Should I choose a waist or rim gripper to move my drums?

September 16, 2021

Drums can easily be lifted by forklift truck using our Grab-O-Matic drum attachments – but it is important to choose the right lifting solution.

We offer a wide range of forklift truck attachments for handling drums and are always happy to advise on the right choice for your specific drum type.

In a two part blog, we look at whether you should choose a waist gripper or rim gripper attachment. As a general rule the Waist Gripper would only be used for Low Volume handling of good quality steel drums. For Medium to High Volume of steel or plastic drums, or damaged or out of round drums the Rim Grippers are the correct drum handler to use.

In this first blog, we discuss the waist grippers, whilst the second will focus on the rim gripper attachment.

Drum handling Waist grippers

Waist grippers are designed to grab drums around the middle. The drums are grabbed under the centre rolling rim and released when set down on the ground.

They are only suitable for use on steel drums with pronounced rolling rims, since the drum must be strong enough to withstand the pressure of the gripper arms around their waist without collapsing. Steel drums are reinforced with rolling rims or hoops which provide this extra stability, so the waist gripper Grab-O-Matic attachment can safely grab the drum between the central rolling rims.

Open top steel drums with rolling rims can also be lifted but the lids must be securely clamped in position.

St Clare Engineering supplies four different types of waist gripper for steel drums:

Single Steel Drum Handler DH-1

Suitable for 205/210L steel drums with pronounced rolling rims, the Grab-O-Matic DH-1 is perfect for moving one drum at a time.

Double Steel Drum Handler DH-2

If you are handling two steel drums then the Grab-O-Matic DH-2 is the right drum attachment for your forklift truck.

ATEX Drum Handler  – Stainless Steel

St Clare Engineering’s stainless steel waist gripper is designer to perform safely in critical areas. Manufactured completely from stainless steel this drum gripper is suitable for use when handling steel drums in an ATEX Zone 1 spark proof area.

Drum Handler for forklift trucks with double side shift

Our forklift truck drum handling customers sometimes need bespoke drum grips for their particular requirements, and St Clare Engineering is happy to help. This particular Grab-O-Matic model consists of a pair of fork attachments with curved gripping pads for a double side shift fork truck, used to grab steel drums around the waist. This unit can also be used with plastic drums as it is the pressure of the side shift forks that grip the drum

These drum handling attachments are made bespoke to customer requirements and can be fitted with standard steel gripping pads or rubber faced pads as required.

When not to use a waist gripper drum handler

Waist gripping drum attachments are not suitable for use on damaged drums, or drums that are not a consistent diameter and shape. Only steel drums that are strong and of regular shape with pronounced rolling rims can safely be manoeuvred using a waist gripper.

Expert advice on drum handling attachments for forklift trucks

Here at St Clare Engineering we have a wealth of expertise on drum lifting, and we are always happy to help you select the best drum gripper and handling attachment for your forklift truck.

Contact Us

For more information and enquiries please contact:

Andy Bow – St Clare Engineering Ltd
Tel: 02380 643402
Fax: 02380 642189
Email: sales@stclare-engineering.co.uk
Web: www.stclare-engineering.co.uk

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