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Dear reader,
This is issue #283 - 26 October 2006 of the weekly newsletter for industry professionals.
“Pyroban opens a plant outside Europe.”


SPECIAL REPORT: Beware of bad vibes

Konecranes’ fourth China factory opens in 2007
NER helps police, insurers check serial numbers
BT invests in Mjölby plant
Pyroban establishes first Asian factory
Komatsu seeks feedback on 2005 products
JLG opens Georgia service company
Gehl machines star in reality TV
Sample of used equipment for sale

MLA wins multi-million dollar contract
Forklift safety attachment released in Australia

MLA wins major container handling deal
TCM Manufacturing USA: Building For The Future.

The most ergonomic forklift seat available!

Warehouse Safety Solutions
Advertising with in 2007.

FORK TALK: FLTA answers forklift questions

INDUSTRY PROFILE: Company: Mobile Industries Inc

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We recently updated our photo galleries with several new albums under the Trade Shows, Spectacular Machines and Creative Handling galleries. From time to time, members send us pictures of forklifts or other methods of materials handling, ranging from the spectacular to the eyebrow-raising. If you have a photograph to share with the e-community, drop us an email at We would be happy to display them in our galleries. thanks Jungheinrich AG, Doosan Infracore Europe SA, BT Products AB, Darren Joubert and Dirk Zeinstra for their help with this month’s feature article on forklift vibrations.

Beware of bad vibes

The UK Health & Safety Executive estimates more than five million working days are lost in the UK each year due to back pain. Vibrations transmitted to the body from off-road vehicles have been singled out as a cause of back pain. Off-road vehicle seat manufacturer Grammer AG’s research found more than 7.5 million workers in Europe were subjected to whole-body vibrations. It is not surprising then that the European Union (EU) is leading the world with its “vibration directive”.  Read more

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Konecranes’ fourth China factory opens in 2007

By Christine Liew

Konecranes plans to expand market share in Asia by manufacturing empty container handlers and reach stackers in a new Shanghai factory.

Construction of the plant has started and production will begin there during the first quarter of 2007.

This year, Konecranes purchased a 10,000 square metre piece of land to build the dedicated factory for container handling forklifts. The site is in the Lingang heavy industry zone, in south-eastern Shanghai, near the Yangshan International Airport.

Konecranes director for north east Asia ports, Ryan Flynn, said further land was reserved for a “phase two development”.

“The (phase one) facility will include a parts distribution warehouse, training centre, workshop, assembly area for reach stackers and empty container handlers, testing area for finished products and offices.”

Konecranes started producing empty container handlers in its factory in Shanghai’s Taopu Putuo District, at Futurity Island industrial park, in December 2005 ( News #238). The move was part of Konecranes’ China forklift production strategy, Konecranes told News in an exclusive statement.

Flynn said China was important for the company’s growth.

“China is the world’s largest container market and turnover is increasing at 25 per cent to 30 per cent a year.

“In 2005, the container throughput in China was 75 million and by 2010 the amount is forecast to double. Considerable port investments are being made to add capacity, which means a huge growth market for our machines,” Flynn said.

He said production and support facilities close to Asian customers were necessary for increased Asian market share.

“Maintaining the quality of our Swedish forklifts is also important and that is why we are using the same drive trains and components as Europe.”

The new plant would be capable of producing 200 reach stackers and empty container handlers a year. The phase two expansion planned for 2008 would double the plant’s capacity. Flynn said Swedish production would continue as normal.

Sweden-based Konecranes Lifttrucks AB would supply reach stackers and empty container handlers to the European, Middle-eastern, African and American markets, and heavy duty forklifts to the global market. The Shanghai factory would supply reach stackers and empty container handlers to the Asia Pacific market.

Konecranes was investing “considerable” funds into training and developing resources in China, Flynn said.

“We have already embarked on an aggresive recruitment program to execute our strategy since 2005 when production of empty container handlers started in December at Shanghai’s Taopu Putuo District.

“The staff have been selected from various locations across China although the talent pool in Shanghai is considered the most developed in China. That was a key factor in chosing Shanghai as the location for our modern forklift facility.

“Tremendous time has already been dedicated to training and development. We also have expatriates from Europe and Singapore working closely with our Chinese staff to ensure good transfer of skills,” he said.

Konecranes’ plant in Markaryd, southern Sweden, was extended this year. Its production capacity is now 30 per cent higher than in 2005. Konecranes established its first Shanghai factory in 2002 and a second one in 2005. It also has a rubber-tyred-gantry crane production facility in Dalian.

