chain hoist is different based on the way that the chain hoist is energized. A chain hoist that needs to be used manually will have one more chain than an electrically energized chain hoist. We will discuss three different energy options for a chain hoist in this section, namely :
- Manual chain hoist.
- Lever chain hoist.
- Electrical chain hoist.
We will discuss these energy options under their own headings to make it easier for you as the reader to follow along. We are starting with a manual chain hoist.
How Many Chains Are In A Manual Chain Hoist?
A manual chain hoist has two chains in it, namely the pull chain and the lift chain; when the user pulls down on the pull chain or the hand chain as it is also commonly referred to, then the lift chain will move up and down based on whether the pull chain is pulled on the front or the rear side of the chain block.
The Pull Chain Inside A Manual Chain Hoist
The pull chain of a manual chain hoist is the chain that is located on the far side inside the housing of the chain hoist. People can easily get confused and think that this specific chain is two different chains, but it is because it is one chain that goes around a wheel that turns the reduction gears so that the lift chain can lift and lower the load.
When the chain section is pulled on the opposite side of the wheel, then the lift chain will go in the opposite direction. The pull chain is made from a general grade of steel because it is not the chain that needs to do the heavy lifting. We will now discuss the lift chain inside a manual chain hoist.
The Lift Chain Inside A Manual Chain Hoist
The lift chain inside a manual chain hoist is responsible for lifting and lowering loads. This chain can only function if the pull chain activates the lifting or lowering gears. The lifting chain must be a grade 80 or a grade 100 chain, which means the chain is suitable for lifting and lowering heavy loads. If the lifting chain is in poor condition, it will affect the capacity of the manual chain hoist.
Just like in the case of the pull chain, people confuse this long chain for multiple chains. The lift chain of a manual chain hoist is connected to the assembly housing of the chain block at two places and then goes through the lifting hook and around the lifting disc. The configuration makes it look like there are four chains when in fact, it is only one chain.
How Many Chains Are Inside A Lever Chain Hoist?
There is only one chain inside a lever chain hoist. A lever chain hoist functions similarly to a manual chain hoist, except that a lever is operated in a ratchet fashion to lift and lower the lift chain. The direction of the lift chain is changed when a directional toggle switch is activated after the clutch is de-activated.
The lifting chain is the only chain inside a lever chain hoist, and because it is also for heavy loads, it must also be of lifting grade, just like the lift chain inside a manual chain hoist. Once again, it looks like there are multiple chains, but it is just because of how the hoist is designed.
How Many Chains Are Inside A Electrical Chain Hoist?
Like the lever chain hoist, an electrical chain hoist has only a lift chain. In this case, a drive motor that is electrically powered operates a drum that lowers and lifts the lift chain. All chains that must lift or lower any load have to be an alloy chain that is of lifting grade. It is the strength of the alloy chain that gives the hoist its lifting capabilities.
The end-user can operate an electrical chain hoist with a pendant or a battery-operated remote control. When the controls are used, the lift chain will move up and down based on which button is pressed.
In this post, we have seen that a manual chain hoist has two chains, a lever chain hoist has one chain, and an electrical chain hoist has one chain inside it as well. In the case of the lever hoist and the electric hoist, the lift chain goes up and down when control is used on an electrical hoist or the lever is moved up and down on a lever hoist.
It is known that the chain inside a chain hoist appears as if there are more chains than there, but it is just because of how a chain hoist works. I hope that by writing this post, I also answered your question about how many chains there are inside a chain hoist.