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Linde CiTi: A game-changer for pallet trucks
Linde’s innovative CiTi Truck, which combines the best features of hand and electric pallet trucks, is winning over local users.
Hand pallet trucks can make significant physical demands on operators in confined areas, particularly when heavy loads have to be pulled and pushed using muscle power alone.
Linde’s lightweight, robust CiTi Truck removes the strain and stress from the operator with electric traction and lift motors, combined with a unique load and drive wheel configuration and ergonomic tiller controls.
Already a success in Europe, the pioneering pallet jack is now impressing Australian customers, as Linde undertakes a demonstration program for potential users in key industry segments.
“We’ve had rave reviews from workplaces where we’ve demonstrated the CiTi Truck,” Linde’s General Manager, Key Accounts, Ben Newey said.
“Users like the way it takes the physical effort out of their role and management can see the benefits of equipment which greatly reduces the risk of back injuries. Total risk assessments carried out by large companies have come back extremely positive. Safety specialists love it.
“A traditional hand pallet jack with a load of up to 2.5 tonnes can take a considerable amount of straining and pulling to get moving or to stop, particularly in a confined space.
“Before the CiTi Truck the only practical alternative was a traditional fully electric pallet jack, which in many circumstances could not be justified because of cost and un-needed capability.”
Now Linde has introduced a comfortable mid-step between hand and electric pallet trucks in terms of performance and cost.
With a tubular structural frame the new Citi Truck has a service weight of less than 100 kilograms yet it is suitable for smaller consignments and palletised loads of up to 500 kilograms.
A large, rubber tyred drive wheel and two pivot-mounted rear load wheels enable the CiTi Truck to travel over obstacles up to 70mm high and the lift motor can cope with ramp gradients of up to eight percent.
The wheel hub motor, which is integrated into the front wheel, raises the load located on the fork arms at the touch of a button, saving the operator the effort of pumping.
The motor is powered by a 36-volt, max. 15-amp nickel metal hydride battery, which is rated for up to two hours of continuous operation. in practical terms, this is equivalent to being in service for an entire day.
The battery can be replaced in under a minute by simply releasing the battery connector to remove the compact, lightweight battery from its rack using the pull handle and inserting a fully-charged battery.
An “easyControl” two-way roll pad is integrated into the tiller head and travel direction, lift/lower buttons and horn, are ergonomically grouped for ease of use. A built-in digital scale further adds to the CiTi Truck’s usefulness.
The emergency stop button which is located on the component cover for rapid actuation can also be used as an immobiliser by turning the cap on the button and then removing it. This isolates the electrics and prevents unauthorized use of the CiTi Truck.
For enhanced safety on loading ramps and gradients the electromagnetic brake is automatically activated as soon as the tiller is released.
The performance of the CiTi truck makes it a safe, practical pallet jack in the hands of any operator, regardless of their size or strength, because the energy is supplied by the unit itself.
“This is a massive benefit for employers,” Ben Newey said. “it really extends their options in terms of selecting and assigning staff.
“Some workplaces might only need to handle four or five pallets a day, but it only takes a misadventure with one pallet load to injure a worker, often in an environment where there isn’t a spare worker available to take over those duties.
“The Citi-Truck eliminates a major source of OH&S issues because it does away with the exertion of getting a hand pallet jack under way or bringing it to a halt.
“We’re getting particularly positive feedback on ergonomics. it’s very easy to use and with a simple control on the handle for lift, lower and travel only minimal training is necessary.”
The Linde CiTi Truck is designed for a wide range of applications in confined spaces, for cross docking, in the back of stores where broken down loads are common and anywhere that palletised loads of up to 500 kilograms need to be moved.
CiTi Truck has role in manufacturing too
The first Australian user of Linde’s CiTi Truck has confirmed that it is equally at home in a manufacturing environment delivering raw materials to a production line.
The first Citi Truck delivered in Australia has performed flawlessly for more than a year at carpet tile manufacturer interfaceFLOR’s plant at Picton, south of Sydney.
“it is brilliant,” interfaceFLOR Engineering Manager, Bill Davidson said. “We needed a pallet truck which could work in a confined area moving heavy loads short distances without putting too much strain on male and female production line workers of various builds.
“Previously we had been using a hand pallet truck to move pallets of yarn weighing up to 420 kilograms around a production line work station that is approximately three metres by eight metres.
“The Citi Truck immediately solved an occupational health and safety issue and the operators love it. it’s actually smaller than a hand pallet truck, but now any operator can do that job regardless of their size.”
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