Konecranes Port Machinery (Shanghai) Co Ltd, a newly registered company, will be Konecranes’ “main business driver in Asia” for forklifts and port machinery.

Group sales for Konecranes totalled EUR971 million (USD1.218 billion) in 2005. It employs 7,000 people in 38 countries. The crane and forklift manufacturer is listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange.

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NER helps police, insurers check serial numbers
NEW YORK, NY, United States

The US-based National Equipment Register (NER) has launched a 24-hour service enabling law enforcers and insurers to check the validity of product identification numbers (PIN) on stolen equipment.

NER operations manager Glen Sider said many thefts were incorrectly entered into police and insurance company computers because of a wide variety of PIN formats or serial numbers on farm and construction equipment.

NER hopes the PINcheck service would increase the accuracy of equipment theft reporting and improve the success of police investigations, leading to more equipment recoveries and arrests.

There were thousands of PINs in NER’s electronic database. Each equipment manufacturer has different PIN formats, which can also change mid-product line, Sider said. Forklifts were included in the data.

Law enforcers and insurers can contact NER 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to check if a PIN is correct for any make, model, type or year of equipment. PINcheck can be integrated into electronic and online processes, an NER statement said.

Serial numbers or PINs were used for identifying forklifts for maintenance, examinations, truck or component recalls, and sales, hire and rental documentation.

David Ellison, chief executive of the UK Fork Lift Truck Association (FLTA), said serial numbers were easily removed but could deter “ad hoc theft”. More than 20 forklift thefts were reported to the FLTA each year.

Counterbalance forklifts were most commonly stolen in the UK, “maybe because they were most likely to be left outside”, he said.

The FLTA has a “security alert system” to warn the association’s dealer members if they buy a stolen forklift.

“If a member company, or one of their customers, has a truck stolen they forward details to us in a set format. We pass on the same details to all members overnight using a broadcast fax system.

“Stolen trucks are often taken out of the country, as part of organised crime, to the Middle East or Eastern Europe. Once they are reported missing, they are rarely seen or heard of again,” Ellison said.

He said a national register for stolen forklifts was a good idea if it did not incur costs for users.

Sider said NER charged annual fees for larger fleets like United Rentals, RSC Equipment Rental and Hertz rental companies, and USD30 per machine for a lifetime registration.

Japanese Industrial Vehicles Association senior manager Ken’ichiro Takase said he had not heard much about forklift thefts in Japan.

“There is no statistical data for stolen forklifts in Japan.

“As far as I know, no association or government offices have undertaken initiatives to recover stolen equipment,” Takase said.

NER maintains a national database of equipment ownership consisting of 13 million records and a database of equipment theft, consisting of 80,000 records. NER claims to have assisted in the recovery of more than USD10 million of stolen equipment.

The Belgium-based European Confederation of Equipment Distributors (ECED) has an online database of stolen machinery. The ECED is a lobby group for 2,000 equipment dealers and renters in Europe.

The National Plant & Equipment Register, in Bath, UK, maintains an international database of owned and stolen equipment that includes construction equipment and agricultural machinery.

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BT invests in Mjölby plant
MJÖLBY, Sweden

BT has invested nearly EUR4 million (USD5.02 million) in its Mjölby plant to cope with growing demand for hand pallet trucks.

“While production of hand pallet trucks has, for many countries, moved to the far east, BT has signalled a commitment to continued European production,” a BT statement said.

Sven Wirenhammar, general manager of BT Europe’s hand trucks division, said BT had added a new production line at Mjölby to increase production capacity and efficiency. Old production equipment have been replaced and certain processes and components standardised.  

BT’s hand pallet truck, the BT Lifter, is approaching 3,000,000 units produced since manufacturing started 60 years ago.

The investment included developing a new pump unit for the BT Lifter. The pump unit was produced using highly-automated robot cells, “with turning, milling and drilling plus high-precision machining techniques”.

Last month, BT started producing its latest series of hand pallet trucks. The truck continues BT’s lifetime guarantee on fork frames, introduced in 2005. The series differs from the old trucks, because it has the new pump unit that took three years to design.

The pump unit has fewer parts, which “improves reliability”. The hydraulic body is cast in a single piece, improving lifting performance and avoiding risk of leakages, the statement said.

BT conducted full-load work cycle tests that showed the new pallet truck delivered 50 per cent more work cycles than its predecessor.

