PHL believes that Sideloaders are a good option if you’re looking to handle wide or long loads. This is even more the case if you operate within a warehouse environment with narrow aisles. These machines include an integrated loading platform to help bear the weight. And, unlike front-loading forklifts, the Sideloader allows the load pressure to be distributed across the machine. This gives the operator far more stability compared to a truck where the weight is concentrated at one end.
What’s the Benefit of a Sideloader?
Imagine a front-loading forklift attempting to negotiate a warehouse aisle with a six-metre pipe across its fork. There just isn’t the room for the pipe to pass. Sideloaders are effective with this kind of material because they enable to operator to pick up the load side-on, then drive forward. In a warehouse environment, this means the Sideloader transports the load length-ways down the aisle.
The fact that a Sideloader doesn’t need to turn within the aisle is a massive bonus for warehouse planning. Some customers report a 50% space saving after they added a Sideloader to their fleet.
Has the Side Loader Had Its Day?
Maybe it’s due to its specialist nature that the market for Sideloaders is relatively small. Some manufacturers have reported a slow-down in demand, while others such as Linde have ceased production altogether. Despite its appeal within Europe, elsewhere people sometimes see them as a niche solution and tend to overlook them in favour of cross-functional machines.
At PHL we still see an active market for Sideloaders. As long as companies need to handle super-long and super-heavy materials, a Sideloader remains a solid choice. Technology can also play its part in keeping the Sideloader practical and relevant. The introduction of Four-Way Machines increases the flexibility and efficiency within the product range. Technological aids such as cameras and monitors help to eliminate the blind spots that come with handling long, large loads. And electronic guidance systems and sensors mean that the Sideloader is better equipped than ever for the modern warehouses, even in Narrow Aisle set-ups.
If you’re considering buying a used Sideloader, PHL can help assess your requirements. We’ll find the best machine for the task in hand. Get in touch with our team of experts today.