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types of Lifting Slings
Monday, 19th December 2022 Materials Handling

Understanding the Advantages and Disadvantages of Various Types of Lifting Slings

Types of Lifting Slings

Lifting slings are primarily used for commercial construction purposes because their use is to assist with easily transporting large, heavy or awkwardly-shaped loads from one point to another around a construction site.

Various forms of lifting slings are used in construction, industrial, transport and marine sectors and for each of these areas, slings are utilised for various requirements. There are also a variety of lifting slings to choose from depending on your needs.

Here, we are going to look at the various aspects of a lifting sling as well as what to be mindful about when both selecting and using one correctly.

Read on for this helpful guide, and impress the boss when you’re required to be in the know of this versatile tool!

Lifting sling materials most commonly consist of either cable, chain, rope or webbing, and are used with the aid of a crane or another lifting device.

They are predominantly used for lifting various types of loads especially where potential damage can be a concern when used for lifting items on and off construction trucks, as well as for transporting heavy, irregular or fragile items around a construction site.

Wire rope, fibre rope, chain, synthetic, web and metal mesh slings are the most sought after and widely used types of lifting slings throughout the commercial construction industry. They each have their own properties and benefits for being selected for the use they are required for.

As with all material-handling mechanisms, there are some challenges. Depending on the type of sling being used, the handler can experience several risks if not used correctly and in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. These issues are:

  • If there are any link that is damaged in a chain sling, this can be a potential safety hazard or cause damage to the load
  • If a synthetic sling is exposed to oil contaminants or UV rays for an extended period of time, they can compromise the integrity of the material that can potentially cause the sling to break during use
  • Synthetic slings are generally unsafe to use in high-temperature and chemical hazard-prone environment
  • In addition, synthetic slings are susceptible to cuts and abrasions from overuse or poor storage, and this can expedite the process of compromising the safety of slings, which may injure the handler or damage the load.

At Keble’s Trading, we stock a wide variety of lifting slings to cater to your requirements. With long-standing relationships with contractors in various construction and industrial settings, we know what kind of slings are best for specific applications and can point you in the right direction for the sling that will work best for your project.

Here, we discuss the types of lifting slings sold at Keble’s Trading:

Chain Sling For lifting purposes

The most popular choice in Australia is the chain sling. It is durable, easy to use, and is widely available (including accessories and parts). Chain slings are often used on job sites to lift heavy and irregularly-shaped items such as skip bins, concrete slabs, pre-fabricated structures, pipes, and various building materials.

Wire Rope Sling

Wire rope slings are commonly found throughout construction and industrial job sites for their great strength, tractability and resistance to corrosion. They are often used in construction, manufacturing, marine and oil & gas settings where lifting heavy loads is required and the environmental conditions can be tough on the materials.

Fibre Rope/Synthetic Material Slings

Commonly used for lifting fragile loads, synthetic material slings are lightweight, highly flexible, and are easy for the handler to use. Relatively inexpensive compared with other types of slings, it’s important to note that they can be easily damaged due to their material fragility.

Due to the flexible materials of fibre rope or synthetic material slings, they are usually utilised in settings where abstractly-shaped objects are required to be lifted, as the material easily conforms to the shape of the item that needs lifting. In many settings such as in construction, painting and marine use, whether for temporary or permanent lifting purposes, synthetic material slings are an inexpensive option because of the material’s pliability, load grip, as well as for safety in terms of damaging the surface of the load.

Here at Keble’s Trading, we stock two main types of lifting slings—flat and round.

With regard to strength and durability, these types are available in all sizes and start at around 1 metric tonne capacity. In accordance with industry standards, each sling is colour-coded in accordance with the weight it can handle. Depending on your project requirements, we can provide you with lifting slings of 1, 3 or 5 metric tonnes in capacity, and can recommend how many may be required should you need to invest in multiple slings to handle the weight of the load.

Lifting slings are available in 0.5 metres increments and start at 0.5 metres in length. Chain slings can be purchased off the shelf in 1- 2- and 3-metre sizes, but you can buy custom-made ones too. All of our chain slings come with a shortener to fit your application needs. We can further customise the slings to size onsite to cater to your project’s unique needs.

With each of these sling type’s durability, reliability and ease of use, help with determining which sling type would be best suited to your project can be narrowed down by assessing the following:

  • Size of the load
  • Weight of the load
  • Shape of the load
  • Temperature of the material and its sensitivity
  • Weather on the days scheduled for lifting the load
  • Frequency of sling use

If you’re still unsure about which sling type would be the wisest investment for your next big job, give us a call today to speak with one of our knowledgeable team members who can direct you toward the product that would best suit your requirements.

At Kebel’s Trading, in addition to slings, we carry all the necessary components and accessories to further assist with and customise your sling to fit your requirements, such as various types of lifting equipment and lifting hooks.

When purchasing a lifting sling from Keble’s Trading, it is important to note that we also provide periodic inspection services for your sling, which include a complete examination of your slings to ensure that they still conform with industry standards prior to their next use. It is a legal requirement in Australia and in accordance with the Australian Building Codes Board that all commercial equipment get a periodic inspection to examine for potential damage to the sling with the aim to avoid any possible injury sustained by the handler on its subsequent use.

Types of Lifting Slings- FAQs

What should you consider when selecting a sling for a lift?

You should note the weight, shape and material of the load being lifted, as well as the environmental conditions on the day when it is scheduled to be used.

What are some factors that may damage a sling?

Some factors that could damage a sling include extreme heat, oil contaminants and UV rays for synthetic slings. Should there be any chips, stretching or notable damage to a link in a chain sling, these can also further damage the sling and also compromise the load being lifted.

Are there any key/critical points to keep in mind?

It is important to ensure safe and correct handling of the lifting sling and book your periodic inspections in accordance with the Australian Building Codes Board regulations.

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