Finnish business news provider Esmerk reported BT has tripled forklift production over the past 15 years. The report said BT aimed to increase production capacity from 40,000 units a year to 60,000 units a year for 2006 to 2010 ( News #277).

The BT Group celebrated its 60th anniversary in April. A part of Toyota Industries Corp, BT has nearly 9,000 employees, seven production sites in four countries and annual sales of SEK15 billion (USD1,968 million).

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Warehouse Safety Solutions

Warehouse Safety Solutions has grown to be one of Australia’s leading suppliers of safety technology to the warehousing industry.

Warehouse Safety Solutions supplies products such as:

  • Speed Limiters
  • Speed Monitors
  • Driver ID
  • Buddy System
  • Camera Systems
  • Seat Belt System
  • Fork Alert
  • Forklift Scales
  • Pedestrian Gates & Railing
  • Pro Flare


WSS ShopFront

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Pyroban establishes first Asian factory

Explosion-proof specialist Pyroban has opened its first factory outside Europe, in Suzhou city, Jiangsu province, China.

The 1,300 square metre plant, in Suzhou Industrial Park, is initially capable of converting 150 forklifts a year. Pyroban will offer its explosion-proof systems to Chinese and foreign brand forklifts.

Pyroban (Suzhou) general manager Alan Winn and the company’s engineering manager are the only UK-born staff. The rest of the workers are from Suzhou.

“The engineering manager has responsibility for training to ensure quality standards at Pyroban China are consistent with Pyroban’s strict manufacturing standards in Europe,” Winn said.

No employee number was available but Winn said more workers were expected to be employed once the plant was in full production.

“Pyroban will consolidate its position in China as a leading supplier of explosion-proof solutions to the materials handling industry. Pyroban will develop the skills of its workforce [in China] through education and training programs, so it can establish a full design and production facility in Suzhou,” he said.

Winn came to China as managing director of the Chinese subsidiary of a company providing injection moulded parts for the mobile telephone industry. He left that company in 2003 to head a Sino/UK joint-venture consulting company before joining Pyroban. He is has a degree in physics.

China has a statutory regulation governing explosion-proof systems, GB19854-2005 “General rules of explosion-proof techniques of industrial trucks for explosive atmospheres”. The regulations “generally follow the European standard EN1755:2000 but with some significant local changes”, a Pyroban statement said.

Winn said the Pyroban China factory “will make explosion-proof conversions according to local systems. Our move to China is to support the Chinese market in the future, not to export to Europe”.

Pyroban was introduced to China more than 20 years ago by the Beijing Material Handling Institute to help Chinese forklift manufacturers produce explosion protection safety products. Its other plants are in Shoreham by Sea, West Sussex, the UK, and Hendrik Ido Ambacht, in the Netherlands.

Pyroban officially opened its China plant on October 18 with a traditional Chinese ceremony. Pyroban Group CEO Brian Tyrer, Pyroban Ltd managing director Ian Ratcliff, and representatives from the China Construction Machinery Association, Anhui Heli Fork Truck Company and the Industrial Vehicles Safety Standards Committee were present.

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Komatsu seeks feedback on 2005 products
MILAN, Italy

Komatsu Forklift’s European head office has asked European clients for feedback on the reliability, comfort and productivity of Komatsu’s 1.5-tonne to 3.5-tonne AX50 and BX50 forklifts, rolled out in 2005.

A Komatsu Division statement said 50 European Komatsu end-users and sales personnel, “qualified to express an opinion”, received a questionnaire which was the final step in a four-part product evaluation.

The evaluation was “an on-the-ground survey of the forklift after a minimum of 500-600 hours use and has the objective of revealing any problems related to quality, assembly or product-specific defects”, the statement said.

The European questionnaire followed similar surveys in Japan, other Asian nations and Russia.

Komatsu's European clients “affirmed their satisfaction with the quality, reliability, productivity and handling of the forklifts”, the statement said.

It said questionnaire results would assist in developing a blueprint for the next model.

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JLG opens Georgia service company

JLG wants to generate at least 35 per cent of consolidated operating profit from its after-market business.

As part of the strategy, JLG has opened a third repair and maintenance subsidiary, ServicePlus Inc, in Kennesaw, Georgia, near Atlanta. JLG has previously opened ServicePlus companies in Houston, Texas, and McConnellsburg, Pennsylvania ( News #219).

The company plans to open more ServicePlus locations in future, a JLG statement said.

