The most replaced or repaired part on an overhead crane is the pendant. The simple reason for the frequent repairs is because the pendant is the control unit for the crane or hoist. This is the part of the crane that is most frequently handled and can easily become damaged by regular wear or abuse.
Overhead cranes and hoists will always outlast the lifespan of their pendant controls. Because of this you will find a mix of OEM (original equipment) and third party replacement pendants on cranes. It is not uncommon to see three different brands of pendants all attached to the same model CM Lodestar hoist in one factory. Because of this variation it is important to provide either the exact part number of the assembly or part from the hoist service manual. Or you can provide answers to the following questions.
How many motions do you need to control? One motion for up-down directions on a solo hoist? Two for a monorail to control trolley and hoist? Or do you have three motions as is common for overhead cranes with bridge, trolley and hoist motorization?
How many speeds do you need? Single speed and two speed are the most common options.
What type of start-stop circuit do you need? The two most common types are maintained start-stop and momentary start-stop.
Is your crane equipped with an E-stop? If it is you will want to have a pendant with an emergency stop button.
If you are uncertain about any of the above questions, our parts department at Hoosier Crane can help you identify these details. To help us identify the correct pendant for your crane we will need to know the following details: Manufacturer of the crane and hoist, model of hoist and serial number of hoist. It is also helpful to provide a photo of the front and back of your existing pendant to help identify the existing model and any special features.
Another important question is the length of the pendant. Most new hoists and cranes ship with a pendant length that is equal to the height of lift less four feet. A properly sized crane pendant will hang 4 feet from the floor for optimal ergonomics. Be certain to not have a pendant that is too long. This can result in both damage to the pendant from dropping and striking the ground and cause a tripping hazard. Hoosier Crane stocks bulk rolls of pendant control wire and is able to create custom pendant cord lengths.
Also consider the environment in which the crane pendant will is used. If you are frequently ruining or replacing a hoist pendant, it may be cost effective to upgrade to a more durable option. Most pendants are designed for indoor use and are resistant to light dust, oil and some moisture. If you are using your crane outdoors, in a high dust environment, wet environment or high heat area, be sure to notify your sales rep. We will recommend a safe and durable option for your application.
How to Save Money
And now the part you were waiting for: the money saving tips. Avoid pendant damage and replacement by properly training employees to care for the crane remote. One of the most common pendant control problems we encounter comes from crane operators pulling the load with the pendant on a push trolley type crane. The hoist is designed to be moved or positioned by moving either the chain or the load on a push type crane or trolley. Pulling a load with the hoist pendant results in strained and broken control wires and loose connections.
Another money saving tip: buy third party replacement crane pendants.Hoosier Crane uses name brand components that are direct replacements for your existing hoist pendant. Our parts follow all the same design and safety standards as the OEM part. The simplest example of this is our 6-foot Pendant Control Station for CM Chain Hoists. Our replacement pendant lists for $130 and is currently on sale for $105.00. It is a direct replacement for the CM 29333 pendant with a list price of $334. That is a savings of $229 alone on a simple two motion single speed pendant. The savings can be even more dramatic for custom multi-speed multi-motion crane pendant. Check out the info-graphic below to see how much you can save over the lifetime of a typical CM Lodestar Electric Chain Hoist.
If you have any questions about replacement hoist and crane pendants, please contact our parts department. We are happy to help find replacement pendants and pendant parts for all makes and models of overhead cranes and hoists.