A typical counterbalance forklift consists of the following components:
Image of electric forklift with component description
Forklift frame – the basis for the machine to which masts, axles, wheels, counterweights,?overhead guards and power sources are connected. The frame may have a fuel and hydraulic fluid tank configured as part of the frame assembly.
Counterweight – is a mass attached to the rear of the forklift frame. The purpose of the counterweight is to offset the load being lifted. In electric forklifts, large batteries can be used as part of the counterweight.
Cab – Contains the operator’s seat and control pedals, steering wheel, joystick, switch and area of ??the dashboard containing operator readings. The cab area may be open or closed, but it is covered by a cage top shroud assembly. When closed, the cab can also be equipped with cab heaters for cold climate countries and fans or air conditioners for hot weather. [twenty two]
Overhead Guard – A metal roof supported by pillars at every corner of the cab to help protect the operator from any falling objects. On some forklifts, the top shroud is an integral part of the frame assembly. [twenty three]
Power Source – Composed of an internal combustion engine that can be powered by LP gas, CNG, gasoline or diesel fuel. Electric forklifts are powered by batteries or fuel cells to power the electric motor. For warehouses and other indoor applications, electric forklifts have the advantage of not producing carbon monoxide.
Tilt Cylinder – Hydraulic cylinder mounted on the forklift frame and mast. The tilt cylinder pivots the mast back or forward to help engage the load.
Mast – A vertical component that is used to raise and lower the load. It consists of interlocking rails and also provides lateral stability. The interlocking rails can have rollers or bushings as guides. The mast is hydraulically driven and operated directly by one or more hydraulic cylinders or using a chain from the cylinder. It can be mounted on the front axle or frame of the forklift. The change in the “container mast” allows the fork to rise a few meters without increasing the overall height of the forklift. This is very useful when double loading the tray into a container or under a mezzanine floor.
Bracket – is a component that is mounted by a fork or other accessory. It is mounted to the mast rail and moved up and down by a chain or by direct connection to a hydraulic cylinder. Like the mast, the bracket can have a roller or bushing to guide it in the interlocking mast rail. [twenty four]
Load Backrest – is an extension of the rack that is bolted or welded to the carriage to prevent the load from moving backwards when the carriage is raised to full height. [twenty four]
Accessories – can be made up of a mechanism that is permanently or temporarily attached to the bracket to help the load engage properly. Various material handling accessories are available. Some accessories include side shifters, sliding plate attachments, carton holders, multi-purpose clamps, rotators, fork locators, carpet shanks, rod processors, container handlers and roller clamps.
Tires – solid for indoor use and pneumatic for exterior use.