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Advertising with in 2007.

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If forklift manufacturers, owners, fleet managers or dealers are your customers, let us help you reach them. offers an exciting range of opportunities, catering for both international and local advertising campaigns. Our team is trained to help tailor an advertising package that meets your marketing strategy and budget.

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For more information or a no obligation quote, email, phone +61 7 3369 9090 or fax +61 7 3369 9096.

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Gehl machines star in reality TV
WEST BEND, WI, United States

Two Gehl telehandlers and a skid loader will have starring roles in an award-winning home improvement TV show to air in the US next month.

Gehl Company, a US manufacturer of compact construction and agricultural equipment, donated use of a Gehl RS8-44 telehandler, a Gehl CT6-18 telehandler and a Gehl 78 10E skid loader to ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition to help build a new home for the Koepke family, of Dundee, Wisconsin.

The Emmy award-winning show is expected to air on Sunday, November 19, at 7pm central US time.

About 1,200 volunteers and 1,500 subcontractors helped design and build the Koepke family’s new home in 100 hours.

Produced by Endemol USA, the show features a “race against time on a project ordinarily taking at least four months to achieve”. The Extreme Makeover team takes seven days to rebuild a house for a lucky family.

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Search 8380 listings in the MarketplaceSample of used equipment for sale:

Komatsu FB 16 M-3 E 1999 Germany EUR 4450 Details
Nissan PJ01A15PV 1999 United States USD 9999 Details
Mitsubishi SB 16 P 1996 Germany EUR 2650 Details
Steinbock WN 20 S 1996 Germany EUR 250 Details
Still R60-25 1999 Germany EUR 4450 Details
Raymond OPC30TT 1999 United States USD 8396 Details
Daewoo D30S-2 1997 Australia AUD 5000 Details
Mitsubishi FG30 2000 Mexico USD 13500 Details
Nissan KCPHO2A25PV 1996 United States USD 10500 Details
Still R06-06 2005 Germany EUR 7800 Details
Clark EC500-45 1986 Canada CAD 7995 Details
Yale GDP 50 1992 New Zealand NZD 10000 Details
Taylor TEC-950-L 1994 United States USD 199000 Details
Raymond EASI-OPC30TT 1998 United States USD 7900 Details

and thousands more...
Click here to include your used forklifts, stackers, telehandlers, container handlers, attachments etc.

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MLA wins multi-million dollar contract
SYDNEY, New South Wales, Australia

MLA Holdings Pty Ltd (MLA) has won a major, five-year rental contract to supply container handlers to rail freight transport company Pacific National Pty Ltd.

MLA managing director Ken Rathgen said MLA would supply 20 MLA Vulcan C4531 reach stackers to Pacific National, in a deal “worth nearly AUD30 million”.

MLA is the exclusive Australian importer and distributor of Mitsubishi forklifts and the Vulcan range of heavy forklifts and container handling equipment.

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Forklift safety attachment released in Australia
MOOREBANK, Sydney, Australia

A German-manufactured forklift driver restraint, BodyGuard, is now available in Australia and New Zealand.

Australian forklift restraint supplier Collective Intelligence Industrial Fleet Management Pty Ltd (CI), based in Moorebank, Sydney, is the exclusive distributor for the restraint, released last week at the Sydney Safety Show.

A CI statement said the restraint “prevents the operator from being thrown out during a lateral tip over”.

The restraint is a foam-padded door bar made of plastic and metal that does not protrude beyond a forklift’s outer contours.

CI general manager, sales, Garry Squire said the attachment suited 1-tonne to 8-tonne counterbalanced forklifts. He said brackets were manufactured to suit each forklift “which means [the door bar] can be fitted in about 1.5 hours”.

Fritzmeier Systems GmbH & Co, an 80-year-old global engineering company, based in Grosshelfendorf, Germany, manufactures the restraint.

Squire said several models of the BodyGuard door bar were being distributed in Australia and New Zealand.

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MLA wins major container handling deal

MLA Holdings Pty Ltd (the exclusive importer and distributor of Mitsubishi forklift trucks and importer of the new MLA Vulcan range of heavy forklifts and container handling equipment) announced today the winning of a Pacific National contract amounting to millions of dollars of container handling equipment supply.

After many months of negotiations MLA has won their third consecutive five-year contract to supply Container Handling Trucks to Australia’s leading freight rail operator.

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.

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TCM Manufacturing USA: Building For The Future.

