29 April 2008
Kato Works exhibited three new cranes at Conet, the largest of which was the SL-650R, a 65 tonne capacity truck crane. An interesting feature is the crane's jib, which is a three-piece hydraulically telescoped model that can be used to raise the maximum hook height from 44.5 m with the main boom to 58.6 m.
Also on display was the MR-350SL from Kato's city crane range. Like the SL-650R, this 35 tonne capacity unit features a three-stage fly-jib that can raise the maximum hook height from 33.4 to 47.3 m. Also on display was the 13 tonne MR-130 city crane.
All three cranes are designed for the Japanese market, but Kiyohiko Akagi, manager of Kato's overseas marketing department said, “We are ready to export if there is demand, but truck cranes like the SL-650R are only really popular in the US and Japan.”
This partly explains why the company has pulled back from the European market in recent years. Mr Akagi added, “We have sold a lot of cranes in Europe over the years, but we are not active at the moment because of the CE-mark requirement.” He continued, “I think this will change in a year or two.”
Another interesting launch was Tadano's 'concept' road/rail city crane. The machine features a set of retractable railway guide and drive wheels in addition to its normal road tyres, which allow it to mount and travel