Tue June 08, 2021
When Steel Giraffe LLC owner Stephen Kelly began looking to expand his fleet, he knew he needed a crane that was adaptable to many different environments and capable of tackling a wide variety of projects.
Kelly was looking for a machine that was highway mobile, nimble, had good capacity charts, the ability to telescope with loads, off-road capabilities, retracted outrigger charts, and an excellent tire (rubber) chart.
The Demag AC 45 City crane checked all the boxes.
A First-Time Demag Owner
Steel Giraffe had never owned a Tadano or Demag mobile crane before and, like trying anything for the first time, Kelly was skeptical. However, Kelly said the crane quickly exceeded expectations, both through its capabilities and its learning curve.
"Working a 114 ft. radius with such a small foot-printed crane was quite an experience at first. We would often pull up to job sites and people would ask, ‘Is this crane going to reach?' Customers are blown away with how compact the unit is, in contrast with the total system length we can stretch out to."
Kelly described a long-reach job to replace the flag halyards at historic Fort Adams in Newport, R.I.
"Installing the double swing jib was fast and easy," Kelly said, adding, "On the other end of the spectrum, the crane can often be found loading / unloading 40 ft. shipping containers, weighing around 30,000 lbs."
Kelly also praised the Demag AC 45 City crane's fast and efficient setup, saying, "Setup and breakdown times are extremely short. We often find ourselves on the same job site, but in different locations throughout the day. The City crane enables us to complete a lift and quickly move on to the next one.
"The ease of moving the crane is really notable. It is not uncommon for us to have three to four jobs in a day, spread out all over Rhode Island. With a top speed of 50 mph, the City crane allows us to cover 100 percent of our state."
Kelly said that with its three-axle steering with multiple modes, the City crane can fit almost anywhere. The differential locks also have come in handy a time or two, Kelly said.
"Sometimes you just get stuck. But once engaged, the City crane always seems to climb out without issue," he said.
As for learning how to operate a crane from a manufacturer unique to the Steel Giraffe fleet, Kelly said the IC-1 Plus computer software was extremely intuitive.
"It's basically like using an iPad. The full color display really brings it to life and makes it easy to read and see in all conditions," Kelly commented, adding, "Switching between parts of lines, crane modes, telescope modes and general situational monitoring is as easy as touching the correct icon on the screen."
In its two years owning the crane, Steel Giraffe has used it in every imaginable setup: jib offsets, runner, runner with searcher hook and offset, extensive pick and carry duty, variable outriggers, reduced counterweight package. Kelly said that with the three different telescope modes, the crane configurations are virtually endless.
Kelly also shared other interesting projects Steel Giraffe has tackled with the Demag AC 45 City crane, including a super yacht mast installation, moving MRI medical equipment, bridge work, art installations, loading the America's Cup boat onto the Antonov Cargo Carrier Aircraft, and small to medium modular home builds.
The crane continues to impress both the clients and the operators. Kelly said that he has been elated with Steel Giraffe's purchase of the AC 45 City crane and looks forward to what Tadano has to offer in the future.
For more information, visit www.tadano.com.