Since 1989, TCM has been building lift truck products in a modern 165,000 square foot facility in Columbia, South Carolina. With the help of a dedicated workforce, the factory has met the demand in the United States for reliable, powerful, and productive TCM lift trucks.

To meet increasing demand and to attain their objective of delivering maximum value to their customers, TCM Corporation is in the process of upgrading its factory with a 3 year $2.5 million renovation project to increase output, raise quality, and improve worker safety.

Click here for the full text of this release, including pictures.

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The most ergonomic forklift seat available!

The ERGO INDUSTRY is jointly developed by Recaro and Eblo Seating. Recaro has more than 30 years' experience in professional motor sport and ergonomic seating. The seating technology is now used to make a new seat especially for forklifts. Sit better, drive more safely and stay fit!

Click here for more information on this product, including pictures.

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FLTA answers forklift questions
ALTON, United Kingdom

What is the minimum legal age to drive a forklift? If you’re not sure, the UK Fork Lift Truck Association’s (FLTA) new FAQ resource could help.

Click here for the full Fork Talk feature, including pictures.

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Company: Mobile Industries Inc

Since its humble beginnings, Mobile Industries Inc has evolved into a world leader in the materials handling manufacturing industry. Mobile boasts a 100,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Canada and was one of the first North American materials handling manufacturers to secure a joint-venture agreement with a Chinese manufacturing facility.

Click here for the full Industry Profile feature, including pictures.

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Todd Brennan, a man on a forklift mission

Todd Brennan lives and works in Helensburgh, a small town halfway between Sydney and Wollongong. He is a gentle, unassuming man, but his ambition is far from unassuming. Brennan has dedicated more than half his life to the Australian forklift industry.

Click here for the full Industry Profile feature, including pictures.

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3 of 8,380 listings
Jungheinrich - EFG-DF 16 SPG - 2000
Almelo, Netherlands
Datsun - PF02A25U - 2000
Dandenong, Victoria, Australia
Yale - oso30 - 1999
Saint-Laurent, Quebec, Canada

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Tip off

Do you know something our readers should know? Write to or provide information anonymously here.

In the Discussion Forums

My forklift's contactors are giving problems.
"I have a problem with the contactors of the Nissan N01L15U. As you know, this forklift has two forward-reverse contactors for each electric motor. The problem is that the left motor always goes forward and the right motor always goes reverse."
manuel_m, Spain

Plethora of paper clamps - need help!
"Does anyone know of a business that buys used attachments? I have a plethora of paper clamps and would like to reduce my inventory a trifle."
thomas_e, United States

The leasing wish list.
"What exactly are you looking for from a lease company? We seem to be doing ok with everyone but I want everyone to be raving about how good we are to work with. We compete with every large company in every other industry we work in ..."
john_p, United States

String cutter for baleclamp?
"I'm looking for a product that could be attached to a baleclamp or an actual baleclamp that would cut and possibly even remove the metal string around paper pulp bale. Has anyone heard of something like that? "
ville_s, Finland

Discussion Forums

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Upcoming Events

1. Making Sense of Chain of Responsibility
Brisbane, Australia
6th december 2006

2. The National Tradesman's Expo
Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Australia
Various dates March to June 2007

3. ICUEE Exposition - “The Demo Expo”
Louisville, Kentucky, United States
16th to 18th October 2007


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1. Electric Field Service Technician - Full time
United States, Oklahoma City

2. Territory Sales - Full time
United States, Lubbock Texas

3. Field Service Technician - Full time
United States, Northwest Suburbs of Chicago

4. Spraypainter - Contract / temp
Australia, Oxley, Brisbane, Queensland

5. Sales Representative - Full time
United States, Chesapeake, VA

6. Service Manager - Full time
United States, Birmingham, Alabama

7. National Sales Director - Full time

8. Corporate Service Manager - Full time
United States, West Coast

9. Forklift technicians - Full time
Belgium, Diest


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1. Service Manager/Engineer - Full time
Europe, North America,Midle East, Asia, United States

2. Operations Manager/Service Manager - Full time
Melbourne, Australia

3. Sales Training - Full time
Columbus In., United States


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Fast Facts

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Editorial Calendar

Explosion proof forklifts
Forklifts in the logging and timber industry
Industrial batteries and chargers
The forklift market in China
Reach stackers
Forklift tyres, wheels and castors
The German forklift industry
Container attachments
Truck mounted forklifts
Bad vibrations
The forklift market in Canada
End of year review


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